Breaking the Wall

January 29, 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: 252.01 Year: 252.01
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

Fast Running Friend Workout - 2017-09-28 09:10:16
Workout Totals: Distance10.010Time1:17:04.20Pace7:41.96
10 total. Some with the kids. Joseph was not feeling 100% today, had an oncoming cold, so I told him to run only 3. Otherwise usual distances for everybody. Matthew ran 3:58.2 for 0.5 on the out and back course which is a course record and is slightly faster than his 800 track PR. Splits were 1:58/2:00.

I did another adrenal test with a fast quarter at the end of the run. Got 76.4. Felt the stride length was longer, but I had a hard time combining sustained stride length with high turnover in a balanced way - especially as the grade got steeper.

I must mention that I have gotten Ercolina, a special indoor cross-country ski machine, that unlike every cross-country ski trainer, gives your arms, back, abdominals, gluts, and hamstrings a real cross-country skiing muscle engagement. It is sold by a company in Italy and is used by the world's best cross-country skiers during off-season to stay in shape. I have been using it for about 5-10 minutes a day over the last week and a half in hopes of strengthening the supporting muscles to partially compensate for the L-4/L-5 defect. I still have a lot to learn about how to use it effectively. What I have felt from it so far is that sometimes I am able to find extra support when running and it feels like I have some extra power, and sometimes it just disappears. Lets see what happens after a couple of more weeks.
Leg 1:Distance0.500Time3:58.20Pace7:56.40
With Jacob, William, Stephen, and Matthew.
Leg 2:Distance1.500Time12:13.20Pace8:08.80
Same crew without Matthew.
Leg 3:Distance8.010Time1:00:52.80Pace7:36.03
First 1.5 with Joseph, the rest alone.
Split 1:Distance7.760Time59:36.40Pace7:40.88
Split 2:Distance0.250Time1:16.40Pace5:05.60

Red Crocs Miles: 10.01
Night Sleep Time: 0.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.00
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