Breaking the Wall

August 19, 2019

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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: 160.46 Year: 2462.47
Saucony Type A Lifetime Miles: 627.15
Bare Feet Lifetime Miles: 446.12
Nike Double Stroller Lifetime Miles: 124.59
Navy Crocs Lifetime Miles: 2133.34
Navy Crocs 2 Lifetime Miles: 1263.81
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Long run today due to the General Conference tomorrow. It is hard to get a quality long run in without getting up too early. Also we were going to be out of town so would be doing it alone. Mike was happy to get it done today as well, so it worked out great. We did a warm-up, then a 10 mile tempo, and a cool down that included 3 miles with Benjamin.

Mike and I did 10 in 57:18 like this: 5:40 - 5:35 - 5:42 (14:06 at 2.5) - 5:44 - 5:49 (28:29 at 5, 14:23) - 5:47 - 5:44 - 5:49 (42:56 at 7.5, 14:27) -  5:48  - 5:41 (last quarter in 79, last 2.5 in 14:22, last 5 in 28:49).

5:48 pace felt cozy, 5:40 did not, 5:52 (88 quarters) felt too cozy. This was a great run for Mike. We traded quarters most of the way, except I pulled him from 7 to 9.5. A couple of months ago he could not do that pace for a little over a mile going downhill. Now he can do this on an out and back riverbank course for the whole 10 and have initiative in the last quarter.

Jenny and Julia ran 2 including 0.5 with Jacob.

P.M. Benjamin ran 0.5 with Joseph. We went to my mission reunion in Salt Lake. The highlight of the evening for me was walking into the chappel as our mission president was speaking (we got there late due a number of almost legitimate reasons). He stopped his talk and started counting our children - 1 - 2 - 3 - 4 - 5 - 6 -7! I was happy I had something to show him 14 years after finishing the mission.


Gold Crocs 1 Miles: 18.80
Night Sleep Time: 7.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.00
From Rob Murphy on Mon, Oct 04, 2010 at 23:02:28 from

I'm impressed with that 10 miler Sasha.Good work.

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