Breaking the Wall

July 11, 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: 51.55 Year: 2011.51
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: 881.43
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Ran 16 miles in Cedar Cit. First 6.6 with Eric Lambert's father Adam. Then 2 with Benjamin for his morning shakeout. Then I wanted to find a place that was flat. The only flat place was the track. To help time pass quicker I decided to do a 5 K tempo run. Figured at 5700 feet and with the sun coming up 18:00 would take work, and I was not mistaken. I started out with 86 laps, but once I got to 3K all of a sudden the same effort started giving me 89 laps. At this point I understood why distances over 3K receive a much higher altitude adjustment. I decided to maintain the effort instead of forcing the pace. Then in the last lap I ran 81 and finished the 5 K in 18:04.2. I could really feel the lack of oxygen. Then I ran some more to make the total 16 miles.

Then I watched Benjamin and Eric races the 1500. The race started at around 11:20 AM, and the temperature was 88 F. Eric took the lead and hit the first 300 in 55.3. Benjamin heard that and took over. Their next lap was 71.8. Eric took over at the 600 mark. Then he heat got to both of them and their next lap was 74.0. I yelled at Benjamin to floor it, and they shifted gears. Their last lap was 70.2. Benjamin got 4:31.58 - Eric outleaned him by 0.08 with 4:31.50. For Benjamin this is a new PR. He missed Josh's record set in the same race 17 years ago by 2.22 seconds.

I was quite happy with Benjamin's performance. This is on pace for 2:07:19 marathon. Now he officially advanced his ability to run that pace to the 1.5 K point. Another 40 K to go. Maybe less - this was in 88 F and at 5700 feet. He would last longer at that pace at sea level in ideal conditions.

Green Crocs 5 Miles: 16.00
Night Sleep Time: 7.50Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.50
From Dave Taylor on Sat, Jun 29, 2013 at 12:58:05 from

Amazing performance, that's great! The heat makes it so much harder. Question - would Mon or Tues be better for speedwork if I am trying to do well in a Thurs 5K?

From Sasha Pachev on Sat, Jun 29, 2013 at 17:02:29 from

Dave: I would say either way could work. Monday gives you more rest, Tuesday on the other hand may end up being the magic hit to give a boost that will materialize on Thursday.

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