Breaking the Wall

February 17, 2020

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Orem,UT,United States

Member Since:

Jan 27, 1986



Goal Type:

Olympic Trials Qualifier

Running Accomplishments:

Best marathon: 2:23:57 (2007, St. George). Won the Top of Utah Marathon twice (2003,2004). Won the USATF LDR circuit in Utah in 2006.

Draper Days 5 K 15:37 (2004)

Did not know this until June 2012, but it turned out that I've been running with spina bifida occulta in L-4 vertebra my entire life, which explains the odd looking form, struggles with the top end speed, and the poor running economy (cannot break 16:00 in 5 K without pushing the VO2 max past 75).  


Short-Term Running Goals:

Qualify for the US Olympic Trials. With the standard of 2:19 on courses with the elevation drop not exceeding 450 feet this is impossible unless I find an uncanny way to compensate for the L-4 defect with my muscles. But I believe in miracles.

Long-Term Running Goals:

2:08 in the marathon. Become a world-class marathoner. This is impossible unless I find a way to fill the hole in L-4 and make it act healthy either by growing the bone or by inserting something artificial that is as good as the bone without breaking anything important around it. Science does not know how to do that yet, so it will take a miracle. But I believe in miracles.


I was born in 1973. Grew up in Moscow, Russia. Started running in 1984 and so far have never missed more than 3 consecutive days. Joined the LDS Church in 1992, and came to Provo, Utah in 1993 to attend BYU. Served an LDS mission from 1994-96 in Salt Lake City, Utah. Got married soon after I got back. My wife Sarah and I are parents of eleven children: Benjamin, Jenny, Julia, Joseph, Jacob, William, Stephen, Matthew,  Mary,  Bella.  and Leigha. We home school our children.

I am a software engineer/computer programmer/hacker whatever you want to call it, and I am currently working for RedX. Aside from the Fast Running Blog, I have another project to create a device that is a good friend for a fast runner. I called it Fast Running Friend.

Favorite Quote:

...if we are to have faith like Enoch and Elijah we must believe what they believed, know what they knew, and live as they lived.

Elder Bruce R. McConkie


Favorite Blogs:

Miles:This week: 0.00 Month: 81.04 Year: 418.47
Saucony Type A Lifetime Miles: 627.15
Bare Feet Lifetime Miles: 446.12
Nike Double Stroller Lifetime Miles: 124.59
Navy Crocs 2 Lifetime Miles: 1576.28
Neon Crocs 1 Lifetime Miles: 1353.22
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Fast Running Friend Workout - 2013-12-31 08:15:48
Workout Totals
Distance Time Pace
11.998 1:38:59.10 8:15.01
12 miles again. Benjamin did 10, Jenny 4, Julia and Joseph 3, Jacob 2, William 1.
Leg 1
Distance Time Pace Comment
6.42 54:53.40. 8:32.99 This part consisted of the standard Joseph/Jacob run, and then from the house to the Canyon View Park bathroom. I was trying to get rid of a minor cough/throat irritation last night and felt it would respond well to oranges. It did, but oranges give me a side effect. I recall a 6 K tempo in 1986 that became more of a 4x1500 thanks to just one orange which provided a great deal of entertainment for my coach and teammates. I did a little bit better this time, but still had to make 2 bathroom stops on this section, and the last one was very urgent. GPS was not working on this part, but I do not really care why - I am starting on the GPS driver re-write today so things like this will not happen. I wish the re-write of the code for my lower spine were as easy... The distances are correct, regardless, because I edited them using the Fast Running Friend Web interface over WiFi.
Split# Distance Time Pace Comment
1 2.040 18:34.20 9:06.18 On the "big boy" course with Joseph, Jacob, and Benjamin. I annoyed Benjamin by asking him to prove that f(x) = x^2 is continuous using the definition of the limit with epsilon and delta. He will need to know this to challenge Math 290 at BYU this semester.
2 1.020 8:32.40 8:22.35 With Benjamin and Joseph on the "little boy" course.
3 3.360 27:46.80 8:16.07  
Leg 2
Distance Time Pace Comment
3.578 28:09.10. 7:52.08 After the bathroom break the GPS started working. This leg was from the Canyon View Park bathroom to the house with a little add-on at the end.
Split# Distance Time Pace Comment
1 0.387 3:23.60 8:46.10 To the start of the mile pickup.
2 1.000 5:24.80 5:24.80 The lower back bruise is doing better. Still hurt, but less than yesterday. I was able to run 9 seconds faster. Benjamin's horses neighed, I had to reign him in a few times. We opened with an 83 quarter because I could not go any faster from the get-go, but then once my muscles warmed up we sped up to 80s (5:20) pace for the rest of it with the exception of the icy section under the 800 North bridge. Benjamin felt he could run this pace forever, which is good - he is going to need to in the Phoenix half. The goal is 1:10.
3 2.191 19:20.70 8:49.76 We got lazy after the pickup. Plus my bruise reduced my pace initiative.
Leg 3
Distance Time Pace Comment
2 15:56.60. 7:58.30 One mile of this was with Julia, and the last one alone - both on the "little boy" course.
Split# Distance Time Pace Comment
1 1.000 8:31.50 8:31.50 With Julia.
2 1.000 7:25.10 7:25.10 Alone. It actually took some will power and concentration to run this pace - I did not want to, but I knew I needed to.

Green Crocs 6 Miles: 12.00
Night Sleep Time: 7.50Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.50
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