Breaking the Wall

February 17, 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: 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

Ran the Provo River 5 Mile Tempo again this morning with Nick. It went much better than on Tuesday. Felt a bit stale, but no major neural fatigue disaster.

Splits by 0.5 - 2:52 - 2:48 (5:40) - 2:48 - 2:50 (11:18, 5:38) - 2:47 (14:05 at the turnaround) - 2:47 (16:52, 5:34) - 2:46 - 2:45 (22:23, 5:31) - then by quarter 1:25 (uphill), 1:24, 1:23, 1:19, last mile in 5:30, total time 27:53, last 2.5 in 13:48. HR hit 161 on the last mile before the kick, did not feel lucid enough to check during, and too lazy to get it out of Garmin history.

Then did 4x200 with 200 recovery on a section that was about 1 second slower that the track - partially uphill - 32.8 - 33.5 - 33.2 - 30.7. I was happy about the last one, even though I died on the last 50 meters.

Ran to the body shop - forgot to give them the VanGoGo key  shortly after the morning run - this added another 3 miles. Ran with Julia little later - 0.5 miles.

In the evening ran with Benjamin and Jenny and added some more to make it 4 miles. Felt good, no high mileage fuzzy head.  Consumed a lot of honey and Powerade today. Seems like my body is just sucking the glucose in like a breath of fresh air. Looks like my constant blood sugar replenishment experiment is working.

Night Sleep Time: 0.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.00
From Maria on Fri, Jun 29, 2007 at 10:13:42


just wanted to pass this on to you. You might want to consider linking to the site, or advertise it somehow on fastrunningblog, maybe people would like to help. It is a terrible story, and still very typical for CIS countries, especially his treatment by the track federation. The guy is only 24! Unfortunately, the content is only in Russian. I've seen English translation on one of the sites, but can't find it now, and it was pretty bad (but understandable nevertheless). If you decide to link to it, I'm sure we can translate it, it's not long.

From Sasha Pachev on Tue, Jul 03, 2007 at 23:39:10

Maria - do you know how people in the US can send him money for the operation with the info they are providing on the site? I've sent them an e-mail asking if they have a PayPal account, but have not yet heard back from them.

From Maria on Wed, Jul 04, 2007 at 04:17:16

Sasha, I'm sure they don't have PayPal account, and I don't know if it makes sense for them to open it, since mechanism of transferring money from PayPal into Ukranian currency is not clear.

What they do have, is the Russian version of PayPal - WebMoney ( There, it is possible to open accounts in different currencies (dollars, euros and rubles). They call them Z-purse, E-purse and R-purse. I looked through their info, including legal, and it appears to be a legitimate business (but then again, in Russia, you never know!). They do charge commission on each transaction, I think. So, it should be possible for US residents or for anyone, really, to open an account and fund it with some money, and then make a payment to Gladkov's account. His WebMoney accounts (in all currencies) are listed on his website. I just never heard of this service before, so I'm a bit weary of using it (plus the commission fee), but maybe I can try it with a small amount and see what happens. Most of my expendable money is in sterling now, but I still have regular checking account in US, so I should be able to use it. I can also ask Victor Zhdanov, who is also trying to help - he is based in Florida now, maybe he knows some other ways. I've been in contact with him for other things (he is the founder of site, and interestingly, the husband of elite master runner Firaya Sultanova, who is running Peachtree 10K today).

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