Breaking the Wall

February 22, 2020

Recent EntriesHomeJoin Fast Running Blog Community!PredictorHealthy RecipesSasha Pachev's RacesFind BlogsMileage BoardTop Ten Excuses for Missing a RunTop Ten Training MistakesDiscussion ForumRace Reports Send A Private MessageWeek ViewMonth View
15% off for Fast Running Blog members at St. George Running Center!


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: 81.04 Year: 418.47
Saucony Type A Lifetime Miles: 627.15
Bare Feet Lifetime Miles: 446.12
Nike Double Stroller Lifetime Miles: 124.59
Navy Crocs 2 Lifetime Miles: 1576.28
Neon Crocs 1 Lifetime Miles: 1353.22
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Ran with Tyler. My original plan was to pace him through a 5 mile tempo at 5:30 pace. With the stomach troubles of yesterday that plan was put into question. However, I decided to give it a try anyway. I told Tyler I would run 5:30s until I can't.

I did take some measures to ease the impact of GI distress. There were two concerns. One, if there is something in the stomach that is not being digested, the nausea will come up. Two, with the lack of ability to digest food, low blood sugar, and glycogen depletion would cause problems. I had an interesting experience with a 5 mile tempo after a stomach flu about a year ago when I was able to run 5:30s in the first 2 miles, but then very quickly digressed to 5:55s for the rest of the run. To mitigate the impact of the illness, I ate my standard breakfast meal right before bed (uncooked rolled oats, dates, and peanuts mixed with soy mile) along with some Powerade, and added a large cup of Powerade in the morning as well.

We warmed up 2.62 miles and started the tempo. First mile was 5:24 with perfectly even splits by quarter. I noticed Tyler was struggling a bit at 5:25, and eased off the pace to the 5:30 target. Next mile was 5:31. Around 2 miles my legs started feeling slightly toxic, and I was concerned. But I figured I'd keep the pace for as long as I can and not worry about it. If I have to stop, I have to stop. Then we did a half in 2:45, (13:40 at the turnaround), and the next half in 2:46, which gave us another 5:31 mile. We got into a nice 1:22 per quarter groove after that, and I now started feeling confident I'd be able to sustain it to the end. Tyler struggled a bit around 3.75, so I eased off to a 1:24 quarter, which gave us a 5:30 mile for the next split. The mini-break helped Tyler regain his strength, and he pushed the pace to a 1:23 quarter on the mini-uphill, followed by a 1:21 once it flattened out. With about 500 to go he started struggling again, and a gap began to open up, but I figured he would close it in the final kick especially if he had a moving target, so I just kept the pace. Which is pretty much what happened. I finished in 27:21.6, Tyler was withing 0.5 of a second, which gave him a PR for 5 miles, as well as 4 miles en-route. Last mile was 5:25. Incidentally, this is my 5 mile PR for wearing Crocs, and only 33 seconds slower than my fastest time on that course.

Then we did a long cool down at around 8:00 pace to make the total of 15 miles. I felt like I do at the end of a marathon on the last mile due to the lack of nutrition the day before, but otherwise everything was fine, much better than yesterday. I still could not eat very much at breakfast, but was able to get in enough to make me feel decent.

Crocs - 132.18 miles.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 11:38, 0.15 to drop Julia off at the church and back, 1.5 with Jenny in 12:50, 2.53 with Benjamin to Jamba Juice in 21:55. Stomach still not good, dinner consisted of a small cup of Jamba Juice.

Crocs -  137.36 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
From Mike Warren on Fri, Mar 21, 2008 at 13:20:04

Sasha, you just need to come to St. George and I will take you for a Double Cheeseburger at Carls Jr! That will fix you right up! Extra fry sauce and chocolate milk shake, olympic trials here you come!

From Dustin on Fri, Mar 21, 2008 at 13:36:56

In and Out Burger will be opening soon Mike, and they use fresh ingredients. I have a Cold Stone Card you could use for the dessert. Actually Sasha, hope you get to feeling better and I'm quite certain you would be feeling much worse if you were to dine with me, Mike or the Wildbull down here in St. George.

From Sasha Pachev on Fri, Mar 21, 2008 at 13:50:47

An upset stomach is very bad at digesting any form of meat. When I threw up yesterday, it was all ground turkey + some tomato peels. Everything else I ate in addition to that (whole-wheat pasta, oats, bread) had apparently been processed more productively.

From Tyler on Fri, Mar 21, 2008 at 14:53:33

Sasha, you forgot to mention that you did the whole thing in Crocs. Imagine the commercial appeal if you ran sub-2:30 in those things!

From josse on Fri, Mar 21, 2008 at 15:41:46

ewww yuck! that is a little graffic.

From Superfly on Fri, Mar 21, 2008 at 17:15:18

I'm not sure a picture would be as descriptive. Yuck! Sorry about the tummy. I still can't believe you are running in the croc's!!!

Add Your Comment.
  • Keep it family-safe. No vulgar or profane language. To discourage anonymous comments of cowardly nature, your IP address will be logged and posted next to your comment.
  • Do not respond to another person's comment out of context. If he made the original comment on another page/blog entry, go to that entry and respond there.
  • If all you want to do is contact the blogger and your comment is not connected with this entry and has no relevance to others, send a private message instead.
Only registered users with public blogs are allowed to post comments. Log in with your username and password or create an account and set up a blog.
Debt Reduction Calculator

Featured Announcements
New Kids on the Blog
(need a welcome):
Lone Faithfuls
(need a comment):
Recent Comments: