Breaking the Wall

Week starting Mar 07, 2010

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15% off for Fast Running Blog members at St. George Running Center!

Location:

Orem,UT,United States

Member Since:

Jan 27, 1986

Gender:

Male

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.

Personal:

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 nine children: Benjamin, Jenny, Julia, Joseph, Jacob, William, Stephen, Matthew,  Mary, and Bella.  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: 166.57 Year: 2238.03
Saucony Type A Lifetime Miles: 606.85
Bare Feet Lifetime Miles: 446.12
Nike Double Stroller Lifetime Miles: 120.59
Camouflage Crocs 2 Lifetime Miles: 938.88
Red Crocs Lifetime Miles: 111.70
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
68.5918.360.001.3788.32
Water Clogs 3 Miles: 62.51Eva Clogs Army Miles: 25.61
Night Sleep Time: 53.50Nap Time: 2.00Total Sleep Time: 55.50
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
0.000.000.000.000.00

Day of rest. Went to church. It was a Fast Sunday. We had a Fast and Testimony meeting. Then a Sunday school class - the lesson was on scriptures, followed by the lesson in the Elder's Quorum which was on the talk by Elder Oaks on reverence while partaking of the Sacrament. 

Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
Add Comment
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
12.310.000.000.6212.93

A.M. Ran 10.18 with Jeff in 1:22:14. Did 5x200 with full rest in the middle. My splits were 30.9 - 30.0 - 30.8 - 29.6 - 29.6. I felt very tense in the first two, then loosened up, but not 100%. Felt tension in the shoulders in the 4th repeat. Had Jeff massage them out, and it did help. It was gone in the last one, which I think helped me keep the pace in spite of the fatigue in the muscles. 30.8 felt easy, but 29.6 was all I could do.

Jenny ran 2.5 with Sarah.

P.M. 2 with Benjamin in 17:13. Julia ran 1.5 in 13:03.  0.5 with Joseph in 4:39. He was bumming around and being lazy at the start. I told him to get on the ball. He said he did not have to if he did not want to. I explained to him about choice and consequences like this: "You do not have to do anything if you do not want to. But you cannot choose what happens later. If you do not work, you will not learn to work. You'll grow up to be a bum. You will not be able to provide for your family. Nobody will want to marry you except a girl that is a bum herself." When he heard about the eternal consequences of being married to a bum he immediately sped up and ran with an honest effort to the finish. I hope he will remember this.

0.25 with Jacob in 2:32.

Water Clogs 3 Miles: 12.73
Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
Add Comment
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
12.750.000.000.0012.75

A.M. 10 in 1:19:41. Met Jeff on the trail. Jenny ran 2.5 with Sarah.

P.M. 2 with Benjamin in 16:53. Julia ran 1.5 with us in 13:17.  0.5 with Joseph in 4:29. 0.25 with Jacob in 2:35.

Water Clogs 3 Miles: 12.75
Night Sleep Time: 7.50Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.50
Add Comment
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
13.530.000.000.0013.53

A.M. Jeff had another Lehi's dream experience, so I ran alone. 10.28 in 1:14:58. Hamstrings still stale from the 200s on Monday. Jenny ran 2.5 with Sarah.

P.M. 2 with Benjamin in 16:48. Julia ran 1.5 with us in 13:06.  0.25 with Jacob in 2:45. Joseph asked to run the whole mile today, so we did. This was his first timed mile. He did 8:48 with the splits of 2:18, 2:16, 2:09, and 2:05, and was chatting the entire time. Joseph is an interesting kid. He often acts  lazy. But sometimes he decides to work.

Water Clogs 3 Miles: 13.53
Night Sleep Time: 7.50Nap Time: 1.00Total Sleep Time: 8.50
Comments(1)
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
13.150.000.000.2013.35

A.M. Ran with Jeff. Met him on the trail. 10.1 in 1:17:44. Did a pickup to catch another guy whose name was also Jeff. Ran 300 in 58 (5:10 pace).

P.M. 2 with Benjamin in 17:17. Julia ran 1.5 with us in 13:18. 1 with Joseph in 9:27. 0.25 with Jacob in 2:52.

Water Clogs 3 Miles: 13.35
Night Sleep Time: 7.50Nap Time: 1.00Total Sleep Time: 8.50
Add Comment
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
12.350.000.000.5512.90

A.M. 10.15 in 1:17:43. Some of it with Brian. Did a 900 pickup in 2:58 (5:17 pace) to shake out the legs. Jenny ran 2.5 with Sarah.

P.M.  Retired my Water Clogs at 506 miles, and replaced them with Eva Clogs bought at Walmart for $7.   2 with Benjamin in 17:27. Julia ran 1.5 with us in 13:31. 0.5 with Joseph in 4:48. 0.25 with Jacob in 2:58.

Water Clogs 3 Miles: 10.15Eva Clogs Army Miles: 2.75
Night Sleep Time: 7.50Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.50
Add Comment
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
4.5018.360.000.0022.86

A.M.20.36 with Jeff in my new Eva Clogs in 2:01:25. Yes, that's right, 5:57.8 average for the whole business. Only half-intentional. I was in a hurry to get to a baptism this morning, so I told Jeff let's go as fast as is reasonable with the idea that we would bum around at 6:20 pace for the first 5, then speed up to 6:10, then 6:00, and then 5:50 for the last 5. But 2 miles into it the pace hit 6:00 and never really got slower after that except a couple of miles at the end.

So we hit the first 5.09 in 31:18 (6:09 avg), then the next 5.09 in 30:18 (5:57). Then Jeff got really excited about breaking 2 hours for the entire run and started throwing occasional 83 quarters (5:32 pace). I would reign him in with a warning, he would slow down to 86-87 (5:44-5:48 pace). On the detour in the unmarked territory he was like a sports car driver on a freeway in the middle of Nevada with no police officers in sight. I did not have a number to scare him with, so my warnings only slowed him down there to around 5:38 average. We ended up with 29:12 for the next 5.09 stretch (5:44 avg).

This looked too good to be true. Jeff had run 10 miles the night before, and now he was being feisty in the later parts of an aggressively paced 20 miler. But I figured I did not want to hold Jeff back, so I told him to bring me to 4 miles to go mark, and then see if he could run 5:20 pace to the finish. We hit the next 1.05 in 5:58 (5:41 pace), and then Jeff went for it.

The remaining 4 miles was a lesson for both of us. Jeff learned more about fuel fatigue, while I learned more about neural fatigue. It was good to have those two types side by side so we can understand the difference better. In Jeff's case a surge to 5:20 quickly faded, all of a sudden he was struggling with 5:40 pace at first, a mile later with 6:00, then he could not do even 6:00, and the last mile was a disastrous 6:51. I almost caught him.

On my side, as soon as I lost contact I slowed down to 6:00, half a mile later it became 6:05, then 6:08, then with a couple of turns 6:15. However, because the fatigue was in the nervous system, the easing off of the pace allowed me to regroup and finish with a 5:58 last mile, which was slightly uphill, and had bridges and sharp turns. Seeing Jeff gradually come back gave me a boost. The last 5.09 was covered in 30:37 (6:01 avg).

Immediately after the run Jeff was dizzy and hungry, while I was actually too wired up to eat, and not dizzy at all.

Now here is the big question. I know what to do for fuel - just run more miles, and run as much as you can at marathon pace. But what do you do if the limiting factor is in the nervous system? More miles, more miles at marathon pace is often the wrong answer. More sleep is a better answer, but not quite the whole deal. Better form might be the answer, more particularly fixing the rhythm issues. Poor rhythm puts more stress on the nervous system. Then you can approach the issue from the aspect of raw power. Train at sub-5:00, and even hit sub-4:30 pace for short segments. But I think the main culprit is the poor rhythm, which is rooted in what I call "the structure". So we go back to targeted and intelligent massage that would hopefully fix "the structure".

Aside from the small lapse in the final miles I was happy with how this run went. I have not done too many 20 miles in my life in training on a course without a drop averaging sub-6:00.  It shows that I am in somewhat respectable shape.

P.M. 2 with Benjamin and Jenny in 17:57. Julia ran 1.5 with us in 13:45. 0.5 with Joseph in 5:00. Benjamin ran 0.25 with Jacob.

Eva Clogs Army Miles: 22.86
Night Sleep Time: 7.50Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.50
Add Comment
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
68.5918.360.001.3788.32
Water Clogs 3 Miles: 62.51Eva Clogs Army Miles: 25.61
Night Sleep Time: 53.50Nap Time: 2.00Total Sleep Time: 55.50
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