Breaking the Wall

September 24, 2019

Recent EntriesHomeJoin Fast Running Blog Community!PredictorHealthy RecipesSasha Pachev's RacesFind BlogsMileage BoardTop Ten Excuses for Missing a RunTop Ten Training MistakesDiscussion ForumRace Reports Send A Private MessageWeek ViewMonth View
15% off for Fast Running Blog members at St. George Running Center!


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: 146.13 Year: 2768.94
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: 22.05
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Started the day with a 1 mile jog before going to the temple. In the afternoon drove to the Provo Canyon for the speed workout. It was warm - probably about 70 degrees.

Warmed up a mile. Then another mile with ankle weights (2.5 pounds each). Then a 1.5 mile tempo uphill to the Canyon Glen Park in 8:45. Tailwind.

4x100 strides. Then 10x500 down with 200 recovery. Fairly strong headwind, but I think the warm temperature mitigated the effects somewhat. Hit the first one in 1:25.5. Then the headwind got stronger, slowed down to 1:27-1:28. The one with the uphill which is always the slowest was 1:29.7. Sped up back to 1:27s afterwards. 1:24.9 on the last one with the last 200 in 32.8. Total time for the 5 K 14:32.6, more than 15 seconds faster than last week. This is a siginficant improvement.

The form felt like I was using my muscles better, so I was not getting as tired towards the end. On the kick on the last one, I did not feel extremely anaerobic. Rather, I felt I did not go faster because I just did not know how to recruit the muscles to go sub-32. Normally, it takes me a few all out strides before I can break 30 seconds on 200 meters.

A little jog, and a tempo for a cool down. Also to measure the wind. 2 miles, one up, and one down. First mile up was 5:48, then 5:38 down on the way back with the same effort. 11:26 for two miles.

Later, ran with Bejamin and Jennifer, and added another always on the run mile. 15 miles for the day.

Night Sleep Time: 0.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.00
From BS Rools on Thu, Apr 13, 2006 at 13:48:36

Sasha, your workouts are interesting where you do turnaround and do a rep downhill when you quads are tightening up. I am going to try that.

Thanks for askings, yes, I feel 95% over the injury. My issue now is getting me stride smooth and putting some intensity in my workouts without over doing it. Just good to be back on the road in good weather. By the way, when is your next marathon? I am running Odgen, Salt Lake and St. George. B of BS Rools out.

Add Your Comment.
  • Keep it family-safe. No vulgar or profane language. To discourage anonymous comments of cowardly nature, your IP address will be logged and posted next to your comment.
  • Do not respond to another person's comment out of context. If he made the original comment on another page/blog entry, go to that entry and respond there.
  • If all you want to do is contact the blogger and your comment is not connected with this entry and has no relevance to others, send a private message instead.
Only registered users with public blogs are allowed to post comments. Log in with your username and password or create an account and set up a blog.
Debt Reduction Calculator

Featured Announcements