Breaking the Wall

July 22, 2019

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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: 217.33 Year: 2189.42
Saucony Type A Lifetime Miles: 627.15
Bare Feet Lifetime Miles: 446.12
Nike Double Stroller Lifetime Miles: 124.59
Navy Crocs Lifetime Miles: 2133.34
Navy Crocs 2 Lifetime Miles: 1034.77
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Easy run today. Got up in the morning and it was snowing. Just had a dream about winning some small 10 K. For a prize they were going to give me some fairly large contraption of no practical use created for a special project by the local high school students. I felt bad I had to tell them I could not take it. With only 1060 square feet in my house, 4 children, and one more on the way, there was simply not enough room.

My wife Sarah tells me my dreams are boring - too close to reality. As a case in point, a few nights ago I dreamt about Hobie Call winning the Hobblecreek Half-Marathon with the time of 1:03:22. He was disappointed afterwards because he was shooting for 1:02. Well, Hobbie indeed could have run that time - he ran 1:05 in that race in 1999, and a high 1:07 in the Great Salt Lake Half-Marathon in 2002, which my predictor converts to 1:02 in Hobblecreek. And he is the type of guy that sets high goals and tends to be disappointed when he does not get them.

I also had a dream before the St. George marathon in 2003 that the race had already happened Trevor Pettingill won it with the time of 2:20:04. In reality, Trevor ended up winning with the time of 2:20:35.

Dreams forgotten and after a short scripture study I went with George and Eric on the Slate Canyon Loop. We did 4x400 at around 1:20-1:25 pace in the middle. Then dropped Eric off and finished the 10 miles with George. Maybe one day George and I will convert Eric to the blog religion. Right now he is doing it the non-tech way - Runners World book.

Did my "always on the run" miles in the afternoon, as well as separate runs with Benjamin and Jennifer to hit the total of 14 miles for the day.

Night Sleep Time: 0.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.00
From d-enz on Thu, Mar 09, 2006 at 22:01:51


I'll get my 9th grade Geography students working on a smaller contraption so you can be more satisfied with all your winnings.

Interesting you mentioned Trevor Pettingill, I ran with him in the fall of 1998 at BYU. He actually was one the guys I had the most in common with. It was a different team. Awesome freshmen, Bryan Lindsay, Nate Robinson, Matt Adams, and older married guys Matt Paulsen, Randon Richards. At times I didn't feel like I fit in with the group, but I did get along good with Trevor.

From Steve Hooper on Fri, Mar 10, 2006 at 09:19:30

I wish I had more dreams about me winning races. I can only recall having one running dream back in 1999 where I ran a 10k on the track at BYU in 28:30. I remeber being pretty happy with winning the race with that time.

From SuperFly on Fri, Mar 10, 2006 at 10:28:41

I don't know why you had to bring up Hobbie Call. I still have nightmares about that guy stopping off for a soda and still beating me by 5 minuets. He's a machine. I ran a 10k with him this fall...I got sick and vomited...He won the race by FOREVER over the next placer. That was a bad day.

Sasha I'm considering one of the two: Deseret News Marathon in July or the SLC marathon in June. If I want to peak by the St.George in Oct which race would be most benificial?

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