Breaking the Wall

August 06, 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: 16.00 Year: 2314.91
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: 1185.83
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Total of 12. Did a workout with Benjamin to give him practice for track racing. We ran 1200 passing each other every 50 meters. I hoped to keep 75 seconds per lap, but it proved more hectic than I thought. We only managed 3:54.1. Benjamin's Croc fell off in the middle as well and we had to stop to put it on. This was also rhythm breaking. This is the first time this happened to him in a workout. Need to evaluate why. Crocs definitely have a lot of advantages. Aside from the cost and the shocking effect on the observer, and the convenience of no shoe laces is critical for training little kids, the main driver for Benjamin is the lack of forced traction that would be caused by spikes. Going around a curve in spikes is not good for young legs. So I estimate the chances of Crocs falling off in a 1500 meter track race are somewhere around 1%. That is OK. A possible little comedy, and even a DNF in a "critical" youth race - in quotes because I do not believe any youth races are really that critical - is a small price to pay for healthy feet, legs, hips, and lower back in maturity. Also for the shock effect of achieving a spike-quality performance the 99% of the time when they stay on.

After that we jogged 200 meters and I wanted to test Benjamin's sense of pace in absence of the surges as well as the ability to lead, so I had him lead a quarter at the effort that felt the same as the the 1200 interval. We ended up with a 78.9 400. Odd - I thought we would see something like 75-76. Then we jogged maybe 100 meters, and I did not want to end the workout without ever running Benjamin's target pace for 1500 meters. So I paced a 400 in 72.2.

Then we ran with other kids. Jenny did 4, Julia 3, Joseph 3, Jacob 2, William 0.5. 


Schwinn Double Stroller Miles: 3.00Green Crocs 6 Miles: 12.00
Night Sleep Time: 7.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.00
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