Breaking the Wall

Earn Your Turkey 4 miler

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15% off for Fast Running Blog members at St. George Running Center!

Location:

Orem,UT,United States

Member Since:

Jan 27, 1986

Gender:

Male

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.

Personal:

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 nine children: Benjamin, Jenny, Julia, Joseph, Jacob, William, Stephen, Matthew,  Mary, and Bella.  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: 93.66 Year: 93.66
Saucony Type A Lifetime Miles: 627.15
Bare Feet Lifetime Miles: 446.12
Nike Double Stroller Lifetime Miles: 120.59
Camouflage Crocs 2 Lifetime Miles: 938.88
Red Crocs Lifetime Miles: 1168.62
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
286.5632.0026.489.00354.04
Brooks T4 Racing Flat Miles: 175.39Vibram Five Fingers Miles: 100.75
Night Sleep Time: 204.75Nap Time: 3.50Total Sleep Time: 208.25
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
5.5510.000.000.0015.55

A.M. Took Benjamin to the Utah State Cross Country championship. He started out conservatively, moved into 3rd by around 2 K mark, and look like he was going to hold on to it, but then took a wrong turn on the course, lost about 32 seconds just on the extra distance + whatever from the mental aspect, and ended up in 6th place with 13:51.

P.M. Tempo run with Jeff. Ran a warm-up of 2.67. Then the standard 10 mile tempo. Splits:

Total time: 58:53

5:43 - 5:56 - 5:53 - 5:52 - 6:05 - 5:53 - 5:53 - 5:56- 5:52 - 5:48

Splits by 2.5: 14:35 - 14:55 - 14:45 - 14:38

HR: average 152, observed median 153, max 164 at the very end when I tried to push.

Subjective: Felt acceptable in the first mile, worse later, and terrible from mile 3 to the end. At 5 I seriously considered just stopping. But then I weighed the alternatives - next 5 miles in about 30 minutes in a trance, or next 5 miles in 40 minutes with full ability to reason. 30 minutes in a trance appeared to be a better alternative. Plus Jeff needed full 10 at tempo pace to build his gas tank, and I did not want to make him either cut it or do it all alone.

After 3 miles any time we ran faster than 5:52 even for a quarter, it would put me in a very miserable state. However, I was able to zone out drafting off Jeff, and as long as he was not breaking 88 on a quarter I could keep plodding along. He yelled at me in the last mile, and that helped with a faster split. Last quarter was 84, and it was one miserable quarter. I gave it all I had.

Jogged down with Jeff and another guy named Scott who we found on the trail, split ways with 0.46 to go, finished off 14.05 at the house. Lay on the cough for about 10 minutes, then felt good enough to run with Jenny and Julia. 14:33 for 1.5 miles with Julia running the first mile in 10:15.

The time was 6 seconds faster than two weeks ago. The effort was very hard. I'll blame it on the worn out nervous system.


Brooks T4 Racing Flat Miles: 16.05
Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
Comments(1)
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
0.000.000.000.000.00

Day of  rest. Slept nearly 11 hours. This shows the severity of the neural fatigue yesterday.

Went to church. Had a meeting afterwards. Went to a baptism in the Spanish branch in the evening. 

Night Sleep Time: 10.75Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 10.75
Add Comment
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
12.470.000.630.0013.10

A.M. 10.1 alone in 1:09:58. Yes, I like to beat the 1:10 guy when it is close. The sleep and a day of rest yesterday seemed to help. Felt energized from the start. Decided to measure the depth of it. Ran 1 K in 3:22 over a fairly thick layer of leaves in the middle.

Ran 200 with Jacob in 1:44. 

For some odd reason I got interested in the demographics of Denmark. I think if I had the patience to deal with the academic bureaucracy and our cost of living relative to income had not been so high I might have even become a sociologist. But I am somewhat satisfied with programming for a living and studying sociology as an amateur. In any case, I found this link:

http://www.denmark.dk/en/menu/About-Denmark/The-Danes/Population/ThePost1967Period/

And the following statements:

The last 30 years of the 20th century showed a far-reaching change in the demographical characteristics of the Danish population. The decline in fertility accelerated from 1967, and the lowest level so far was reached in 1983 when the average number of children born per woman was 1.4.

As c. 2.1 births per woman are necessary to avoid a fall in the size of the population, fertility rates are thus below the level needed for reproduction. Corresponding declines have been noted in most western European countries, in North America, Australia and Japan.

...

It has become more difficult for both practical and financial reasons to have many children...

As a father of 6, I can sure tell you about financial difficulty. I make quite a bit more than the average, and we still have to pinch every penny to live without debt.

The big question I have is why in the world has it become so difficult for a family to have the needed 2.1 children to maintain the population size when we have experienced such huge advances in technology and can do just about everything a lot more efficiently that we used to. With everything we have now the average family should be able to afford 10.5 children, not 2.1. Something somewhere has gone fundamentally wrong, something somewhere is being dumped into a huge black hole.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 9:52, 2 with Benjamin in 17:00, Jenny ran the first 1.5 in 13:14. Jacob wanted to do a double today so we did another 200 in 1:58.

Vibram Five Fingers Miles: 10.10
Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
Comments(23)
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
10.840.002.500.0013.34

A.M. Tempo run with Derek and Tyler. During the 4.12 warm-up talked about the economy, what affects the cost of living, and to what extent is the government regulation of the free market necessary. My thoughts. Comparing free market to a race. No individual competitor should be unfairly aided or hampered by the race officials. However, strict rules are needed to make sure nobody cheats. If you trip or punch somebody, cut the course, ride part of the race on a bike or in a car, use roller blades, poison a competitor before the start, or do something of that nature you are disqualified. If a famous runner is struggling and falls behind we do not give him a ride to catch up to the leaders or to be back on pace.

Then we ran the 2.5 in 13:42.1. The rough plan was 5:30 pace and we beat him by 3 seconds. I drafted behind Derek and Tyler most of the way. The splits were mostly unavailable due to the trail being heavily covered with leaves. We got our first split at 0.435 - 2:28. About 4 seconds off pace, no wonder it felt too manageable. I told Derek to speed up. He took us through the rest of the mile at 5:20 pace on the dot, so we had 5:28 at the mile. At this point my HR was 165, and I started to feel uncomfortable. So I asked Derek to back off a bit, and he did hitting the next two quarters in 81 each like a clock, 8:10 at 1.5. My HR was 163, and I felt balanced but very tenderly - a slight surge could do me in and the pace, even slower pace, would become unsustainable. This stretch had the fewest leaves, which I think is why 81 quarters felt more sustainable than at any other point in the tempo.

The last mile was uphill and covered with leaves. The next split was at "3000" - 10:16, so the uphill "600" at 5:36 pace. It felt hard but not miserable. Next "600" in 2:03, 5:28 pace, not noticeably uphill, but still uphill, I know because I had cross-country skied it several times timing it in both directions. On the last quarter it felt like we picked up the pace, HR got up to 168, but we only got 83 for the quarter. I wonder if it had to do with the increased amount of leaves while on a slightly higher upper grade. My HR never spikes that high unless I am running a sub-80 quarter. If I am too tired to run a sub-80 quarter, I just cannot push it that high.

Total time for the last mile was 5:32. Average HR 160, max 168.

I was pleased with the run. The time was the fastest for that stretch since St. George. But I was more pleased with the following: HR could get to 165 in 5 minutes of running, life seemed bearable at HR of 163, and I felt like I still had a little bit to give when it was as high as 168.

Cooled down with Derek and Tyler for 1.38 discussing no state income tax in Washington, then 2 more by myself to make the total of 10.

Sarah and I voted today. It felt good to vote for neither McCain nor Obama. I felt relieved that there was a candidate that represented my values much better even though he could not win.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 8:59. 2 with Benjamin in 17:10, Jenny did the first 1.5 in 13:08. Julia rode the bike during Jenny's run. This is a big breakthrough for Julia - she learned to ride less than a week ago. 200 with Jacob in 1:54, and 0.34 with Joseph in 4:09.

Brooks T4 Racing Flat Miles: 10.00
Night Sleep Time: 8.50Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.50
Add Comment
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
13.000.000.000.0013.00

A.M. We got our first snow. However, it started during the run, and I was wearing Five Fingers. Got to experience the snow. It was rather cold, but not as bad as I anticipated. Ran the first 6 miles with Jeff, the rest on my own. Discussed politics. 1:25:12 for 10 miles, got beat by a boltushka, I suppose we deserve that since we've been talking the whole time.

P.M. 2 with Benjamin in 17:05, Jenny ran the first 1.5 in 13:09. Took the Fast Running Van to get the the tail blinker fixed, they found literally a hornet's nest under the light cover. Wasps made a nest there.

P.M-2. 1 with Julia in 10:03. 200 with Jacob in 2:08.

Vibram Five Fingers Miles: 10.00
Night Sleep Time: 7.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.00
Add Comment
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
12.090.000.001.2513.34

A.M. Ran with Derek. Learned from him that M-16/AK-47 effective range is 500 meters, but a stray bullet can kill you from as far away as 800 meters. This made me remember some dark Russian humor: The optimist is studying English, the pessimist is studying Chinese, but a realist is studying AK-47.

We did 5x400 with 200 jog rest. Splits: 71.8, 69.9, 69.3, 69.1, 71.1. Derek hit around 67 in the last 3.  I was happy with how it went. Even though it was cold, and we had some leaves on the ground, this is the fastest I've done this workout since St. George.

Dropped Derek off at 8 miles, ran 2 more to make it 10. Then ran/walked with Jacob - 200 meters in 2:01.

P.M. 2 with Benjamin and Jenny in 17:50. 0.34 with Joseph in 3:39. 1 with Julia in 10:29. 

Brooks T4 Racing Flat Miles: 10.00
Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.50Total Sleep Time: 8.50
Comments(5)
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
12.940.000.500.0013.44

A.M. 10.1 alone in 1:14:32. Did a 0.5 pickup in the middle in 2:42 (82,80). Felt decent.

P.M. 200 with Jacob in 1:56, 0.34 with Joseph in 3:44. 1 with Julia in 9:49. 2 with Benjamin in 17:19, Jenny ran 1.5 in 13:09 with us.

Vibram Five Fingers Miles: 10.10
Night Sleep Time: 8.50Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.50
Comments(4)
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
10.005.005.000.0020.00

A.M. Ran with Jeff, Tyler, Michelle, and Julie Esplin. Jeff and I did the standard 10 mile tempo. Tyler and Julie ran easy. Michelle did some mile repeats with us during the tempo.

The tempo went better than I expected. 56:38.9 for the whole thing, which is actually a 3 second course/workout PR. Splits:

5:47 - 5:42 - 5:40 - 5:46 - 5:44 - 5:37 - 5:40 - 5:31 - 5:37 - 5:34

By 2.5: 14:20 - 14:19 - 14:04 - 13:55

By half: 28:39 - 27:59

Subjective/Descriptive:

Started out slow on purpose to not kill Michelle. Too slow - 91 the first quarter. I warned Jeff about overcorrection, so the next one was 87. After that Jeff just let it loose, but Michelle made it with us to 1.25 in 7:13.

After the first 2.5 I thought I'd be lucky to keep the pace. But then 4 miles into it things did not get any worse. During the second half of the tempo Jeff pressed harder, but I was not too miserable at first. I just tucked in behind him and tried to zone out. He had an non-gentleman-like moment by serving Michelle an 83 quarter after 5.5 when she tried to join us for a mile, followed by another in 85. Michelle was still hanging on, after that she fell back.

From 7 to 8 it was my turn to suffer. Jeff served me a 5:31 mile with a 180 turn in the middle. I asked him to back off, and was hanging on to dear life. Michelle saw us go by and decided it was hopeless to try to hang on. Perhaps not without a reason as we still hit a 5:37 for the next mile.

At the end, all I wanted to do was catch the 5:40 guy, but Jeff had higher ambitions. So he dropped me on the last quarter and finished 8 seconds faster in 76 vs mine in 84. I did not have much more than 84 left in me at that point.

Felt like I could push through fatigue better. The breathing was harder. Did not wear an HRM. I think my quarters have helped. I've seen this effect before - quarters at mile race pace or faster helping all distances up to the marathon.

Felt much better after the tempo that a week ago. Ran a long cool down. Total of 17 miles.

200 with Jacob in 1:53 afterwards. 

P.M. 1 with Julia in 8:56. 2 with Benjamin and Jenny in 17:07.

Brooks T4 Racing Flat Miles: 17.20
Night Sleep Time: 8.50Nap Time: 1.50Total Sleep Time: 10.00
Comments(1)
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
0.000.000.000.000.00

Day of rest. Went to church. Counted the kids during the Sacrament meeting to make sure everyone was still there. Then I thought of the hymn Count Your Blessings and realized I was literally counting my blessings. Every child is a blessing and I now have 6 of them. Then a short while later one blessing (Jacob) escaped and I had to chase him.

As luck or perhaps God's will would have it, I got to teach both in Sunday School and in the Elder's Quorum. The lesson in Sunday School was on the plan of salvation, and in the Elder's Quorum on knowledge. 

Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
Comments(1)
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
13.100.000.000.0013.10

A.M. Easy 10.1 alone in 1:09:55. The temperatures were cold, but not freezing. Very runnable, although my feet started getting wet towards the end. Almost ran into an uncovered drainage opening in the last mile. Somebody had lifted the cover and had not put it back. So this gave me a chance for some small weight training exercise putting it back on. Surprisingly it did not take me very long - handy tasks, even very simple, often take me a lot longer than they should.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 9:03, 2 with Benjamin in 17:06, Jenny ran the first 1.5 in 13:14. 

Vibram Five Fingers Miles: 10.10
Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
Comments(1)
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
8.000.005.000.0013.00

A.M. Ran with Tyler, Derek, and Dustin Williams, Derek's friend and athletic trainer at BYU. Tyler and I did the standard 5 mile tempo. Derek and Dustin ran the warm-up with us.

My original plan was to do only the second half of the tempo, but Tyler persuaded me to do the whole 5.

Total time: 27:46.4

Splits: 5:30 - 5:30 - 5:37 - 5:34 - 5:35.

By half: 13:48 - 13:58

Subjective/Descriptive: 5:30 pace for the whole 5 was rather ambitious given that last week I barely managed 5:29 for 2.5, no nap on Sunday or Monday, leaves, and a wet road. Nevertheless we decided to go out at 5:30 and see what happens. We hit every half mile on the dot for the first 2 miles. The first mile felt a bit aggressive. Second mile felt good, just perfect. Third mile at first felt too good and then it started feeling hard, about 0.25 before 180 turn, and even harder afterwards. I tucked behind Tyler, and the fourth mile felt a bit better, but still not enough to take a turn upfront and lead pursuit of the 5:30 guy who was gradually slipping away. The first quarter of the last mile felt too good, and for a good reason - we slowed down to 85 on it. It was uphill, so it was more like an 84 effort, but still the quarter before that was 82. I took the lead after that, and Tyler started falling back. But I was not doing that much better - hit quarters in 83, 84, and 83, and that was all I could do. Tyler finished 2 seconds behind me in 27:48.

Overall happy with the tempo.

 P.M. 1 with Julia in 10:20, 2 with Benjamin in 17:07, Jenny ran the first 1.5 in 13:08.

Brooks T4 Racing Flat Miles: 10.00
Night Sleep Time: 8.50Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.50
Add Comment
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
13.000.000.000.0013.00

A.M. Easy 10, first 7 with Jeff. Total time 1:21:11. Of all things discussed civil unions. My argument is that if we do allow civil unions with benefits, then two or more people living together should not have to engage in the "alternative behavior" described by Leviticus 18:22 in order to form the union and receive the benefits. E.g. two guys finish running for college and decide to try to run professionally. One year one trains full-time, the other works and trains when he can, then they trade. They share an apartment and kitchen duties to save costs. One should be able to put the other on his health insurance.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 10:26. 2 with Benjamin in 18:00. Jenny ran the first 1.5 in 13:23. 200 with Jacob in 1:52.

Vibram Five Fingers Miles: 10.00
Night Sleep Time: 7.00Nap Time: 0.50Total Sleep Time: 7.50
Comments(311)
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
11.750.000.001.2513.00

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

Times:

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
Comments(4)
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
13.100.000.000.0013.10

A.M. Ran alone. 10.1 in 1:08:53. A little faster today for a rather odd reason. I was feeling stoked about the economy, of all things. Yes, I am excited. Hard to explain the reasons, but I am just stoked. I feel I know something to be excited about even if I cannot quite formulate it. Maybe I should try and it will come out.

Our economy has been a huge wasteful behemoth . Collectively as a nation we produce mostly junk. Junk food, overpriced cars, frivolous law suits, overcomplicated laws most people cannot understand without the help of a professional whose sole expertise is in studying those laws, multi-level marketing schemes, over-hyped gimmicks of various kinds, you name it. Only maybe 10-20% of our collective what we do goes towards something that truly honestly contributes to life quality. The rest we would not only be able to do without, much of it we would be better off without.

So with the recent "crisis" we are being forced to normalize the economy. If all of our car makers produce no new cars (extremely unlikely, but let's consider the worst possible case) I won't miss it for another 20 years as long as the spare parts are available and some car shops are still in business. First 10 years I will drive what I have now. 10 years later I will buy a 10 year old car and drive it for another 10 years. People are spending less, I say good for them. Learn to live on what you have, learn to sacrifice, get a small taste of what it's like in other less affluent countries.

I have to say I have no clue about going without. I've never been hungry for too long because the food was not there. I've never had to sleep outside or on a dirt floor. Yet I know a lot more about going without than most Americans. I remember in the 90s when the food shortages hit Russia that I wished they had a store out in the middle of nowhere so that to get there you'd have to take a train, and then walk or run a mile, and that the train would go there only once a day. I would have never had to wait in line. Those memories make me thankful for what I have now. I live in a 2050 sq ft. home with my wife and six children, and to me it is a mansion. We have three cars! The line for food is rarely more than 5 people. You can buy fresh exotic fruit like bananas all year round. I own several computers and they are connected to the internet. With the "crisis" those things do not appear to be going away. It is not a crisis, it is a little bit of a reminder to put your wants/needs head back on your shoulders.

P.M. 1 mile with Julia in 10:20. Then 2 miles with Benjamin, and Jenny joining for 1.5. No time taken - the watch broke during the run. It was the prize from Ogden - Suunto T4.

Vibram Five Fingers Miles: 10.10
Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
Add Comment
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
8.3415.000.000.0023.34

A.M. Ran with Nick. This morning all of my watches were not functional. Suunto T4 died - probably dead battery. Garmin 305 refused to boot. So I had Nick tell me the splits.

We did a warm-up, 15 mile tempo, then a cool-down. Total of 20 miles.

I think Nick accidentally stopped his watch during the first quarter, so I am going to add 7 seconds to adjust for that to the relevant splits and total time.

Total time - 1:27:10 (5:48.67 avg).

Splits by 2.5 (yes we did it on the standard course, 6 times on the same stretch of the trail from Geneva to the Utah Lake turnaround):

14:33 - 14:29 - 14:05 - 14:25 - 14:28 - 15:10

Subjective: At first it felt hard. Then I tucked behind Nick and he mesmerized me with his rhythm. He picked up the pace, and I was able to handle it. We were going faster than 5:40 and it did not feel unbearable. Then around 8 miles into it I started struggling and asked Nick to back off. Was able to hold around 5:45 pace for a while until 11. Then I started losing it. Nick took off at 12.5 and closed with 13:42 last 2.5. After he took off I did not have any splits. I felt that I was sprinting, but at the same time I could tell my legs were moving slow. But there was nothing I could do.

Overall happy with the tempo. I think it is the fastest non-aided 15 mile tempo I've ever run in training. Now if only those 2.5 mile splits were 5 K splits :-)

P.M. 1 mile with Julia, no time taken due to the lack of functional timing equipment. Then tried the Garmin and it booted. Ran 2 miles with Benjamin and Jared in 17:05. Jenny ran the first 1.5 in 12:31. 200 with Jacob, 0.34 with Joseph.


Brooks T4 Racing Flat Miles: 20.00
Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
Comments(3)
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
0.000.000.000.000.00

Day of rest. Went to church. The sacrament meeting talks were on living the gospel of Jesus Christ vs following the rules of the Church as part of the culture. 

Night Sleep Time: 9.00Nap Time: 1.00Total Sleep Time: 10.00
Add Comment
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
13.440.000.000.0013.44

A.M. 10.1 with Derek and Dustin in 1:11:53. Discussed a number of subjects - mainly automaker bailout, and cross-country racing. My thoughts on the automaker bailout are that they have been making way too many cars and have been overpricing them on top of it. I think we would all benefit from a law that would force the insurance damage payouts limited to $20K or so on any car. If somebody wants to have a luxury car, and it gets totaled, let him absorb the cost. Also, tax anything above that really high, e.g. 100%. Basically, pass a set of laws that encourages meeting the needs while punishing excessive wants. Good luck with that in our culture of "I want the best, and I want it now", but I think that would help the automakers in the long run a lot more than the bailout. They WILL find ways to make most cars so that they sell for less than $20K. Of course, the market might force them to do that anyway if we just do nothing to bail them out.

Took Jacob for 200 meters - untimed.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 10:26, 2 with Benjamin in 16:56, Jenny ran the first 1.5 in 13:05. We played leap frog. 0.34 with Joseph in 3:44.

Vibram Five Fingers Miles: 10.10
Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
Add Comment
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
10.150.002.850.0013.00

A.M. Ran alone. Did the 2.5 tempo run. Ran a 4.12 mile warm-up.

Tempo run:

Course: As usual, from Utah Lake gate to Geneva. Slight net uphill, mostly in the last mile.

Total time: 13:46.5

Splits by 0.5: 2:43 - 2:44 - 2:44 - 2:48 - 2:47.

Subjective: At 1 mile felt the legs were moving quick, but not quick enough. Some components of quickness were present, but others were absent. Felt stuck in the 84 second per quarter gear on the last mile. Did not feel too bad, but just could not go any faster. In fact, the pace felt hard from the beginning, but I hoped it was just cold weather, that I would warm up eventually. The run went on, it did not get any harder, but it did not get any easier either.

On the cool down I saw a runner moving at a decent speed, and ran about 0.35 at a tempo pace to catch up. Got to meet him - his name is Drew Johnson. I remembered that I'd run with him once before, and I correctly remembered that he was a math major at BYU. I gave him my standard geek test. He set a record for correctly computing 2i while running - it took him about 100 meters. Then I also discovered that he had served a mission in Korea.

You meet all kinds of people while running in Provo - math geeks, Russian speakers, Italian speakers, Korean speakers. Spanish speakers - well it is almost a given. Most of my training partners over the years have spoken Spanish.

Afterwards, 200 with Jacob in 1:43, 0.34 with Joseph in 4:25 (slow today because his pants were falling down), and 1 with Julia in 10:35.

P.M. 2 with Benjamin in 16:52. Jenny joined us for 1.5 in 12:38.

Brooks T4 Racing Flat Miles: 11.34
Night Sleep Time: 8.50Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.50
Comments(2)
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
11.000.001.000.0012.00

A.M. 10 miles in 1:18:28, first 7 with Jeff. Ran a tempo mile in 5:29 just because - the legs felt a bit feisty and I decided to give them a shake.

Discussed a new economic concept I have thought of. Perhaps it is not new, just plain common sense, but I do not see it discussed very often. They talk about inflation, price index, GDP, (un)employment rate, etc, but I find those measurements rather removed from real life. Example - we say that creating new jobs is good, but removing jobs is bad. By that definition, if one could completely automate the production of life necessities and conveniences that would be bad because a lot of jobs would be lost. We are producing and buying from each other a lot of gimmicky junk, this raises our GDP. If increased GDP is what we are after, producing more junk is good. When we try to spend less time producing the gimmicky junk and more time with our families, GDP goes down, so that is bad.

So I wanted to have a different set of metrics and came up with this rough idea:

Each individual at any point in his life contributes and withdraws economic value. E.g when he eats he withdraws. When he produces food he contributes. When he helps somebody in some way he contributes. He may get paid for his contribution, he may not. He might have to pay to withdraw or he might not. We create a withdrawal-contribution model by assigning a value to every action. Granted, you can debate the values, but I believe you tried hard enough you could create a reasonable model. We already do it with money, and it works more or less OK, at least enough to keep us doing things for each other even when we do not feel like it. But we could do much better if all we are doing is a mathematical analysis - e.g we can assign a teacher much higher contribution value than a tobacco sales exec, and we do not have to pass any laws in the Congress, raise taxes, or mess with the free market otherwise.

Throughout an individual's life, the deposits and withdrawals add up to a net total. The key to our survival and progress is to have the net total of the whole population as high as possible. Definitely a non-negative, ideally highly positive. To make that happen, we need to maximize the net total of each individual. Some will have to be negative. E.g someone is born with a handicap. Others will be highly positive - e.g a scientist that invents a process for feeding millions off a small portion of land. We want to help each individual arrive at the end of his life with a positive balance.

We are born with a negative balance already - our parents had to sacrifice just for the pregnancy alone. As children we continue to accrue the negative. Then hopefully we eventually get to the point where we are starting to deposit more than we withdraw, and begin to eat away the negative balance. At some point it hopefully becomes positive, hopefully positive enough to where when we get old and need care, we have enough positive to still stay positive all the way through.

The cause of the current economic crisis could be explained in traditional economic terms and complex discussion of cash flow, assets, borrowing, etc, but I believe it is much simpler. As a society we have been withdrawing more than we have been contributing. Again, referencing the thoughts above, not necessarily just the money, but rather in terms of true value which correlates with money maybe 50-70%. For a while we were OK because the previous generation has build a positive balance of value. But now that we've squandered some of it things are starting to get a bit tougher. The solution is to start contribution more and withdrawing less.

So with that vision in mind our education should be reformed. Right now we have a system when a lot of people do not reach the level of a positive economic existence until they are 30, and I would guess net zero is often not reached until 45. While education is very important, we need to do something to help people become productive contributors while they are being educated. Less pure academic learning and more learning on the job in other words. In my area (computer programming), for example, most jobs require a BS degree. Yet every good programmer I've ever known acquired most of his skill either on the job or hacking on his own. If he went to school at all he did so to prove that he was good more than to become good. Classroom instruction would not hurt, but political issues aside, if somebody asked me to train a good programmer, I would spend 10% of the time instructing him, and 90% of the time throwing him in the water to see if he would learn to swim. While learning how to swim he could produce something useful and end his education with a positive net value balance.

P.M. 2 with Benjamin in 16:41, Jenny ran the first 1.5 in 13:08. Julia was sick, so no run for her.

Vibram Five Fingers Miles: 10.00
Night Sleep Time: 7.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.00
Comments(5)
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
12.090.000.001.2513.34

A.M. Ran alone. I got a feel of what it's like to not have the trail. A portion of the trail was blocked due to construction, so I had to take a detour for about 1.2 miles and deal with cars on 820 N and Geneva Road. This reminded me that I should be thankful for where I live.

Did 4x400 on the trail - 70.9, 70.7, 69.8, 70.0 - 200 recovery between the first three, then 400. Was originally planning the 5th 400 but because I was hitting them so slow and could not go any faster decided to break the last one into 2x200. Did them in 33.1 and 33.4. Fast speed was not happening today, but it was not as bad as a few weeks ago when I could not break 72.

Felt like the stride was not explosive enough and did not feel good control over the legs in general. Like if I had to write with my feet it would have produced the doctor's level of illegibility even if adjusted for the expected hand-foot legibility gap.

200 with Jacob in 1:41 (new record), and 0.34 with Joseph in 4:09.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 11:05. 2 with Benjamin in 17:32, Jenny ran the first 1.5 in 13:18.

Brooks T4 Racing Flat Miles: 10.00
Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
Add Comment
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
13.000.000.000.0013.00

A.M. 10 miles in 1:12:33, first 8 with Dustin and Derek. 

P.M. 1 with Julia in 11:05, 2 with Benjamin in 16:49, Jenny ran 1.5 with us in 12:45. 

Night Sleep Time: 0.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.00
Add Comment
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
9.702.009.000.0020.70

A.M. Tempo run with Jeff. Did some bushwhacking on the warm-up trying to find a alternative route to having to run on 820 N and Geneva road. Found a one-way solution of sorts, but it was not viable - too much hole crawling and fence climbing. Total of 2.75 for the warm-up.

Tempo run. Usual course - the 2.5 mile stretch between Geneva Road and the Utah Lake, out and back twice/(three times for Jeff). The plan was 10 for me, 15 for Jeff. After I am done with my 10, join Jeff at his 13.5 and try to run as far as I could at his pace. The workout had different purposes for each of us. For Jeff - develop fuel storage capabilities. For me - learn to fight neural fatigue.

Total time: 55:59 - new course PR by 39 seconds.

Splits:

by mile: 5:43 - 5:36 - 5:38 - 5:34 - 5:38 - 5:28 - 5:41 - 5:33 - 5:31 - 5:37

by 2.5: 14:08 - 14:01 - 13:54 - 13:56

by 5: 28:09 - 27:50

Subjective:

This was a breakthrough run. I was not expecting it. I have difficulty understanding where this strength came from. I cannot think of any regular physiological reasons. This whole week has not been that great. The only thing I can think of is my conversation with Hobie Call the day before. As we talked about training and other things something happened. I got off the phone, and felt different. I did not think much of it although I did wonder with a measure of hope in the back of my mind if it was a real physical change, not just a feeling. Once I heard that the Japanese believe in learning by osmosis, or in other words, assimilating a skill or a capability by virtue of merely being around a person who has that capability. The person telling me about it was mocking the notion, but as he did I thought to myself, and ever wondered since, if there was some merit to this concept. I think today I observed the strongest material witness that learning by osmosis has something validity.

Hobie and I have opposite strengths and weaknesses. His neural drive is superb. He can run a 5 K so hard that his muscles will hurt for a week. I cannot run a marathon that hard. But at the same time, I can put my body through all kinds of abuse and never get injured, while he has to watch every step. I have wished I could borrow a portion of his neural drive for a long time. Well, it appears like I was able to do it, and all I had to do was talk and listen. I did not do any mental games, or visualization before or after, except briefly thinking 2 miles into the run about how the leaders ran a suicidal pace in the Olympic marathon. If anything, I doubted the entire time that I could keep the pace. But something got reprogrammed on the subconscious level and I just kept doing fast quarters one after another.

The entire run after 0.5 miles felt like a long long quarter. I noticed my legs wanted to do a quarter, and I just let them. For some reason I had no fear. The odd thing is that I've tried this many times in the past, but it was the top-down decision. I would say to myself, go this pace until you cannot, or push yourself into pain and see how much pain you can take. And it never really worked. The conscious will was there, but the subconscious will was lacking. Today the conscious will was lacking, but the subconscious will was there. So after the first mile I started pushing the pace and breathing hard not quite sure of where I was headed with that. 2 miles into it I gave myself a reassurance that if this worked for Wanjiru, it could work for me. But I was still skeptical thinking build a gap, the longer you go, the less you will lose when you crash because there will be less left.

At 2.5 I thought - it would be nice if I could keep this, but I know I can't. Nevertheless, I tucked behind Jeff and just kept telling myself, one more quarter at this pace. It hurt, but surprisingly never got worse. By 5 miles I began to believe that I could finish ahead of the 5:40 guy given a decent star alignment. Then Jeff at 5.75 got confused by his watch and thought we had slowed down to 5:50 pace. So he "corrected" it and our next quarter was 79. That hurt, but the fact that I could do it at all was very encouraging. Taking the next mile easy in 5:41 allowed me to recover, and I began to believe that 56:30 was a possibility. At 7.5 we were 3 seconds behind the 5:36 guy and I thought it would be good to get beat by 10-15 seconds, so 56:10-56:15. But Jeff kept pressing the pace, and I managed to stay with him, and to my utter amazement with a mile to go we got 2 seconds ahead of the impossible-to-beat-for-10-miles-on- that-course-56:00-5:36 guy.

When I finished 1 second ahead of my virtual elusive nemesis and started jogging I realized how mentally drained I was from the effort and was not looking forward to any more running, much less fast running. But I needed miles, and I wanted to do what I could to support Jeff. I said to myself, just 0.5 miles, that's better than just leaving Jeff in the hole to run alone. I was able to make it to the mile, in a great degree thanks to the fact that Jeff was hurting. But it was still a decent mile - 5:29.

Jeff had a great run - 1:23:02 for 15 miles, in my estimate worth 2:25 in Ogden if he does not blow up. Right now he probably will, but with those tempos done consistently he likely won't when it is time to race.

We cooled down, this gave me 17.8 for the whole run.


P.M. 1 with Julia in 11:18, 2 with Benjamin in 17:38, Jenny ran the first 1.5 in 13:23.

Brooks T4 Racing Flat Miles: 17.80
Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
Comments(2)
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
0.000.000.000.000.00

Day of rest. Went to church.

Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
Add Comment
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
13.000.000.000.0013.00

A.M. 10 miles alone in 1:11:56. Still feeling stoked about the economy.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 11:29, 2 with Benjamin in 17:47, Jenny ran the first 1.5 in 13:27. 

Vibram Five Fingers Miles: 10.00
Night Sleep Time: 0.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.00
Add Comment
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
11.750.000.001.2513.00

A.M. Ran with Tyler. He is a business/finance major so it was fun to talk to him about the economy. We did quarters. I did 5, he did 10. 200 meter recovery between all.

Times: 69.4, 70.3, 69.4, 69.8, 69.4

Subjective: Consistent, quick recovery, faster than last week, but still slow. They all felt hard, like in all honesty I could not do them any faster even with infinite rest. Question - is the problem in the power, or in the turnover? If turnover I need to run downhill. Otherwise uphill.

Total distance - 10 miles.

P.M.  1 with Julia in 10:42, 2 with Benjamin in 17:35, Jenny ran the first 1.5 in 13:15.

 

 

 


Brooks T4 Racing Flat Miles: 10.00
Night Sleep Time: 0.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.00
Comments(3)
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
13.000.000.000.0013.00

A.M. Ran with Jeff, Dustin, and Derek. Dustin and Derek went 8, Jeff and I added 2 more. Total time 1:14:47. I overdressed at the top.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 10:32. 2 with Benjamin in 16:50. Jenny ran the first 1.5 in 12:49.

Brooks T4 Racing Flat Miles: 10.00
Night Sleep Time: 8.50Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.50
Comments(1)
Race: Earn Your Turkey 4 miler (4 Miles) 00:21:22, Place overall: 10
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
7.000.000.004.0011.00

A.M. Earn Your Turkey 4 miler in Orem. 21:22.6, 10th place.

Today was a special day. Everybody in our family except Sarah and William ran. I ran first. We had a fast field. The start was very fast. I worked through the pack until I found Stephen Clark pacing Shaine Kirtright, and tucked in behind them. The mile markers were off. For the record, my time at the first mile marker was 5:06, but it was short. 5:30 at the official 3 mile mark which we would hit on the next lap again, and the it was really supposed to be 3 miles, but I knew already it was in the wrong place. I caught a split at the four triangles for 1.25, and it was 6:40. Now that made sense. 2 mile split officially in 10:41, I think that one was right.

Then around 2 miles Shaine started struggling, Stephen started yelling at him, and I passed them and surged to catch Gamechu, a high school runner that immigrated from Ethiopia. Caught him, he surged and dropped me, but I was able to pull back up. Tucked in behind him as tight as I could. 15:55 at the official mile 1 the second time around, 16:06 at the triangles, I think this was the actual 3 mile split, and 16:19 at the official mile 3. My natural tendency to association cannot help but remind me of the standard Soviet propaganda line when they spoke about America: "According to the official, obviously distorted, data ..."

With about 1 K to knowing that Gamechu had a close to 11.0 PR in 100 meters I tried to break him, but could not. He ended up gapping me instead, but I closed with a quarter to go. But then it was too late. He turned on his kick and pulled ahead. He eased off, I closed some, but could not catch him. I timed the last quarter in 76.

Ahead of me: Sean Sundwall 19:55.3, Nick McCombs 19:59.8, Jeff McClellan (our Jeff) 20:02.1, Reagan Fry 20:13.8, Aaron Robison 20:30.1, Shin Nozaki 20:33.0, Danny Moody 20:45.1, Thatcher Olson 21:11.9, and Gamechu Goesse 21:21.9. 1-2-3-7-8 for the blog. Not bad in that field. Bloggers beat BYU, not bad at all. Of course, not sure how to count Thatcher - he is both.

Overall the race went better than I expected. 5:20 pace felt good when tucked behind somebody. Felt like I could run a 10 K like this. But not any faster. Did not handle surges well, they hurt bad. On the positive side of things ran strong all the way, did not fade in the last mile. So while the neural power is lacking the neural endurance is not doing too bad.

Now the fun begins. Kids races. Men 0-2 - 100 meters. Jacob won with 35 seconds. This is our family record for the diaper division. 9:20 pace while wearing a diaper, how about that? We've tried to win that division ever since we've had kids. It took 5 tries (as in kids, not the number of runs).

Men 3-4, 400 meters. Joseph ran 2:34 for 7th place. A new PR, and not bad for a 3 year old. His stride is still developing though, he shuffles. No big deal, he'll outgrow it. Jenny used to shuffle at his age as well.

Women 5-6. 800 meters. Julia crushed the field with a 3:51 winning by more than 40 seconds. New PR. Splits of 1:51 - 2:00, quarter PR en route as well. She pushed hard, which for her is remarkable. She is not developed mentally to the level of Benjamin and Jenny at her age yet.

Women 7-8. 800 meters. Jenny won coming from behind. Her time was 3:21, splits by quarter 1:41 - 1:40. There comes Jenny the Fire Breathing Dragon, better watch out.

Men 9-10. 1 mile. Benjamin finished second with 6:14, 4 seconds behind his arch-rival Jacob Blackburn who is a year older. New mile PR. Last quarter in 1:30. He gave it all he had.

Interesting enough, in all of the races our kids ran the Pachev-Blackburn combination did a 1-2 punch. The main Blackburn family has 10 children, and they have cousins as well. It is fun to race them.

All of the children performed according to my expectations. After having worked with my kids for probably 7 or so years I can appreciate the significance of this. This is a true miracle. I do not set my expectations low. I do not tell a kid he did a good job to make him feel good when he performed poorly. When he runs below expectations I am  honest with him, we analyze what went wrong, and make plans on how we are going to improve.  You can train, you can prepare, you can make plans, and things still go wrong. They go wrong even with adults. With all the experience I have I still have bad races. With kids it is much worse - kids can run into issues adults never will (hopefully), like a temper tantrum at the start, or half way through the race. To have all five run with no glitches was something special.

Ran a cool-down with Jeff, total of 11 miles for the day.

Brooks T4 Racing Flat Miles: 11.00
Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
Comments(9)
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
13.250.000.000.0013.25

A.M.  10.25 with Jeff in 1:22:59. Felt tightness in the left hamstring. I actually like it when the hamstrings hurt. I had tight hamstrings after my best races.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 10:44, 2 with Benjamin in 16:46, Jenny ran 1.5 with us in 12:55. Julia rode along on a bike. 

Vibram Five Fingers Miles: 10.25
Night Sleep Time: 0.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.00
Comments(4)
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
15.000.000.000.0015.00

A.M. 12 miles with Jeff in 1:34:35. Stomach has  not worked since yesterday afternoon so I have not been eating much. This entire run felt like the last 6 miles of St. George. 8:00 pace was a challenge. Focusing on the positive, stomach flu helps save on food.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 10:47, 2 with Benjamin in 17:47, Jenny ran 1.5 with us in 13:18.

 

Brooks T4 Racing Flat Miles: 12.00
Night Sleep Time: 0.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.00
Add Comment
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
0.000.000.000.000.00

Day of rest. Went to church. Looked at our missionary board. We have 10 full-time missionaries in the field from our stake. What is interesting is that three come from one family, and three more come from our Spanish branch. I cannot help but think it means something, but I cannot quite figure out what this means. Church average is about 20 per stake.

Night Sleep Time: 9.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 9.00
Add Comment
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
286.5632.0026.489.00354.04
Brooks T4 Racing Flat Miles: 175.39Vibram Five Fingers Miles: 100.75
Night Sleep Time: 204.75Nap Time: 3.50Total Sleep Time: 208.25
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