Breaking the Wall

July 14, 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: 51.55 Year: 2011.51
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: 881.43
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Long run. Did not want to run in the Provo Canyon today as it got colder. When it first gets cold it is important to take it easy to avoid the risk of getting sick. So I took it easy the whole week more or less, and decided to take it easy in the long run as well. So I ran the first 9.75 miles with the kids. 0.5 with Jacob, 1 with Joseph, 2 with Jenny and Julia, and I talked Benjamin into going 6 with me to reduce my lonely mileage by one mile. About 4.5 miles into it he remarked that he was moving not that much slower than his official 10 K record (45:34), so I challenged him to beat it. He had to add a quarter mile (really only 0.21, but we added a full quarter anyway). Then he went fast. His last mile was 5:59, and his time for 6.25 was 45:12.

Then I went to the Fast Running Blog 5 mile course and did a mild tempo. I was not sure what goal I had in mind except run faster than 6:00 pace. The first mile was 5:55. It felt good, almost like a jog, but I did not feel like going any faster. Nevertheless I gave myself a kick in the pants and ran the next mile in 5:47. My time at the turnaround was 14:38. At this point I decided I wanted to break 29:00. At 4 miles my split was 23:13. I was not looking forward to running the last mile in under 5:47 as it is not a pleasant mile. Nevertheless I found an extra gear and ran it in 5:35, which gave me 28:48 for 5 miles. I was happy about that extra gear. It felt so good to kick into it. I like the way it felt - I was going faster, it felt hard but it did not feel miserable. It is one thing to be able to just go fast. But it is something else when you can go fast and enjoy it. Especially after having run 18 miles already.

Total distance was 20 miles.

P.M. 2 miles.

Green Crocs 2 Miles: 22.00
Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
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