Breaking the Wall

August 24, 2019

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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: 173.50 Year: 2475.51
Saucony Type A Lifetime Miles: 627.15
Bare Feet Lifetime Miles: 446.12
Nike Double Stroller Lifetime Miles: 124.59
Navy Crocs Lifetime Miles: 2133.34
Navy Crocs 2 Lifetime Miles: 1360.04
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. First ran 6 with Benjamin and Ariel. Then Jacob wanted to do a time trial. So I took him, Joseph, and William to the track. For the warm-up we did William's 400 m time trial. William is 3 years old, turning 4 in October. He got to 150 meters without me holding his hand, then he said he was scared and took my hand. He needs to learn to run fast without holding my hand to be ready for the Thanksgiving race where in order to win he will likely need to break 2:00 without holding anybody's hand. He ended up running 2:21 which is not a bad time at this point. It will, however, be a challenge to get him ready by Thanksgiving as he is less mature. He just barely got out of diapers, and his ability to talk and understand instructions is still not quite at the racing level. An important aspect of preparation for a little kid. I must say training a little kid to run fast when it matters is very educational for the parent.

On the positive side, William is way ahead of where Benjamin was at his age. Benjamin at the age of about 4 and 8 months ran 400 meters in 2:26 with me holding the hand all the way. He did manage to win the Thanksgiving race that year with 2:37 due to the lack of competition among boys.

Then it was time for Jacob's time trial. We did 800 meters. Our goal was to try to get as close as we could to 3:30. Jacob is 5 years and 11 months old. He will be 6 on Thanksgiving, 6 year old division has never been won with anything faster than 3:28 from what I remember, and it was Joseph last year. So I figure if he can run anywhere close to 3:30 now, barring some prodigy competition or severe race day misfortune he will win. Incidentally, he is the only child in our family that has ever won the 2-year-old 100 meter run, and when he did it was decisive - 35 seconds with a gap of 11 seconds, I believe, on the nearest competitor. I think his secret is that he is naturally very obedient. You tell him to do something, and he just does it if he can at all. So he did his 800 meters with Joseph being a rabbit (per Jacob's request) running about 5 seconds ahead, and me being by his side (also per Jacob's request). His splits were nearly perfect for the time he got - 52, 55 (1:47), 54, 53 (1:47) - 3:34.9 total.

We ran some more to cool down, then I ran another mile with Joseph. So Jacob did 1 mile, and Joseph did 2. Jenny and Julia ran 2 miles. I ran some more to make it 12 total.

P.M. 0.7 with Benjamin. 

Green Crocs 4 Miles: 12.70
Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
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