Breaking the Wall

January 15, 2021

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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: 107.61 Year: 107.61
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: 1657.61
Brown Crocs 3 Lifetime Miles: 1276.97
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Was originally planning on 12x400. However, I caught the same scratchy throat type of cold again. Decided not to push the body too hard, but I still needed some anaerobic speed. Figured 6x400 would be the right type of workout. Did them with Ted, he ran them a bit slower, but not too far behind.

Warm up, then we started on the flattest portion of the trail. First 5 very consistently between 70.2 and 70.9. The recovery was usually a very slow 200 meter jog except one time we did 300 to get to a better place, one time we stopped for my bio break,  and another time (before the last one) we stopped for Ted's. But that is OK, this workout is more about speed for me than recovery, I just keep the recoveries fairly short to get it done in a reasonable amount of time, and I can get away with a very slow 200 meter jog.

On the last one pushed a bit on the last 200 meters. Got 68.5. In all repetitions the anaerobic bear started to climb on me at 200, and was comfortably (for him, not for me) sitting on my back by 300. However, as the last repetition shows, I could run through it for a while with a little bit of willpower application. Probably all of the repetitions were about 0.5 to a full second slower from having to ease off before the mark so as not to miss it. It was still dark.

Did a fairly long cool down. Ran to the library and back with the kids in the afternoon. Benjamin did well on the way back - hit a mile in 7:39 fairly relaxed, and in spite of a side ache.

Treating the cold with large doses of onion mixed with agave to make it somewhat edible.

Night Sleep Time: 0.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.00
From Cody on Thu, Mar 08, 2007 at 00:16:02


I have a Garmin question for you or anybody who might know. Is there a way to split up a workout or quit recording a workout and start a new one on the same day. For example, I would love to run a warmup then record a run and then record a cool-down all with a different "workout" for each section. The only way I can do it now is to hit the lap button when I am done with each section and then go back in the Training Center software and look at the pieces that I want. My desire is to have the total time reset and ave values reset so that when I run the hard miles, I know the real-time results of that phase of the run. Understand? That is one of my pet peeves of the Garmin. I have to mentally subtract the warmup from the rest of the run.

From Maria on Thu, Mar 08, 2007 at 05:14:34

Cody, I've done it several times, specifically in races, when I want to record warmup, race and cooldown separately. All you need to do, is just reset the workout time by holding the lap button until it resets itself, and then hit the start again. Then, if you go to history on the unit (or software), you'll see several workouts for that day, all recorded separately.

From Cody on Thu, Mar 08, 2007 at 10:02:20

Thanks for the tip Maria. I will try it out later today to see it in action. That sounds like it is exactly what I want do. Thanks

From steve ashbaker on Thu, Mar 08, 2007 at 10:39:03

You need to sleep more.

From Ryan Woods on Thu, Mar 08, 2007 at 13:32:55

Thanks for the advice. I've actually taken a lot of the steps you've just suggested. pretty much my last 2 years of college and the next 3 years out of college I ran every run at 5:45-6:00 pace including my long runs. These last 3 years I've dropped that back to 6:00-6:15 pace. Basically that's a pace where I'm very low heart rate and breathing rate. It's "conversation pace." But this is the formula I've been working with now for that last decade and I'm rarely injured. It's pretty obvious that the plantar problem came from my first track workout in spikes and since then it's been a battle of keeping it under control. Also, as for taking a day off, I've found my body responds much better to a shorter easy mileage day than to a complete day off. ie, my 5 mile run. It gets the system started up, warms up the muscles, and I get in a good stretch afterwards. This is all from my personal experience and what I've responded best to over the years.

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