Breaking the Wall

August 21, 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

Ran with Jeff McLellan this morning. We warmed up 2.34 very leisurely, then did 4x400 with full rest (very slow 400 meter jog) on the trail on the standard quarter workout stretch going towards the lake (faster direction, but still about 1 second slower than the track). First in 69.1, I was surprised, did not think we'd hit sub-70 on the first one. Then another surprise - 66.2. One more surprise - 63.2. That one felt fast, but at the same time had somebody told me to finish the 800 when I had 30 meters to go, I could have been coaxed into it. Enough surprises. I've got a race tomorrow. I told Jeff I wanted to relax on the last one, although it was tempting to blast it out to try to bring the average under 65. We did it in 69.4.

Then we ran 5.93 for a cooldown. Started out at slower than 8:00 for the first mile. Then gradually picked it up as the lactic acid from the workout began to disappear and worked our way to 6:40 pace at the end.

Ran 1 mile with Benjamin and Jenny in the evening pushing Joseph and Jacob in the stroller in 9:03. Then ran 4 more miles with Jacob and Joseph in the stroller in 30:16. Started out at slower than 8:00 then eventually worked my way to 7:00 pace at the end.

Sandy Classic 10 K tomorrow. The goal is to be in pain for the majority of the race. If I can do that, the time and the place will come. 

Night Sleep Time: 0.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.00
From bc on Tue, Jul 03, 2007 at 23:55:03

Sasha does that mean the big bad bear will be on your back the whole race. I thought I might try to carry him part of the way. I don't know if I'm brave enough to take him on for the whole race. I would like to start fast and see if I can hold off a few masters though. With a loop course that has a few good hills both up and down it could be a set up to blow up if I try to be in pain from the start.

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