Breaking the Wall

November 29, 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 ViewYear 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: 244.22 Year: 3545.74
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: 734.48
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Fast Running Friend Workout - 2016-05-20 07:31:53
Workout Totals: Distance14.396Time1:43:06.70Pace7:09.75
Today the kids ran several PRs. Jenny ran 2000 in 7:56.6, splits 93,94,97,99,93. She is working on breaking 20:00 in the 5 K - the target I gave her for getting her driver's license. Next target is to make it to 3000 at that pace.

William ran 800 in 3:11.9, new PR by a bit less than 1 second. Splits 92/99. He still has a lot of fear. He ran 27 seconds from 400 to 500, then 24 second 100s to the finish. So he can hold it in the second lap if he puts his mind to it.

I gave Joseph and Jacob a target of 86 for the first lap, then 88s until failure, then if the failure was so bad they could not run a decent 3000 I would stop them, otherwise, we would go to 3000. After the first lap in 86 Joseph started screaming due to leg pain. I told him to stop, and continued with Jacob. He continued with 89,90,89,93,93,90,44 finishing 3000 in 11:14.2 - faster than Joseph's 3000 performance in the race on Tuesday.

Joseph felt some serious quad pain, appears to be what is called growing pains. It is very strange - symmetrical, somewhat responsive to massage, comes out after about a mile or two of easy running, is aggravated by emotional stressors, but has never bothered him in a race. When he competes he is able to forget about it.

So seeing his brother beat his 3000 record made him want to try. I was thinking - well, he'll be done after 3 laps - there is no way he will be able to run through this. I was actually hoping he'd stop because I am getting old, and 11:14 3000 is not an easy effort for me anymore. But he did not. I opened in 87, he is still there. 88, still there, started screaming. I am thinking - OK a couple more laps, he will start running 95s or slower, I'll stop him. 89, still there, 90, still there - screaming in pain the entire time. With 3 laps to go it became clear to me that he was going to finish the whole thing. I told him he was 2 second behind Jacob. Loud scream of pain and frustration, I wondered if maybe I should not have told him, but then he speeds up and closes that gap by 2000. So 92 for this lap. Then 93, 89, and 43 for the last 200 to finish in 11:12.2 - improving his PR by 7 seconds.

I was beyond speech. How can an 11-year-old boy be so tough? The entire time I was recalling Derek Clayton's marathon world record where he was showing signs of pain as early as the 5 K mark. Maybe he can run 10:58 qualifier at altitude after all.
Leg 1:Distance1.100Time9:45.10Pace8:51.91
Warm-up with Benjamin and Jenny.
Leg 2:Distance1.240Time7:56.70Pace6:24.44
Paced Jenny through 2000.
Leg 3:Distance1.000Time8:40.60Pace8:40.60
Back to the house.
Leg 4:Distance0.190Time1:50.50Pace9:41.58
Warm-up with William, Joseph, and Jacob.
Leg 5:Distance0.496Time3:11.90Pace6:26.90
William's 800.
Leg 6:Distance1.860Time11:14.20Pace6:02.47
Jacob's 3000.
Leg 7:Distance1.860Time11:12.20Pace6:01.40
Joseph's 3000.
Leg 8:Distance0.650Time5:23.70Pace8:18.00
Leg 9:Distance6.000Time43:51.80Pace7:18.63
With Benjamin.

Black Crocs 2 Miles: 14.39
Night Sleep Time: 0.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.00
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
Recent Comments: