Breaking the Wall

August 23, 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: 173.50 Year: 2475.51
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: 1360.04
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Last day in Idaho Falls. No office work, just a trip to Yellowstone. Not sure what wears you out more. Ran 10.5 miles in the morning on the same course as yesterday, except this time did a tempo for only 5 miles in the middle. Running alone is starting to get tedious, so I did the tempo not only for fitness, but just to get the run over with quicker, and keep my mind occupied. Idle mind gets busy analyzing the pace during recovery runs, and if you let it go for too long the pace gets faster and hits what Jack Daniel's calls the no-mans land - the pace that is to fast to allow your body to rest, but at the same time too slow to train you for anything. So I figured, I could handle a couple of miles of warmup, then do a short light tempo, then I have the rest of the run to analyze my feeling on the tempo, and will be able to run slow. Ran 5 miles on the loop (5 laps + a little bit) in 29:30. Starting to feel the trip wear-down. There is a good reason why I really, really, really do not like to travel, and it is precisely this feeling of being overtravelled.

Then we checked out (a workout in and of itself with 4 small kids) and drove to Yellowstone. I put on ankle weights to wear for the day. I suppose that literally gave me a lead foot. So now you've got a guy with a lead foot driving a van with the license plate VANGOGO.

In Yellowstone, ran a lap with Benjamin and Jennifer around the Old Faithful. Right when we were done it errupted.

Got home at 9:00 pm. Unloaded the van and ran another mile to make it 13 total for the day.

Night Sleep Time: 0.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.00
From Maria on Fri, May 19, 2006 at 15:16:32

Good job on fitting the training in on the trip, and with entire family too! Travel is number 1 reason I quit consulting more than a year ago. It was wearing me down, my family down and I couldn't train consistently either. I almost always tended to work insane hours under great amounts of stress, get back to hotel really late, get some pretty bad food for dinner and do it all over again the next day! I didn't have your dedication to put in my miles no matter what.

From Superfly on Fri, May 19, 2006 at 16:47:43

Good job getting in the miles. I decided travling was hard enough, add in training and by the end of a trip...I need a vacation from everything (work, running, dog,...)

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