Breaking the Wall

August 12, 2020

Recent EntriesHomeJoin Fast Running Blog Community!PredictorHealthy RecipesSasha Pachev's RacesFind BlogsMileage BoardTop Ten Excuses for Missing a RunTop Ten Training MistakesDiscussion ForumRace Reports Send A Private MessageWeek ViewMonth ViewYear View
15% off for Fast Running Blog members at St. George Running Center!


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: 88.07 Year: 2386.98
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: 1257.89
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Big Workout. Ran a warm-up of 5.02 with Ted in 37:19. Legs felt snappy. Wondered if this was just the nervous system being a bit wired, or really a sign of fitness. Made the pessimistic assumption. After the warm-up started the 10.02 tempo back to the house with the Provo River 5 Mile Tempo detour. Going off the pessimistic assumption did not have any goals, just run comfortably hard, starting out at a conservative marathon pace, then picking it if feeling good and coasting otherwise.

Got to the tempo turnaround gate in 6:44, this was around 5:45 pace. Ran the next 2.5 in 14:22, then 180 turn, next 2.5 in 14:00, then another 180 turn, next 2.5 in 13:58. This gave me 42:20 for 7.5 en route, with the last 5 of it in 27:58. Kept going past the end of the standard tempo start at Geneva Road to the house. Ran 7:38 for the last 1.33, with the last quarter in 1:22. Total time for 10.02 was 56:42, a slightly under 5:40 average. I was very pleased with the results - I usually run this tempo in a different flavor (faster and shorter course, only 10.00, not 10.02, no running under the bridges, and not net uphill), and my PR on that course is 56:42. This was done with a furious drive on the last 2.5 in 13:32, and with a shorter warm-up. Today I was just coasting, no shift to threshold at the end except maybe on the last 100 meters when I saw a garbage truck and realized I had not put my garbage out.

Total time for 15.04 was 1:34:01.

Interesting events during the run: around 6.75 into the tempo a dog tried to attack me. It was too big to kick (I think it was a shepherd) so I stopped and invited it for a boxing match. It backed off, I advanced, it backed off again, but the moment I would turn and try to run, it would back to its old tricks. So I just waited for the owner to get it. And, I passed a guy on a bike that looked like a farmer. He had a dog on a leash. I wonder if the dog's name is BINGO. The dog did show some interest in me, so I had to swing out wide enough to avoid trouble. We actually see him out almost every day. That dog really likes Nick, always tries to get him.

A little later ran 0.5 with Julia. She liked the stuff she got for her record yesterday and wanted to set another record today. So she ran 4:16 with the splits of 2:09 and 2:07. This is the family record in the 4 and under division. Her run yesterday was the family record as well, but prior to that Jenny held it (4:31).

P.M. Ran 1.53 to the car shop to pick up VanGoGo with Jenny in 13:07, then 2.05 with Benjamin to the soccer game in 16:33, then back (2.06) in 14:00. Benjamin's team won 7:1.

Night Sleep Time: 0.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.00
From Brent on Tue, Aug 21, 2007 at 20:49:15

I gave up kicking dogs, carry pepper spray now. Your blog is interesting to read, the workouts are amazing after 31 miles last saturday. Mortals can only read your blog and imagine such fitness. Best to you at St.George.

From Michelle on Thu, Aug 23, 2007 at 10:32:48

Thanks for the Bingo reference! Thanks to your humor I spewed oatmeal into my new keyboard through an involuntary guffah!

I do enjoy reading your blog though I don't comment much. It's hard to comment on the "coach"es training.

Add Your Comment.
  • Keep it family-safe. No vulgar or profane language. To discourage anonymous comments of cowardly nature, your IP address will be logged and posted next to your comment.
  • Do not respond to another person's comment out of context. If he made the original comment on another page/blog entry, go to that entry and respond there.
  • If all you want to do is contact the blogger and your comment is not connected with this entry and has no relevance to others, send a private message instead.
Only registered users with public blogs are allowed to post comments. Log in with your username and password or create an account and set up a blog.
Debt Reduction Calculator

Featured Announcements
New Kids on the Blog
(need a welcome):
Lone Faithfuls
(need a comment):