Breaking the Wall

January 26, 2021

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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: 266.81 Year: 266.81
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: 1657.61
Brown Crocs 3 Lifetime Miles: 1438.17
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Dropped my mother off at the airport in SLC, and then met up with Mike Kirk at the Steiners Aquatic Center. We warmed up downhill to the Sugar House Park. We went around to familiarize ourselves with the Sugar House Park 5 K course, and verified all the marks against the course map I got from the USATF website.

Then we started the tempo run along the course. We agreed to run at the fastest pace the slower of us could handle, and that the one that felt strong will pull the one that felt weaker. When Mike started pushing it on the early downhill, I thought I'd have to draft pretty soon. However, he eased off enough on the uphill to give me a break.

We hit the 2 mile mark in 3:40 then the first mile in 5:24, and the first lap in 7:15. Then we got to the hill on the second lap around 1.6 miles into the run or so. Mike started struggling, so we slowed down a lot. 2 miles in 11:13 (5:49, 7:33 lap). Afterwards, Mike was able to recover and get going at a good pace again. We hit the 1 mile mark in 13:03 (7:39 lap), 2 laps in 14:56 (7:41 lap), and we were on the downhill and started shifting gears. 16:45 at 3 miles (5:32). Then we had to find the finish, which we did not think to mark better earlier on, and the sun was in our eyes. So we slowed down some, and on top of that, did not take the tangent in fear of missing the finish mark. So we got 17:23 for the 5 K. Both of us were happy with it.

Afterwards, we ran back to the Aquatic Center for a cooldown. I noticed that Mike compared to me likes to push it a bit in the easy running. After running fast, I like to relax and chat.

I left the lights on in my car, so Mike gave me a jump start. Then I followed him to his house, took a shower, chatted a bit, and drove back to Provo.

Did some always on the run miles with a stroller, and ran with the kids. Also lifted weights - benchpress, 105 pounds, narrow grip, a set of 5, then 2 sets of 3.

Night Sleep Time: 0.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.00
From Paul Petersen on Fri, Sep 01, 2006 at 15:51:41

Sasha, I was just looking at the LDR Circuit standings. You are doing quite it possible for you to beat Joe if you bust out a couple wins to end the season?

From Sasha Pachev on Fri, Sep 01, 2006 at 18:28:42

Yes it is, if the stars are aligned and I do not blow it.

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