Breaking the Wall

January 27, 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

A.M. Ran with Derek and Dustin. We did 5x400 on the trail.


70.1 - 67.8 - 67.8 - 67.5 - 69.0

Recovery: 200 jog between the first three, after that 400 jog.

Subjective: Compared to last week, the effort was the same, but was able to hit faster times. Decided to increase the rest after 3 repeats to make sure the remaining two would stay faster. However, I still faded on the last one. Regardless of how fast we went I had my breathing back to normal in 30 seconds. The intensity of breathing during the repeat appeared to correlate with how fast I ran it, but the perceived effort did not. The last 200 meters of the last repeat felt very similar to the last half mile of the tempo run on Tuesday.

Ran a cool down to make the total 10 miles.

My original plan was to increase to 8 repetitions once I am able to do 4 averaging under 70, which I accomplished today. However, I decided to revise the plan. Instead, work on getting those as fast as possible. First under 67, then 66, 65, 64. Once I can do all under 64, then maybe do 400 to warm up, then 800 under 2:20, then if that is not too hard, another 800 under 2:20, otherwise, go back to 400. Work on being able to run the whole mile under 4:40. Once I am there, work on doing mile repeats under 4:40. Then 2x1.5 at 4:45 pace. Then a sub-15:00 5 K. Once I can do that, I can start thinking about an OTQ in the marathon.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 10:04. 2 with Benjamin in 17:06. Jenny joined for the first 1.5 in 13:02.

Brooks T4 Racing Flat Miles: 10.00
Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
From Jon on Sat, Nov 15, 2008 at 13:29:58

How do you get the Delete and Edit buttons to work on blog comments? I put a double comment on lisap's blog today, but it wouldn't let me delete the first even though I push the button.

From Phoenix on Sat, Nov 15, 2008 at 15:49:43

I think this is a good plan. With this workout, the speed of the 400s is far more important than the number of repeats. Just do at least 2; 4-5 is probably optimal.

From Phoenix on Sat, Nov 15, 2008 at 15:51:30

Also, being eu- or even hypercaloric going into hard workouts like this is very important. Meaning, eat well the day before. This makes a big difference for me.

From Sasha Pachev on Tue, Nov 18, 2008 at 13:38:52

Jon - you need to be logged in.

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