Breaking the Wall

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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: 51.55 Year: 2011.51
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: 881.43
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
White Crocs 1 Miles: 82.86Nike Double Stroller Miles: 5.90
Night Sleep Time: 49.00Nap Time: 3.00Total Sleep Time: 52.00
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Day of rest. Watched General Conference with the family. Took a nap afterwards, then we went for a walk near Bridal Veil Falls.

Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 2.00Total Sleep Time: 10.00
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Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Fast Running Friend Workout - 2015-04-06 07:26:50
Workout Totals: Distance12.000Time1:32:00.90Pace7:40.07
Regular 12. Kids did usual distances, except Joseph and Jacob ran a little shorter - only 3 in preparation for the time trial tomorrow.
Leg 1:Distance9.000Time1:08:49.80Pace7:38.87
With Benjamin.
Leg 2:Distance3.000Time23:11.10Pace7:43.70
With Joseph and Jacob.

White Crocs 1 Miles: 12.00
Night Sleep Time: 6.50Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 6.50
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Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Fast Running Friend Workout - 2015-04-07 08:02:46
Workout Totals: Distance11.689Time1:32:23.00Pace7:54.21
Today was the day of time trials. Some kids ran well while others have struggled. Stephen was trying to break 9:00 in the mile, was a bit off pace at 800 (4:34) but still on pace for his 9:21 record. Unfortunately he tripped half way through and lost his will to go further, which is common for a 4-year-old.

We originally planned for Jacob to run the mile, and Joseph 2000, but today was not their day. We opened with two 90 second quarters, then Jacob could only do 97, and Joseph did not feel good enough to just take off at that point. Jacob's last lap was 93 finishing the mile in 6:12, and I do not know what Joseph was thinking because he maintained the pace and fell back by 4 seconds. Seeing he was going nowhere I stopped him. He was upset with me saying he had a great kick. I gave him a chance to prove himself, and had him run an all out 800. His emotions got him through the first 100 in 17, and 37 at 200, and then he had no juice and could only manage 93 seconds per lap pace finishing in 2:56.

Jacob also was not happy with his 6:12 and wanted some closure for the day. So I had him run an all out 800 as well. He opened in 40 at the 200, and the struggled as well finishing also in 2:56.

Benjamin had a good 800 time trial running a new PR of 2:05.4. He opened in 29.0 (tailwind), then 31.8 (headwind), 32.0 (tailwind, I ran that one with him), and 32.6 (headwind). I think this is enough 800 speed for now, time to connect the mile and the 5000 to it. He should be running 4:27 and 15:19 respectively. Historically he had a hard time following that curve, though, but we will see how he does.

Jenny did a shake-the-cobwebs time trial on the track in 6:38.8 with the splits of 1:40, 1:42, 1:41, and 1:33. Not back to her PR of 6:24 yet, but I think in a couple of weeks she might be there.

William was the only running kid who did not do a time trial today - he ran 1 mile at a normal training pace.
Leg 1:Distance0.498Time4:34.00Pace9:10.20
With Stephen, Joseph, and Jacob.
Leg 2:Distance1.000Time6:16.30Pace6:16.30
Joseph and Jacob's mile time trial.
Split 1:Distance1.000Time6:12.00Pace6:12.00
Jacob's time.
Split 2:Distance0.000Time0:04.30Pace0:00.00
Waited for Joseph.
Leg 3:Distance0.498Time2:56.20Pace5:53.82
Joseph's 800.
Leg 4:Distance0.498Time2:56.30Pace5:54.02
Jacob's 800.
Leg 5:Distance1.611Time14:15.00Pace8:50.73
Warm-up and strides with Benjamin. Jenny ran with us for the warm-up part.
Split 1:Distance1.050Time8:52.30Pace8:26.95
Split 2:Distance0.062Time0:15.90Pace4:16.45
Split 3:Distance0.062Time0:51.00Pace13:42.58
Split 4:Distance0.062Time0:15.50Pace4:10.00
Split 5:Distance0.375Time4:00.30Pace10:40.80
Leg 6:Distance0.334Time2:05.40Pace6:15.45
Benjamin's time trial - I ran from 400 to 600 and the diagonals to give him splits.
Split 1:Distance0.070Time0:29.00Pace6:54.29
Split 2:Distance0.070Time0:31.80Pace7:34.29
Split 3:Distance0.124Time0:32.00Pace4:18.06
With Benjamin from 400 to 600.
Split 4:Distance0.070Time0:32.60Pace7:45.71
Leg 7:Distance0.250Time3:06.90Pace12:27.60
Recovery jog with Benjamin.
Leg 8:Distance1.000Time6:38.80Pace6:38.80
Benjamin and I paced Jenny in her mile time trial.
Leg 9:Distance1.000Time9:26.70Pace9:26.70
Back to the house with Benjamin and Jenny.
Leg 10:Distance5.000Time40:07.40Pace8:01.48
More distance with Benjamin.

White Crocs 1 Miles: 11.69
Night Sleep Time: 7.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.00
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Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Fast Running Friend Workout - 2015-04-08 07:18:02
Workout Totals: Distance13.000Time1:43:41.00Pace7:58.54
Usual easy run - kids did their usual distances.
Leg 1:Distance9.000Time1:11:34.90Pace7:57.21
With Benjamin.
Leg 2:Distance4.000Time32:06.10Pace8:01.52
With Joseph and Jacob.

White Crocs 1 Miles: 13.00
Night Sleep Time: 7.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.00
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Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Fast Running Friend Workout - 2015-04-09 08:34:01
Workout Totals: Distance13.090Time1:39:24.50Pace7:35.65
800 meter time trials for Joseph and Jacob. Joseph ran 2:46.7, Jacob 2:47.8. New PRs for both by 4 seconds. They opened with 40 at 200, then at 300 I told Joseph to go ahead because Jacob started to struggle. Joseph was 83 at 400, Jacob 84. Then Jacob was able to relax and held the pace better. At 600 Joseph had 2:07, Jacob 2:08. And then both of them had a furious kick in a little under 40 seconds for the last 200.

Matthew ran 100 meters in 47.8 - with Jenny dangling a fruit snack in front. Good result for a kid that does not yet talk.

Benjamin and I did a workout - Benjamin did a fartlek. The target was 200 in 34 followed by 200 in 30 15 times, he was not as fast on the fast 200s hitting them in around 36, but on the slow ones he was fast running them around 25-26 seconds. I did a tempo 3 miles in 16:35 with the splits of 5:25, 5:36, 5:34. When I caught up to Benjamin he joined me and finished with me.
Leg 1:Distance0.900Time7:48.20Pace8:40.22
Warm-up with Jenny, Joseph, Jacob, and William on foot, and Stephen and Matthew in the stroller.
Leg 2:Distance0.062Time0:47.80Pace12:50.97
Matthew's time trial.
Leg 3:Distance0.120Time1:01.50Pace8:32.50
A jog with Joseph and Jacob.
Leg 4:Distance0.498Time2:47.80Pace5:36.95
Joseph and Jacob's 800 time trial. When Joseph pulled away I stayed with Jacob and timed Joseph from a distance.
Split 1:Distance0.495Time2:46.70Pace5:36.77
Joseph's time.
Split 2:Distance0.003Time0:01.10Pace6:06.67
Finishing with Jacob.
Leg 5:Distance0.950Time8:13.20Pace8:39.16
Back to the house with the gang. Stephen and Matthew in the stroller.
Leg 6:Distance5.280Time42:40.00Pace8:04.85
Warm-up with Benjamin.
Leg 7:Distance3.000Time16:35.40Pace5:31.80
Tempo run.
Leg 8:Distance2.280Time19:30.60Pace8:33.42
Cool-down with Benjamin.

Nike Double Stroller Miles: 1.90White Crocs 1 Miles: 13.09
Night Sleep Time: 7.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.00
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Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Fast Running Friend Workout - 2015-04-10 07:32:11
Workout Totals: Distance13.036Time1:43:44.90Pace7:57.52
Usual easy run. Joseph, Jacob, and Julia did 4, I pushed the stroller with Matthew and Stephen in it. Other kids ran their usual distances.
Leg 1:Distance9.100Time1:09:57.90Pace7:41.31
With Benjamin.
Leg 2:Distance3.936Time33:47.00Pace8:34.99
With Julia, Joseph, and Jacob on foot, and Matthew and Stephen in the stroller.

Nike Double Stroller Miles: 4.00White Crocs 1 Miles: 13.04
Night Sleep Time: 7.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.00
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Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Fast Running Friend Workout - 2015-04-11 07:53:02
Workout Totals: Distance20.040Time2:26:21.80Pace7:18.21
Total of 20. Joseph and Jacob did 5 - their longest run ever- and they volunteered a good pace - 20:05 first half (8:02 average), and 17:40/17:44 second half 7:02/7:03 average on the way back - Joseph pulled ahead a little at the end.

Benjamin did 12. He and I did 2x3 in the canyon, first up, second down. On the way up I did 18:25 (5:55,6:19,6:11), Benjamin 17:28 (5:41, 5:55, 5:52). On the way down I got 16:54 (5:35, 5:43, 5:36), he got 15:47 (5:18, 5:12, 5:17).

On the way back I joined Julia on foot and Joseph on a bike for a mile.
Leg 1:Distance5.000Time37:49.50Pace7:33.90
With Joseph and Jacob.
Leg 2:Distance2.300Time17:45.50Pace7:43.26
Warm-up with Benjamin.
Leg 3:Distance3.000Time18:25.90Pace6:08.63
Tempo uphill.
Leg 4:Distance1.400Time13:07.60Pace9:22.57
Leg 5:Distance3.000Time16:54.50Pace5:38.17
Tempo downhill.
Leg 6:Distance3.300Time26:56.40Pace8:09.82
Distance after the tempo.
Leg 7:Distance2.040Time15:22.40Pace7:32.16
More distance to finish the 20.

White Crocs 1 Miles: 20.04
Night Sleep Time: 6.50Nap Time: 1.00Total Sleep Time: 7.50
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Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
White Crocs 1 Miles: 82.86Nike Double Stroller Miles: 5.90
Night Sleep Time: 49.00Nap Time: 3.00Total Sleep Time: 52.00
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