Breaking the Wall

January 28, 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: 252.01 Year: 252.01
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

A.M. 12 miles total for me. Benjamin did an 800 time trial. A year ago I could pace him in that. Now even if I was in my best ever 800 shape the only way I could participate over the entire distance would have been by drafting, and my 800 speed is not quite what it used to be. So we decided he would run the first 300 by himself, then I would pull him for 200 and then step aside so he can pass over the next 100, then I would provide a competitive challenge from behind over the last 200. The plan was to open in 64 and see what happens. We did the time trial at Orem High track.

It pretty much went as planned, except I was not too competitive in the last 200. He got to 300 in a high 48, I pulled him through 400 in a high 64, then 1:21 at 500, then I stepped aside and he passed me with 1:38 split at 600, then I hung on for dear life for the next 100 with 1:55 split at 700. Then Benjamin finished in 2:12.3 and I finished 1.4 behind. Benjamin got a 4 second PR and was only 0.3 off my best time ever. 

So here is the plan for Benjamin's OTQ 2016: 800 - 2:00, 1500 - 4:00, 5000 - 14:30, 10000 - 29:45, and that should hopefuly be enough for a little under 1:05:00 half on an eligible course. In all honesty, my main concern is the 800 meters. That is where we have relatively little control. The longer distances will come with training if the speed is there - his endurace has developed quite well off just 50 miles a week already, so I am quite confident that once the mileage goes into the 80-100 range there will be no problems with the endurance.

Jenny did 4, Julia 3, Jacob 2, Joseph 3, William 1. William ran 0.5 in 4:04, a new record for him. I did 1.5 of tempo running.

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