Breaking the Wall

February 19, 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: 81.04 Year: 418.47
Saucony Type A Lifetime Miles: 627.15
Bare Feet Lifetime Miles: 446.12
Nike Double Stroller Lifetime Miles: 124.59
Navy Crocs 2 Lifetime Miles: 1576.28
Neon Crocs 1 Lifetime Miles: 1353.22
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Ran the first 2 miles with Daniel, then he biked. Found Matt on the trail, he joined me for a bit. Ran the rest alone - 12.1 miles in 1:29:54. Then 2 more with Benjamin in 15:27, including a lunch-with-Daddy qualifier 0.5 in 3:04, a bit of a jog to rest, and then picking it up to finish the mile in 6:54.

Last night completely of her own initiative Sarah committed to working on her Russian more seriously. She speaks quite well, has good accent, can say what she needs to, but she does have her struggles. She cannot yet speak with color reordering her words just the right way, remembering to insert zhe and other forms of emphasis in the right places to make it sound natural, picking a more naturally sounding word vs a standard dictionary-recommended translation of what she would have said in English, without the fear of odd word forms that are particularly foreign to an English speaker, without the fear of using long words with several tongue-twister consonants in a row, etc. For the last 11 years she has fought the idea of learning to speak Russian like a native, but now the day has come. We are going to work on it.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 10:36, then 1.5 with Jenny in 11:55. 

Five Fingers - 1033.77 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.50Total Sleep Time: 8.50
From Cheryl on Thu, Aug 21, 2008 at 22:46:03

That learning Russian sounds really cool. Wish I could learn it, I took one semester in college and enjoyed it but never pursued it after that. Good luck, Sarah.

From Jon on Fri, Aug 22, 2008 at 11:30:45

Sasha- do you know what time you will be leaving for Logan today? Marcie J is bringing me some shorts but I am not sure how to get them from Provo to Logan. If she arrives before you leave, she could give them to you.

From Sasha Pachev on Fri, Aug 22, 2008 at 12:27:55

I'll be leaving around 5 pm. Marcie can drop them off at our house - 339 N 1120 W in Provo. Phone number 801-788-4608.

From Jon on Fri, Aug 22, 2008 at 12:57:17

Marcie says "I will try to get them there!!"

You can just leave them with Paul rather than bringing them to the race or anything, too.

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