Breaking the Wall

Week starting Apr 24, 2011

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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: 61.20 Year: 2764.50
Saucony Type A Lifetime Miles: 621.04
Bare Feet Lifetime Miles: 446.12
Nike Double Stroller Lifetime Miles: 120.59
Camouflage Crocs 2 Lifetime Miles: 938.88
Red Crocs Lifetime Miles: 594.85
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
65.1510.004.356.5086.00
Gold Crocs 2 Miles: 86.00
Night Sleep Time: 52.50Nap Time: 1.50Total Sleep Time: 54.00
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
0.000.000.000.000.00

Day of rest. Went to church. It was an Easter Sunday. Sarah played the hymns on the organ, and the flute for the musical number in addition. I always enjoy hearing her play musical instruments. The talks in the Sacrament meeting were naturally on the resurrection. The lesson in Sunday school was on the Church of Jesus Christ in former times. As far as I know, there are only two churches that claim to have a connection to the Church that Christ established when he lived among the Jews - the Catholic and the LDS. The difference is that the Catholics believe the authority of the priesthood was never lost, while we believe that it was lost and restored through Joseph Smith.

The lesson in the Elders Quorum was on Elder Uchtdorf's talk from the October general conference about strategically slowing down when flying through turbulence, or in other words, adjusting properly and taking time to ponder the things of eternity rather than increasing the mad rush when we encounter adversity.

Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
Add Comment
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
9.500.003.000.0012.50

A.M. Usual 12.5 including kids runs. Mike joined me for part of it. Did 3 with Benjamin, 2 with Jenny and Julia, 1 with Joseph, and 0.5 with Jacob. I often do not realize how many children I have until it is time to fill out the forms. You only have to buckle them until they are maybe 4, then they can buckle themselves. But you still have to put their social security number on the forms until they are 18! 

Finished the run with a 3 mile tempo in 16:59. Felt good.

Gold Crocs 2 Miles: 12.50
Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
Add Comment
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
11.500.000.004.0015.50

A.M. Did an experimental workout. Mike joined me for a part. Wanted to better understand the cause of the slowdown I have been experiencing at faster paces lately. The suspicion was that it had to do with the suppression of the stretch reflex, thus resulting in longer ground contact times, and disproportionately increasing effort required to run at faster speeds. The question was, whatever it is, can I snap out of it with a few jumps that would hopefully reboot the stretch reflex in the quads. So I decided to do this - run 5:20 pace until a relaxed effort was not good enough to maintain the pace. Then stop, jog a bit, do a few jumps, and keep going. I ended up doing 4 miles in 21:38 with a stop after a mile, then in 0.75, 0.5, 0.25 (it was a good spot to stop due to a 180), and then every 0.5 miles. My conclusion was that while I might have been losing the bounce in my legs , the jumps did not do much to fix it. Half a mile later, just about how long it would take to push HR above 160, I felt that the legs had lost their snap again. I suppose the only way to fix this problem is to attack it directly - get HR above 160, then try to maintain 5:20 for some time, rest, and repeat. So something like 1000 meter repeats with short rest.

Ran with the kids: Benjamin - 3, Jenny and Julia 2, Joseph 1, and Jacob 0.5.

Gold Crocs 2 Miles: 15.50
Night Sleep Time: 7.50Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.50
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Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
12.500.000.000.0012.50

A.M. The combination of the Saturday tempo run difficulties and the struggle to maintain 5:20 relaxed for even a mile yesterday convinced me that my body was finally tired of the daily 3 mile tempos and needed a break.That fatigue is so subtle - I do not feel any soreness in the legs, or a decrease in the energy levels, the only way I know it is there is that I get tired more quickly at fast speeds.

So I ran easy today. Total of 12.5, most of it with Mike, 6.5 of it with the kids as usual - Benjamin - 3, Jenny and Julia 2, Joseph 1, and Jacob 0.5.

Gold Crocs 2 Miles: 12.50
Night Sleep Time: 6.00Nap Time: 1.50Total Sleep Time: 7.50
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Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
9.750.000.252.5012.50

A.M. Did 4x1000 with 200 recovery. Mike joined me for a part of it. The workout went well - I was able to hit my target times. The times were 3:15.1 (down) - 3:23.8 (up) -  3:17.1 (down)- 3:22.3 (up). I felt that this short and simple workout stirred the cobwebs and got them moving a bit. Ran with the kids. First 3 with Benjamin with a 2000 time trial in the middle. His target was 7:30, but he again psyched himself out and could not get going until he had a quarter left. So he made it to the mile in 6:18 (94-95-95-94), and then kicked in 83 finishing in 7:41. Still a PR by 16 seconds, but we will try again on Monday. Jenny and Julia ran 2, Joseph 1, and Jacob 0.5.

Gold Crocs 2 Miles: 12.50
Night Sleep Time: 7.50Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.50
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Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
11.400.001.100.0012.50

A.M. Another easy day. Did a total of 12.5 including 6.5 with the kids (Benjamin 3, Jenny and Julia 2, Joseph 1, and Jacob 0.5). At the end of the run I noticed there was a guy that would end up about a minute or so ahead of me after I had turned around that was going a good pace. So on a whim I decided to chase him. It took about 1.1 miles, with the mile split of 5:23, and it included a quarter in 84 through the tunnels where I had to take the foot of the gas for fear of slipping and falling. It felt very good, I felt like I could run like this forever. So how is that that when I try this in a workout it is not nearly so easy? Perhaps not enough excitement, which could possibly be directing the finger of blame at the underperformaing adrenal gland. Come to think of it, I've had a hard time getting excited about anything lately. Not that I am unhappy, more like being too mellow.

I caught up to my chase target, made a police siren noise, and said: "Do you know how fast you were going? I had to run a 5:23 mile to catch you!" His name turned out to be Logan. And in good tradition of my Provo River chase targets, he of course spoke a foreign language - he just got back from a Vietnamese speaking mission in San Jose. Watching his form, and having an idea of his pace from how quickly he was coming to me during the chase, I decided to make a guess about his running background - 4;35 mile in high school. I was only 2 seconds off - it was 4;37. We talked some more. I hope to convert him to the true religion of being my training partner. A plug for the "true religion" - it got Jeff to 2:22 marathon, 1:07 half, and 29:33 10 K.

Gold Crocs 2 Miles: 12.50
Night Sleep Time: 7.50Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.50
Comments(1)
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
10.5010.000.000.0020.50

A.M. 20.5 miles with a 10 mile tempo. The weather was not the best, so I wore pants today. However, there was no headwind. There was a fallen tree from last night's storm that I had to jump over 4 times, which broke the rhythm. The splits were:

5:46, 5:52 (tree),5:48 (180 turn), 5:53 (tree), 5:56(180 turn at the end), 5:51,5:50,5:53 (180 turn), 5:52 (tree), 5:46 - total time 58:27.7. After the first 5 in 29:15 I wanted to stop, but the thought of having to run more miles at 7:30 pace was even more unpleasant than the thought of doing the same at 5:50 pace. So I kept going.  Overall I think the run went better than last week, and perhaps comparable to 58:10 two weeks ago when I was wearing shorts and there was no tree to jump over. I was pleased to see that unlike last week I had more control over the pace and could surge to 5:40 more or less on demand mid run for short periods. There was more bounce in the legs. So I suppose some rest and the 4x1000 on Thursday did some good.

Ran with the kids to finish the 20.5. 3 with Benjamin, 2 with Jenny and Julia, 1 with Joseph, and 0.5 with Jacob.

Gold Crocs 2 Miles: 20.50
Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
Add Comment
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
65.1510.004.356.5086.00
Gold Crocs 2 Miles: 86.00
Night Sleep Time: 52.50Nap Time: 1.50Total Sleep Time: 54.00
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