Breaking the Wall

January 28, 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: 252.01 Year: 252.01
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. 15.1 in 1:57:32. Started with Jeff and Hyrum. Then Matt joined us briefly. Dropped Hyrum off at 4. He did have quite a pick up on the last quarter, it was 1:32 with the last 100 in 18. He made a resolution that he would not eat on a training day (Mon-Sat) until he ran. With as much as he likes to eat, this would hopefully get him to run more regularly.

After than ran with Jeff and he realized he needed to get his car back to his wife so she'd make it to work on time. So we picked up the pace. We figured we needed to run 6:40 for 4.5 miles. That sounded tedious. We were going 6:20, then 6:10 at first. Then I figured if we just hammer a mile and a half, we can relax at the end. So we gradually picked up to a little under 6:00. Saw the new blogger Luz on the trail. Then we picked it up even more, ran 0.5 in 2:51 followed by 2:45, 5:36 for the mile. It hurt more than it should have. Some of it could be the fatigue from the 10 K, but some is probably just because it is hard to run fast in Five Fingers because you cannot pound the ground as hard. But that is OK, good practice running fast without pounding the ground.

Dropped Jeff off at 10, he moved his car and rejoined me for another 2 miles at 11.5. Then I finished the run alone.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 9:36, 1.5 with Jenny in 13:21, 2 with Benjamin in 16:40, and 0.5 alone. 

Five Fingers - 229.73 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.75
From Sweetiepie on Mon, Jun 02, 2008 at 14:39:45

Thanks for your comment. I don't walk when I run, I only walked this morning due to my daughter coming along. I have a question about running 6 days a week. I am overweight, won't that be hard on my knees (which have been a problem in the past)? I run 5 days a week now, with Fridays off (day before long run) and Sundays (day after long run). Is that not sufficient?

From Sasha Pachev on Mon, Jun 02, 2008 at 15:01:18

It is odd that running 5 days a week you are still overweight. I would suspect two problems:

a) Because of the weight and the knee stress you cannot run far or fast enough to burn the calories you are eating

b) Your diet is less than ideal

To fix a) keep your running routine the same, but add some biking on top of it. If possible, ride up a small grade. Make sure you are breathing fairly hard the entire time, do not make it a leisurely ride, but at the same time keep it controlled enough to where you are able to do it for an hour.

To fix b) start with "if I know it is bad I do not eat it, no excuses, no exceptions", and go from there.

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