Breaking the Wall

August 06, 2020

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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
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Stephen refused to sleep, so I took him downstairs and worked with the idea to take a nap in the afternoon. Thus only 4 hours of sleep. Did the usual 12.5 miles, including kids runs. 3 with Benjamin, 2 with Jenny and Julia, 1 with Joseph, and 0.5 with Jacob. Benjamin repeated his 2000 time trial, this time much better. I told him that if he found enough faith to bear his testimony in public, he would be able to use that faith to overcome his self-confidence issues when faced with a challenging running goal, in this case being able to run 2K under 7:30. He does have a testimony. He has read the standard works of the Church (Old Testament, New Testament, Book Of Mormon, Doctrine and Covenants, and Pearl of Great Price) in their entirety twice, has been through the Book of Mormon 9 times, and studies at least one General Conference talk every day. All of that on his own initiative. But he did not inherit from me the natural brazen-facedness that eliminates the fear of getting up in front of a crowd or tucking into a pack of Kenyans and running with them till "the standard bearer fainteth". So that had to be developed through faith, and he took the first step yesterday in church. Today he did the time trial, and it went much better than last time.  His splits were 88 - 88 - 89 - 91 - 86 with the total time of 7:22.5, reaching the goal of sub-7:30 and improving his PR by 18.5 seconds.

During the rest of the run I saw Ed Eyestone and ran with him some. We had a good chat.

Gold Crocs 2 Miles: 12.50
Night Sleep Time: 4.00Nap Time: 1.50Total Sleep Time: 5.50
From Kory on Tue, May 03, 2011 at 18:43:48 from

That's really cool on the PR. Congrats to him.

From Scott Ensign on Tue, May 03, 2011 at 23:50:26 from

congrats to Benjamin on a great PR,he must be very proud.

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