Breaking the Wall

SLC Track Club Winter Series 15 K

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Orem,UT,United States

Member Since:

Jan 27, 1986



Goal Type:

Olympic Trials Qualifier

Running Accomplishments:

Best marathon: 2:23:57 (2007, St. George). Won the Top of Utah Marathon twice (2003,2004). Won the USATF LDR circuit in Utah in 2006.

Draper Days 5 K 15:37 (2004)

Did not know this until June 2012, but it turned out that I've been running with spina bifida occulta in L-4 vertebra my entire life, which explains the odd looking form, struggles with the top end speed, and the poor running economy (cannot break 16:00 in 5 K without pushing the VO2 max past 75).  


Short-Term Running Goals:

Qualify for the US Olympic Trials. With the standard of 2:19 on courses with the elevation drop not exceeding 450 feet this is impossible unless I find an uncanny way to compensate for the L-4 defect with my muscles. But I believe in miracles.

Long-Term Running Goals:

2:08 in the marathon. Become a world-class marathoner. This is impossible unless I find a way to fill the hole in L-4 and make it act healthy either by growing the bone or by inserting something artificial that is as good as the bone without breaking anything important around it. Science does not know how to do that yet, so it will take a miracle. But I believe in miracles.


I was born in 1973. Grew up in Moscow, Russia. Started running in 1984 and so far have never missed more than 3 consecutive days. Joined the LDS Church in 1992, and came to Provo, Utah in 1993 to attend BYU. Served an LDS mission from 1994-96 in Salt Lake City, Utah. Got married soon after I got back. My wife Sarah and I are parents of eleven children: Benjamin, Jenny, Julia, Joseph, Jacob, William, Stephen, Matthew,  Mary,  Bella.  and Leigha. We home school our children.

I am a software engineer/computer programmer/hacker whatever you want to call it, and I am currently working for RedX. Aside from the Fast Running Blog, I have another project to create a device that is a good friend for a fast runner. I called it Fast Running Friend.

Favorite Quote:

...if we are to have faith like Enoch and Elijah we must believe what they believed, know what they knew, and live as they lived.

Elder Bruce R. McConkie


Favorite Blogs:

Miles:This week: 0.00 Month: 16.00 Year: 2314.91
Saucony Type A Lifetime Miles: 627.15
Bare Feet Lifetime Miles: 446.12
Nike Double Stroller Lifetime Miles: 124.59
Neon Crocs 3 Lifetime Miles: 1185.83
Race: SLC Track Club Winter Series 15 K (9.321 Miles) 00:56:55, Place overall: 16, Place in age division: 8
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Fast Running Friend Workout - 2020-02-22 08:36:55
Workout Totals: Distance20.314Time2:31:54.40Pace7:28.68
SLC Track Club 15 K, 56:55, 16th overall, 8th master. Top results:

Place Overall;Name;Gender;Age;Time
1;Benjamin Pachev;m;21;00:48:38.1
2;Fritz Van De Kamp;m;40;00:48:56.2
3;Jace Nye;m;35;00:50:21.8
4;Teren Jameson;m;42;00:51:12.2
5;Nathan Hornok;m;41;00:51:17.1
6;Melchor Suaste;m;42;00:51:27.9
7;Albert Wint;m;40;00:52:02.2
8;Matthew Gulden;m;32;00:53:23.8
9;Kyle Barrett;m;31;00:54:50.5
10;Thatcher Olson;m;29;00:55:02.6
11;David Taylor;m;51;00:55:10.1
12;Levi Pace;m;36;00:56:00.1
13;Stephen Robinson;m;44;00:56:10.1
14;David Nierenberg;m;37;00:56:31.2
15;Taylor Call;m;26;00:56:53.3
16;Alexander Pachev;m;46;00:56:55.0
17;Riley McCarter;m;19;00:57:04.2
18;Daniel Haway;m;42;00:57:36.0
19;STEPHEN GLOD;m;18;00:57:43.0
20;Scott Daw;m;34;00:58:10.9
21;Jacob Pachev;m;13;00:58:22.0
22;Christina Perry;f;38;00:58:23.4
23;Mark Payne;m;47;00:58:46.2
24;Jon Hansen;m;30;00:59:06.5
25;Janel Zick;f;28;00:59:09.5
26;Bill Cobler;m;56;00:59:29.0
27;Soren Moller;m;49;01:00:04.5
28;Ryan Timme;m;32;01:00:18.7
29;Jessica Stanford;f;50;01:00:41.1
30;Rob Murphy;m;55;01:00:54.6
31;Joseph Pachev;m;15;01:01:07.6
32;David Johnson;m;38;01:01:37.7
33;Rebecca Bennion;f;39;01:02:06.2
34;Lawrence Cannon;m;47;01:02:28.1
35;Natasha Hoffman;f;28;01:02:45.6
36;William Pachev;m;11;01:03:05.2

Benjamin ran 48:38, which is a course record for the 20-24 age division beating the previous record of John Coyle of 49:12 from 2014.

In the process he pulled/pushed Fritz Van De Kamp to the master's course record, and I believe all time personal best for the course as well. Fritz finished in 48:56.

Knowing that Fritz is fairly consistent and had run a fairly recent low 1:07 half, I figured if Benjamin could keep up with Fritz for most of the race, and maybe, if luck would have it, using the youth to his advantage in the kick, pull away in the last half mile, it would be a very good result. So I told him to run with Fritz, and then see what happens.

Very soon from the start Benjamin and Fritz separated themselves from the rest of the rather formidable field, and were averaging 5:16-5:17 pace, right on target for John's course record. They went through the first 5 K in 16:20, and had 24:34 at half way, on pace for 49:08. Then after seeing a 5:18 split for mile 5, Benjamin shifted gears and ran a 5:13, with around 32:40 at the 10 K mark, followed by I think around 5:08, which was now outside of Fritz's range.

In the last mile, in spite of having run 8+ already at a very brisk pace, he dug deeper and found a 5:03, which gives him 15:58 for the closing 5 K. So 5:14 average for 9+ miles on and out and back course at 4200 feet. I am estimating this is worth about 1:06:30 half on a good flat sea-level course. Now his speed it getting to the point where we can started thinking about a sub-2:19 marathon (previous Olympic Trials Qualifier, not sure what will happen in 2024), but we need to work on impact resilience. He ran 30 miles a week on his mission, and since returning gradually ramped it up to 76 a week, which right now seems to be a sweet spot as he is still improving. But eventually we will need to up it to at least 90 to run a good marathon.

My goal was under 57:00, and I was able to get it with 56:55. I started out with Chad and a few other runners, and we went through the first mile in 5:59 which was just perfect, but then they picked it up and we went through the 5 K in 18:29 which now was too fast, but there was nobody behind that I could trust to keep a steady pace, so I went with them. After that, Jacob and I backed off to a slower pace and started running somewhere around 6:10. We had 28:04 half way through. Around 5 miles Taylor Call caught up to us, and we went with him. Jacob made it with us to 6 miles, then he was out of gas, but at least he ran a 10 K PR of around 37:43-45. We had 37:40.

In the last 5 K, I felt Taylor was slowing down too much, so I gave it a push and dropped him, but then I got a side ache and slowed down enough for him to catch me. I was able to speed up and go with him, though he outkicked me by 2 seconds at the end.

Jacob suffered a lot in the last 5 K, but was able to finish in 58:22. Joseph paced William through the first half in 30:37, then sped up, but not by much, and ran 1:01:07 for the whole thing. William ran 1:03:05.

Later in the evening I ran more with the non-racing kids, which gave me the total of 20+ miles.

Mary broke 9:00 for the first time today with 8:56.4 on our out and back mile course. Her splits were 2:25, 2:21, 2:10, and 2:00.
Leg 1:Distance2.000Time16:18.20Pace8:09.10
Warm-up with Benjamin and Dave Taylor, part with Joseph, Jacob, and William.
Leg 2:Distance9.321Time1:03:06.20Pace6:46.20
15 K race.
Split 1:Distance9.321Time56:56.00Pace6:06.48
15 K - my time.
Split 2:Distance0.000Time1:27.80Pace0:00.00
Split 3:Distance0.000Time4:42.40Pace0:00.00
Leg 3:Distance4.100Time32:53.50Pace8:01.34
Cool-down with Benjamin and Dave Taylor.
Leg 4:Distance1.050Time8:35.20Pace8:10.67
With Stephen and Matthew.
Leg 5:Distance0.843Time6:44.80Pace8:00.19
With Stephen and Matthew.
Leg 6:Distance1.000Time8:27.70Pace8:27.70
With Stephen and Matthew.
Leg 7:Distance1.000Time8:56.40Pace8:56.40
With Stephen, Jenny, and Mary.
Leg 8:Distance1.000Time6:52.40Pace6:52.40
With Stephen and Jenny.

Neon Crocs 1 Miles: 20.31
Night Sleep Time: 0.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.00
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