Breaking the Wall

July 20, 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: 24.15 Month: 178.13 Year: 2150.22
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

A.M. Total of 12.7. Did a workout with Benjamin. He was finally healthy enough to try the 2 mile tempo run down the canyon. I did not have any particular goal for him, we decided to start out trading quarters and then see what happens. I took him through the first quarter in 84, then he did his in 83, I did mine in 82, then he was headed for around 85 on his, and I did not like that, so I took the lead early and made it 84 to hit 5:33 for the mile. After that I decided he had the ability to break 11:00 if he drafted, so I told him to just sit on me until he was ready to come out, and I took him through the next two quarters in 81 and 80. He handled it fine, and took the lead around 1.5 mark to pull me for the rest of the tempo. I was very pleased for two reasons - one was that I did not have to lead anymore. The other was that Benjamin was showing he was in good shape. We ran the last 0.5 in 2:33 (5:06 pace) and finished in 10:47.7 - my second fastest time this year. Our last mile was 5:14, which makes it for my most negative split in this workout with the second mile 19 seconds faster than the first. Prior to that I had been consistently 2 seconds slower in the second mile. Benjamin is becoming a great training partner.

It is a lot of fun to run with your 14-year-old. Particularly when somebody we meet on the trail tries to guess the relationship. A few days ago a runner said to us - why aren't you boys in school? I had him guess who we were and what we were up to. His guess was that Benjamin was in high school and I was 23 years old, married, and in college - after he had observed my wedding ring. With Benjamin he was not too far off, but with me he was off by 70% on the age part, and off by 15 years on the college part, but he was correct on being married.

Jenny ran 3, Julia 1, Joseph 2, Jacob 1, William 0.5.

Green Crocs 5 Miles: 12.70
Night Sleep Time: 4.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 4.00
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