Breaking the Wall

August 03, 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: 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

Fast Running Friend Workout - 2017-09-26 09:30:28
Workout Totals: Distance12.150Time1:29:48.10Pace7:23.47
Gathered a few more data points in my adrenal fatigue/training research. So far my hypothesis is this: when the adrenaline cannot push the muscles/cardio to their limit, the unconventional training is more effective than conventional. You do not have to worry about the muscle breakdown or tendon/ligament wear very much - your adrenals will not let you until they are no longer the limit. You do have to be concerned about your sleep and emotional state quite a bit, though.

Basically it boils down to this - when you feel emotionally ready to run hard, you run hard for as long as you look forward to and as often as you look forward to. You structure the workout in a way that makes you look forward to running hard. It is safe to run hard for a just little bit every day as a test. The speed you get by running hard for a little bit highly correlates with what you would have run in longer distances that day.

So to collect some data points and also to try to develop and improve the training method I came up with this for today. First 8 total in the morning with a 2 mile tempo down the canyon. I told myself it is OK run run in 88 per quarter (5:52) pace as long as I kicked in 80 at the end for the last quarter. I started out with two 84s, then ran two 82s - 5:32 for the mile. Then for the next three quarters I only felt like running 84s, which I did. Then in the last quarter I kicked. The kick surprised me - it was 73.6 which allowed me to catch the 5:30 guy and finish in 10:58, last mile in 5:26.

I did a fast quarter uphill at the end of 8 in 77.3 to get another data point. Felt medium stride length and a decent turnover.

In the evening I went to the cross-country race with Sarah and the kids. The distance was 4 K and they moved it to East Bay Golf course, which made it nice - no big hills, just little bumps and some mud from the rain earlier. I made myself look forward to it by planning to pace Jacob for the first 1 K, then catch up to Joseph and pace him for the second 1 K, then if I did not feel good, stay with Joseph, and if I did, take off and catch the leaders. If I still felt very good, pass the leaders.

I was able to follow the plan more or less. Joseph fell back in the middle of the second lap, but I did not pick it up until the end. I passed the leaders in the middle of the third lap and was able to open up a 17 second gap over the remaining 1.3 K or so feeling very strong, energetic and positive. Times:

myself 15:05
Joseph 15:35
Jacob 16:09
William 18:11
Julia 19:51
Stephen 21:46
Sarah 22:44
Matthew 26:06

Jenny paced Matthew.
Leg 1:Distance4.030Time31:28.30Pace7:48.56
Leg 2:Distance2.000Time10:58.00Pace5:29.00
Tempo run with a kick.
Split 1:Distance1.750Time9:44.40Pace5:33.94
Split 2:Distance0.250Time1:13.60Pace4:54.40
Leg 3:Distance2.030Time15:26.80Pace7:36.55
Cool-down with a kick for a quarter on the uphill.
Split 1:Distance1.780Time14:09.50Pace7:57.25
Split 2:Distance0.250Time1:17.30Pace5:09.20
Leg 4:Distance0.700Time5:48.20Pace8:17.43
Warm-up before the cross-country race.
Leg 5:Distance3.390Time26:06.80Pace7:42.18
Cross-country race - 4 K.
Split 1:Distance2.480Time15:05.90Pace6:05.28
My time.
Split 2:Distance0.000Time0:30.00Pace0:00.00
Split 3:Distance0.000Time0:33.20Pace0:00.00
Split 4:Distance0.000Time2:02.10Pace0:00.00
Split 5:Distance0.420Time3:35.10Pace8:32.14
Split 6:Distance0.110Time0:58.60Pace8:52.73
Split 7:Distance0.380Time3:21.90Pace8:51.32

Saucony Type A Miles: 4.09Red Crocs Miles: 8.06
Night Sleep Time: 0.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.00
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):