Breaking the Wall

August 06, 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: 16.00 Year: 2314.91
Saucony Type A Lifetime Miles: 627.15
Bare Feet Lifetime Miles: 446.12
Nike Double Stroller Lifetime Miles: 124.59
Neon Crocs 3 Lifetime Miles: 1185.83
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Ran in the Provo Canyon in the morning. A mile of warm-up, a mile with ankle weights, some strides and jogging, then the real workout.

2x1.5 miles downhill with 0.5 recovery jog - essentially full rest. The idea was to go out at 5:00 pace and hold it until it would become impossible. Then just hang in there to the end doing my best.

There was tailwind in some places, and cross winds in others. First one - quarters 74-74-74-75-75-76. 7:28.3. Not bad. Chatted with an older guy named Phil during the recovery jog, and one more. 75-75-74-77-76-74. 7:31.5. In both repetions, it seemed like my body was trying very hard to run aerobically. It almost felt like a tempo run through the first mile. Then it got a bit harder, and on the last quarter the breathing was out of control - sucking air in like crazy, and exhaling with vengence. And all that just to keep the pace. With the cooldown, it was 10 miles for the workout.

The rest of the day was rather crazy, as Saturdays often are. However, I managed to get my jogging in. Ran with Benjamin, and Jennifer in the afternoon. Then at 10:00 pm I was still at 11.75 for the day, 1.25 short of my daily minimum quota. The day does not end until I've run 13 unless I am tapering, so I went for another 1.25. All the kids were still awake. I took Joseph and Julia in the stroller. Benjamin said he was feeling like a fast mile, so I took him also. He ran a mile in 7:55, would probably qualify as a world record for a 7 year old timed running after 10 pm, if they kept such records. Then he jogged another 0.25 with me.

Night Sleep Time: 0.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.00
From MikeBro on Mon, May 15, 2006 at 07:55:52

Man, do I envy your ability to recover from a well-run marathon. The Flying Pig was 7 days ago (8 now) and I'm still feeling sluggish and vaguely sore. Nothing really hurts, but I have no inclination to push the pace beyond easy right now. I ran 4.5 miles easy in light rain last night and that was it for me. You, OTOH, are already over 10mi/day and doing hard stuff to boot. Jealous!

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