Breaking the Wall

Earn Your Turkey 4 Miler

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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: 0.00 Year: 3593.46
Saucony Type A Lifetime Miles: 627.15
Bare Feet Lifetime Miles: 446.12
Nike Double Stroller Lifetime Miles: 120.59
Brown Crocs 1 Lifetime Miles: 1509.03
Brown Crocs 2 Lifetime Miles: 987.95
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
286.2516.0016.0010.35328.60
Green Crocs 4 Miles: 328.60
Night Sleep Time: 228.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 228.00
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
11.250.000.000.7512.00

A.M. 12 miles total. Most with the kids. Benjamin did 7, Jenny and Julia 3, Joseph 2, Jacob 1, William 0.5. Benjamin and I did a pickup for 0.75 down the canyon in 3:52.

Green Crocs 4 Miles: 12.00
Night Sleep Time: 0.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.00
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Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
12.000.000.000.0012.00

A.M. Total of 12. Ran with the kids. Benjamin did 7, Jenny and Julia 3, Joseph 2, Jacob 1, William 0.5. Jacob did an 800 meter time trial on the track in 3:24.3. This is his new record, but only by a second. I was hoping he would get under 3:20. He started out in 47 for the first 200, then faded. Possibly not used to 800 meter pain. We will try one more time to see if he can do better.

Green Crocs 4 Miles: 12.00
Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
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Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
15.250.004.001.2520.50

A.M. 20 mile run. 16 of it with Chad. Part of it with the kids. Jacob did 1, Joseph 2, Jenny and Julia 3. Benjamin was on the campout, and ran 7 later. I had an idea for Chad to improve his 5 K, and we tried a workout to get him started, and also to get an idea of his capabilities. The workout was 5x400 with 200 recovery down the Provo Canyon. The target was 75. We ended up doing 75.4, 73.9, 73.8, 73.8, 72.3. Then I finished out 16 with Chad and ran the last 4 as a tempo. My course is rather unpleasant - out and back, rollers, some wind in the canyon, so I was going to be happy with anything under 24:00 at the end of a 20 mile run on it. But I felt strong, and managed 23:27 with the splits of 5:52, 6:00, 5:43, 5:51.

P.M. 0.5 with William. 

Green Crocs 4 Miles: 20.50
Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
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Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
0.000.000.000.000.00

Day rest. Went to church. We had a fast and testimony meeting, then a lesson on the words of Christ to the Nephites - continuation of the lesson last week, and a lesson in the Elder's Quorum on sharing the gospel.

Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
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Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
12.000.000.000.0012.00

A.M. Total of 12 miles. Most with the kids. Benjamin did 7, Joseph 2, Jacob 1, Jenny and Julia 3, William 0.5.

Green Crocs 4 Miles: 12.00
Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
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Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
9.500.000.002.5012.00

A.M. 12 total. Most with the kids. Jacob did 1, Joseph 2, Julia 3.5, Jenny 3, William 0.5. Benjamin did 7 with me. I did 2x2000 he did just the last one with me. The first one was uphill. I ran it in 7:11.3. Then I jogged maybe 300 meters and started the second one with Benjamin down the canyon. The target was 6:40 (5:20 pace).  Our splits were 80, 78, 80, 78, 71 with the total time of 6:27.9, which is Benjamin's PR for the distance. I suppose he could go under 6:15 if we really planned a time trial for that distance given that his mile is 4:52.

Green Crocs 4 Miles: 12.00
Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
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Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
13.000.000.000.0013.00

A.M. 13 total. Most with the kids. Benjamin did 7, Jenny and Julia 3, Joseph 2, Jacob 1, William 0.5.

Green Crocs 4 Miles: 13.00
Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
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Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
11.400.000.000.6012.00

A.M. 12 total. Most of it with the kids. William did 0.5, Jacob 1, Joseph 2, Jenny and Julia 3, Benjamin 7. Benjamin and I did a pickup for 1000 in 3:12.

 

Green Crocs 4 Miles: 12.00
Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
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Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
7.805.500.000.0013.30

A.M. The kids were going to run in the state championship, so they had a taper. William did 0.5, Jacob 0.5, Jenny, Julia, and Joseph 1, and Benjamin 3. I figured since I was not going to get a good long run tomorrow, I'd do something today. The plan was to go 15 - first 7.5 easy up the canyon, then hard on the way back. It was raining hard, but I figured with 48 F I'd be OK in a long sleeved shirt and shorts. This turned out to be a big mistake, the biggest clothing mistake I have ever made in 28 years of running, and a humbling experience. The first 7.5 miles were nothing out of the ordinary. I felt a little cold in the first mile, then got used to it. The wind was blowing into the canyon, so my face and chest were protected, and I was going a decent pace - around 6:50 with a jogging effort. This did give me concerns about coming back as it revealed that the wind was rather strong, and that combined with the rain would make things uncomfortable once I turned around. But little did I know what was coming.

I turned around, hit 5:36 pace for about 200 meters, then was greeted by a gust of headwind. No big deal, slowed down to about 6:00, deal with it. Maintained a slight sub-6:00 as I was being pounded by the rain and occasional hail. Things got to the point where my legs started feeling numb, but I kept turning them over and still maintaining a little under 6:00. However, once I came out of the canyon a strange thing began to happen. All of a sudden the pace slowed to 6:20, although I felt that my legs were moving fast. Then a little after 13 miles into the run and a little over 5.5 into the fast portion while still a little less than 2 miles away from the house I started feeling like I could not run at all. I stopped and was feeling faint, so I laid down. I began to wonder if I was going to die right there from hypothermia. Now that I am writing this in retrospect this sounds like a rather improbable event. I had not been out for that long, and I had been moving, the fainting probably came from trying to run sub-6:00 into a headwind and cold rain while in a state of mild hypothermia already, so the body was saying - hey, you cannot do that. But at the time I seriously thought that the time might have come for me to go to the other side of the veil.

This was a good test of faith. It is one thing to bear your testimony about eternal life in a church meeting, but the question is if you are going to feel the same way when you actually experience what you perceive could end your life on Earth, and the threat looks real. One time in a BYU class the teacher asked for a volunteer to release a heavy led ball suspended on a chain and stand and wait for it to come back. According to the laws of physics the ball will not come back higher than where you released it, so no damage to your face is going to happen and there is nothing to fear. Having studied physics extensively I felt that I understood that law quite well, so I volunteered. However, when I saw the ball coming at me, I completely forgot about this law, and all I could think about was that it was going to hit me, so I blinked. This time, I did better, I think. There was no fear, no panic. I felt the assurance that everything would be alright even if I did not survive this as far as the mortal survival is concerned.

Laying down made me feel a little better, although I was still not feeling the greatest. I realized that if I chose to remain on the ground I would be there for a long time before anybody noticed. So I told myself to get up and start running. I needed to make to the closed warmest place, which happened to be a nearby printing business only about a quarter mile a way. Fortunately I was able to run, and got there before anything bad happened again. The office staff was very helpful. They got me warm, and I was able to call Sarah to come and pick me up. My jaw was shaking for about 20 minutes or so. Once I got warm, everything was fine, except I was not going to try to risk it and finish the run. So I ended up with about 13.2 or so miles, 5.5 of it tempo.

I think something like this happened to Logan in the 2008 trials, and I believe to Curtis Moore as well in 2004. Not sure why this happened to me today, never happened before under similar, or even worse conditions. Perhaps with age my ability to stay warm in cold conditions has declined. Regardless, I know now that I need to dress up when it is cold, and avoid doing long runs in those conditions. This will be an adjustment as I am used to ignoring the weather and going through with the workout that I planned, but it is good to be forced to learn new things and do things in new ways - often it makes you discover better ways. 

 

 

Green Crocs 4 Miles: 13.30
Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
Comments(1)
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
12.000.000.000.0012.00

A.M. We got up early, drove to the Cottonwood complex, and were ready to run in the state cross-country championship. Unfortunately there was so much snow that the national headquarters of USATF made the decision to cancel the meet. So we drove home and ran there. There was quite a bit of snow, but it was manageable. I ran 12 miles. Benjamin did 7, Jenny and Julia 3, Joseph 2, Jacob 1, William 0.5. I considered doing something fast with Benjamin, but there was too much snow for that. Plus I suspected I might have some hidden damage from yesterday's hypothermia, so I kept it low profile.

Green Crocs 4 Miles: 12.00
Night Sleep Time: 7.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.00
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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
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Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
12.000.000.000.0012.00

A.M. Total of 12. Ran with the kids for the most part. Benjamin did 7, Jenny and Julia 3, Joseph 2, Jacob 1, William 0.5.

Green Crocs 4 Miles: 12.00
Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
Comments(1)
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
10.002.000.000.0012.00

A.M. Ran with the kids. Total of 12. Benjamin did 7, Jenny and Julia 3, Joseph 2, Jacob 1, William 0.5. Benjamin and I did a 2 mile tempo in 11:31 with the splits of 5:55, 5:36 down the canyon.

Green Crocs 4 Miles: 12.00
Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
Comments(1)
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
12.000.000.000.0012.00

A.M. Usual 12, most of it with the kids. Benjamin did 7, Jenny and Julia 3, Joseph 2, Jacob 1, William 0.5.

Green Crocs 4 Miles: 12.00
Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
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Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
10.001.001.000.0012.00

A.M. 12 total. Most of it with the kids. Jacob did 1, William 0.5, Julia  and Jenny 3, Joseph 2, Benjamin 7. Benjamin and I did a 2 mile tempo in 11:14 down the canyon with the splits of 5:48 and 5:26.

Green Crocs 4 Miles: 12.00
Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
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Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
12.000.000.000.0012.00

A.M. The usual 12 with the kids. Benjamin did 7, Jenny and Julia 3, Joseph 2, Jacob 0.5.

Green Crocs 4 Miles: 12.00
Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
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Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
12.507.500.000.0020.00

A.M. Long run. 20 miles. Did it differently than I normally do because I wanted to run a tempo run with Benjamin. Also because it is November, and it is easy to get sick, and also because I was not sure if I was fully recovered from the hypothermia a week ago. So I took things relatively easy - instead of hammering out 10 miles at the end of 20, I ran 3.5 early with Benjamin, and then 4 at the very end. Also ran with all the other kids. William did 0.5, Jacob 1, Joseph 2, Jenny 3, Julia only 1 because her foot was hurting. Benjamin and I did 3.5 in 20:19 - the first half is down the canyon, after than it is an uphill finish to the house. So overall not super-fast course. Once I dropped everybody off I still had 8.5 to go. I ran out into the canyon and back. On the way back I started feeling low on fuel so I decided to still try 6:00 pace, but with the idea that if it was obvious the fuel was too low, back off and jog in. In the first mile I felt like I might have to do that, but then I found a rhythm and was able to maintain respectable pace with 23:45 for 4 miles.

Green Crocs 4 Miles: 20.00
Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
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Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
0.000.000.000.000.00

Day of rest. Went to church. Had a hard time staying awake in the sacrament meeting for some reason for a third week in a row. Not sure why. It is not the speakers - the messages were good, and I tried hard to listen and understand. It is not the sleep, or should not be at least - I've been getting 8 hours of sleep. Maybe some weird residual fatigue that reminds me of its existence when I finally sit down and sit still for some time.

There was no drifting off in Sunday school, though, at least for me because I taught the class. Not much for the students either - I kept putting people on the spot by asking them surprise questions. Plus Sarah tells me my voice is very loud and tends to wake people up, especially babies. The lesson was on the life of Christ. I posed a question to ponder - how do you get people to start counting time from the time of your birth, and keep doing that for 2000 years? Even the Soviet Union did not dare change that after the communist revolution of 1917. They made many changes, adjusting the calendar and changing the spelling of Russian, but they could not change the name of Sunday, which in Russian literally means the day of the resurrection. I remember wondering as a child - if God is not real and there was no resurrection, why do we name a day after that? Later I learned that God is real, and resurrection of Christ did take place, and that you can go only so far in trying to remove the truth from the culture. 

 

Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
Comments(1)
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
12.500.000.000.0012.50

A.M. Usual 12 with the kids. William did 0.5,  Jenny and Julia 3, Joseph 2, Jacob 1, Benjamin 5.

Green Crocs 4 Miles: 12.50
Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
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Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
11.250.000.001.2512.50

A.M. Total of 12.5, again most with the kids. William did 0.5, Julia 3 in 23:41 - I think that is her record, Joseph 2, Jenny 0.5 with William. Jenny got a fever, that's why she ran less. Not again! Not right before the Thanksgiving race! Benjamin ran 7. We did a workout 800 up the canyon in 2:45, the rest down - 600 in 1:47.8, 400 in 68.3, 200 in 32.3.

Green Crocs 4 Miles: 12.50
Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
Add Comment
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
12.000.000.000.0012.00

A.M. Total of 12. Ran 0.5 with William and Jacob, 1 with Julia and Joseph. Jenny rested trying to mitigate the fallout from the fever. Bed rest pretty much for her. Benjamin ran 3. 

P.M. Now Benjamin got a fever. That changes our plans for the race. The plan was for him to go out with me to 2 miles, then see what happens. Now we will have to come with something different. Things could be bad - he might not even be able to break 25:00. But we are hoping for the best. He and Jenny are resting in bed, drinking EmergenC, and taking ibuprofen to knock the fever down. I gave both of them a blessing. I also knelt down and had an argument of sorts with the Lord. This is a different type of argument. You of course realize that He is charge, and that you cannot ask for things contrary to His will. But there is a reason the scriptures use the phrase "wrestle with the Lord". You can ask for things that appear not meant to happen, and if you do it with enough faith and give the Lord a good reason for them to happen, not just good for you but good for Him, He will make them happen. So in that hope I prayed tonight that my children would not see their training go in vain but see some fruit of their labors and be rewarded with a solid performance in spite of their fevers. 

Green Crocs 4 Miles: 12.00
Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
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Race: Earn Your Turkey 4 Miler (4 Miles) 00:21:44, Place overall: 6
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
8.000.000.004.0012.00

A.M. Earn Your Turkey 4 Miler, 21:44.9, 6th place, got the turkey. Not just me - we got 8 turkeys total. My argument with the Lord last night appears to have had some merit. Everybody ran great, and Benjamin and Jenny won their races in spite their fevers.

First Benjamin and I raced in the 4 miler. I was very concerned for Benjamin. I knew from fairly recent personal experience how devastating fevers can be when it comes to fitness. I prayed for him last night, this morning when I got up, and several times during the race. Benjamin demonstrated a classic example of resilience against adversity. His fever and its consequences were not removed - he did not all of a sudden feel 100% healthy. But he felt healthy enough to race, and to run his guts out. He drafted behind Chad Robinson for 3.5 miles. Then he saw a kid that looked no older than 14 ahead of him. He said - that is my turkey, and he went for it. He was glad that he did because the kid did turn out to be 14. He finished in 23:08 - 14th place overall, and 1st in the 12-14 age division. Chad was not too far behind with 23:19 in 18th place. When Benjamin finished he said this was the hardest race that he's ever run. I can believe it. In 2009 I ran 23:05 myself after experiencing a fever 4 days prior.

Now on to my race. In the first half mile I maneuvered my way past the fast starters that lacked the fitness to maintain their starting pace and found a runner of perfect size and perfect pace. It was Bryce Peterson. I've run with him a few times in the past, but I did not recognize him at the time. He now lives in Arizona, but came over for a visit. Thanks to him I was able to run a decent time today, in fact this is my best since 2008. The official mile markers were off except for the first one. However, Bryce happened to have a beeping Garmin that appeared to function correctly as it beeped in places that I remember were the right ones, and the splits quite reasonably agreed with perceived effort and total time. So I will go off his beeps. The first mile was 5:18. I felt thankful when I saw the split. The pace felt hard, but sustainable for some time. At that time I knew that I was going to get a good result, and with it being the day of Thanksgiving I said a prayer of thanks. The next mile was 5:26, 10:44 for 2. I could tell that the pace had slowed down and became more manageable, yet I knew from how it felt that I did not have the strength to pass Bryce and push a faster pace. In fact, it was just perfect.

The third mile was 5:36, 16:20 for 3. Again I could tell that we slowed down some more. But again, I felt it was still too early to push. Maybe if somebody had passed us at this point I would have latched on, but I definitely did not have what it takes to break way. 

The last mile was perhaps the most exciting. With about 1000 to go I made an attempt to pass Bryce figuring if I had a chance of beating him it would be now. But he was strong and sped up. I tucked back behind him. We were closing on a runner in front of us as we tried to navigate a crowd of walkers and runners we were lapping. In this race somebody going 12:00 or slower does get lapped, and there was quite a crowd, more than I ever remember in the history of this race which I have run every year since 1997. Then with about 400 to go there was an interesting development. The runner in front of us saw a frozen turkey on the road and picked it up. This was part of the race - if you saw a turkey on the course you could pick it up and run with it. I wondered how well he could run in this state of fatigue and with a turkey in his hands. Turned out not very well at all. We passed him very quickly. Bryce started his kick, I tried to kick as well, but did not have the kicking gear. He ended up a couple of second ahead of me with 21:43 low.

The winning time was 20:44, I think it was Trevor Nielson. Jaydn Asay was second with 20:48 if I remember right. Then John Hedengren with 21:08 - he is back at BYU teaching chemical engineering and obviously getting back into some decent shape ( he was a 29:30 10 K runner in his prime). Then Derek Moody with 21:12.

I looked through my old blog entries and realized that this race has been won in the past by two Olympians. In 2006 it was Josh McAdams (19:19), and in 2009 Cam Levins 19:36. 

Chad and I ran and found Sarah and her training partner Shelly on the course shortly before they approached the 3 mile mark. They were moving faster than I was expecting. Sarah is eight months pregnant with our eighth child and she gave me permission to announce that loudly as she approached the finish line. Last time Sarah ran this race this pregnant she got 57:00. This was when she was pregnant with Joseph in 2004. In 2008 while pregnant with William she established a new standard of virtual pregnancy with 34:37 in a 5 K at Payson Onion days which equates to 11:08 pace. This was done at 7 months pregnant. Today she raised the bar. While 8 months pregnant with her 8th child she ran 4 miles in 42:03 averaging 10:30 per mile which will average out to 32:40 5 K. So, able bodied men who are reading - if you cannot do that, you may just as well be 8 months pregnant. Stop eating junk, relaxing in front of TV or video game console all day long and start training!  

Now with my race over, I could focus on helping the kids in their races. This year was the first time that we had a kid that was too old for the little kids races - Benjamin is now 13. This will be more and more of a pattern from now on. I told Benjamin he should go in the car and rest, but he wanted to participate in pacing his younger brothers and sisters, so I let him. I figured it would cost a few extra hours and degrees of the fever later on, but it was more important for him to share in the joy of achieving with his younger siblings. Thinking about this in retrospect helps me appreciate what a great son Sarah and I have in Benjamin.

First Stephen got 2nd place in the 100 m dash in the 0-2 age division with the time of 49 s on my watch as Jenny and I paced him. I will ignore the official times for the kids races as they were all off and report what I had on my watch from now on. We hoped for the first, but we knew that it would be difficult to convince him to race all out at such a tender age. So 49 seconds on race day is a decent result for him. This ended up being our only non-win in the kids races for the day.

Then William won the 400 meter race (ages 3-4) with 2:14. In addition to the turkey he is going to get a violin. Jacob has one, so he wanted one as well. I told him that if he either won the race or broke 2:00 he could get one. Julia and I ran with him.

 Joseph and Jacob won the 800 meter race in their age groups. I paced Joseph, while Benjamin paced Jacob. Joseph took the lead at the turnaround - his split was 93. Then I think he relaxed a little seeing that he's broken the competition and maybe did not quite run as scared as he should have been. But he won the 7-8 age division with 3:14 by 7 seconds over his competitor. A bit slow for him, but it is hard for little kids to run a good time in the fall.

Jacob had a problem with his pants falling down (in the bustle of getting all the kids ready on the morning of the race an uncertified/unapproved pair of pants managed to sneak past security), but still won with 3:40 by 44 seconds in the 5-6 age division. 

Then Jenny and Julia raced in the mile. I paced Julia while Benjamin paced Jenny. Julia moved into the first girl position after the first 200 meters or so and stayed there until Jenny passed her with about a quarter to go. Both of them ended up winning their age divisions with very good times. Jenny ran 6:45 which is only 3 seconds slower than her healthy track PR. Julia did get a PR of 6:49 by 6 seconds.

So with me winning the 35-39 age division, and all of the kids except Stephen winning theirs we earned 7 turkeys. Additionally we got a turkey + potatoes award for the largest immediate family participating in the race. We hoped also to get the most pregnant participant award, but they never announced it before we had to leave. 

Overall a good day for the family.

Green Crocs 4 Miles: 12.00
Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
Comments(3)
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
12.000.000.000.0012.00

A.M. Total of 12. Benjamin and Jenny were still sick, but felt like they could run a mile, so they did. I had Joseph, Jacob, and Julia keep it low key as well, so we had a 1 mile family run altogether. Then I ran 0.5 with William, and the rest of the distance alone. Then we ate the turkey that William has earned with his win. Well, we cannot really tell who earned which turkey easily, but we attributed this one to William. It is good for the children to feel from a young age that they can and should contribute to the family dinner in a real way. 

Green Crocs 4 Miles: 12.00
Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
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Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
9.000.005.000.0014.00

A.M. 14 miles total. Some with the kids. Benjamin and Jenny were sick, ran only 1 mile. Julia and Joseph did 2, Jacob 1, William 0.5. I did the last 5 miles of my run at tempo pace from a little after Nuns Park to the house in 28:37. Felt OK except maybe a little weak in the last mile, but not too bad - it was 5:57 uphill.

Green Crocs 4 Miles: 14.00
Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
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Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
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Day of rest. Went to church. Benjamin and Jenny were sick, took them home after the sacrament was passed, and stayed with them to make sure they were OK for a bit over an hour. Then went back and helped Sarah with the Sunbeams class.

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

A.M. Day of adventures, of sorts. Benjamin and Jenny were sick, but Benjamin could run a mile, so he did. Jenny did not run. William did 0.5, Joseph 2, Julia 2, Jacob 1. Julia's run revealed she started getting sick. I ran some more, including to our car (Zhu) which broke down about half a mile away from the house. The towing truck initially picked up the wrong car. What would have been funny is if it had made it all the way to the shop, needed to have work done, and ended up getting work done, but it would not have gotten that far as the shop would have realized they did not have the right key. In any case, at the end of the mess Zhu ended up at the shop, the problem turned out to be a broken timing belt which happened due to idle pulley seizing. I ended up with 13 miles total.

Green Crocs 4 Miles: 13.00
Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
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Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
8.000.002.000.0010.00

A.M. 10 miles total. This was a pre-cautionary reduction in mileage in an attempt to avoid the rhinovirus or whatever it is that we've got in the house (in my dream I would have the equipment on hand to test not only for the type of virus, but to know the exact strand and report it somewhere for the benefit of science). Rhinovirus is the most common cause of common cold, Benjamin and Jenny tested negative for strep throat at the doctor's office, there is nothing wrong with their stomachs, so I think rhinovirus is a decent guess in absence of better diagnostics. Benjamin ran 1 mile, Joseph 2, Julia 0.5, Jacob 1. I did 2x1 mile pickups one up the canyon in 6:07, the other down in 5:34.

Green Crocs 4 Miles: 10.00
Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
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Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
9.000.004.000.0013.00

A.M. Some kids are improving while others have caught the virus. The run was adjusted based on the health of each child. Benjamin did 2, Joseph 2, Jacob 0.5, Julia 0.5, Jenny 1. I did a total of 13 with a 4 mile tempo - 2 up the canyon, then 2 immediately down. The splits were 6:03, 6:07, 5:32, 5:18 - 23:00 total. I was happy with the second half, but not happy with not being able to crack 6:00 going out.

Green Crocs 4 Miles: 13.00
Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
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Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
10.000.000.000.0010.00

A.M. A total of 10. Desperate attempt to avoid getting sick. I am still holding off, but the odds are against me with all seven kids now having some form of sickness. Benjamin and Jenny are recovering, however. Benjamin ran 2 miles averaging sub-8:00 for the first time since Thanksgiving. Jenny also ran 2. Everybody else was out of commission today. If I do get sick, I'll just won't go to the Rocket City Marathon or even if I make it to Huntsville and find myself unhealthy there, I will just go back without starting the race. I've done it sick once, do not need the experience again. Plus I need to set a good example for others. I keep telling people not to run marathons when not 100% healthy, but I am yet to back out of a marathon myself when the health is not there. I've won the stupidity award twice in the last 3 years - St. George 2009 and Rocket City 2011. In St. George I had an irritated heel, while in Rocket City I had a cold.

Green Crocs 4 Miles: 10.00
Night Sleep Time: 7.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.00
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Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
8.800.000.000.008.80

A.M. We had a restless night getting up every couple of hours and taking five temperatures in a row - Julia, Joseph, Jacob, William, and Stephen, and making sure the kids were properly hydrated. Amazingly Sarah and I are still not sick. I cut the run to 8.8 miles to give the immune system a chance to deal with all the mess. Even though some kids had fevers in the morning, I felt that I should get them out all for a very short run anyway after kicking the fevers down to let them breathe some fresh air, to maintain good spirit, and to get an idea of how much the sickness was impacting each of them and make a plan for recovery.

Joseph wins the most resilient fever sufferer award. He had periods when his fever would jump up to 103.5F, but after we kicked it down with ibuprofen and water he was the liveliest of all the sick kids and volunteered 4:52 for 0.5.  I was not expecting that - I thought he would run a quarter maybe and then we would walk back. Julia was affected the worst. We did 0.5 in 5:18, but we had to stop several times for Julia to clear out her throat. Her fever had also been knocked down, but even without it it never went about 101F. So I thought she would be much livelier that Joseph. Jacob had no problem keeping up with Julia, I do not know what pace he would have gone on his own. William did 0.25 struggling some but not too bad. Benjamin ran 3 miles, Jenny 2.

About a week ago we submitted a request to participate in a home schooling family reality show. Today was just the perfect day for them to call us. Sarah, being 8 months pregnant, having not slept well, and still taking care of five sick kids in addition to everything else that she does, answered the phone. It sounded to her like the guy was a telemarketer, so she hung up. He called back. How dare he? She told him to not call back. Then she gets an e-mail from the program director explaining that he wanted to talk with us but got hung up on twice. We resolved the matter and have a Skype interview scheduled with them this coming Thursday.   

Green Crocs 4 Miles: 8.80
Night Sleep Time: 6.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 6.00
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Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
286.2516.0016.0010.35328.60
Green Crocs 4 Miles: 328.60
Night Sleep Time: 228.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 228.00
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