Breaking the Wall

St. George Painters Half Marathon

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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:

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Miles:This week: 0.00 Month: 133.06 Year: 1711.68
Saucony Type A Lifetime Miles: 640.15
Bare Feet Lifetime Miles: 450.37
Nike Double Stroller Lifetime Miles: 124.59
Brown Crocs 4 Lifetime Miles: 1334.06
Amoji 1 Lifetime Miles: 732.60
Amoji 2 Lifetime Miles: 436.69
Amoji 3 Lifetime Miles: 380.67
Lopsie Sports Sandals Lifetime Miles: 818.02
Lopsie Sports Sandals 2 Lifetime Miles: 637.27
Iprome Garden Clogs Lifetime Miles: 346.18
Beslip Garden Clogs Lifetime Miles: 488.26
Joybees 1 Lifetime Miles: 1035.60
Madctoc Clogs Lifetime Miles: 698.29
Blue Crocs Lifetime Miles: 1164.32
Kimisant Black Clogs Lifetime Miles: 720.62
Black Crocs 2023 Lifetime Miles: 1312.70
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
Vibram Five Fingers Miles: 187.10Brooks T4 Racing Flat Miles: 487.82
Night Sleep Time: 2468.67Nap Time: 145.16Total Sleep Time: 2613.83
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. 15.1 with minor events in 1:42:09. Events were - ran with Ted for the first 10.1, 11 degrees at the start, good traction on crunch snow, two VPB stops with catch up at 5:55 - 5:35 pace (depending on how much snow was on the ground), and picking it up on the last 0.25 with Ted (1:27) and last 0.5 (2:56) at the very end. Fixed two bugs in the mileage board (I hope) - triathlete swim now will not bump them up into the spaceship mileage category, and the rollover from the lost sheep from the last month/year should not make them leaders for a couple of days in some cases in the current month/year mileage.

P.M. 2 with Benjamin in 15:51, 1.5 with Jenny in 13:17, 1.05 with Julia in 11:20, and 0.7 in 4:45 alone.

Night Sleep Time: 7.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.00
From Jon on Wed, Jan 02, 2008 at 16:28:30

Thanks for fixing both of those things. I was trying to sort mileage for Dec and it was giving me fits yesterday. Works now.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Almost uneventful 15.1 in 1:50:18. The events were "balmy" 14 degrees compared to 8-11 yesterday, having Ted around for the first 10.1, nice crunchy snow with good traction, and a tempo pick up on the last 0.6 with the last 0.5 in 2:53. First 10.1 were done in 1:17:14, 7:38.81 avg, we've been so engrossed in the conversation that we did not even bother to chase down the 7:30 guy. On the last 5 I picked it up a bit, total time was 33:04, 6:36.8 avg.

P.M. Cross-country skiing in the Hobblecreek Canyon while the kids were sledding. Today is Joseph's birthday, he turned 3. He loves sledding. So we figured we'd give him a bit of a present. Did not bring The Toy, used landmarks and a regular watch to judge the distance. Took it easier starting out, went up for 14:59, figured it was about 1.5 off the landmarks. 12:11 on the way back. I need to start waxing my skis. I do not know that much about cross-country skiing, but I think there is something wrong if on a certain stretch you run up at 6:00, with the same effort you run at 5:00 down, you ski up at 9:00, and with the same effort you ski down at 8:00. Going down 3% grade I cannot just coast, I would come to a standstill in 5 seconds, and going down 2% I cannot go into pushing off with both poles at the same time. Forget skating, down or up. At first I thought maybe the road was really bad, or maybe my arms were just too weak, but now I am more inclined to think it is the lack of waxing. I found a small patch of ice, and was able to accelerate skating on it, and if felt much different.

1.05 with Julia in 11:07, 2 miles with Benjamin in 17:05, Jenny joined us for the first 1.5 in 13:12. Additionally 0.25 from Benjamin's Boy Scout meeting place home, and from home to church.

Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
From Clay on Thu, Jan 03, 2008 at 16:08:35

Be careful in the back country Sasha, we don't want you to become another statistic, avalanche danger is high right now...

From Paul Petersen on Thu, Jan 03, 2008 at 16:33:34

If you are still using my old skis, they are wax-less, and I think waxing would probably make them function very poorly. As I recall, I could climb just about anything in those skis, and stay in control on the way down on steeper stuff. I think they just have a bit more grip than other skis. My current wax-less skis have the opposite problem: going up is hard, and going down is a bit too fast for my liking. Going up Green Canyon (4.7% grade), I did 15-minute miles, but could hold 7-minute pace coming down.

From Sasha Pachev on Sat, Jan 05, 2008 at 21:08:04

Paul - yes, those are the skis I am using. Any tips on how to make them slide better? I read that glide waxing could work. Have you ever tried it?

I do have a strategic reason for good sliding qualities. I noticed that when running I have a 3-5% difference in the stride length from one leg to the other, but when bounding the strides are even on both legs. And if you remember the discussion earlier, my bounding predicts a 53 second quarter based on the Russian charts. I suspect there is a range of motion issue for hip extension when running on the right side (which produces the shorter stride when running) that I am able to work around when bounding. So the thought is, if I could make the skis slide back really well on hip extension, that would give me some range of motion exercise that may be enough to enable me to learn to use my bounding workaround when running.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. A very eventful morning. It started at 12:10 AM. Jacob was teething, and refused to sleep. So I took him downstairs and worked. After a bit over 1 hour he was done crying and fell asleep. Then I was too wound up to sleep, so I read the scriptures. Finally laid down and fell asleep. Another event was forgetting it was Thursday, and that Michelle was going to join us at 6:00 AM. So I arranged with Ted earlier to run at 6:30 AM. Michelle, of course, was on time. So she had some time for a nice warm-up.

We decided we would run fast when we could. I had an unplanned tempo pick-up for about a quarter due to a VPB stop, and then the road was clear, so Michelle kicked into gear and that extended the tempo to 0.5. Then we ran 2.1 stretch in 13:04 with a slightly negative split and a 180 in the middle. The road was mostly clear. On the last mile, I challenged Michelle to break 6:20 knowing that two things would happen. It would be easy and doable, so she would succeed. She would not think it is easy, so she'd kick seriously into gear, and after the first quarter or half at a good pace, she would feel up to a raised bar. It worked out as planned. She hit a quarter in 1:29, the bar was raised to catch the 6:00 girl, then 1:31, then Ted pulled ahead a bit to do his standard Ted-rabbit thing, and we ran 1:28, and 1:27 with a college kick on the last 60 meters at a pace that felt like 5:20. This gave me 1:19:30 for 11.61.

Then it was time for more miles to finish the 15.1. After not sleeping, and not having anybody around to push the pace, I was perfectly happy to trot along at 7:20-7:30 pace wishing for the run to be over, and looking forward to a breakfast and a good nap. Then I met Tyler. He said he was planning to do a 4 mile tempo and invited me to join. Even though at that point I wanted little else other than breakfast followed by bed in that order, I remembered a principle. When you are invited to do something out of your comfort zone, do it! Many times while serving a mission there was a door I did not want to knock on for one reason or another. And I learned that those doors had a very high probability of having somebody who was very interested behind them. So I decided that I'd always knock those doors, on a mission and afterwards. An invitation to do something hard is often an opportunity for a blessing of some kind.

Since there was no good 4 mile stretch anywhere on the trail, we decided to do 6x1000 (actually 0.625 going off the magic triangles to be more precise) on the dry stretch between the Union Pacific and 800 N bridges. It has a fairly steady about 1% grade. To get the tempo effects we kept the rest very short, about 40 seconds, barely enough to lose the momentum, turn around and jog back to the start. There were a couple of snow patches. I did not like them. They broke the rhythm, and at that point, rhythm was very important.

The times were: 3:31 (up) - 3:24 (down) - 3:33 (up) - 3:24 (down) - 3:32 (up) - 3:22 (down). This was good training for the third leg of Del Sol. I was doing OK on fuel, but the neural drive was seriously lacking, as you would expect.

Ended up with 19.23 miles for the run.

P.M. VanGoGo had a coolant leak. Took it to Computune. The manager, Todd, knows his cars like a good shepherd knows his sheep. At least for VanGoGo, he could probably recite 90% of its maintenance history without looking at the record. Turned out the problem was a bad radiator. We are going to get it fixed.

VanGoGo is a GMC Safari 95 van. It got its name partially from Kip Kangogo. Interestingly enough they have actually had a brief meeting on one occasion in the Slate Canyon. We even wrote a song about naming VanGoGo (we name our cars as you can tell):

When Zhu got too crowded we needed a van.
So we bought a Safari to drive our small clan.
When we pressed the gas pedal, it made Zhu seem slow.
So we thought that maybe it could be VanGo.
But then we remembered that Van Gogh was weird.
We thought of his paintings, and the dreadful lost ear.
We thought of a runner, a Kenyan we know.
With this inspiration we said: "VanGoGo!"

It now up to 191K miles. Second engine, third transmission (we did two of those, but one was fortunately under warranty). When we get another kid, it will be time for an upgrade to GMC Savannah. But until then I want to see how far VanGoGo can go.

Ran back with Benjamin and Jenny, 2.25 in 20:12. Benjamin was complaining that Jenny would not let him catch the 9:00 guy. Then Jenny got into a good rhythm on the last mile, closed with a 1:57 quarter, and beat the 9:00 guy by 3 seconds.

Night Sleep Time: 6.00Nap Time: 2.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
From MichelleL on Thu, Jan 03, 2008 at 21:03:33

Good job accepting the challenge for some speed at the end. I think it will help you in Del Sol and also as a marathon workout--seeing what you can do when you are tired.

Thanks so much for letting me run with you this morning and for coaching me through a nice tough workout. The last mile challenge was tough since I was already pooped but was a confidence booster!

So what's your goal for Painters? I can already guess and answer -- I will run by feel, go out fast and try to hang on. That's the typical Sasha strategy, right? Correct me if needed.

From Sasha Pachev on Thu, Jan 03, 2008 at 21:07:54

Yes, pretty much. Even better - I'll develop the strategy as the race develops.

From Christi on Fri, Jan 04, 2008 at 11:28:52

Hi Sasha! I wanted to see if I could post an announcement? I want to get a head count of how many people would like to gather Friday Jan. 18th in St. George for a Painter's pre-race party. I am looking into places that we can have a pre-race pasta party and I need to know how many people we'll have. I have a place we can use, but it only holds 40. Anyway- I don't know how to post news/ announcements. Can you do it for me or show me how? Thanks so much!!

From Sasha Pachev on Fri, Jan 04, 2008 at 12:05:29


To post on the board:

* log in to your FRB account

* click on Discussion Forum link

* click on News and Announcements

* click on New Topic

* fill out the Subject and the Message fields

* click on the Post button at the bottom

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. The stomach flu that hit our kids finally made its way to me. Fortunately, last night I noticed that there was a problem and did not eat dinner. So I had nothing to throw up, otherwise it would have been messy. Woke up around 1 AM, was not feeling good, drank some raspberry tea, felt better, drank some Powerade. Then had a hard time falling asleep. Decided running 15 would be counterproductive due to starting depleted and the difficulty of post-run carb replenishment, so just ran easy 10.1 with Ted in 1:18:38 to get a breath of fresh air. Nice balmy morning - 37 degrees!

Handled a phone call with a client, then took a nice 2 hour nap to regain strength.

P.M. 2 with Benjamin in 15:55. Had him guess the splits, no feedback the entire time. He thought he was going 8:40 pace all along, this is a good sign. Then 1.5 with Jenny and Jared. Jared was a bit sick, and struggled. So we had to stop and wait for him a couple of times. Jenny's time was 12:58, not counting the stops. Then 1.05 with Julia in 11:40. Then 2 on my own in 13:59. The stomach is still giving me problems. Was able to eat one light meal, regular breakfast along some with crackers and honey sandwiches. Also was able to drink a fruit smoothie, and Powerade. Held everything down so far, but it was asking to come up during the run when I'd pick it up to 6:40 pace or faster.

Night Sleep Time: 5.00Nap Time: 2.00Total Sleep Time: 7.00
From Lybi's Mom on Sat, Jan 05, 2008 at 13:01:09

I can't believe you keep running when you are sick. Doesn't the body know what it is doing to make you want to lie down?

BTW Laura on "Running in the Rockies" had some serious technique questions today.

From Sasha Pachev on Sat, Jan 05, 2008 at 13:40:27

Different degrees of sickness reduce your ability to run in different ways. The sickness would have to be quite severe to where running at all becomes counterproductive. I listen to my body and ask it how much training would be productive that day. So far, the only time it said no training at all would be most productive was when I had a 103 degree fever. For milder forms of sickness, getting out for a breath of fresh air at a slow pace is a good idea.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Ran with Ted and Tyler. Slept fine last night, woke up only once to drink some raspberry tea and go to the bathroom. Was originally planning on going only 15 figuring the carbo-depletion from the stomach flu and eating less would make 20 counterproductive. Ted and Tyler were doing the Uneventful Half. The start was rough, had a hard time getting going. However, felt stronger and stronger as I went along. We kept picking up the pace. With about 2 to go Ted picked it up to about 6:10 - 6:20 pace. I really dislike that pace. It feels like driving through the mud. It is almost as hard as 6:00, and I do not like seeing 6:something splits when working that hard. At sub-6:00, and especially sub-5:45 I start feeling relaxed, like I am flying, and I do not mind working a bit harder to get that feeling. So with a mile to go I picked it up so we'd be sub-6:00. That felt good. Finished with the last mile in 5:44, last quarter in 1:22. Total time for the Uneventful Half was 1:31:41.

Drank some Powerade to refuel. Amazingly I somehow found a way to compensate for the effects of the stomach flu and extract the energy out of something. My body was telling me it could handle the whole 20 productively, so I went for it. It started raining pretty hard. I ran the first 4 in 26:55, 6:43.75 avg, and then my body said it felt good about 6:00 to the end. So I did 5:59, 5:55, and closed with 5:47 feeling progressively stronger. Last 3 in 17:41. Total time for 20.11 was 2:16:17, 6:46.61 avg.

P.M. Lots of snow on the ground, the kids ran slower. 1.5 with Jenny in 14:52, 2 with Benjamin in 17:20, and 1.05 with Julia in 12:05.

Night Sleep Time: 7.50Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.50
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Got good night sleep, went to church, stayed awake for all meetings, then after some missionary visits came home and took a 2 hour nap.

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

A.M. Jacob kept us awake all night. Did not get a lot of sleep. Ran with Ted and Jeff this morning. Very slippery I first did 5 on my own, the watch got messed up, but it was a bit slower than 40 minutes. Then 8 with Ted and Jeff, and 2 more with Ted, total of 1:21:41 for 10 miles. So that gave me around 2:02 for 15 miles.

P.M. Josse came and showed me some stretches for my extra tight right hip. Will give those a try. Took a 2 hour nap. Ran with the kids. 1.5 with Jenny in 13:27, 2 with Benjamin in 15:51, and 1.05 with Julia in 10:02. Then 0.7 on my own in 5:15. 

Night Sleep Time: 4.50Nap Time: 2.00Total Sleep Time: 6.50
From jeremystaples on Tue, Jan 08, 2008 at 11:29:18

Hi Sasha, thanks for all of the analysis and advice lately. It is a great to get insight from someone so much more running experience. I really appreciate it.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Uneventful 15.1 in 1:52:19, first 10.1 with Ted in 1:14:41. Still slippery, although not as bad as yesterday. Was able to beat the 7:30 guy. On the last 0.4 finally got out on some dry ground, still patches of ice, but much better. Picked it up, ran 5:45 pace. Did the magic hip stretches later.

P.M. 3 miles cross-country skiing in the Hobble Creek Canyon. When we came back, 2 miles with Benjamin in 15:56. Jenny and Julia ran with Sarah. 

Night Sleep Time: 0.13Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.13
From cgbooth23 on Tue, Jan 08, 2008 at 18:04:52


are you an ibuprofen man, do you take it for aches and pains? I know how strict you are on your diet and I am curious your thoughts on prescription drugs in general? and ibuprofen specifically? I very rarely take in kind of medicine, i do take flax seed pills and glucosomine chondroitin supplements!

From Sasha Pachev on Tue, Jan 08, 2008 at 21:57:32

I am fortunate enough to hardly ever have aches or pains. However, I am not completely immune. I treat them as naturally as possible. Last time I used any kind of pill-style medication was Tylenol in 2002 when I had a 102 degree fever. But back then I did not know as much about herbs. In 2005 I used catnip tea for the same problem. My approach is that if your body is fussing at you, you need to address the root cause rather than just tell it to be quiet with a pain-killer pill.

From Jennifer Pachev on Wed, Jan 09, 2008 at 23:13:14

I like to go sledding.Thank you for taking me.

From cgbooth23 on Thu, Jan 10, 2008 at 13:04:52

thanks for the reply on your thoughts on ibuprofen etc... i too attempt to let the body take its natural course in healing!

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. We got a serious snow storm. However, at 5:00 AM it was still decent. Ted was being usually late due to snow problems. I waited, then decided to start without him. Went about 200 feet, fell down. Never had an event happen that soon! Got up. Saw Ted about 0.14 into the run, turned around. We ran 10.1 on the trail in 1:18:50. After the first two miles we began to wonder what kind of time we would get in Painters if the roads are like this (we were in about 4 inches of snow). So we picked it up for a mile at a tempo pace. It was one of the better miles of the course, and we did it in 6:29.

I've given the issue some thought and realized that I really do not enjoy anything very much anymore that does not require significant effort, either physical or mental. There are things I do not mind doing, such as watching a movie, but that is where it stops. It is always at the level "I do not mind" vs "I would really like to". Sleep would be one exception, I always look forward to it.

I get so much more joy out of doing things that require effort that whatever I can get out of those that do not just pales in comparison so much that they are not worth the hassle and/or the money unless something else of significance is being accomplished at the same time.

P.M. Ran 2 miles in 15:12 on the trail, then ran 2.2 to the BYU indoor track, did a mile time trial with Benjamin which turned out not so good - he was 3 seconds ahead of 6:40 pace after three laps (0.6), but he was overdressed and got too hot, this frustrated him enough to just stop and call it quits in the middle of the fourth lap. But he PR'ed on 1000 meters en route - 4:06. Ran a bit with Benjamin afterwards outside, he got a talk about mental attitude and Winston Churchill's "never, never, never give up". We will try again today (Thursday). Jenny ran 1.6 easy, and Julia ran 1 mile. Also ran a small errand to the church and back.

Did the magic hip stretches.

Night Sleep Time: 0.11Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.11
From Kim on Wed, Jan 09, 2008 at 16:54:11

Sasha, You and Ted are amazing! That's all I can say! Hope you didn't get hurt in the fall!

From wheakory on Wed, Jan 09, 2008 at 17:36:39

I'm kind of like that to. I will do whatever I can that requires more exercise or effort. Like at work... I will not take the elevator I will only take the stairs to my office, because I know by doing that I'm building strength in my legs.

I would rather watch a Football game than a movie though, but I do like movies I just don't watch very many.

From Brent on Wed, Jan 09, 2008 at 21:39:28

Never ending quest!, great to way pave a trail thru life.

Stay Cool and on your feet, B of BS Rools out,

25 commando points for you and Ted today, another 10 for you getting right back on your feet to continue the daily challenge. You are both the ultimate WOWs, warriors of winter running.

From Mike Warren on Wed, Jan 09, 2008 at 23:47:16

Sasha, if we get snow like that for Painters, I think it's safe to say, not many, if any, St. George ites, will be running! You will own the roads! By the way great job today!, I find myself shaking my head alot, reading your running adventures. I think you will really enjoy our weather next week.

From Sasha Pachev on Thu, Jan 10, 2008 at 11:27:59

Mike - if it snows the competition will not be any less serious. The guys that can beat me will train and race in any conditions. They do not allow circumstances to control their training. That is why they can beat me.

From Mike Warren on Thu, Jan 10, 2008 at 21:31:55

Sasha, I was kidding! but I am impressed with your training. It's nice to see someone so dedicated, to something that is not easy. Good luck at Painters!

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Another uneventful 15.3 in 1:59:55. Nobody fell down. 16 degrees, lots of ice, but enough traction to average sub-8:00. Had our Sasha and Ted uneventful run talk show. After discussing upcoming Dubai and the possibility of Haile being beat by a pacer, we talked about Haile's business success, how much good you can do even with a little bit of money, the Kiva program that allows ordinary folks to provide small business loans to aspiring entrepreneurs in developing countries, the waste of the welfare program that fails to prevent people on welfare from buying alcohol and tobacco, then the discussion turned to the history of the Soviet Union, politics in Russia, and the grip of the Russian mafia on the Russian livelihood today. In reference to Revelations in the New Testament I mentioned the whore that sat upon many waters, and from then on we discussed the current American politics and Hillary Clinton in particular. Dropped Ted off at 13.3, and added another 2 miles by myself.

A.M2  2.1 to the BYU indoor track, then 1 mile warm-up with Benjamin, then 1 mile time trial. With the help of shorts and t-shirt, as well as Winston Churchill Benjamin did much better today. 6:32.2 with the splits (by 0.2) of  1:17 - 1:19 - 1:19 - 1:20 , and 1:17 for the kick. New mile PR. Benjamin's progression in the table below:

 Age1 Mile
5 K
 7.9 7:0923:18

His current 5 K PR is relatively weak, he was not feeling quite 100% when he set it, and it was done on a slow course. A month prior to that he ran 13:57 flat 2 miler closing it with a 6:43 mile, which until now was his 1 mile PR. I imagine also based on his Thanksgiving 800 in 3:00.6 that he really has about a 6:20 mile in him if he was racing kids outside. The indoor dust confuses him, and he starts getting a false sense of fatigue. But his 7:09 last year was also done on the indoor track with comparable dust/lack of kid competition challenge. So it would be fair to say that his true mile speed improved by 37 seconds in a year.

Ran another 0.7 to Computune this time for a tour for the kids. Learned some things about a car shop. Later took the kids to the Love To Learn store in Salem to get their prizes. Benjamin got a solar car kit for $18 for his new mile PR.

Did the magic hip stretches later in the afternoon.

Night Sleep Time: 7.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.00
From James on Thu, Jan 10, 2008 at 14:48:18

Got a kick out of the whore/Hillary thing! I remember when Hawk Harper and a couple other runners had a competition to get the most miles a couple of years ago. The loser had to give $500 to the Hillary for President campaign. They were very motivated!

From josse on Thu, Jan 10, 2008 at 17:15:04

Hows the stretching treating you?

From Sasha Pachev on Thu, Jan 10, 2008 at 18:10:39

I noticed an improvement in hip flexibility today. The roads have been too icy to test if this translates into running improvements. I feel the most effective stretch is the first one that you've shown me that opens up the hips.

From josse on Thu, Jan 10, 2008 at 18:56:11

Yes that one is the one I like the best and has helped me the most but still do the others as well. Nest time I will show you some others as well, and make sure you are doing them right. Just let me know when you are ready for more.

From josse on Thu, Jan 10, 2008 at 19:03:04

Oh ya by the way, after eating at your house you guys totally inspired me to clean up my diet. I forgot how much I love the way bean make me feel. I use to eat them all the time only I like black beans. Any way thank you.

From Jon on Fri, Jan 11, 2008 at 16:18:16

I'm just curious- what did you decide is the chance of Haile getting beat by a pacer? Were you talking about a marathon?

From Sasha Pachev on Fri, Jan 11, 2008 at 16:29:07

Very good chance. I do not believe Haile is the fastest marathoner in the world right now. The reason he is the one holding the world record is that others who are faster did not have enough reputation to be invited to Berlin and be pulled by pacers.

So it all depends on how the pacers are feeling, and whether their contract allows them to go all the way.

I think once race directors start paying people enough for hitting the first half in 1:01 and then hanging on, the world record will quickly progress into the 2:01-2:02 range. Otherwise when you get all the big guns together, they always run tactically. If they worked together, and each of them knew that he gets a decent cut for being part of the world record even if he is not the one who sets it, we would see much faster times.

From Mike B on Fri, Jan 11, 2008 at 20:00:18

Sasha, I have not update my log in sometime. I keep an excel spreadsheet, but have been swamped at work, sick kids, etc.

I seem to recall you mentioning having your running mechanics looked at. If I were you, video your running at various speeds and ask Tinman ( to look at your form. I am quite sure that he will provide some feedback. A recent post over there reminded me of you. See you!

From Sasha Pachev on Fri, Jan 11, 2008 at 21:56:09

Mike - thanks, this is a good idea.

From josse on Fri, Jan 11, 2008 at 22:07:47

I have had myself filmed a couple of times and had form analysis done(Hawk used to bring this guy down form SLC once a year and we could pay to have hime look at us and give his advise). It helped bring my times down alot.

but something I have noticed with myself, as well as other runners I know that has done the same thing, is that you tend to fall back to your old stride when you are at the end of a race and are very tired. But I do think it is a good idea.

I have also thought about your stride differance and it could be that one side is stronger and had more push off than the other. You have probably all ready though about this but just thought I would mention it. I still think the hips being bound up does contribute.

From Benn on Fri, Jan 11, 2008 at 22:15:16

Sasha, how can I monitor my sleep time in conjunction with mileage like your blog? I think that is a useful feature because it can help shed light on certain high or low points in performance and why you feel the way you do.

From Sasha Pachev on Sat, Jan 12, 2008 at 13:53:43


Go to User Options, check the Track Sleep checkbox, then hit Submit.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Uneventful 15.1 in 1:56:13. First 10.1 with Ted. It warmed up on the last 5, and the snow got so slippery that I was down to 8:30 in some places. At the end I figured I'd break 40:00 for the last 5. Then I realized that the only way this was going to happen was if I ran 5:00 pace on dry sections, which was doable because there were not that many of them. So I got 0.2 of VO2 Max mileage, and 39:59 for the last 5.

P.M. 2 with Benjamin in 18:47, Jenny joined us for the first 1.5 in 14:33. Cross-country skiing for 3 miles in the Hobble Creek Canyon. The arms felt stronger, got good push off, although went slow most of the way as the snow was sticky and the road was usually rough. Chased three free roaming cows. The kids went sledding. 1.05 with Julia after we got home in 11:38.

Did the magic hip stretches.

Night Sleep Time: 0.12Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.12
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. 1 mile with Julia in 10:34 to see the fence ice sculpture on the trail. Then 5 mile shakeout by myself in 37:08. Will do the long run with Ted and Jeff later in the afternoon.

Did the magic hip stretches. 

P.M. Ted got hurt snowshoeing, so it was just Jeff and me. It was warm enough for shorts, probably about 40. But still lots of snow on the ground. We ran 10.1 in 1:09:44. Got good traction, so I thought I could do a tempo run. Took Benjamin and Jenny for a run, we did 1.5 in 13:21, then Benjamin closed with a 3:37 0.5. Ran 8 more, including the Provo River 5 Mile Tempo. The snow kept getting more and more slippery as I went along. Did the first 2.5 in 15:27 and thought that was slow until I got through the second half which took 16:00, 31:27 for 5 miles, 6:17.4 avg. I am hesitating if I should really call this a tempo because I was not working super-hard although I was tempo-focused. Decided since I was fresh, and the remaining 1.38 had more traction I'd just keep the effort to the end. Plus I needed to get home fast for missionary visits. So I ran that part in 8:28, 6:08.12 avg, with the last mile in 6:03, and the last two quarters in 1:29 and 1:25. Needless to say the last quarter was the driest. This gave me 39:55 for 6.38 of tempo, 6:15.39 avg, and 2:18:09 for 20.1, 6:52.39 avg. Felt very good.

Night Sleep Time: 0.15Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.15
From Lybi on Sat, Jan 12, 2008 at 13:11:24

Do you mean a real ice sculpture, or is the fence jut convered with snow? Either way, sounds like you and you kids are making some great memories. (Did you really chase cows yesterday?)

From Sasha Pachev on Sat, Jan 12, 2008 at 13:52:03

There is a guy in a trailer that points his water hose at the fence during the winter and that makes a nice sculpture-looking shape on the fence.

Yes, and I really did chase three cows yesterday on skis. They kept running forward, stopping, looking back, realizing I was getting closer, and then running again. Cows are pretty good runners, they can go 7:00 pace without much of a problem.

From Paul Petersen on Sat, Jan 12, 2008 at 14:16:16

Cows will wear down after a couple miles, I've noticed. They can't sustain the pace for long.

From steve ashbaker on Sat, Jan 12, 2008 at 14:56:23

If all you did was lay around and eat hay all day you would be out of shape too!

From josse on Sun, Jan 13, 2008 at 14:52:04

Cows scare me, I was driving up hobble creek one time for a run and a cow came and ramed the side of our van.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Since church now starts at 11, slept without the alarm, figured I'd be awake long before it is time to get ready naturally. Woke up around 6:00 - 6:20. Home teaching visits after church took a bit longer than I expected, but they were good and I was able to get a nap in late afternoon anyway.

Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 1.00Total Sleep Time: 9.00
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Ran the first 8.02 (we missed the turnaround by a bit) with Jeff and Ted. Well, actually a good part of it was without them as I had 3 VPBs and then took forever to catch up due to slippery conditions. The last stop was with about 0.8 to go, and then I started booking it because I wanted to catch them before they got to my house. With about 600 to go it was finally dry enough to go 5:20 pace. With about 150 to go an SUV passed me, and then tried to pass Ted and Jeff, but could not get around them. So I passed the SUV back. It always feels good when you can pass a car running. Then I passed Ted and Jeff as well, and just kept going to time my last quarter, which was 1:20. Last 0.75 was 4:17. Then we ran to the snow field and did stride measurements. All of us had even length strides off either foot this time. Jeff went home after that, Ted ran to 10.02 with me. Then I added 5 more. Towards the end started feeling like a tempo, so I did pickups on dry section. Timed a 200 in 39 down 1% grade, and then ran the last quarter, which had some icy spots, in 1:23. Total time for 15.02 was 1:47:17.

Did the magic hip stretches.

P.M. 1 mile with Julia to the ice sculpture and back in 10:31, 1.5 with Jenny in 13:25, 2 with Benjamin in 17:57 - his foot was hurting, and 0.7 in 4:50 by myself. 

Night Sleep Time: 0.12Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.12
From George on Mon, Jan 14, 2008 at 22:08:26

Curious - what is your stride frequency? I am hearing that single leg ought to be 90+ a minute but I find that is a bit of a challenge for me.

Live it.


From Sasha Pachev on Mon, Jan 14, 2008 at 23:32:57

About 180-190, and it happens naturally. Do not worry about yours too much. With proper balance of the muscles and the nervous system it will be where it needs to be. Mine used to be around 175, and I did not do anything special - just run th e miles overtime.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Slept in and missed Ted. Ran alone. 15.1 in 1:47:43. It was 23 degrees. The road was good at first, could go 7:00 pace, then it got slippery and I slowed down to 8:00. Picked it towards the end. Ran from the DI bridge to my house (1.5) in 8:40. It was a mix of marathon pace and threshold, depending on the road conditions. Sometimes 5:20, sometimes 6:20.

P.M. Ran 1 mile with Julia in 10:16, then 1.5 with Benjamin and Jenny in 13:08. Cross-country skied in the Hobble Creek Canyon - 3 miles. Then ran to the church and back twice. First time to teach the ESL class, second time to retrieve the forgotten hat - total of 0.5 miles. Ran out of necessity, as it was cold. 

Night Sleep Time: 7.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.00
From wheakory on Tue, Jan 15, 2008 at 23:39:01

Sasha, how dare you miss your running buddies! Were all human, and sometimes your body needs the sleep. Are you a heavy sleeper?

Nice running especially hitting around 5:20 at times.

From Wildbull on Thu, Jan 17, 2008 at 13:32:51

have a safe trip to saint George Sasha!

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. 8 F at the start. 10.1 with Ted in 1:19:05. Ted helped me jump-start Zhu afterwards. Zhu had not been driven in a while, so the battery lost the charge. We had to drive VanGoGo through the front yard which was covered with snow to get to Zhu. Zhu was parked in the other unpaved and not shoveled driveway, and it was not possible to push it out from there on the road. Fortunately VanGoGo has a 4-wheel drive. The jump start was the biggest event of the morning.

P.M. Ran 1 mile with Jenny and Julia in 10:26. Jenny had a cough so she ran shorter and slower. Then drove VanGoGo to Jiffy Lube for the oil change and other scheduled maintenance. Ran home with Benjamin, 2.25 in 20:04. Then ran back to get VanGoGo in 16:56. Drove it to the parking lot on Geneva Road. Ran 0.5 to check out the trail to see if you could cross-country ski on it. Looked good. Cross-country skied on the 0.625 stretch out and back twice, 2.5 miles in 19:29, 7:47.6 avg. I did stop the watch on the turnarounds, as those take quite a while on skis. The trail is mildly rolling, and had hard-packed snow with a a couple of asphalt patches that you could avoid by skiing through the snow on the side, only a small loss of momentum. I tried to skate, but there was not enough glide in the skis for that, and pushing off with both arms did not work well either. So I just did a regular running-like stride. Nevertheless, averaging out my time, this is 14:31.7 for 3 K which is a 2 minute PR. Of course, the old PR was set at the age of 11.8, but on a well groomed course, and at low elevation (Moscow, Russia). On the other hand, I suspect the skis I have now (even though I got them for $20 from Paul) are quite a bit better than the wooden skis I had then.

I did really enjoy being able to just put my skis in the van, drive, take them out, put them on, then take them off, put them back in the van, and drive straight home. In Moscow I had to drag the skis down 4 flights of stairs, then walk with them 0.1 miles to the bus stop, wait 20 minutes for the bus, ride the cold bus for 30 minutes often standing up and holding the skis the whole way, then walk some more from the bus stop. Then repeat everything backwards when done, except now sweaty.

Added another .25 to teach the ESL class at the church and back. Again had to run because it was cold. Teaching ESL can be a lot of fun, especially in settings when you are not allowed to use the student's native language. My student was having a hard time with the Z sound, they do not have it in Spanish. After a demonstration that did not seem to work I finally decided to explain how to say it - do it like a bee, bzzzz, not like a snake - sssss. Turned out she did not know what a bee was or a snake for that matter. So I showed her the snake, explained about different types of snakes with hand demonstrations and snake noises, she got that one. The bee was harder. I explained how bees make honey, she did not know what honey was. I explained that a bear likes to eat honey, and showed her the bear. Still not much progress. Then I decided to cheat a bit, knowing that the Spanish words for insect and flower sound very similar to those in English, and explained that bees are insects that land on flowers and then make honey, which is sweet stuff that you can put on bread. That worked. Then we got the Z sound down.

Did the magic stretches later in the evening.

Night Sleep Time: 0.11Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.11
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Ted came in and announced that it was 3 F outside. I put on some extra clothes. Then Jeff came. We started with 3 laps around the block (1.05) with only one purpose in mind - for me to avoid a VPB stop. It turned out to be a wise decision as my body lived up to the statistical patterns of the past. Afterwards we ran 4 out and 4 back. The conversation, appropriately for the weather, turned to the Russian history of the 20th century. The weather and the discussion reminded me of the places where one of my grandfathers died, and the other spent 18 years before being released by Khruschev's decree after Stalin's death. Among other things, I recalled the story of how my grandmother went to see Stalin's dead body twice to be 100% sure he was really dead before she felt free to speak her mind.

Afterwards, added 2.1 around the block with Ted, this time to help him avoid a VPB. Then 4 more on the trail by myself. Total of 15.15 in 1:57:17.

Julia had read all of her Bob books. So Sarah made her some more books with stories about a fat pig and a bad pig. Then Benjamin decided to join the fun, and on his own wrote and illustrated a book titled The Slow Runner. The story reads as follows:

The slow runner was slow. The slow runner lost a race. The slow runner was sad. The fast runner came. The fast runner trained the slow runner. The slow runner won a race. The slow runner was not slow. The End.

P.M. 1 mile with Jenny and Julia in 11:38 - both had a sore throat. 2 with Benjamin in 17:27 - his foot is doing better. 2 more by myself in 13:59.

Magic stretches. 

Night Sleep Time: 0.13Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.13
From wheakory on Thu, Jan 17, 2008 at 16:58:43

Great story from your son. Very creative!

Nice run and wise choice to know how your body is feeling. Do you still have family in Russia?

From steve ashbaker on Thu, Jan 17, 2008 at 20:15:25

I liked the anecdote about your family in Russia. It illustrates better than any history book about how the Russian people felt about Stalin. A strange mix of fear, respect, and loathing. Would you say this is an accurate statement?

From Mike B on Fri, Jan 18, 2008 at 10:10:38

Sasha, forgive me, but what does VPB stand for? I've always been curious.

From Sasha Pachev on Fri, Jan 18, 2008 at 12:50:27


I still have family in Russia - my mother, father, aunt, and a few twice-removed cousins.


Yes, I agree.


VPB = Virtual Private Bathroom.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Ran with Ted. Very slippery. We invented a new term "to get grandpa-ed", or "to get grandped". It means a guy who has grandchildren is beating you in a race. Ted has plans to enter the grandpa division around the age of 44. My plan is to do it at 48. During the discussion I also set a goal to run a sub-3:00 marathon as a great-grandpa, which could happen when I am around 70.

Met Adam with about 2 miles to go, he joined us. Turned out he had fulfilled the scripture earlier in his run: "Adam fell that men might be; and men are, that they might have joy" (2 Nephi 2:25). The interesting coincidence is that right before the run I had read 2 Nephi 2. Dropped Ted off at 10.1, ran another mile with Adam and 4 more on my own. The last 5 miles were exceptionally slippery, I went 9:00 pace in a lot of spots and lost ground to the 8:00 guy, but then gained some back once I got out on drier ground. 1:59:48 for 15.1.

P.M. 1 mile with Jenny and Julia in 10:49, 2 miles with Benjamin in 16:44, drive to St. George, then 2.05 in 13:43 with 0.5 in 2:45 pickup to feel race pace.

Night Sleep Time: 0.13Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.13
Race: St. George Painters Half Marathon (12.95 Miles) 01:10:29, Place overall: 3
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Raced Painters Half in 1:10:29, third place after Logan Fielding (1:08:57) and Nick McCombs (1:09:00). The course measured 12.91 on my GPS, 12.92 on Logan's and 12.95 on Ted's. Ted's never measures long. So for now we'll call it 12.95, given the fact that the start was about 0.15 further ahead of where Steve Hooper and other St. George guys thought it should have been. Details to follow later.

More details. Around 30 degrees at the start but it kept getting warmer. I called out for Mr. Little Bad Legs to identify himself. He did not hear me. Then Ted noticed his legs and pointed him out to me. About 1 minute into the race I found myself right next to him, we talked, and it was discovered that it was indeed Glen Tucker as Steve suspected. But I think the name Little Bad Legs is now going to stick. I love those 5:30 pace introductions. Incidentally, that is how I met Paul Petersen as well.

We started at a brisk but comfortable pace trading quarters. In addition to myself, Nick, Logan, Dave, Little Bad Legs, and Karl Wilcock, a talented high schooler that needs to run more miles, were in the pack. This was a perfect picture moment - four FRB team members in uniform in the lead pack with police escort.

Karl looked a bit scared, so we did not make him take his quarters. Everybody else did their turn up front religiously. We went through the first mile in 5:35, followed by a 5:31. Then we hit the downhill, and picked it up - 5:19. It flattened out, but Nick pressed the pace, and we ran a 5:24. Somewhere around there we lost Karl. Then Nick put some serious pressure up the little hill, he climbed it as if that hill was not there. This lost Little Bad Legs, and made Dave show some signs of struggle. I started hurting as well, but acted normal in response to pace changes.

Now we were on some rolling hills in the neighborhood, and Nick was pressing the pace relentlessly. 5:25 on the next mile which was uphill. That hurt. Now downhill. We are moving. Next mile in 5:11. Dave fell back a bit, Nick gapped me and Logan. I told Logan to go with Nick if he felt confident he could keep up, otherwise hang around with me for a while and trade quarters so we would not both end up in no man's land. He felt good enough to go with Nick.

As we hit the bridge coming off the downhill and charging hard, the 90 degree turn on an icy surface did wonders. Nick went down then quickly got up like a hockey player, Logan did exactly the same, Dave and I saw it and eased off enough to avoid their fate. Then Dave suggested we should close the gap. I told him it was a bad idea. That was all I had the breath for then, but here is the reason. In a half marathon you should almost never forcefully close the gap. There are a few exceptions - e.g if you think the competitor had just made a move he would not be able to sustain, or if you are approaching a section with strong headwind, or if you are within a mile and a half of the finish. In distances up to 10 K it is all about how bad you can hurt. In a half marathon, it is the opposite. Any pain that is past anaerobic threshold pain makes you run eventually slower, you pay for it.

So Dave and I traded quarters for another mile, then Dave fell back. We hit the Bloomington loop. It did not seem to have one flat spot - you were on a constant roller-coaster. I focused on running steady and naturally. Even though Dave was only a few seconds behind, I felt confident about my position due to the laws of nature. I knew that as long as I hit around 5:30 flat equivalent I was safe. There is something about half-marathons. Things rarely get better between 8 and the finish, and they definitely do not get better if you fall behind.

Hit 10 miles in 54:12 (by GPS, course mile markers were fairly consistently 0.15 short), so 26:59 for 5 miles, was quite happy with that. By that time I was also fairly certain that the course would be short. This made me lose focus a bit. I was not excited about running a fast time any more because I knew it would be about a minute fast. So from then on I was just coasting, just running naturally and not trying to fall asleep. Slowed down to about 5:35 pace once we got back on the trail. I think that section had a mild grade because going the other way the same effort gave me 5:20, and I did not feel I had lost that much steam. Lots of runners coming in the other direction, many of them were cheering. That was nice. However, dodging them was an interesting exercise in eye-leg coordination. I remembered a story my mission companion once told me about how while he worked as an EMT his boss made him drive an ambulance at 90mph on the wrong side of the freeway.

Finally made it to the finish, safe in 3rd place, but Dave made a heroic effort and closed the gap to 9 seconds.

Still had some miles left for the workout, decided to use them wisely. Ran back, paced every blogger I could find. Messed up a couple of times, and mistook two fast blonds for Marcie. She would have beaten them on a good day, but I did not realize she was struggling. So I paced two Marcie-looking runners for a while, and only afterwards realized that they were taller than 5-1! But on the bright side of things they got to see the blog commercial.

Total of 20.25 for the run.

P.M. 1.1 with Jenny and Julia in 11:09, then 2.2 with Benjamin in 17:15 in St. George on the 0.55 loop near Steve's house.

Night Sleep Time: 0.13Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.13
From Christi on Sun, Jan 20, 2008 at 00:16:21

CONGRATS on your 3rd place!! It was so awesome to see so many bloggies coming in the top of the race! Thanks so much for pushing me at the end and believing in me! I know I didn't seem appreciative, but I was. It was a fun weekend with the FRB. Looking forward to the next race!

From Mike Warren on Sun, Jan 20, 2008 at 00:22:25

Sasha, great race! Congrats on third place, very impressive time! It was nice to meet you at the party. Enjoy your stay at Steve's and travel home safe.

From Michelle on Sun, Jan 20, 2008 at 00:32:41

Sounds like a great time for the FBR today down in St.Goerge! Nice job to all of you guys and it sounds like you did a great job in bringing the other runners along the way too! Great work for the whole team!!!

From James W on Sun, Jan 20, 2008 at 00:49:34

Congrats on a great race, Sasha! Looks like even with the course measuring a bit short, you would have beaten your Sasha science prediction!

From Kim on Sun, Jan 20, 2008 at 10:36:21


Thank you so much for helping me the last mile and a half! I may have acted like I didn't like you and what you were doing for me, but you would be the first one to tell me that that was just negative thoughts that needed to be conquered! Now that the race is over I have thought about some of the things you said along the way and I will work on those things to help me do even better next time. The ta ta ta ta ta thing is making more sense now that I am a little more coherent. Thanks again! You and that cute, patient wife of yours are awesome!

From Tom on Sun, Jan 20, 2008 at 10:40:29

Great race Sasha. Ditto everything Kim said. That was great of you to help so many other runners in and help them finish strong after you were finished. Kind of reminded me a good shepherd helping bring all the FRB sheep safely home! Thanks for being the good shepherd of the blog.

From JohnK on Sun, Jan 20, 2008 at 11:48:10

Amazing to me that you ran so well after logging 20 miles each of the two previous days. I'm curious how much faster you think you might have run had you toed the line rested?

From Steve Hooper on Sun, Jan 20, 2008 at 11:49:03

Sasha, Great Job on your race! Another great Sasha performance. Keep it up!

It was also great seeing you and your family this weekend. You guys are welcome anytime.

From James on Sun, Jan 20, 2008 at 21:07:07

Impressive run. You are running stronger now than I have ever seen you run! I think those extra recovery days are paying off. Keep it up. I'll be down close now, so I'll have to hook up with you for some weekend runs.

From MarcieJ on Sun, Jan 20, 2008 at 21:09:54

Nice Job Sasha! You had a great race! It was nice to meet you and your family and thanks for the push at the end of the race!

From wheakory on Mon, Jan 21, 2008 at 13:28:25

Nice race Sasha... sounds like trading quarters made the pace fast and interesting. How did you feel the last few miles finishing? Did you have a good kick towards the end? I know you always like to start out fast.

From Lybi on Mon, Jan 21, 2008 at 14:14:29

Great job Sasha! Very nice time. Was it close to your half PR?

I especially liked that you went back and ran in so many FR Bloggers. Very nice.

PS I am trying to substitute molasses for sugar. Unfortunately it tastes like crap. Trying to remember how the pioneers would have died to shluck down this stuff with their pancakes.

From Sasha Pachev on Mon, Jan 21, 2008 at 16:48:07

Everybody, thanks for the comments.

John - I think I might have run it 30 seconds faster with a taper, but no more than that. I actually felt quite fresh throughout the race. 20 miles a day is really not that hard on your body when you are not doing any speed. Especially with all the snow on the roads that forces you to run 8:00 pace or slower for a good portion of the run. Essentially it is like a long relaxing hike.

Kory - I felt good at the end, the legs were a bit stale, but you would expect that at the end of a half marathon. Nothing unusual, I would say the last 3 miles felt better than normal. I kind of spaced out the kick, though. I was distracted by the shortness of the course, not feeling a threat from behind and not particularly caring about my time I zoned out, and by the time I realized it was time to kick, I was crossing the finish line.

Lybi - this was probably a PR quality run. My PR for an aided course is 1:07:03 in Hobble Creek, but you do not impress a race director with your Hobble Creek half PR any more than you do with your 8K time from Alta Peruvian. My PR for an unaided course is a big question. I think the closest I can get to claiming a non-aided PR is 1:12:09 split in Richmond in 2003. So had the course been certified, this could have produced an official non-aided PR to put on a resume, something around 1:11:25. Quality-wise, this run was probably worth 1:09:45 on a course like Houston.

Regarding the sweetener, try honey or maple syrup instead of molasses. Or some dry fruit like dates or raisins. Molasses on their own do not taste very good, but they give you a nice flavor when you mix them with something else.

From Brent on Mon, Jan 21, 2008 at 17:14:08

Sasha, 100 commando points for third place, 1,000 commando points for being the good shepard bringing your bloggers home, your spirit is the blog. Great race report as usual.

Sasha Science, should be a required running class, b of bs Rools out

From Sean on Mon, Jan 21, 2008 at 17:33:39

Nice job Sasha. It's really too bad they can't measure a course properly. It definitely puts a damper on things. Way to hang in there.

From Paul Petersen on Mon, Jan 21, 2008 at 17:52:18

Nice job. Bummer on the short course. Sounds suspiciously close to a block in length, kind of like the Striders 10-miler last year.

From Sasha Pachev on Mon, Jan 21, 2008 at 17:56:41

We suspect that what happened is that they measured the course right, but then somebody messed up and started us in the wrong location. I am trying hard to communicate to the race directors that after the course has been measured due respect needs to be given to the start and the finish location, those cannot be moved on a whim!

From Paul Petersen on Mon, Jan 21, 2008 at 18:01:18

Yeah, it's pretty aggravating as a runner to run a PR effort and not get a PR out it. Fast times and good weather do not happen every day.

From Dustin on Mon, Jan 21, 2008 at 19:03:40

Good Job Saturday Sasha. It was fun watching you come by. The FRB had a good showing Saturday. Disappointing the half was short again, just like last year. The 5K was pretty close. I measured 3.08 on my Garmin, but I was trying to take the corners best I could.

From Patrick on Mon, Jan 21, 2008 at 19:11:31

Sasha: I thought I would send my congratulations along with many others. You had a great race and you are an amazing runner. Good luck!


From Craig on Tue, Jan 22, 2008 at 00:00:35


As always, I thoroughly enjoyed the race description. I have a high school kid across the street that lives in my ward named Kyle Moffet. He runs XC for Alta. He's 16 and ran a 1:16:XX time at this race. He said he was 2nd in his age and 7th overall, so I'm guessing he finished behind Karl Wilcock. This was his first long race, and he said it was the toughest thing he has ever done (running-wise). I know you have opinions on how high schoolers waste their talents. I don't know if you got the chance to meet him at this race, but I'd like to share some good advice with him from someone that has a closer eye on high school talent than I do. I'll tell him about the blog as well.

From Sasha Pachev on Tue, Jan 22, 2008 at 16:33:14

Craig - I did not get to talk to Kyle, only to Karl. However, I noticed he had run a mile in 4:57 in a meet. Not sure if this is his PR. If he thinks a half-marathon is harder than an all-out mile, I would imagine he trains like most high-schoolers (I'd run a half over an all out mile any day). If that is indeed the case, there would be a lot of room for improvement. Tell him to get on the blog, and we'll see what can be done.

From Kyle Moffet on Mon, Feb 04, 2008 at 20:36:20

Hey, this is kyle. That was my first ever half. I really enjoyed it. As for my mile, i've run faster, however, I got phnemonia during the end of track. It was pretty bad. But since then i've sped up and I should be able to pull a sub 10 min. 3200. Do you have any advice for me? I'm racing 2 other boys in my division in the 2 mile this year and would love to be a little ahead of them.

From Sasha Pachev on Mon, Feb 04, 2008 at 23:29:19


Advice number one is to get on the blog. The advice is most meaningful when I can see the fine details of your training overtime.

You could be quite a bit ahead of a lot of high schoolers especially in the 3200 meters if you build a very thorough aerobic base and do a thorough job of consistently maintaining it throughout the year. I left some comments in Karl Wilcock's blog at

most of which will probably apply to you as well.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Got good sleep. Did not need a nap in the afternoon. Had an interesting discussion after the missionary correlation meeting in the evening with somebody who served a Russian/Ukrainian speaking mission in the Ukraine. We discussed the use of zhe. It is a Russian word that means nothing, and is randomly inserted into spoken and sometimes written sentences for flavor and emphasis. If you do not use it, your speech sounds dry. If you use it improperly, you sound like a foreigner. There are no rules for the proper use of zhe, you go completely by feel. So very hard for our missionaries to learn. As we spoke, I had a bright idea of how to teach this concept. Imagine J. Golden Kimball speaking. Every time he would insert a certain word for emphasis, that is when you say zhe in Russian!

Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
From Karl on Tue, Jan 22, 2008 at 19:19:04

Hey thanks for the tip! I'm almost recovered from the half now. I just ran a 10 mile run today and it felt great. Starting to get the mileage going again. I was running around 40-50 miles a week in November and December, but I had a few bad weeks at the start of the year. It's great to get going again. I don't know about Rohatinsky's record, but I guess I won't put it beyond me. Anyways, thanks and good luck to you!

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. We got our share of snow. 10.1 with Ted in 1:19:35, form drills, then 2 with Benjamin in 17:47. Then Sarah told me the oats lady called and said our 400lb of oats we were supposed to pick up in Lindon on Saturday was getting snowed on. So she hurried there while I stayed home with the kids. Unloaded the oats after she got back, then ran 1 mile with Jenny and Julia in 11:53. Jenny still had a cough, so she is running less. Then added 2 on my own in 15:56.

P.M. Provo River 5 Mile Tempo on cross-country skis in the dark in 43:58. There was quite a bit of snow to work through. In the first and the last half mile it was clear enough to go 8:00 pace. I went 9:00 pace the rest of the way. For our Family Home Evening activity, packed the oats into buckets.

Night Sleep Time: 0.13Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.13
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A.M. Uneventful Half with Ted in 1:41:18. The biggest even was a VPB stop for me followed by 4 miles of catching up. The road was so slippery that 7:45 was all I could do. Then 2.1 with Sarah in 23:41.

P.M. 2 with Benjamin in 16:36. Then 3 by myself in 22:31. Jenny and Julia ran 1 mile with Sarah. The event of the night was giving Zhu a jump start from VanGoGo for which VanGoGo had to drive through lots of snow front yard - the 4wd has to be good for something after all. Zhu's internal light got accidentally left on after Joseph had been playing in the car and the battery was dead before we noticed it. Jump starts when it is below 20 F outside are always a lot of fun.

Night Sleep Time: 0.11Nap Time: 0.02Total Sleep Time: 0.13
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. 10.1 with Ted and Jeff in 1:21:08. Very slippery still, although better than yesterday. We got beat by the 8:00 guy and we did not care as we were lost in the discussion of performance enhancing drugs and Quality X.

P.M. Had an odd night with lots of happenings, so the run consisted of fragments. 2 miles with Benjamin in 17:18. After we found Jenny's shoes, 1.75 with Jenny  in 17:04. Then 1 mile with Julia to the ice sculpture and back in 11:09. Then dinner and the Daily Dose ESL class at the church (ran there and back with Julia, total of 0.2)  followed by family scripture study. Then 2.5 in 18:45 by myself afterwards.

Night Sleep Time: 6.75Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 6.75
From wheakory on Wed, Jan 23, 2008 at 16:06:01

What's the temperature like there for your morning runs?

From Christi on Wed, Jan 23, 2008 at 16:59:53

Hi Sasha! Thanks again for cheering me on the last 2 miles of Painter's- I needed it! I know you're a busy guy- quick question- In order for me to qualify for Boston, I would have to run 3:45:59 at St. George this fall. That is basically the same pace I ran Painter's. How would you suggest going about training so I can extend my 1/2 marathon pace to a full marathon? Any tips?

From Sasha Pachev on Wed, Jan 23, 2008 at 23:13:55


It is a bit below 20 usually. This morning we were expecting near zero and were pleasantly surprised with 18.


I think you have it in the bag pretty much. You just need to run no less than 6 days a week and no less than 6 miles on each run between now and St. George. No skipping, no excuses, and you've got it.

From Mike Warren on Wed, Jan 23, 2008 at 23:29:41

Sasha, you have mentioned I should change my diet. Would you give me an example of your daily diet. I just ate a big piece of cheesecake, I am guessing this would not be an approved item. Seriously, I do need to make some changes, curious as to what others are doing.

From Christina on Thu, Jan 24, 2008 at 04:39:24

Hi--I just came across your blog and thought I'd comment. Carbohydrates are definitely necessary for runners, but cheesecake may be taking too far. :-) My running coach tells me that baked goods are harmful to a runner's improvement. He eats six small meals a day, each including a protein, carbohydrate, and a vegetable. After we run, we drink a recovery drink so our muscles don't deteriorate after a run. Hope that helps.

From Sasha Pachev on Thu, Jan 24, 2008 at 13:52:09

Mike - I posted my menu a while ago at,104.15.html

This is what I discovered over the years of trial and error to achieve the best balance between my body needs and my budget. Different people respond differently to different foods.

Start with the basic good conscience diet - if your current knowledge and experience tell you the food is good for you, eat it, otherwise stay away. Some general principles as you try to discover the optimal diet for yourself:

How well can you run within 15 minutes of eating it, 30 minutes, 1 hour, 2 hours? I would say anything that takes more than 3 hours to stop affecting your ability to run is bad. Anything that you can eat and run well after 15 minutes is a serious candidate for becoming a staple food.

How much processing did it take to produce the food? Something that grows on a tree, in the ground, or on a bush, and tastes good when eaten raw is usually very good. Elaborate preparation often makes the food empty of nutrients and even taste unless you add some artificial taste enhancers such as fat and sugar.

Can you eat it to satiation and feel good in the next 48 hours, including your runs? If not, it probably has some unnatural taste enhancers that make it taste better than it deserves.

Even if a food appears harmless, ask yourself if there is a food your body really needs you would not be able to eat instead because of the limited digestive capacities.

Does it taste good to you? If it does not, but some book says you should eat it, do not eat it unless that is the only food you have. If it does not taste good, your stomach does not want to digest it and if it cannot, all the nutrients will go to waste.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Ran 15.1 in 1:58:58. First 10.1 with Ted. Temperature was 15 F. Lots of snow on the trail still, slippery, had a hard time with 8:00 pace. There was one dry stretch where we did a couple of pickups at 5 K race pace or so, around 5:00/mile if Ted's GPS was right. It did feel like it could have been right.

P.M. 2 with Benjamin in 18:57, Jenny joined for the first 1.5 in 14:48. 3.75 cross-country skiing on the Provo River trail out and back on a 0.625 section in 28:46, 7:40.27 avg, which gives a 23:50 5 K. This would be a 5 K PR for cross-country skiing. The entire time I was in a running-like gait when you move both the arms and the legs as if you were running (as opposed to pushing off with both arms and gliding, or pushing off with both arms and only one leg at a time). I had to because the skis did not glide very well. I wonder what I could do on racing skis that glide optimally and a well-groomed track. Would anybody familiar with cross-country skiing  venture a guess? The effort felt like 6:30 pace running, but if I put any more, it did not seem like I was going any faster. Afterwards ran a mile with Julia in 11:29.

Night Sleep Time: 0.13Nap Time: 0.02Total Sleep Time: 0.15
From Lybi on Thu, Jan 24, 2008 at 20:25:31

Geez Sasha, now because of your lovely little comment on my blog I can't access that entry. My web filter has blocked it out under the heading of "anger/violence/racism". Lol.

Great zhe job today. I am absolutely confounded at the zhe idea of running more zhe miles in a day than degrees over zero! You are going to be in zhe heaven when you come down for Relay del Sol.

From sarah on Thu, Jan 24, 2008 at 23:45:18 never cease to completely crack me up..what would we do without your wonderful humor. Sasha thinks you should start learning Russian....(Big's like being invited to join an exclusive country club..Russians are language snobs..especially Muscovites!)

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Uneventful 15.1 in 2:00:00. First 10.1 with Ted and Jeff. The events were the heat wave of 29 degrees, and a very slippery trail on the last 5 miles which slowed me down to 8:40 pace in a lot of places.

P.M. A heat wave has come - 39 F! 1.5 with Benjamin, Jenny, and Jared in 13:20. Jared was a bit behind with 13:37. Had an adventure with a couple of feisty dogs that got off their leashes. Told the kids to run ahead. Stopped and chased one dog until it started running away from us, but then it resumed the bad behavior once I started going in the planned direction. Finally decided to stop and throw a snowball at it. Being able to hit the dog with a snowball gave me a boost of confidence in my throwing skills (I've always been a very much below average thrower), and it also convinced the dog that I meant business, and it ran back to its owner. On the way back, I armed the kids with snowballs just in case, but both dogs were very timidly hiding behind their owners this time. Added another 0.5 with Benjamin and Jared in 4:29.

Then 1.05 with Sarah around the block in 11:27. Pushed Jacob and Joseph in the double stroller up to this point. Left the stroller at home, and added 2 more in 15:28. Julia ran 1.05 with Sarah.

Night Sleep Time: 0.11Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.11
From Jon on Fri, Jan 25, 2008 at 13:34:26

Looks like slippery trails hit all of us, sometimes.

From wheakory on Fri, Jan 25, 2008 at 13:57:35

Sasha, have you tried to go run somewhere else where its not so slippery? Sometimes I'll drive to a certain spot in town where I know the roads or path is clear. But it's always nice to be able to run back to your house without having to drive anywhere.

Nice run as usual. It was a heat wave for me today too. It was 10 degrees much warmer than the last few below zero runs.

From adam on Fri, Jan 25, 2008 at 17:21:59

The DI tunnel is pretty bad (alot of black ice and very dark). I'm guessing that and the wood bridges were part of your last five miles?

From Sasha Pachev on Fri, Jan 25, 2008 at 17:26:27

Adam - I went the other way. The problem was mostly the snow getting slick.

From Scott Zincone on Sat, Jan 26, 2008 at 08:01:54

Hitting a moving target with a snowball is no easy feat. Especially since you had been running. Maybe you could start a new type of biathlon. Running, then snowball throwing at targets.

Race: SLC Track Club Winter Series 5 K (3.107 Miles) 00:16:25, Place overall: 4
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Raced the SLC Track Club Winter Series 5 K in 16:25.1 taking 4th place after B.J. Christensen (15:44.0), Aleksander Thomas (16:02.1), and Steve Ashbaker (16:24.2). Adam Wende was 6th with 16:54.0, Ted was 8th with 17:16.6, and James Barnes was 13th with 17:46.3.

When we got to the start, Ted's car read 19 degrees. Fortunately there was no wind. Unfortunately there was still some snow and ice on the race course. Did some jogging around, then Rebeca Walter after realizing that the race was starting at 10:00 AM and her work was starting at 10:30 AM decided to just run hard on the course by herself and asked us if we wanted to pace her. So Steve and I paced her through a 20:25 5 K for our brisk warm-up. Did some more jogging around, realized it was now warm enough to run in shorts (24F), got dressed appropriately, and jogged to the start.

The race started at Saltair and went east on the frontage road along I-80 for 2.5 K out, then back the same way to the finish. Essentially flat course with some very insignificant rises and drops, nothing greater than 0.75% grade.

Went through the first mile in 5:08. B.J, Aleksander, Albert Wint and Steve Ashbaker were ahead of me. By the mile mark, I finally caught up to Steve. That 5:08 mile felt hard. No surprise - it is the fastest mile I've run since Thanksgiving. We worked together to close the gap on Albert. 8:07 at the turnaround, we had to come to a complete stop, and then accelerate back to pace through some slush. B.J had 7:47, Aleksander 7:51. We passed Albert, he saw our FRB commercial, and we kept on moving. 10:34 at 2 miles, that was a 5:26 mile. Wow! I did not think it would be that slow. But Steve was still with me, and B.J and Aleksander were within the correct amount of distance ahead, so I figured this was just a slow mile, nothing to worry about.

Now we started seeing oncoming traffic of runners. This made it harder to run in the clear grooves, and we've been hitting slush and ice more often. Steve pressed the pace. At first, I said to myself just make it through a minute of this, then back off. I made it through a minute, it was painful, painful enough to where I would have been forced to back off in the past. But something has changed. I did not have to back off, and just kept moving along. We made it to 3 miles in 15:54, 5:20 mile, not bad at all for the third mile through all the slush and snow. Then it was time to kick. Steve picked it up, I hung on most of the way. He had a little bit more umph in the last 30 meters or so and ended up beating me by 0.9 seconds.

Ran the course again for a cool down, plus some distance to Saltair. Got some food in, then drove back with Ted and Steve.

P.M. It was pleasantly warm in Provo, 40F. 2 miles with Benjamin in 15:00, Jacob woke up and I had him in the stroller the rest of the run, 1.5 with Jenny in 13:02, 1 with Julia in 10:44, and 6 through more snow than I hoped for still pushing Jacob in 47:35.

Night Sleep Time: 0.13Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.13
From paula on Sat, Jan 26, 2008 at 23:47:51

Great job on the run today. I enjoyed seeing so many people from the blog out at the race today. Someday I will have to introduce myself in the flesh to some of you all.

Great run.

From Jody on Sun, Jan 27, 2008 at 11:25:25

Great job !!! The FRB was well represented!

From Brent on Sun, Jan 27, 2008 at 12:21:37

Sasha, guts to hang on, very impressed, good character builder race. Fighting the pain in a 5K.

B of BS Rools out

From Adam RW on Sun, Jan 27, 2008 at 14:27:40

Sasha, Great run thanks to you and Steve for being that pulling force up front...

From Tom on Sun, Jan 27, 2008 at 18:27:23

Nice job on the race Sasha. Sounds like FRB did great in general again!

From James on Mon, Jan 28, 2008 at 13:25:10

Good race on Saturday. You really seem to be running strong, and that kick is getting better!

From Lybi on Mon, Jan 28, 2008 at 13:35:33

Great race, Sasha! That's amazing that your threshold for pain seems to be getting even higher. I've wondered sometimes if that is a big part of that "quality X" that you talk about.

From Sasha Pachev on Mon, Jan 28, 2008 at 14:15:15

My pain threshold while running is actually very low. Frozen fingers or a scraped knee hurt more than the worst pain I can put myself into from running hard. What holds me back is not the lack of conscious willingness to deal with the pain, but rather some shutdown that just happens. What was different in this race is that all the signals at 2 miles were telling me I had about a minute before the nervous system would quit, but it never did. I was not trying to be particularly tough or to motivate myself in any extraordinary way. I think the nervous system was just stronger.

From Lybi on Mon, Jan 28, 2008 at 14:39:59

"My pain threshold while running is actually really low." Compared to what, a decapitated chicken? You are tough Sasha, just admit it. :)

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Good good sleep. Went to church. Got a nap in the afternoon.

In the evening, heard the news about President Hinckley's passing away. What a great life he lived! It is hard to comprehend. He has done a lot in 97 years, and he finished strong with the last 12 years serving as the President of the LDS Church, and being actively involved in the work. He sure practiced the doctrine of enduring to the end. 

Night Sleep Time: 9.00Nap Time: 1.00Total Sleep Time: 10.00
From JeffC on Mon, Jan 28, 2008 at 13:03:06

I never saw this coming so quick. He was always so vibrant and full of life that you thought he would never die. His longevity has sealed his image and example into my mind forever as he was in the first presidency for so many years prior to becoming the prophet. You're right Sasha, he is one of the greatest examples of enduring to the end.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. The heat wave continues. It was 40 F this morning. A very pleasant temperature. Wore shorts and two long-sleeved shirts. Ran the first 10.1 with Ted. The trail was slippery. We fell behind the 8:00 guy by over 2 minutes in the first 3 miles. Then we got some light and dry ground, and we caught him with vengeance. What a drama! It was more entertaining than a movie. We would hit a dry spot and close 30 seconds on him. Then he gaps us on ice. Then we close again on a dry spot. Finally we are ahead of him, but the battle is not over - there is some ice up ahead. Finally, on the last 0.4 it was dry all the way, so we really showed him who's the boss and beat him by 1:03 finishing 10.1 in 1:19:45. All of this fun while spending no money and building aerobic fitness as opposed to sitting in front of a TV and just getting fat and lazy. Much good can be accomplished when you realize that joy comes from simple things.

Dropped Ted off, ran some more. About 1.7 miles later ran into Tyrel Jensen, a BYU middle distance runner, best mile in 4:05. Ran another couple of miles with him, then headed home. Ended up with about 15.8 in 2:00:39.

P.M. End of the heat wave. Got a nice snow storm, temperatures down to 25 F. Slick roads. 1 with Julia in 11:47, 2 with Benjamin in 17:42, 1.5 with Jenny in 14:27. 

Night Sleep Time: 0.12Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.12
From Paul Petersen on Mon, Jan 28, 2008 at 13:46:52

What if they made a movie about you and Ted catching the 8-minute guy? Would that be entertaining?

From Brent on Mon, Jan 28, 2008 at 20:33:28

Does the 8 minute guy know you and Ted are trying to catch and pass him? Most runners would run until they drop rather than be passed. Lesson learned, make games out of your runs.

Stay Cool, B of BS Rools out

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A.M. Ran with Ted at 5:00 AM. His knee was hurting, he went only 6 miles. The roads were pretty slow, although they did not look too bad. We ran 6 miles in 54:05, got beat by the 9:00 boltushka. Boltushka is a Russian word that means "talkative woman", but Sarah and I use in a variety of other ways. One of the meanings is "a recreational female runner that runs primarily for social reasons".

Thought I'd be able to go much faster after dropping off Ted, but no luck. Ended up with 2:16:53 for 16.1, 8:30.12 average! Got beat by the 8:30 quicker boltushka.

P.M. 2.1 with Benjamin in 16:58, Jenny joined us for the first 1.75 in 14:35. The funny thing is that Jenny's average pace (8:20) was faster than on my run earlier in the morning. Julia tried to run, made it about 0.1, but her knee was hurting. Cross-country skied, tried the Provo River Trail by Geneva Road, did not like it, tried the Provo Canyon, did not like it either, but got a total of 4 miles in. Ran the church and back later in the evening for the ESL class - it was unpleasantly cold.

Night Sleep Time: 0.12Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.12
From josse on Tue, Jan 29, 2008 at 11:39:05

Icey road are a bugger when you are trying to go fast.

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A.M. The trail was covered with snow today. Ran with Jeff at 5:10 AM. We got beat by all kinds of boltushkas. 10.1 in 1:26:40, 8:34.85 average.

P.M. 2 with Benjamin in 16:12. The trail was quite clear. Provo City plowed it well. Tried to cross-country anyway, made it to almost a mile out, and then one of the poles got caught in the fence, and it broke the handle. Managed to make it back nevertheless, the broken handle was an annoyance but not as a big of a deal as I thought it would be. Total distance of about 1.7. Then ran with Jenny around the block, 1.75 in 15:43, added another 1.75 by myself in 12:55. A little later 1 mile with Julia in 11:19, plus some errands on foot.

Night Sleep Time: 6.75Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 6.75
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A.M. Had two interesting dreams. In the first one, Google managed to put together a very strong team that beat our team by 10 minutes in Del Sol. I woke up before finding out our finish time, then decided to go back to sleep to find out, but then as I woke up more realized that the next dream would not have that information. The next dream was very different indeed. I was running on the Provo River Trail and saw a tiger. Climbed on a tree, tried to call 911. The cellphone was not working. Finally got through, but the operator was not very helpful. Then some people came and said there was no tiger. Others said there was. I began to wonder who was right, and woke up. There was no tiger indeed.

Cold morning. Ran 5 miles with Sarah around the block in 52:34. Then decided to chase down the 8:00 guy for a challenge. I was 12:34 behind him, but I had 10.1 miles to close the gap. Would not be a challenge on a normal day, but with the snow and ice it was interesting. However, the cold temperature in combination with the abundance of asphalt patches made the task reasonably possible. I decided the 8:00 guy had a name - Ded Moroz, or Granpa Frost, the Russian version of Santa Claus. Half way through the last 10.1 of the run Ded Moroz started getting concerned, because I had closed half of the gap. However, it was getting warmer, and the roads were getting slicker, so he had that to his advantage, and was hoping he'd be able to hold me off. With a mile to go he saw me coming, and knew he was doomed unless he made me trip on ice. He tried, but I was smart enough to slow down under the bridges, and then quickly accelerate on the dry spots. Finished in 1:59:57, beat Ded Moroz by 51 seconds, 1:07:23 for the last 10.1, 6:40.3 avg, 7:56.62 avg for 15.1.

P.M. 2 with Benjamin in 17:34, first 1.5 Jenny was with us (13:28),  1 with Julia in 11:35, then 2 alone in 14:57. 

Night Sleep Time: 0.14Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.14
From Aaron on Thu, Jan 31, 2008 at 17:53:46

Interesting: "Dede" is Turkish for 'grandpa.' "Ded" must be a loan word.

From Benn on Thu, Jan 31, 2008 at 19:38:27

I've just been wondering, Sasha. I love the stories, but just how DO you do all those calculations while dodging the ice and snow? You are definitely a MACHINE!

From Sasha Pachev on Thu, Jan 31, 2008 at 23:10:39


I find those calculations rather simple to do. In fact, the first time I saw a timing chart with splits I wondered why anybody in his right mind would every want to buy one. I run with a $10 watch from Walmart, never press the split button (not that it would be any use anyway on that watch) and the calculations just happen in my head whether I want it or not.

From Jon on Thu, Jan 31, 2008 at 23:17:13

Sasha- I don't suggest going to San Francisco zoo anytime soon.

Benn- Sasha is a lot better at doing math/splits in his head than almost anyone you will ever meet. Not joking.

From JohnA on Thu, Jan 31, 2008 at 23:18:11

That is a awsome story . . . the 8:00 guy. I like that idea. I will have to try it sometime.

From steve ashbaker on Fri, Feb 01, 2008 at 00:01:31

I don't suggest that you ever take Ambien either.

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A.M. Tomorrow is going to be a very busy, so I decided to do my long run today. Ran the first 10.1 with Jeff. At first, the roads were so slick that we were trailing boltushkas - 43:37 for the first 5.05. I had never run 20 miles at the average pace of slower than 8:00, and thought today would be the day. On the way back at first things did not look so good, and then we ran a mile in 7:46. I could not believe it, double checked my calculations, yes, indeed it was 7:46! Something happened to the snow and we got more traction. We were able to run 2 more miles under 7:30 and finished 10.1 in 1:22:53.

Dropped Jeff off, ran the second half alone . Now I was excited about catching Ded Moroz, the 8:00 guy. At first things looked great - closed 42 seconds in the first 2 miles, thought I'd get him easily. But then it started snowing, and the trail got very slick again. So for the next two miles I lost ground. I thought perhaps today Ded Moroz would win. But then I got out on a good stretch of road where the snow composition was just right and gave much better traction. I took advantage of the opportunity and ran a 6:12 mile. The rest of the way was decent - it kept snowing, and the snow started covering the ice well enough to be able to run 7:30-7:50 pace. I ended up with 2:39:46 for 20.2, 7:54.55 avg.

P.M. 1.5 with Jenny in 13:28, 2 miles with Benjamin in  17:12, and 1 with Julia in 11:15.

Night Sleep Time: 0.13Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.13
From George on Sat, Feb 02, 2008 at 21:42:37

Sasha - are your paces a function of the weather right now? Or are you backing it off to eights specifically?

From steve ashbaker on Sun, Feb 03, 2008 at 10:37:24

So, Cal's name on the blog is Ded Moroz?

From Sasha Pachev on Mon, Feb 04, 2008 at 14:58:01


The reason and the whole humor of the situation of consistently ending up behind the 8:00 guy and having the need to chase him comes from the road conditions. On a good road, my slowest relaxing pace once I warm up is around 7:30. I never allow the pace of my easy runs to be controlled by the clock to the degree that I would run unnaturally fast or slow based on a specific time goal. I do, however, watch my splits, figure out how fast my body wants to go on any particular day, and then just for fun pick some imaginary "guy" I am going to try to chase down about 4-5 miles into the run. When the roads are good, it is often the 7:00 guy. But lately it's been the 8:00. This is particularly entertaining. On a good road, it is very scientific. I just run the pace I want to, do the math, calculate exactly where I would have to pick up to 5:40 to catch the imaginary guy, coast until it is time to go, then pick it up, blow by him at the end, and leave him in the dust. When there is snow on the road, you never know when you will have to slow down to 9:00 pace. So you do strides/fartlek of sorts - fast on dry ground, rest/recover on ice. And there is some drama to it, you never know what is going to happen.

From George on Mon, Feb 04, 2008 at 21:22:02

Ah! Now I get it.

This is a dangerous game I play on the treadmill as well. On the treadmill it is maybe all the more nerve wracking because you know nearly exactly where you are (to the hundreth) and can calculate the pace to keep such and such pace for the entire run. I personally need to be careful in this game because it can make easy days a bit less than easy. 75 minute ten milers turn into 70 minute ten milers that turn into 65 minute ten milers. Almost too much data for me.

Fun game though.

From Sasha Pachev on Mon, Feb 04, 2008 at 22:55:32


For me, being on the Provo River Trail provides as much info as being on a treadmill. Even when there is snow on the ground, I know the landmarks. Without snow, there is a mark on the road every 100 meters.

The key to winning this game is to run slow enough in the first 4 miles to make it impossible, or at least very unattractive to catch the really fast guys. And you should always go for some easy target, and real him in slowly so you would not be tempted to catch a faster guy.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

P.M. A very long day, but managed to squeeze in a 15.1 mile run. Warm day, around 35 F, ran in shorts. A lot of snow has melted. First 2 with Benjamin and Jeff in 15:35, Jeff went another 10.1 with me. We did a tempo pickup on a dry section for 1.05 in 5:50, 5:33 pace. Hit 12.1 mark in 1:28:30. Then went for 3 more to finish off 15.1. After about a quarter realized it was dry enough to run sub-6:00, so just went for it. Ran the last 2.75 in  16:07, 5:51.6 avg. Slipped on snow, but then made up on dry ground. Total time for 15.1 was 1:46:22, 7:02.65 avg. Jenny and Julia ran there regular distances with Sarah.

Night Sleep Time: 0.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.00
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Got good sleep. Went to church. No nap in the afternoon - was busy with home teaching. Decided to study Bulgarian. Figured it sounds very odd to Bulgarians that a guy with my last name would not be fluent. Like a guy with the last name of Williams not being able to speak English. Sarah joined me. Due to our Russian background we were able to read and understand a lot right away. We read a general conference talk. I kept a version of the same talk open in separate tabs in Firefox in English and in Spanish. I would not have even bothered with the English version, but the Spanish translation omitted a phrase with the Bulgarian version retained. Otherwise, with the help of Spanish, I could understand everything in the Bulgarian version, but Russian and Bulgarian are different enough that I would definitely not have been able to understand it without my cheat sheet.

To me Bulgarian sounded like something spoken by a very drunk Russian. To Sarah it sounded like just like some advanced Russian that she had not yet learned.

Night Sleep Time: 10.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 10.00
From George on Thu, Feb 07, 2008 at 14:35:17

No running on Sunday ever?

From Sasha Pachev on Thu, Feb 07, 2008 at 14:54:23

That is right, George. For religious reasons at first, but then I also realized that this has physiological benefits as well. There is something very profound in "six days shalt thou labor, and on the seventh shalt thou rest".

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Another morning of chasing Ded Moroz. We got some new snow. It was slick, but not too bad. First 2 miles were very slow (17:36), after that we were fairly consistently sub-8:00, and even low 7:00 in some really good places. Ran 10.1 with Jeff in 1:19:07, then added 5 more. Total time for 15.1 was 1:59:03.

P.M. 2 with Benjamin in 16:24, 1 with Julia in 11:08, 1.75 with Jenny in 17:14, another 0.35 alone in 2:42.

Night Sleep Time: 0.13Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.13
From Adam RW on Mon, Feb 04, 2008 at 17:15:34

Your streak amazes me. How many of the last 12-weeks have been over 120 miles??? I guess I could look myself, but I had to comment on it.

From wheakory on Tue, Feb 05, 2008 at 00:15:21

Sasha, The 120 weeks is this something new your trying, because I don't remember you running this much last your, but I could be wrong. Nice run again today.

From Lybi on Tue, Feb 05, 2008 at 15:45:27

Quite a machine to chase down Santa Claus in this weather! Great job on all your super mileage!

Ok Coach, got a question for you. I have 2 fun choices for a hard workout this Sat. I could do a 5K (real race) or a half marathon time trial (not a real race). Which should I do? I will do as you say as always. :)

From Sasha Pachev on Wed, Feb 06, 2008 at 14:03:48

Adam - I've been doing 120s since late August with a couple of breaks to taper for the marathons + one week of recovery afterwards.

Kory - yes, this is something new. I figured out how to carbo-reload and sleep, and am feeling better at 120+ now than I used to at 90.

Lybi - I think a 5 K in a race after a 3 mile warm-up followed by a 3 mile cool-down is a good idea. Do not worry about your finishing time, just run hard and have fun.

Everybody - I am still puzzled why so few people use the Training Review Requests board when they have a question. Maybe I need to make the explanatory note on the Add/Edit entry page bigger or somehow more obvious. The first thing I read every day is that board to see if anybody needs advice. Also, if you ask it there as opposed to my blog, other team members are likely to see the question as well, and can often provide a quicker and better answer. I will, of course, say something if I do not completely agree or feel an additional comment is needed for some other reason, but then you have the benefit of two or more opinions.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Slippery roads but not as bad as in the last few days. 1.75 with Sarah in 19:36, then 14.2 alone on the trail in 1:45:47, 7:26.97 average. Much better than the recent Ded Moroz chases.

Got a punching bag yesterday. A little family history about a punching bag. My great-uncle, whose name incidentally is Sasha Pachev as well, lived in a small village near Sukhumi, a town in Abkhazia on the shore of the Black Sea. He had a son. When he went to school at the age of 7 he was getting beat up by older kids. Uncle Sasha solved the problem by getting him a punching bag. Soon enough his son was not getting beat up anymore.

We do have a different purpose for the punching bag, though. I want to see if hitting it might activate my arm muscles, which I hope in turn will result in the improvements in the nervous system in general. It is good for Benjamin as well as he happens to be exceptionally feisty some days.

P.M. 2 with Benjamin in 16:44. Jenny joined for the first 1.5 in 13:12. 1 with Julia in 10:48. We saw the BYU team. Somehow all those good looking young men got Julia, who is only 5, thinking about dating. She said to me: "Daddy, what did you do when you were a teenager?" I replied that  I ran. She clarified: "No, that is not what I mean. What kind of girls liked you?"  

Then we went to the Hobble Creek Canyon. The kids were sledding, and I cross-country skied 3 miles. The road was very rough the entire way, however there were a couple of good spots in the parking lot and around it, which gave me a chance to discover that I could skate at a good speed with my new poles. The entire time I did not realize that my old poles were too short. So I never got a good push off from the arms. I just thought my arms were too weak. With the new poles I could skate up a 3% grade and feel strong, while with the old ones I felt like I was going to stall even on a 1% down. I think now I am beginning to understand why I beat everybody in my school, and even in my district, but then got beat by some ridiculous amount in the Moscow championship. In the school and in the district everybody was skiing on whatever they happened to have. In the city championship I was racing serious skiers that had proper gear.

One day I should go to Soldier Hollow and see what I can do a well-groomed course with my new poles.

Ran random errands for 0.4 miles. Afterwards we went to vote. We spent 2 hours in line. Our friends watched our kids. We considered going home to avoid the socks/hand-written Russian dictation punishment for missing the bed-time curfew, but figured that fulfilling our civic duty was a noble exception. We ended up being only 5 minutes late.

Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.75
From Brent on Tue, Feb 05, 2008 at 22:26:53

Father winter? Time for his departure, shall I say, we have had enough of the frozen tundra.

B of BS Rools out

From Adam RW on Tue, Feb 05, 2008 at 22:27:33

The bag will also be great stress releaver. I used to use one after all my weight lifting in high school. It made the trip to UT but is sitting in the garage I just need to find a place to put it up.

From Lybi on Wed, Feb 06, 2008 at 13:33:36

Sasha, did you see my comment from yesterday? Please advise, I will comply...

Let us know how that punching bag works out for Benjamin--we've got three little tykes who are also quite feisty.

From crumpyb1 on Wed, Feb 06, 2008 at 19:53:18

Sasha, there is a wonderful (at least 4 mile) cross-country skiing course a half a mile from my apartment. Grab Sarah, your kids, and your skis and come visit!

From Kyle on Wed, Feb 06, 2008 at 20:49:58

Thanks for the advice! I'll try those 3 milers in the morning. With more help like this, I actually might have a chance this season. Thanks!

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Easy 10.1 with Jeff at 5:10 AM in 1:14:19. Ded Moroz was ahead of us in the first 2 miles, but then the road cleared up, and we woke up on top of it, so we caught him quickly and left him in the dust.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 10:51. She was wondering if we'd see the BYU team on the trail again, but we did not. Then took VanGoGo to Computune to check the power steering system and the coolant leak (another one), and ran from there with Benjamin and Jenny. 2.25 in 19:55. Jenny thoroughly beat the 9:00 girl with Benjamin's encouragement closing the last mile in 8:28. Then 5 more by myself in 36:56. Some slippage on the trail, but a lot less compared to my recent Ded Moroz adventures. A random errand - 0.25 later in the evening.

Night Sleep Time: 0.11Nap Time: 0.01Total Sleep Time: 0.12
From Brent on Fri, Feb 08, 2008 at 22:23:08

Sasha, thanks for responding. Just after turning 50 I broke my clavical, cracked ribs, mountain biking. I was away from running for couple of months. Just never got that drive back, and never broke 20 min. in a 5K again. For about 5 years suffered thru many injuries trying to get back. Finally, last year, changed my running to only one hard day a week with easy runs for the remainder. I have stayed injury free and have been able to move my avg. miles to about 69 a week avg. for the last three months. I guess, the big question how to get the quad strength back again, that seems to be what is missing, hill quad strength. Hill work wipes me out for a week. Maybe I have answered my own question. But, I had my best marathon year since turning 50 last year by picking up on a comment you made about using 1/2 marathons as long training runs. Maybe it is just age and not much can be done, placed 9th out of 186 in my div. at St.George last year. This tells me that older runners are losing that rythmic drive. Is this like Austin Powers and his mojo? Whatever it takes to get under 3:10 at St.George, advice would be taken serious. Thanks, Run Hard, B of BS Rools out

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Ran alone. Uneventful 15.2 in 1:46:13, 6:59.28 avg. The roads were decent, although still quite a bit of snow and ice. But they were decent enough to average sub-7:00. One of those rare special times lately.

P.M. Eventful afternoon. Logistical problem. Tasks: take kids for their runs, take them to the library, retrieve VanGoGo from the car shop, get some running in, and go cross-country skiing. Solution: put the skis and boots in Zhu, take the kids to the library on foot via a scenic route. Sarah picked up Julia at 1.12 mark (12:10). We then continued on to the library with Benjamin and Jenny reaching it in 21:03 (2.03 miles). I continued to Computune (3.05 in 28:29), turned out they found nothing wrong with power-steering, and they could not reproduce the noise that bothered us. I demonstrated the noise, they will be diagnosing it tomorrow. Took VanGoGo to the library, left it there for Sarah, now she had a way of taking them back home, took Zhu to the Provo Canyon, skied 2.5 miles in 27:29, the conditions were not good, either deep snow, or hardly any snow, cannot push off well with the poles.

Also ran a short errand (0.25 miles) later.

Night Sleep Time: 0.13Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.13
From Mike Warren on Thu, Feb 07, 2008 at 23:38:56

Good miles! I ran one day this week on ice (Monday). I have to tell you, if it was everyday I doubt running would be my thing. You guys up North are some tuff cookies, Nice job!

From Ruthie on Fri, Feb 08, 2008 at 00:03:47

I just wondered, what do you eat for birthday cake? You have to stick the birthday candles in something, what do you use? Or do you not blow out candles?

From Kim on Fri, Feb 08, 2008 at 10:31:12

Wow! What a way to make it all happen! You guys have it all together! I have a sign in my house that says "we may not have it all together, but together we have it all." At your house it would have to say "we have it all together and we have it all together!"

From Sasha Pachev on Fri, Feb 08, 2008 at 14:01:48

I think Sarah made a healthy cake a couple of times, but we did not put 30+ candles in it if I remember right. To tell you the truth, I actually like life without a birthday cake better, and not because I am getting old. I actually feel quite young, and it comes to me as a shock that the guys I run with or against have often lived for less than I've run. Or that I vividly remember 1980 Olympics, President Carter, my mom's dismay when Reagan was elected, Brezhnev speaking on TV on all the 4 channels at the same time, and then getting a day off at school for his funeral, etc. It almost feels like I got a glimpse of all of that from the pre-existence, and somehow manage to access that memory now. But nevertheless, for some reason my birthday is not a big deal to me, and I do not like to make too big of a deal about it.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Ran with Jeff. More snow today. He is getting married in a couple of weeks. As we were talking about it, we noticed that somebody drew a heart on the snow. How appropriate! Dropped Jeff off at 10.1 (1:19:16), and ran some more. Ran into a guy named Drew and joined him. Then we found Tyler, and he joined us. Drew then continued to BYU, and Tyler and I ran to my house. About 15.3 in 2:00:55.

P.M. A warmer evening. Some snow melted. 1.5 with Benjamin and Jenny  in 13:00 pushing Jacob in the double stroller. Then 1 mile with Julia in 10:16, and 2.5 alone in 18:03. The last 2.5 were somewhat of a steeplechase without the hurdles, but with a water pit nevertheless. Landed in a big deep puddle of water under the bridges 4 times.

Night Sleep Time: 0.13Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.13
Race: SLC Track Club Winter Series 10 K (6.214 Miles) 00:32:59, Place overall: 3
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Raced SLC Track Club Winter Series 10 K in 32:59.6, 3rd place after Aleksander Thomas (31:46.5) and BJ Christensen (32:22.7).

Brought Benjamin and Jenny with me to the race. We picked up Steve Ashbaker on the way as well. Warmed up with Steve and Adam 2 miles. The weather was close to ideal, about as ideal as you can expect it in February - about 34 degrees, 8mph cross-wind which I thought at first was going to be neutral, but it ended up overall favoring the second half.

Benjamin and Jenny were both in the race with the following compensation package from Daddy:

Benjamin (age 8)

  • Appearance fee - $2
  • Bonus for finishing the race - $2
  • Quality time bonus - $1/minute for the gap on the 50:00 guy
  • Competitive bonus - $0.10 for each defeated male competitor, $0.05 for each female

Jenny (age 7)

  • Appearance fee - $2
  • Bonus for finishing the race - $2
  • Quality time bonus - $1/minute for the gap on the 1:00:00 girl
  • Competitive bonus - $0.20 for each defeated male competitor, $0.10 for each female

I knew that given my focus on base and virtually no speed work aside from a few races and tempo pickups, my threshold pace would be very high and would feel very comfortable, but I would not have very much room above it both in the dimension of how much faster I could go, and in how long I could stay there. So the plan was to run threshold pace to 4 miles, and then if I felt good, go into the 10 K race pace misery zone and try to make up some time. I figured the threshold was somewhere around 5:20.

Steve and I worked together from the start. In the first mile there were a couple of guys with us, but they fell back shortly before the mile mark. First mile in 5:20, second in 5:20 as well. 2.5 K in 8:18, 3 K in 9:57, 4 K in 13:18. BJ and Aleksander were around 5:05, and it did appear that Aleksander was pressing the pace while BJ was just hanging on hoping for the best.

Felt some unfriendly wind, but it was not a killer, especially when trading leads. On the third mile the wind picked up, or maybe we just changed the direction a bit to make it more unfriendly. We slowed down to 5:29. I think we slowed down more than we should have, though, because I felt a bit of an easement in the effort. Shortly before the mile marker 3 I moved up and pressed the pace a bit.

16:44 at the 5 K mark. The 5:20 guy is ahead, not good. Oh well, hopefully he would not put too much distance on us. Thinking maybe 33:25 is possible with a strong last mile and if we do not lose focus in the next 2. 20:05 at 6 K, 21:32 at 4 miles. That is an improvement - 5:23 mile with a 180 in the middle. I was encouraged. Saw Benjamin around 19:10 into the race, and Jenny around 20:37. Not enough oxygen to figure out how fast they were going, especially now that Steve started to press the pace and take me right into that 10 K misery zone. However, still enough oxygen to calculate that the 5:20 had 12 seconds on us. That is better, we lost only 3 seconds, and the next mile would have no headwind (hopefully), and no 180 turn.

22:40 with 2 miles to go. 7 K in 23:25. That was 1 K in 3:20, a bit faster than 5:22 pace. Lost some ground on the 5:20 guy, but looks like were are not going to lose any more, Steve is pressing the pace pretty hard trying to lose me. I am experiencing what one could call tepid comfort, like you are sitting in a bathtub, the water keeps getting colder, but the room is even colder than the water so you try to stay in the bathtub for as long as you can. In this case, Steve's back was the bathtub, and he was trying to lower the temperature of the water as much as possible.

7.5 K in 24:59. We are still behind the 5:20 guy, but we are now 1 whole second ahead of the 3:20/km guy, very encouraging! And we closed 5 seconds + gained one in just 500 meters!

5 miles in 26:48. That is progress. The 5:20 guy has only 8 seconds on us. We ran the last mile in 5:16. 1 mile to go - 27:55. I add 5:20 to that, this gives me 33:15 and brings a smile to my face. I know that barring a major disaster I have a 5:20 mile in me with the help of a kick, and 33:15 would give me a 24 second 10 K PR for a non-aided course. But Steve is not happy with that, he keeps pressing. I see Saltair in the distance and it keeps getting bigger fast. I like that.

32:02 at 6 miles. We just ran a 5:14 mile, and we are headed for a very low-33:00. I was just about to open my mouth to share the good news with Steve, but three things precluded me: a) I was out of breath b) it was time to kick c) I realized that there was a remote chance of dipping under 33:00.

So, time to kick. I do not like that. The bathtub was still quite comfortable even though the water kept getting colder and colder. Very appropriately, I had the frozen Great Salt Lake in my view. A kick is like jumping from a lukewarm bathtub into a frozen lake. Steve shifted gears, I am still there, the water got colder, but I am still in the bathtub. If I am going to do my best today, I need to get out of the bathtub. So I reluctantly move alongside Steve with about 250 to go positioning myself for the final dash. My instincts tell me now is the time to strike.

Out of the bathtub! I floored it for about 50 meters knowing that once you get up to speed you can run off the momentum for a while even if the anaerobic bear jumps on your back. Steve did not respond. I am approaching the clock. It says 32:52, 32:53... I was already satisfied with the race, and felt like just coasting to the finish, but somewhere deep inside me there came an urge to break 33:00. It worked against my will. I felt the finish line pulling me towards it, except my legs had to do the work to accomplish the pull. I leaned forward right as a crossed the finish line to make sure I would get every fraction of a second available to me. 32:59.6 official time, a 40 second PR for a non-aided course. 57.6 from 6 miles to the finish, that is a 67 second quarter speed! This is a 4 second PR for the 10 K kick! Last mile in 5:04, last 2 miles in 10:19, last 3 K in 9:34, and last 5 K in 16:15! PR for the last mile of a race 5 K or longer with the exception of Alta, PR for the last 5 K of a 10 K I think even if you count the last 5 K of Magna. And all of that from pretty much pure base!

Steve had a great race as well finishing in 33:02.0 with a new 50 second non-aided course PR.

Immediately after we finished we ran back to meet Benjamin and Jenny. Steve paced Benjamin while I paced Jenny. Benjamin finished in 45:38.8 with the splits of 22:27 - 23:11, 58th place out of 230 finishers, and earned a total of $21.80. Jenny finished in 53:06.4, 111th place, having chicked 67 out 141 men. I hope getting chicked by a 7 year old girl running her first 10 K would give them a reason to get on the Fast Running Blog and start training better. Jenny did a negative split of 26:50 - 26:16 with the last mile in 8:01. She earned $29.49.

Note that Benjamin runs only 2 miles a day, while Jenny runs only 1.5. But they do it 6 days a week. No longer runs. Their longest training run is when our cars needs attention and we run 2.25 from or to the car shop. And this fortunately does not happen often enough to have any lasting training effect. Nevertheless, with this kind of training they are able to not just finish a 10 K but race it and hold their own in the closing miles. What this tells me is that the frequency of the runs plays a very important role in building endurance, and a decent level of endurance can be built when the frequency is good even if the length is lacking.

FRB had a decent showing, with Adam Wende taking 5th place in 34:33.0, James Barnes 9th in 36:08.0, Terry Bean 11th overall and winning the masters in 37:46.4, and Tom Lee running not only a huge 10 K PR, but beating his possibly short course 5 K PR time from last summer doubled by 12 seconds with 38:39.7, 16th overall and 2nd master. A number of other runners set PRs and won or placed high their age divisions.

P.M. Ran 11.7 miles in 1:27:35, met a runner named Austin, a BYU student, ran with him for a while. Also ran a mile with Julia in 11:18 later in the evening.

Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.75
From Kim on Mon, Feb 11, 2008 at 14:18:50

Sasha, that was such a great play by play, I felt like I was there watching you! Oohhh...I was there watching you! But I feel like I was watching you the whole way with that great race report!

For those of you who aren't aware, we have a picture of that great kick he is talking about on Tom's race report. (, check it out!

From Jon on Mon, Feb 11, 2008 at 14:22:10

You definitely win the prize for most words per mile in a race report...

From Jody on Mon, Feb 11, 2008 at 14:32:39

Great race!! Way to PR! It was great to meet you on Saturday!

From Lybi on Mon, Feb 11, 2008 at 14:37:01

What an exciting race report! I was almost holding my breath at the end. Very good news, Sasha! This is quite a break through for a mid-winter race to be so fast. Congratulations! Can't wait to see what this coming year has in store for you.

From Tom on Mon, Feb 11, 2008 at 14:45:16

Great race Sasha! I didn't realize when I talked to you after the race this was a PR. Also congrats on finding the massive kick at the end. I really like the bathtub analogy. I'm wondering if I've ever really gotten out of the tub yet in a race. I'll think I'll be thinking about that late in my next race.

Great that Kim took that picture of you and Steve right during "the kick". I think the grimace on your face says it all. Steve had a great race too, as far as the picture I hope he doesn't feel like one of those NBA players who end up in the poster with the superstar dunking on his head!

From Jon on Mon, Feb 11, 2008 at 14:53:27

Nice race, too. I have to chuckle that you track PR's for 10k kicks and for last mile and 5k's of races. Keep up the good work and you can hopefully set more PR's this year.

From jtshad on Mon, Feb 11, 2008 at 15:01:52

Smoking race and a great PR. You are running very well, Sasha, keep it up. I look foward to seeing you in action at the Del Sol!

From Paul Petersen on Mon, Feb 11, 2008 at 15:35:10

Great job! Impressive due to lack of any speedwork, but perhaps not too surprising. Tinman often writes that the greater the proportion of slow-twitch muscles, the less helpful speedwork is. Thus, a guy like yourself may thrive most off of pure high mileage.

From Tyler on Mon, Feb 11, 2008 at 16:43:22

Awesome race! Loved the bathtub analogy. I'm sure it will be going through my head during my next race.

From George on Mon, Feb 11, 2008 at 20:32:10

Nice job. Good indicator of things to come.

From Brent on Mon, Feb 11, 2008 at 20:36:24

Shasha, breath taking report, 100 commando points for the 10K PR and 50 for the 5K PR and another 100 for third place. 500 points for the wincing and sheer guts. We have all learned from you running advice, your race report should be required reading for mental toughness.

Stay Cool, Tough as Nails, B of BS Rools out

From saamijeff on Mon, Feb 11, 2008 at 21:17:46

Above comment says it better than I ever could. Great report.

From Shauna on Mon, Feb 11, 2008 at 21:32:32

Great job! I loved your report and the bathtub analogy.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Got good sleep. Went to church. Went with missionaries to help translate for a couple of adopted teenage kids from the Ukraine. They spoke a dialect that was some mix of Russian and Ukrainian that I was able to understand without problems to my great surprise. They understood my Russian as well without problems. What I thought was interesting, though, is that apparently they were not able to speak real Russian. I have talked with Ukrainians before, and they have always spoken the cleanest Russian they knew, maybe with an accent, once they realized that was the only Slavic language I could speak. This was the first time I've ever spoken with a Slavic language speaker in the gift-of-tongues mode - I speak Russian, he does not know it, but understands it, he speaks whatever he speaks that is not Russian, but somehow I understand it as well.

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

A.M. Finally the roads are clear enough to go a more normal pace the entire way. Warm weather, around 32 degrees, ran in shorts. Ran 5 miles with Ted and Jeff at around 7:30 pace, dropped off Ted, then we ran a bit under 7:00 pace, then the devil entered into us and we ran a 6:10 mile. We decided to chase the 7:00 for 10 miles, and closed with a 5:49 mile. I continued for 5 more miles, ran some with Matt Anderson who I found on the trail, ended up with 1:43:54 for 15 miles. 

P.M. 1 mile with Benjamin and Jenny in 9:56, 0.35 with Julia in 3:36, then 4 alone in 29:45. 

Night Sleep Time: 0.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.00
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Easy 6 with Ted in 46:08, then about 1.5 with the missionaries. They are supposed to exercise 30 minutes a day 6 days a week according to the mission rules, but they have been slacking off. I had a scripture for them ready - Hebrews 5:8, and told them that this morning they were going to learn obedience by the things they suffer. Then ran 3 miles with Sarah, and 4.5 more by myself. Total time for 15 was 2:01:40.

P.M. 3 miles cross-country skiing, 1.5 with Benjamin and Jenny in 14:23, 1 with Julia in 10:45. Had the missionaries over for dinner. They were taken to task for being out of shape by the mission president's wife as well.

Night Sleep Time: 6.75Nap Time: 0.33Total Sleep Time: 7.08
From James on Tue, Feb 12, 2008 at 20:42:04

Hey, I wanted to tell you that you ran very well on Saturday. I am impressed with how you are racing and even the little kick you seem to be developing or finding. Keep it up!

From Mike Warren on Wed, Feb 13, 2008 at 00:10:22

Nice job, taking care of the missionaries! Your miles are also looking good. Have you ran the striders half? That is ran on the Ogden course right? If so, is it the first or second half? I was thinking about running it, to get a feel for Ogden.

From Sasha Pachev on Wed, Feb 13, 2008 at 17:23:42

Strider's Half is approximately the first half of the Ogden marathon. About 80% overlap. Slightly slower - you start at around mile 2 of the Ogden Marathon, so you miss some good downhill, and then to make up you go further, and you go uphill slightly in that section. Good Ogden practice, good chance to appreciate why you do not get good bang for the elevation drop buck in the marathon. Strider's 30 K is also a good race for Ogden training. You get to experience the worst part of the marathon course, it rolls at 5000 feet the entire way, and it is long enough, of all races it is the most reliable predictor of your Ogden finish.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Ran with Ted and James. Dropped Ted off at 6 miles. Total of 10 miles in 1:17:30.

P.M. 1.5 with Jenny in 14:20, 1 with Julia in 11:18, 4 alone in 29:16, 2 with Benjamin in 16:33, and a small 0.25 mile errand. It snowed a bit, and it was windy, but I enjoyed good traction while I could.

Night Sleep Time: 6.75Nap Time: 1.00Total Sleep Time: 7.75
From Kyle on Fri, Feb 15, 2008 at 19:53:33

Hey Sasha!

I tried to do the workout u suggested over this week. I was wondering if u could check it and tell me if thats about what I should b doing. Its been a stretch, because i've never done close to this many miles, but its felt pretty good. I'll b doing 9 to 12 2morrow. I just was wondering what a good week would b.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. The morning was off to a bad start. I looked outside and the ground was covered with snow. Ted was running over 10 minutes late. This was very much unlike him - he is usually at least a couple of minutes early. I figured maybe he decided not to risk his knee this morning. I was not looking forward to running 15 miles all alone through several inches of snow. Then suddenly out of nowhere Adam showed up. We had barely run 0.05 out when we saw Ted's car. He lives further up the mountain and it took him a long time to dig himself out of the snow this morning. We turned around, and started the run again with Ted. Ted and Adam ran 6 miles with me. Then I decided to go for 10 more instead of 9 since I did not know where the 9 mile turnaround would be. The pace was very slow, I decided not to fight the snow and enjoy nature. Ended up with 2:14:47 for 16.1, 8:22.3 average,  plus the initial 0.1, which makes it 16.2 for the run.

P.M. Took Benjamin cross-country skiing at Soldier Hollow. Was pleasantly surprised that it takes only 40 minutes to drive there. Benjamin really enjoyed it, he stood on skis much better than the first time  a year ago. This was his second time ever cross-country skiing. I ended up with 3.87 miles in 32:48, some of which included towing Benjamin with a harness. I went out and back to him the rest of the time. Soldier Hollow course was not as flat as I thought it would be. Going up by myself I slowed down to 10:00 in some places, then going down I went 6:15. On a short stretch that was truly flat I was able to go 7:30.

Then ran with the kids later. 0.5 with Benjamin in 4:19, then Jenny joined us and ran 1.5 in 13:25, this gave us 17:44 for 2 miles. Then another mile with Julia in 11:48.

Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.75
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Discovered that Clyde was in town from his blog. Called him and invited him to run with us. He was without wheels so I picked him up at his hotel. We started early and ran 6 miles before meeting Ted and Jeff. The trail was mostly clear with occasional snow/ice patches.

We started slow, 8:47 for the first mile. Then gradually sped up to 8:00. Half way through I realized we were not going to make it on time unless we sped up to 6:00 pace, so we did. Clyde was cold at first, then he got feisty, and hit a quarter in 1:23. That hurt. I missed the time on the next one, but it was probably just as fast. But it hurt less. On the last quarter before my house Clyde pushed the pace again, and we ran a quarter in 1:21 with three 90 degree turns, one on ice. That hurt as well.

We waited for Jeff then decided he was not going to make it and started without him. Clyde and Ted mostly chatted about wrestling, and I just listened. Which was just fine as the pace quickly progressed into the low 7:00 range. Even though I can race a marathon at 1:20 per mile faster than that on the same terrain, I do not enjoy conversations at 7:00 pace, I cannot maintain it without focus, and it is hard to focus on the pace and the conversation at the same time. Then about 2.5 miles away from my house I hit a VPB, and this gave Jeff a chance to catch up. Turned out he had a hard time clearing off his car windows.

Dropped Ted off 12 miles into the run at his 6 mile mark. Went for another 4 with Clyde and Jeff. Clyde needed to be back by 8:00. So we gradually picked up the pace to around 6:20 range. It took just as much effort at 7:00 earlier - both felt hard. Then I noticed we were on track to catch the 7:00 guy for the whole run. With 0.25 to go I announced that we needed to close 9 seconds. I did not realize that Clyde was bad at math. All we needed to do was continue at 6:20 pace. Clyde picked it up to 5:20 instead. Then with 100 to go he shifted gears again. We ended up running the last 100 in 18 seconds, which included a 90 degree turn on ice. Our last quarter was 1:18.5, and we beat the 7:00 guy by 17 seconds. Our time for 16 miles was 1:51:43.

P.M. 2 miles with Benjamin in 15:25, 1.5 with Jenny in 13:20, 1 with Julia to her friend's house via a scenic route in 11:01, 0.35 from the friend's house alone, back to the friends house later (0.25) to pick Julia up. 

Night Sleep Time: 6.75Nap Time: 1.00Total Sleep Time: 7.75
From MichelleL on Fri, Feb 15, 2008 at 23:08:05

No need to knock Clyde because he is speedy! I actually get kind of slow in the brain when I am running--math gets harder for me, especially the faster I am going.

From Superfly on Sat, Feb 16, 2008 at 11:08:45

My math skills are basic at best. But when it's just over 10 degrees outside they may even be poor.

Good run Sasha. Thanks for picking me up and driving me around. See ya at Del Sol.

From Dustin on Sat, Feb 16, 2008 at 15:57:09

I think it was just a year or so ago that Clyde even started wearing a watch, before that his concept of time was fast, faster, fastest.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Long run. Cold morning. The temperature was 12F at the start at 6:00 AM. Wore racing flats for a change. My feel felt like they have missed the feel of the ground.

Started with Ted, Jeff, and Tyler. Tyler's ankle started hurting, so he turned around after 0.2 to be safe. Talked about politics the first 6 miles. Averaged barely under 7:30 - 44:38. The road conditions were good - very little ice or snow, mostly dry ground.

Dropped Ted off, continued with Jeff. We gradually progressed from 7:30 pace to sub-6:30. Passed a large group of runners. One of them acted liked he wanted to challenge us. I encouraged him, but he was only kidding. This got my adrenaline flowing a bit, and the pace dipped under 6:20. It felt good. We gradually closed on the 7:00 guy, and passed him about 11.52 into the run. Jeff pressed the pace a bit afterwards. I needed to go to the bathroom bad, but figured the quicker we ran the quicker I'd get there, so I just toughed it out. Our last two quarters were 1:29 and 1:25, the 6 mile stretch in 38:47, and 1:23:25 at 12 miles.

Dropped Jeff off, went to the bathroom, prayed with the family, talked to Logan on the phone, then went for the remaining 8 at a tempo pace. I figured with all the clothes, the cold, the bridges, and being at the end of a 20 mile run, anything under 6:00 would be good. Hard to get going after a stop. First two quarters in 1:33 and I felt like I was pushing it. Then I got into a groove and started hitting 1:27 - 1:28 quarters when the road was good. A few 1:30 - 1:33s with slippage, micro-hills, and sharp turns. A couple of 1:29s when I let my mind drift. Somehow a song from Кавказская Пленница movie came to mind:

Где-то на белом свете,
Там, где всегда мороз,
Трутся спиной медведи
О земную ось.

"Somewhere in the world where it is always freezing the bears are rubbing their backs against the rotational axis of the earth."

I felt I was in that place with the bears, and maybe even helping them rotate the axis with my legs.

Ended up with 47:28 for the last 8 miles, 5:56 average. Total time for 20 miles was 2:10:53, 6:32.65 average. Felt strong but not fast at the end, probably due to the cold and the clothes. Interestingly enough, it took me almost 4 minutes less to run 20 today than it did to run 16.1 on Thursday.

P.M. It was much warmer. I ran in shorts. 2 with Benjamin in 17:02, continued on to finish 5, threw in a couple of tempo pickups to test the nervous system. Ran 0.5 in 2:54 up 1% grade with a bit of a roll, and then 1 mile in 5:35 down 1% grade again with a roll. Total time for 5 was 36:47.

Night Sleep Time: 0.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.00
From Maria on Sat, Feb 16, 2008 at 17:34:32

"Кавказская пленница" is one of the great Soviet comedies. I watched it last time just couple of years ago, and it is still funny, no matter how outdated the setting or camera work. I think I even bought it on DVD last time I was in Moscow. Unfortunately, my daughter doesn't get a lot of it, even if she understands the language... Also, Sasha, speaking of Russian memories, I don't know if you are aware, but there is this relatively new website,, where you are likely to find your school and college classmates. I found most of my high school class, some of my college class, and even some of my track teammates from college! Too bad, I didn't find anyone from Znamenskie group. It is very amusing to see some people 18 years later or find out how their lives have turned out! It was also amusing to me that so many still remember me. I bet no one in your class could predict where you will end up, your story is more unusual than others :).

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Went to church. In spite of a good night sleep, I managed to drift off during Sunday school. Got woken up by everybody laughing. I wondered if they were laughing because somebody asked me a question, but then I realized they were laughing about something else. Took a nice nap afterwards.

Night Sleep Time: 9.00Nap Time: 1.50Total Sleep Time: 10.50
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. First 2 with Daniel, Ted, and Jeff. Daniel turned around. Dropped Ted off at 6. Dropped Jeff off at 10. Was planning on only 15, but ran into John Kotter from BYU, and decided to add a little extra with him. He told me a story about being chased by a pack of seven stray dogs in Moscow while on a run with a bunch of top Utah high school runners. He said it was somewhat similar to that joke about two runners and a bear: "You think you can out run a bear?" "No, but all I need to do is outrun you!" Ended up with 2:17:00 for about 18.4.

P.M. 0.5 with Benjamin in 4:19, then Jenny joined us and we ran another 1.5 in 13:12, total of 17:31 for 2. Then 1 with Julia in 11:07. 

Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.75
From josse on Mon, Feb 18, 2008 at 18:34:12

I was wondering if I could come join you and the boys on one of your easy days for around 10 miles? I need to start at least by 5:30 am.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. 10.1 with Josse and Jeff in 1:16:04. I noticed Josse was conversational at 7:20 pace, and suggested we test her fitness, to which she agreed. We let her set the pace for 0.5, which we did in 3:10. Then I had a VPB, and did a bit of a tempo pick-up to catch up. Afterwards, we paced Josse to a 6:23 mile, which would have been about 6:21 without an ice patch. Dropped Jeff and Josse off, and went for another 5. Did a 300 meter pickup in 59 seconds to probe 15 K race pace.

The original plan was to do a mile time trial indoors. I was curious how fast I could run a mile all out. But after some thought I decided it would be a bad idea. I get injured on the track easily, and the dust, the germs, and the stress of an all-out mile, all being something I have not adapted to, could easily bring on a respiratory infection or some other illness. So I decided I should be satisfied to know that I can run a 5:04 at the end of a flat 10 K and leave it at that.

P.M. 2 with Benjamin in 17:09, Jenny joined for the last 1.5 in 13:05. 1.05 with Julia in 11:42. 3 miles cross-country skiing in the Hobblecreek Canyon.

Night Sleep Time: 7.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.00
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Ran with Ted and Jeff. Dropped Ted off at 6 miles. Total of 10 miles in 1:13:17. 

P.M. It was warm. Around 35-40 F. Ran in shorts. Benjamin announced at the start of his run that it takes  220 muscles to take a step. Then he proceeded to use all of those very well to run 2 miles in 15:20 without too much of an effort. Pushed Jacob and Joseph in the double stroller for this portion. Then ran 3.5 alone in 24:17, 6:56.29 pace. Then 1 mile with Julia in 10:18, and 1.5 with Jenny in 13:02. Met Brad Skidmore on the trail. He is going to run with us tomorrow.

Night Sleep Time: 6.75Nap Time: 1.00Total Sleep Time: 7.75
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. 10.1 with Brad in 1:22:42. The trail was slippery. You would not think it should be with so little snow, but it was. I could barely move. Dropped him off and decided to go the other way. It was a lot better. I decided to run a bit a race pace or close to feel it better, so hit 0.8125 in 4:26, this is 5:27.38 pace. Had a hard time getting going, but eventually eased into 5:20 pace. Total time for 15.1 was 1:57:16.

For those who read my blog, but do not read the discussion board. We need a babysitter for this Saturday. Click here for details.

P.M. 2 with Benjamin in 16:11, then 3 alone in 20:53. Jenny and Julia did their usual runs with Sarah.

Night Sleep Time: 7.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.00
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M 15.2 in 1:56:09. Had Brad and Adam with me in the early miles, and found Matt Anderson at the end.

P.M. 2 with Benjamin in 15:38, 1.5 with Jenny in 13:01, 0.5 alone in 3:31, and 1 with Julia in 10:41. 

Night Sleep Time: 7.50Nap Time: 1.00Total Sleep Time: 8.50
From Jon on Sat, Feb 23, 2008 at 16:42:54

Do you realize you are on pace for 6400+ miles this year!?! Amazing.

Race: SLC Track Club Winter Series 15 K (9.321 Miles) 00:50:43, Place overall: 3
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Raced in the SLC Track Club 15 K. Warmed up a bit over 3 miles at a Kenyan warm-up pace - around 8:30 at the start with the entire FRB team. Then it was time to race. My goal was to run under 50:00, which is slightly sub-5:22 pace. I figured we'd go out at 5:20 and just try to hold it. Maybe slip off in the middle, then gain back on the kick.

BJ Christensen and Aleskander Thomas took off as I expected them to. Steve and I worked together trading leads. There was a slight head wind. Or so I thought. First mile in 5:18. It felt easy, but at the same time I got this feeling - I do not want to race even though the pace is easy, in fact I do not want to race at all. I've had it before. I think I know what it means - nervous system fatigue. That is bad news, I've had nervous system fatigue before. The pace feels aerobically easy, but at the same time with every exertion of effort I cannot break 5:40. I was expecting it today in some degree, though, as I have not been sleeping very well - waking up too early from excitement about life with everything that is going on. I tried to mitigate that as much as possible with naps, but apparently it did not work as much as I hoped. Nevertheless, I decided to cross my fingers and just hope for the best.

6:38 at 2 K, 8:17 at 2.5 K, 10:40 at the mile (5:22). Still alive. 4 K in 13:19, still alive. 3 miles in 16:08 (5:28), no worries, I'll blame it on the wind. 16:43 at the 5 K, 21:34 at 4 miles (5:26), seems like the wind picked up. Steve and I are still trading leads somewhat informally. Whoever is feeling the pace is getting too slow moves up front.

25:08 at the turnaround. 8 seconds off pace, but no worries, we'll get tail wind on the way back, and when we start racing each other hard with a couple of miles to go, we'll catch up. Or so I thought until we had completed the turnaround. What I thought was a headwind on the way out was actually a friendly cross-wind. I guess sometimes we mistake friends for enemies when they ruffle our feathers. So the turnaround made it an unfriendly cross wind.

27:01 at 5 miles (5:27), I move up and press the pace in hopes of getting back up to 5:20 or at least close, but all we could manage was 5:37 on the next mile with 32:38 split at 6. That's bad, the 5:30 guy is starting to close on us. I try to take it in stride.

32:38 at 6 miles (5:32). The good news is that we sped up. The bad news is that the 5:30 guy is closing, and is threatening to come close enough to make me not PR (50:57). And also I am literally falling asleep. Where is the pillow? I'd like to take a nap. The lips feel numb, the quads feel numb as well. Typical night or early morning relay leg feeling. I suppose good practice and confidence builder as well for next week. 33:48 at the 10 K. Last 5 K in 17:05, however, last 2.5 in 8:40, not good at all. If things go like that, the PR might not happen.

38:10 at 7 miles (5:32). We are perpetually stuck at that pace. Trying to pick it up, but not much is happening.

40:41 at 12 K. 10:20 for the last 3 K would not be good enough for a PR. The torch under my fanny is getting lit up. I am feeling good, perhaps even too good, but there seems to be nothing I can do about it. Just cannot get out of the rut. Unfortunately, Steve is the same way. I am starting to wish he would put the hammer down and try to lose me, but he is not feeling up to it either. 12.5 K in 42:24.

43:42 at 8 miles. Another 5:32! Third in a row. We are having a love affair with that pace, and we are in a serious need of repentance, or there might be no PR for me today. 45:27 with a mile to go, a sub-5:30 is good enough for a PR. Fortunately, Steve starts smelling the barn and picking up the pace.

The last mile had quarter marks, thanks to the SLC Track Club. A quarter in 1:21, wow that hurt good enough for 1:19, followed by 1:22. sub-2:47 for the last half gives a PR. Steve picks up the pace even more. I breathe a sign of relief. The PR is happening. We pass mile 9, and now the race is for real. Steve picks it up, I respond, warm into the pace, then try to pass him, he speeds up, I tuck behind him. 49:42 with 0.214 to go. With about 0.1 to go I move out again and start gradually opening the throttle with the intent to reach the max RPMs and hold it to the finish. It is scary, but I know that the momentum will carry me through even if the anaerobic bear attacks me. Steve responds, I keep revving it up and manage to pull away. 50:43.0 for me, 50:43.9 for Steve. Last mile in 5:16, and a 14 second PR for a non-aided 15 K.

Aleksander Thomas won with 48:37 and BJ was second with 48:49. Amazing times for them with the conditions, I was expecting to see them somewhere in the 49:30 - 49:50 range with the wind. But they must have gotten in better shape.

Ran a long cool down to make to the 20 miles for total. Paced Brent in the middle. He had a good kick - 1:36 on the last quarter. Towards the end, Steve started to push the pace, and we ran the last quarter in 1:29. With about 3 miles to go I felt hungry as a lion, and ate accordingly when we got back to Saltair.

P.M. 2 with Benjamin in 16:34.

Night Sleep Time: 7.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.00
From James on Sat, Feb 23, 2008 at 19:57:57

Way to kick it again. You are running well, it showed with your PR today.

From James W on Sat, Feb 23, 2008 at 20:15:04

Congrats on the PR, Sasha. I always love to read your race reports - they are so detailed and full of information. Looking forward to seeing your family this next Thursday.

From Jody on Sat, Feb 23, 2008 at 20:22:48

Great job today!! Great description of the race. I had the exact same thought about the wind. Good Luck at Del Sol.

From Brent on Sun, Feb 24, 2008 at 00:10:51

Sasha, tough race, 100 commando points for the PR and 100 for 3rd place, 100 for pacing me in, thanks. Good luck next weekend, kick some FRB butt.

Stay Kool, b of bs rools out

From Lybi on Sun, Feb 24, 2008 at 00:42:22

I think this is my favorite Sasha race report ever. Very colorful & great metaphors/similies. Lots of people who grew up speaking English have not mastered the language like this. Fun stuff.

And in terms of the running--all I have to say is that when you can drag a PR out of sleep deprived legs like this, something good is definitely coming your way. Congrats on the PR! That wall is coming down!

From Mike B on Sun, Feb 24, 2008 at 07:29:51

As always, a nice read! So much detail...

"Kenyan warmup pace"???

From josse on Sun, Feb 24, 2008 at 11:13:14

That about sums up how I felt when I started racing, but you got closer to your goal time than I did. Thanks for the great "Kenyan warmup" it was great for me. I thought you guys would wrm up alot faster.

From Cal on Mon, Feb 25, 2008 at 10:47:16

Sasha, contratulations on a great race and a PR. I enjoyed your write-up immensely.

From Tom on Mon, Feb 25, 2008 at 11:04:06

Nice job Sasha getting the PR despite not feeling the greatest. Great race report as usual, lots to be learned by reading all the FRB folks race reports.

From JeffC on Mon, Feb 25, 2008 at 11:39:19

I wish I could run and sleep at the same time. Maybe that's what I should do to finally reach my sub 20 5K. Nice race Sasha, you are really on a roll.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Got good sleep. Went to church. Visited a family I home teach. Took a nap.

Night Sleep Time: 9.00Nap Time: 1.00Total Sleep Time: 10.00
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. 4 with Ted and Hyrum in 34:39, another 2 with Ted in 16:02, then 10.1 by myself in 1:06:09. It was raining, and the rain was cold, and I was alone, so I picked up the pace to get warm, and then just could not slow down. Ran into Matt with 1.5 to go, and ran with him for a mile as well. Total time for 16.1 was 1:56:50. Hyrum did better than I thought he would after a break of over a year. Ted was alive as well, that is a good sign.

P.M 2 with Benjamin in 15:55, 1.5 with Jenny in 12:53, 1 with Julia in 11:13.

Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.75
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Started the run with Ted and Josse. Had 2 VPB stops, that gave me some pace at threshold catching up. Timed 700 meters of it - 2:23, almost 5:20 pace. Started out with a 1:03 300, and then eased into 5:20 pace for the remainder. Was happy to see that 5:20 pace came to the surface fairly quickly and painlessly at 6:00 AM in the dark on a somewhat slippery surface. Was originally planning on doing strides, but figured this was good enough - all strides combined into one segment. The pace eventually progressed to a bit faster than 8:00. Dropped Ted off at 6, Josse at 10. Eventually eased into sub-7:00 pace, which soon became 6:40. Then after another VPB the rhythm was broken and 6:50 was what felt natural. Ended up with 1:51:46 for 15 miles. Looking forward to Del Sol. No wrong turns this time, no more people getting sick or injured. Everybody wash your hands, stay away from sick people as much as you can, sleep well, and do not do anything stupid. I hope I can follow my own advice.

P.M. 2 with Benjamin in 16:45, 1.5 with Jenny in 12:46, 1 with Julia in 10:38.

Night Sleep Time: 0.12Nap Time: 0.02Total Sleep Time: 0.15
From Clay on Tue, Feb 26, 2008 at 20:34:29

Good luck Sasha I hope you guys do well. Enjoy the warm weather down there too, its suppose to be in the 80's!

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. 10.1 with newly married Jeff. Started out slow, took 3.5 miles to catch the 8:00 guy. Then woke up and went slightly sub-6:40 pace in the last 4 miles, last 0.5 in 3:02. Total time was 1:12:38. Jeff's car decided to give him a wedding present. Refused to go even after a jump start, so it is sitting in front of our house right now waiting to be taken to Computune.

P.M. Took Zhu to Jeff's house so he and his wife would have a car at least while we are gone. Brought Benjamin, Jacob, and the stroller with me. Ran 2.03 with Benjamin running, and Jacob in the stroller in 15:47. Then put Benjamin on a bike, and ran 5 miles in 37:10 pushing Jacob in the stroller with Benjamin on a bike. Then 1.5 with Jenny, no stroller, in 12:53, 0.5 alone in 3:29, and 1 with Julia in 10:29.

Night Sleep Time: 0.11Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.11
From James W on Wed, Feb 27, 2008 at 22:54:25


What time are you guys planning on arriving at our house tomorrow? I have Webelos scouts from 6-7, and Lybi has missionary correlation from 6:30-7, so we want to make sure that we are home when you get here. Send me an email or give me a call on my cell phone.

From Sasha Pachev on Wed, Feb 27, 2008 at 23:30:14

We are planning on leaving at 5:30 AM, which means we will leave around 6. If everything goes well, we should get to your house a little bit before 6. We will give you updates on our ETA as we go.

From josse on Mon, Mar 03, 2008 at 11:16:49

Are you going to be home for tues. run?

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Traveling to Mesa for the Del Sol relay. 1 mile with Benjamin and Jenny in  Kingman, AZ. Then 0.5 with Jenny in 4:21, followed by 1 mile with James W and Benjamin in 7:55. Then 7.03 with James with two 0.25 pickups at 5:10 pace. Felt good and ready to go.

Night Sleep Time: 0.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.00
Race: Del Sol Relay (181.7 Miles) 17:04:37, Place overall: 1
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Easy 6 with James W, 1.5 with Benjamin and Jenny, additional 0.5 with Benjamin, and 1 mile with Julia.

P.M. Brief report, more details when I have time. Ran Leg 10 of Del Sol (7.4) in 42:20, average pace technically 5:43, but with adventures.

Now details. Our team was as follows in leg order: Van 1 - Dave Holt, Logan Fielding, Nick McCombs, Clyde Behunin, and James Barnes with Steve Hooper driving. Van 2 - Adam Wende, Ted Leblow, Kory Wheatley, myself, Jeff Shadley, and Steve Ashbaker (the Air Darkhorse).

Google was supposedly the team to beat, but after checking their performance history in other relays, I knew that they would not be breaking 6:00 average by much if at all. Barring an exceptionally catastrophic event, our team should not have had a problem outperforming this. I was more concerned about some Arizona running store bringing current and post-collegiate runners together. We did, however, consider putting on our van to taunt our competition, but it was a last minute thought and we lacked the materials. Apparently, according to one of our team members who talked with Google, they indeed had done the above search and knew they were in trouble.

I considered beating Google by a lot one of the main reasons for coming to the race. Why? There was a mission to accomplish. I want to see the US companies to start following the pattern of the Japanese corporations. I want to see strong corporate teams where winning a race is a matter of importance to a corporation enough to actually do something about nurturing the runners. From what I've observed about Google, of all the US companies they appear to be one of the most open to the idea of promoting the company by winning a race. Most corporations spend millions on maintaining their public image but are perfectly content to send a team that will not break 8:00 average pace. Google is different. They care. At least some people inside the company do. I wanted them to seriously ask this question - How in the world are these guys from Utah and Idaho manage to beat us so bad? What do we need to do to beat them next time?

However, beating Google would not have quite done the job had we not won the race outright. After the first leg, we saw that this would not be easy. Although we had no problem separating ourselves from Google as I expected, The Running Shop team from Tuscan was strong. Their runner finished together with Dave. Logan opened a 1:30 gap on his leg, then Nick increased it to 3:42, and Clyde to 4:19. Walter increased it further to 4:27, and then James to over 5 minutes in spite of being sick.

Van 2 took over. Adam ran strong ahead of his projection, Ted and Kory ran strong as well. We were not timing the gap any more as we could not afford to wait. My leg was interesting. I was projected to run 5:28 pace for 7.4 miles on rollers with a net elevation gain which I felt was a bit overoptimistic for a number of reasons. Nevertheless I should have been close. The leg started with 1.5 miles of 2% grade uphill and a steady headwind. I had forgotten by GPS at James and Lybi's house and borrowed one from Adam. Unfortunately, it did not start right away when I pressed the button. However, about a quarter into my leg I got it started for real. I was running a steady 5:50 pace in the initial section. Then I hit a 1:18 quarter on a short downhill, and settled into 1:22 - 1:24 quarters once there was no headwind. Had a hard time hitting my true threshold in the dark and at this late hour (11 pm). Had an adventure with about a mile to go. My flashlight fell off. It took me a few seconds to realize it was gone. I figured losing a few seconds by going back to get the light would be better than losing the light and possibly getting our team DQ'ed on top of it for running without the light. So I went back and got it. I do not know exactly how much I've lost on it, Adam probably could figure it out since it is on his GPS. My overall time was 42:20, 5:43 average assuming the leg was indeed 7.4. I do remember that the GPS had an auto-pause, and afterwards was showing 5:36 pace average for the timed portion of my run (7.15). So the leg could have been a bit longer than 7.4 as well. I ended up being 1:42 slower than the projection, and Jason from the Running Shop gained 2:35 on me.

To add injury to insult, once I got in the van I realized that my cell phone was gone, and we could not possibly go back to get it. Fortunately, I knew that most likely it went down at the same place as the flash light, and we could figure out exactly where later from the GPS.

Jeff and Steve ran very strong on their legs and more than made up for my adventures. We handed off to Van 1 with 7:48 gap on the Running Shop.


Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
From Jason on Mon, Mar 03, 2008 at 23:47:07

Hi Sasha,

I was a member of the Running Shop Team at Ragnar and happened to run the same legs as you. I just wanted to say congratulations on the win and good work!!

For my leg 10, I ran 39:45 which was, by far, my hardest effort of the day. Then, I ran 17:40 for leg 22 and 33:15ish (approx..had to stop at a traffic light) for leg 34.

I'm definitely glad there was at least some sense of competition and I hope we see you guys out in AZ next year.


From jtshad on Tue, Mar 04, 2008 at 10:59:11

Great running with you Sasha and thanks for all you have done getting the Racing Team together!

From wheakory on Tue, Mar 04, 2008 at 14:45:37

Sasha you are a true competitor and it was great running with you. Will have to work on are leg exchanges again if it happens for me and you to follow in order in the future.

Thanks for allowing me to run on your team.

From Superfly on Tue, Mar 04, 2008 at 15:38:01

Good job this weekend Sasha. Hopefully your family had a safe trip back home. Did you ever find your phone?

From Jon on Tue, Mar 04, 2008 at 16:00:36

I find it interesting that you use the relay to beat other teams in hopes of motivating companies to sponsor runners...

From Maria on Fri, Mar 07, 2008 at 07:58:50

Another great victory by FRB! You really had an amazing team this year. Did you see this:

Not sure where "revenge" comes from. Did they beat you in last year's relay?

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Brief report, details when I have time. Leg 22 of Del Sol in 17:30, GPS measured at 3.37, 5:11.57 avg. pace. Then later leg 34 (GPS measured 6.17) in 33:58, 5:30.31 avg, severe nervous system fatigue in the last 3 miles - no surprise, though, since I got zero sleep and the leg was at 9:45 AM. Our team won by almost 42 minutes though, with the average pace of 5:38.34, which would have been good enough to make top 5 in Hood to Coast.

Now more details. Van 1 ran very well, featuring Logan's 4:55 average over 7 downhill miles which alone increased the gap by 4 minutes. Adam received the baton about 17:30 ahead of the Running Shop and attacked his leg with the typical Adam fury. Ted did very well on his leg, and handed to Kory, who ran ahead of schedule as well. Then it was my turn.

I was angry for two reasons. I was upset about the mishaps on my first leg and wanted to redeem myself. And I knew that the only way I could run half way decent at 4:45 AM after not sleeping all night would be by getting productively angry. I have a hard time with that. I have no problem getting emotionally upset, but I do have a difficulty becoming upset in a way that gives me a sustained increase in muscular power output. So I tried to get as mad I as I could about what happened earlier in hopes of channeling the energy into running performance, and it did work to an extent. I ran 4:50 pace on the downhill portion (about 3%), and then once it flattened out I slowed down to around 5:20. 17:30 for the leg, gapped Jason by 10 seconds, was happy with the effort.

Jeff ran strong on his leg, then handed off to Steve. Steve was running angry as well, and beat his predicted pace. We increased the gap to 21:56 before handing off to Van 2.

By that time we had passed most of the teams that started earlier which I was happy about for two reasons. No traffic jam to worry about near Saguaro Lake, and the pristinely clean port-a-potties up ahead.

Van 2 was mostly on schedule, although the fatigue began to take its toll on some runners, and they were a minute or two off on their legs, but I was expecting that. Paul's spreadsheet does not account for the sleep deprivation fatigue, so you should always add 10-20 seconds a mile on the third set of legs. Nick and Logan did not skip a beat though, and were right on schedule. I suppose some runners handle the relay sleep situation better than others, we need to make a note of that and give them longer legs at the end in the future.

Adam was wound up for his third leg. He ran great up the hill and was still ahead of schedule on the Ragnar of Del Sol in spite of being on the third leg. We asked Van 2 to stay around to time the gap, and I became very concerned when I saw them drive by 24 minutes into Adam's leg. Then I realized that due to the dynamics of the race, it was more likely that they just got tired of waiting and took off.

Ted got a decent time on his leg, then Kory survived his. He was struggling with neural fatigue, but still ran decent, and handed off to me. My leg was a steady 1% grade downhill, 6.1 miles of it. The temperatures got up to over 70 F, but that was not a big problem. The heat did not bother me very much. I ran the first mile in 5:13, followed by 5:18. A bit slower than the projected 5:11 pace, but still acceptable. My teammates sang me BINGO, controlled the lights at the intersections, and handed me water. Sarah and Lybi came to cheer as well with all of the kids.

The real trouble started on the third mile. The neural fatigue was reaching the levels above my ability to fight it. I ran a 5:32, followed by 5:38, and a 5:44. What a joke! This is on a downhill at near sea-level altitude. This reminded me of the important role that the nervous system plays at speeds 5:20 or faster. If it gives out, it does not matter how fit you are, you are going to be stuck around 5:40 pace. I mustered all of my strength and managed a 5:34 mile, plus a semblance of a kick for the remaining 0.17 to finish in 33:58, 46 seconds slower than Jason even though he had lost some time at a light. I am sure glad my teammates brought the baton far ahead enough to where this did not really matter.

Jeff ran very well, and even had a little experience with a couple of dogs, then handed off to Steve. We did our best to control the lights and direct Steve to make sure he did not get lost, as his leg had a lot of turns, and was not properly marked in some places. At the end we all jumped out of the van and finished with Steve. In spite of our big lead he pressed hard to the very end and made all of us work to keep up. 17:04:37 at the finish, a win by 41:58 over the Running Shop, and 1:45:24 over Google.

Immediately afterwards we all went to James and Lybi's house for lunch. We downloaded my route of leg 10 from Adam's GPS, researched it, identified the location where my cell phone was dropped, entered the coordinates into my GPS, got directions to it from Google maps (it was a 61 mile drive one way), and I went geo-caching. I had never geo-cached before like this - a night with no sleep, three legs of a relay in the meantime, no nap, and straight down to business to find something I actually needed very much as opposed to something useless in regular geo-caching. The treasure hunt was successful. My Garmin led me right to my cell phone. Wonders of technology!

P.M. 1.5 with Benjamin and Jenny, and 0.5 more with Jeff Shadley and Benjamin. Went to the awards ceremony. It was a bit of a bummer. The results got messed up, and we got nothing more than a set batons, while Google got a treadmill for winning the corporate division. Our 5:38 per mile average and an outright win by quite a margin unfortunately did not get a fair amount of attention in the announcements. At least we got some publicity from passing a multitude of teams and actively recruiting people for the blog at every opportunity. Google got to see the power of the Fast Running Blog in action. And I wonder what we would do with the treadmill if there was one for us anyway.

Night Sleep Time: 0.00Nap Time: 1.50Total Sleep Time: 1.50
From Paul Petersen on Wed, Mar 05, 2008 at 18:36:23

Traditionally relays all have terrible prizes. They certainly are not "money" races, but are designed more for recreational runners and "just having fun." I don't expect that to change anytime soon.

If you had won a treadmill? Easy - sell it and put it in the "future relay expense fund". That would be one way to get a "free" trip out to Hood to Coast.

From JeffC on Thu, Mar 06, 2008 at 11:41:18

Thanks for the great report Sasha. I enjoyed all the details and hunt for the cell phone. The details gave me some insight on what to exptect in an upcoming relay (Wasatch Back) for myself and a group of guys in my Stake from Vegas. Great job by the whole group and again, great report!

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Sarah and I and the kids stayed overnight with James and Lybi. Went to church with them. Their ward has been promoting fitness goals, one of them being family weight loss. I suggested it would not be a good idea for us.

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

Travel home from Mesa. Left early and got in at 5pm, so I had time for a run. Decided to keep it short since I really did not have that much time to start with, and was still fatigued from the race and the travel. 2 with Benjamin in 16:49, 1.5 with Jenny in 12:59, 1 with Julia in 9:41, and then 6 more. Kept running into couples. First it was Jeff (different new Jeff) and Ann. They denied that they were on a date, although it did look like it. Turned out Jeff had served a mission in the Ukraine, so we chatted in Russian some. Then it was time for them to turn around, but shortly thereafter I ran into Jeff McClellan and his wife Kimia. She was following him on a bike. So we all went together from there.

Night Sleep Time: 7.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.00
From Mike on Tue, Mar 04, 2008 at 16:20:07

Sasha, great meeting you and the rest of your team at Ragnar. You all did great. Thanks for the advice and the free blog! We will be using it!

By the way... Team DM ended up First in Public Service, there was some errors in the timing set up!!

From James on Wed, Mar 05, 2008 at 00:21:10

Well, four relays together and we finally got a win under our belts, and what a great win it was!

Did you ever find that phone?

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. 10.1 with Jeff and Josse in 1:16:30. Did 0.5 of tempo pickups after a VPB at 5:20 pace.

P.M. 5.75 with Julia running one mile in 10:05, then riding in the stroller the rest of the way. We went to Reams Family Foods to get her a present for running under 10:00 in a training run on her own initiative. Then 1.5 with Jenny in 12:59, 1.05 by myself in 7:21, and 2 with Benjamin in 15:47.

Night Sleep Time: 7.25Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.25
From MichelleL on Wed, Mar 05, 2008 at 18:35:10

Hey Sasha,

I am going to be running in Provo/Orem tomorrow at about 10am. I have a notion that your job is flexible and you might be able to do a second run in the late morning or sleep in and run later. Could you scare up another flexible runner? Just a thought.

From Sasha Pachev on Thu, Mar 06, 2008 at 18:52:56

Michelle - sorry this did not work out. We are running tomorrow at 6:30 AM, and at some undefined time Saturday morning as well. Let me know when you are going to be in Provo next time. Also, our Benjamin has been wondering when he could play with yours.

From MichelleL on Thu, Mar 06, 2008 at 19:19:03

can you let me know as soon as you know about Saturday? I think I may come up. 6am or 6:30 meet time would work best for me. Hopefully my lungs will cooperate. They will need to so I can keep up.

From Sasha Pachev on Fri, Mar 07, 2008 at 15:22:10

It is going to be 6:30.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. 10.1 with Jeff in 1:09:09 at 5:10 AM. Started slow as usual, but quickly warmed into a good pace. Did a tempo pickup on the last quarter - 1:22.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 10:39, 1.5 with Jenny in 12:28, she closed with a 7:55 mile, 2 with Benjamin in 15:51, and then another 5.55 in 42:14 with 0.5 worth of tempo pickups.

I have finally finished my Del Sol report.

Night Sleep Time: 6.75Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 6.75
From Walter on Wed, Mar 05, 2008 at 22:17:19

When we gonna hear about the phone story!? I still cant believe you went back and found that! You seaze to amaze me my friend! I hope you cleaned it off! Jk have a good night see ya

From James on Thu, Mar 06, 2008 at 15:12:22

That is amazing that you found your phone! I enjoyed the rest of your race report. I think I will write a book about how to run and not run a relay someday when all is said and done. I have plenty of stories to include.

From Jon on Thu, Mar 06, 2008 at 16:21:44

Sasha- I'm going to be in Provo Fri/Sat. I am planning on a long run (~18-19 miles at ~7:00-7:15 pace) Saturday morning. Are you are anyone else running at that time that would allow me to tag along? I would need to know when/where to meet.

From Jon on Thu, Mar 06, 2008 at 16:23:17

typo- should be "you OR anyone else..."

From Sasha Pachev on Thu, Mar 06, 2008 at 19:03:42

Jon - that would be great. The plan is to go at 6:30 AM from my house at 339 N 1120 W in Provo. Call 801-788-4608 if you get lost, etc. Starting time can be adjusted since at this point you are the only person coming.

From MichelleL on Fri, Mar 07, 2008 at 18:51:13

I am coming, though it depends on the day whether I can keep that pace (and for how long - kind of in sketchy shape right now), so I may end up solo, but if I can do that pace it would make for a great run.

From adam on Fri, Mar 07, 2008 at 19:33:35

sasha, I'll be there tomorrow as well.

From Jon on Fri, Mar 07, 2008 at 20:12:02

I'll be there at 6:30.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Really did not want to get out of bed this morning. It was so comfortable. Ran 15.1 in 1:43:31. First 10.1 with Jeff. Adam joined us for the first 3.5. Jeff and I had a need for VPB, and picked up the pace to get to a good spot before the need would strike in a crippling manner. We ran 600 in 2:01 (5:23 pace). Then another 700 in 2:16 (5:10 pace) to catch up. We got a bit carried away on this one. Adam told us we sounded like a herd of buffalo when we came up from behind. Ran into Matt again with about 1.5 to go.

P.M. Took a nap. Had a dream about all of the girls on the blog running a relay race along the Black Sea.  Jenny was running carrying Jacob instead of the baton for some reason. Our team van was actually a bus that looked like this:

bonus challenge - identify the model. The bus was old and had a hard time going uphill. A leg was coming up that climbed 9%. I was getting concerned that the bus would not make it. Then I woke up. It took me a while to realize I did not need to worry about the bus making up the hill.

Ran 2 miles with Benjamin in 16:32. He started out slow, and gradually increased the pace. At 1.5 mark after hearing his split he correctly stated that he was 2 seconds behind the 8:30 guy and, then said, direct quote: "At this rate of aggression I will have him completely destroyed by the finish!", which he proceeded to do.

Jenny and Julia ran their usual distances with Sarah. I ran another 3.05 in 22:22, found Provo High team on the trail, ran with them a bit, did a couple of pickups.

Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 1.50Total Sleep Time: 9.25
From Cal on Fri, Mar 07, 2008 at 13:16:31

If I had to guess, I would say it's a LAZ-697M.

From steve ashbaker on Fri, Mar 07, 2008 at 19:58:12

Have you been taking melatonin too?

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. 15.03 in 1:48:59. Jeff slept in, so I ran to his house (1.35), then 9 more with him. Counted the stride rate at 6:50 pace. It was 172-174. Decided to test it at a faster pace. Ran a quarter in 1:26, stride rate was 184. Ran into Tyler. he was doing a short tempo. Ran the last 0.4 with him, timed 600 of it, it was 1:59. Tried to count the stride rate, but at 5:20 pace it was too tedious. Then ran into Matt. He joined us. We dropped off Jeff, then dropped off Tyler, and then Matt and I went separate ways with 0.46 to go (for me).

P.M. Did a kids relay of sorts from Canyon Glen Park to a little bit past Will's on 800 S in Orem. First, 1.42 with Julia in 14:12, then 1.74 with Jenny in 15:01, and 2.02 with Benjamin in 15:49. We did not make the kids stay up all night and then do it again two more times, though.

Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 1.50Total Sleep Time: 9.25
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. 20.1 in 2:30:49. The run started with Adam, Michelle, Jon Allen, Hyrum, and Tyler. Dropped Hyrum off after 2 miles. Dropped Tyler and Adam after 12. Michelle and Jon ran the entire way. Did 2 post-VPB tempo pickups, first was 0.5 in 2:37 (1:21 - 1:16) about 8 miles into the run, and the second was about 17 miles into the run, also 0.5 in 2:37 (1:19 - 1:18). Turnover was 178 at 8:15 pace, 172 at 7:30 pace, and 194 at 5:20 pace. The tempo pickups felt good, very sustainable, although I was breathing hard. It has been probably at least 6 years since I felt I could not go any faster because I was breathing too hard. It is usually something subtle, no major pain, muscles feel fine, breathing feels fine some kind of invisible wall stops me. Some days it is further out than others. I actually like it when I am able to breathe hard and still feel the pace is sustainable.

P.M. 2 with Benjamin in 17:32, then 3 alone in 22:25. 

Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.75
From Jon on Sat, Mar 08, 2008 at 15:42:47

Thanks for letting me tag along with you guys today. It's a nice trail you have to run on there.

From wheakory on Sat, Mar 08, 2008 at 17:17:33

Maybe the breathing hard could be a fatigue

factor. Great pick-ups... that's what I need to starting doing more.

From Sasha Pachev on Sat, Mar 08, 2008 at 17:46:03

Kory - for me breathing hard is a sign of running well. Whenever I am forced to slow down by fatigue, I actually stop breathing hard.

From Bryce on Sun, Mar 09, 2008 at 18:46:50

Hey! I'm new here on your blog site and my sister (Christi AKA Shuffling Sista) told me you know a great website to get raw nuts, but she couldn't remember it. Could you post it for me please?

From Sasha Pachev on Tue, Mar 11, 2008 at 11:26:54

Bryce - the net site is

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Typical Sunday. Got good sleep at night, went to church, took a nap later in the afternoon.

Night Sleep Time: 8.50Nap Time: 1.00Total Sleep Time: 9.50
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. 15 miles in 1:47:50. First 2 with Ted and Hyrum, then 5 more with Ted, and the remaining 8 by myself. Had a fluke happen after dropping off Ted. The nervous system did something weird and I ended up with a 5:59 mile without actually trying to run in that range. The breathing and the muscle strain were within the easy pace range, so I did not feel anything. I figured I could not have become a 2:05 marathoner overnight, so there was no way that 6:00 pace would be a true easy especially at altitude. And as I paid closer attention to the body signals I could feel that the nervous system was working in the non-easy range. So I eased off consciously although without hitting the breaks and dragging on purpose, but was still in the wrong range - next two miles were 6:14 and 6:11. So I decided to reboot myself by doing strides. Did 8x100 in 17-18 seconds. That calmed me down and I was able to get back into the true easy pace for the rest of the run.

However, this experience in combination with the pace fluctuations in Del Sol made me wonder if my muscles, and heart are already fit to run much faster, but the brain/nerves are lagging behind.

P.M. 1.5 with Jenny in 13:20, 2 with Benjamin in 16:45, 0.7 alone in 4:33, 1 with Julia in 10:20.

Night Sleep Time: 0.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.00
From Lybi on Mon, Mar 10, 2008 at 15:25:48

Every time you mention your neural capacity, I look at your sleep. Good sleep last night? 9.5 is not too shabby.

From Jon on Mon, Mar 10, 2008 at 15:41:18

Or, somedays, you just feel better and can run faster than others...

It's a good workout, either way, and can be a confidence booster.

From wheakory on Mon, Mar 10, 2008 at 16:14:27

Sasha, I've experienced days like that also, and I always assumed it was the sleep the night before and my nutrition from the previous that accounted for the odd behavior.

I like Jon's answer (somedays you fell invincible and others like a slug).

From wheakory on Mon, Mar 10, 2008 at 16:15:53

Sasha so your aware it only shows you ran 5 miles today, and I know for you that will never be true. Nice Job again.

From James W on Tue, Mar 11, 2008 at 09:03:51

Interesting observation. If your idea holds true, then it would be worth further investigating how to improve neural drive and, to the same extent, lessen neural fatigue during a race, when you know that your heart and muscles can handle the pace.

From JeffC on Tue, Mar 11, 2008 at 10:20:43

Sasha, could you teach me how to reboot my legs sometime? :)

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. 15 miles in 1:48:39. Started with Ted, Jeff, Josse, and Adam. Adam turned around after a mile, dropped Ted off at 6, dropped Jeff and Josse at 10. Picked up the pace a bit on the last 5, ran it in 32:52. Also, did 1.25 worth of catching up after bathroom stops at around 5:40 - 5:50 pace.

P.M. 2 with Benjamin in 16:52, then 3 more in 21:35. Pushed Jacob in the single stroller for the entire run. 

Night Sleep Time: 0.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.00
From Lybi on Thu, Mar 13, 2008 at 00:37:09

How am I ever going to learn Russian if you keep slacking on your blogging, buddy? One whole day missed? Intolerable. JK Hope all is well in Pachevland.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Ted was not feeling good, did not make it. Jeff slept in. So I ran alone at 5:15 AM. Started out a bit quicker than normal - 7:21 in the first mile, after that a slight sub-6:40. Ran into Jeff at around 5.5 mark, and we ran together from there. 1:06:59 for 10.1.

P.M. Sarah went to Wal-Mart and got me a pair of crocs for $5. I wanted to try them as a proof-of-concept for near barefoot running. At the very worst, I figured, they would make nice slippers for the summer. Did my entire evening run in crocs. First a mile with Julia in 10:47. Then 1.5 with Jenny in 13:45. Her ankle was hurting, so she did not have to catch the 9:00 girl today. Then 2 with Benjamin in 15:26. Then 5.5 more by myself. I was pressed for time, and needed to keep around 7:00 average to avoid being late. Started with a first quarter in 1:45, followed by 1:41. Then hit the mile in 6:38. Figured I'd just stay ahead of the 6:40 guy. Then I noticed that my split for the next 0.5 was 3:07. I recalculated it to be sure, it was right. The next one was 3:02. I figured, forget it, this is my second run, and I have only 3.5 left, and then a night of sleep, I am not going to hold back. If I feel like running 6:00 pace, I'll just go for it. After that it was unreal. I started running 5:40 pace without actually trying to run a tempo. The rhythm and the harmony of movement were so appealing that I did not notice the effort. The form felt great. I went by a couple of guys in their 40s going around 8:00 - 8:30 that looked like they were experienced runners. This must have been quite a sight for them - a runner in crocs passing them at 5:40 pace, I must have looked like a beach bum running away from a tidal wave. I slowed down to 5:50 under the bridges, and then was back up to 5:40 pace. Ended up catching the 6:00 guy for the whole run with 32:52 for 5.5. Last 3 miles in 17:07, 5:42.3 average.

Checked for side efforts from crocs afterwards, there were none so far. Noticed that the shin muscles were working a lot better, and I felt like was getting more out of them than in regular shoes. It was also easier to take my foot off the ground, there did not seem to be as much of my usual lingering.

Night Sleep Time: 6.75Nap Time: 1.00Total Sleep Time: 7.75
From cgbooth23 on Thu, Mar 13, 2008 at 12:05:04


What made you think of running in Crocs? I did a 5 mile run a couple weeks ago in a similar sandle called Waldies, I too felt great in them! just wonderig what motivated you to try them out! good pace by the way!

From Sasha Pachev on Thu, Mar 13, 2008 at 12:26:54

I noticed that my kids run very well in Crocs. I also have known for a while that I do have a problem with an excessive ground contact time, but do not have a problem wearing shoes with no cushioning.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Finally I got around to doing a scheduled speed workout. It did help that Jeff wanted to do a tempo. I decided I was going to become a boltun, which is the masculine form of boltushka. Both words mean a talkative person in Russian. For me, being a boltun means I am not going to schedule any speed work unless somebody is doing it with me, and even then, go his pace even if he is slower. The rationale behind it is that even though my muscles and cardio can handle pushing the pace every other day fine, my nervous system subtly becomes worn out. The lack of muscular fatigue does not help, either, because it tricks me into thinking I am good to go for another workout too soon. With a partner, the nervous system will get taxed less. If he is slower, I can move up front and pull him and still be OK. If he is faster, I can draft - the muscles will work harder, but the brain will not. If he is an equal match, then we'll trade quarters, and the brain will be working half the time.

After yesterday's experience I was confident the crocs were good enough for a 15 mile run. Jeff's first question when he saw them was if they stay on your feet. They actually do quite well. We warmed up a few miles, then started the Provo River 5 Mile Tempo. The plan was to run side by side for about 0.5, then I would move up front and pull Jeff at whatever pace he thought was right the rest of the way. Jeff is still not quite in his top shape after his injury, normally we just trade quarters. So we did the first two quarters in 1:24. After that I accelerated to move up, but forgot to ease off once I was there. So the next quarter was 1:20. Then I eased off to 1:24, 5:32 for the mile. Jeff seemed to be doing OK, so I ran the next mile in 5:30 at a steady pace hoping that maybe we could beat the 5:30 guy. But then Jeff started struggling and we backed off some. 13:51 at the turnaround, we lost quite a bit hitting both quarters before and after in 1:26. Doing a 180 in the dark over by that gate is a bit tricky.

16:40 at 3 miles. 22:17 at 4. Then Jeff struggled on the micro-hill - quarters of 1:27 and 1:26, then I told him we needed to run sub-5:40 to break 28:00, so he sped up a bit, and we closed with 1:24 and 1:23 to finish the 5 miles in 27:57.

Ran back with Jeff to his house, then the additional distance to make the total of 15.

More notes on the crocks - the pluses are that the form feels great, the foot comes off the ground quickly, the fatigue is less noticeable, the foot lands on the toe, and the shin muscles are working very well, better than in any other shoe I have ever worn. The minuses are that my big toes do not like the feeling of rubber pressing against them, The side of my foot hits the side attachment clip of the back strap on the sharp turns at fast speeds, and the extra rotation of my right foot causes it to rub against the top edge of the shoe which resulted in a minor blister. Plus their durability is not that great. After only 25 miles I am already seeing wear marks in the toe area. No wear marks on the heel, a very good sign. So far, I am encouraged to try Vibram Five Fingers, which should have all of the advantages of crocs but would hopefully address the disadvantages. Plus, being able to use the toes more freely should help.

P.M. Crocs again. 1 with Julia in 10:27, 1.5 with Jenny in 13:10. She said: "There is no way I can catch the 9:00 girl" as she closed 10 seconds on her in a quarter. She repeated that half-way through the next quarter in which she closed the remaining 10, and added another 3 seconds on top of it. Afterwards, she was finally convinced that the 9:00 girl was not that hard to beat, and put another 17 seconds on her in the next quarter closing in 1:58. Sometimes our perception of reality is not correct.

Another 2 with Benjamin in 17:39. He is racing on Saturday, and he said before the run that he did not want to run faster than 8:50 pace. He ended up being right on, which took a lot of self-restraint. Added another 0.5 by myself.

Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.75
From wheakory on Thu, Mar 13, 2008 at 13:15:04

Sasha, wearing the crocs is this an experiment your trying. It would seem like almost wearing race flats without too much heal support.

From Chad on Thu, Mar 13, 2008 at 17:42:41

I am amazed that you can run in crocs. The Vibram Five Fingers (Sprint model) look interesting. I would like to try them on grass, maybe on the track.

From Steve Hooper on Thu, Mar 13, 2008 at 18:22:04

Sasha- way to go with the 15 in your Crocs! I'm very impressed. I think your ligaments and tendons are already fairly strong due to the unusual amount of miles you tend to put your shoes through.

I would bet your Crocs are actually "softer" than you normal trainers? Am I right?

The five fingers don't have the cushion that the Crocs have - However, the Vibram sole will do a better job at protecting your foot against glass.

From thisgirlcanrun on Fri, Mar 14, 2008 at 13:05:25

Crocs? I have 3 pairs cause they are so comfy. I think I will try this :)

From Maria on Mon, Mar 17, 2008 at 11:55:06

I agree with Steve - crocs are very spongy, I think they have good amount of cushioning. But Vibram shoes look like they don't have any cushion at all, or very minimal. It would be interesting to see your results with them!

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. 15.1 in 1:46:50 in Crocs. 11.1 of it with Jeff. Ran 0.9 via a short cut to his house, then with him, then dropped him off and ran 3 more. I think I have the blistering issue resolved, possibly the Crocs stretched out. My lower calves felt a bit fatigued, though, so I think I'll give them a break tomorrow and run in my racing flats instead. Plus it would really be bad to end up with a broken Croc 8 miles away from the house while Benjamin needs to get to his race soon.

The Crocs are still in good shape, the wear marks on the front did not get bigger, and no wear marks on the heel appeared. You can still read "Made in China" on the bottom of the sole, as well as No Boundaries TM. No, this is not a joke, an April Fool's day joke, although it does sound like one, I really have been running in a pair of $5 Crocs, Jeff being a witness.

Here goes the shoe counter, let's have some fun:

Crocs - 45.1 miles.

I am curious if they can handle 500. Already 9% there.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 9:39, 1.5 with Jenny in 12:30, 0.7 with no running partners in 4:58, and 2 with Benjamin in 18:32. Pushed Jacob and Joseph in the stroller for all segments except Benjamin's. Wore Crocs.


Crocs - 50.3 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.75
From Cody on Fri, Mar 14, 2008 at 13:15:56

Maybe steve will start stocking Crocs at his running store....

From Paul Petersen on Fri, Mar 14, 2008 at 14:05:29

You can also try the airwalk "crocs" for comparison.

From josse on Fri, Mar 14, 2008 at 15:01:47

I just realized what you meant by crocks, your crazy! I want to see this on tues.

From Tom on Fri, Mar 14, 2008 at 15:42:00

I'm loving the Croc running experiment, perhaps the beginnings of the next running fad in the making.

From Superfly on Fri, Mar 14, 2008 at 17:27:58

Sasha would be a great marketing name for a guy trying to sell Croc's. I think you need to stick with this and maybe pick up a real sponsor. Someone needs to submit this to Croc's corporate offices.

From jamesm on Fri, Mar 14, 2008 at 18:32:33

What possible reason could there be to run in crocs?

From wheakory on Fri, Mar 14, 2008 at 18:40:56

I have a pair of crocs and they are comfortable. That's amazing Sasha the running your able to do in the crocs. Pretty cool experiment. Good luck reaching 500 miles.

From Sasha Pachev on Fri, Mar 14, 2008 at 19:10:08

I wanted a quick way to check if there was any value to barefooted running. Doing strides on grass was not good enough - too short. Running on grass for a long time - well, I've done that before without much of a result, did not feel any different. I wanted to see what barefoot felt like on asphalt but I did not want to cut myself stepping on glass, etc.

And in the process I discovered a nice side effect. In reality, Crocs are at least not slower than regular racing flats, and might be even faster. But you look like complete beach bum in them. So if you need to freak out the competition, that would work great. The entire time they are thinking, this guy is a weirdo, he knows nothing about running, he should not be here with us, he should be jogging at the back of the pack. And you are still with them two thirds into the race. So they start thinking, I am having a bad race if this weirdo can keep up. And they just quit. And let you pull away.

From MarcieJ on Fri, Mar 14, 2008 at 19:14:09

I agree with Clyde, you could really become a spokesmodel for them, like Jared and Subway, the next thing is Sasha and Crocs! Imagine if you won a race wearing them, it could set you up for life:)

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Steve Ashbaker the Air Dark Horse rescued me today from having to run 20 miles alone. Decided to take a break from Crocs today, and wore racing flats.

I originally wanted to run to Bridal Veil and back, but it was cold enough already without the wind, so we agreed to do our 10.1 mile course twice. We were having fun in the first half. First, we caught the 7:00 guy at mile 3. Then there was a branch on the road. Steve being the Air Dark Horse flew right over it. I being the Low Flying Spy Plane ran into it and took a spill. Only a few scratches, got up and went on, no problems.

Then it was time for Russian jokes. Here is the one for today. Gorbachev comes to the White House. Reagan seats him at the piano and says: "You can press any key except that red one". Gorbachev finally is overcome with curiosity and presses the forbidden red key. He gets splashed with ink, and plans a revenge.

Now Reagan comes to the Kremlin. Gorbachev invites him to the piano and admonishes him not to press the forbidden black key. He finally gets too curious and presses it anyway. Nothing happens. He does it again. Still no result. He goes to Gorbachev to complain: "This is borning! Back in America...", to which Gorbachev replies: "There is no America."

We were having so much fun that we forgot it was time to shift gears into the brisk easy  zone - around 6:20 - 6:40, but we did remember around mile 6, and made it to 10.1 in 1:08:58. After that it was time for the tempo portion. I told Steve that a quarter under 1:30 was good, and over 1:30 was bad, otherwise, anything was acceptable, and we got going. At first we were going 5:50 pace, then we even picked it up to 5:44, but then Steve was not feeling good for some reason, so we eased off to 5:50, and then to 5:55 - 6:00 pace. We ended up running the last 10.1 in 59:48, 5:55.25 average. Total time for 20.2 was 2:08:46, 6:22.48 average.

Immediately afterwards took Benjamin to the Rex Lee 5 K. Ted and I decided that since Ted was injured, it would be better for me to pace his son James, and for him to pace Benjamin. James ran a PR of 19:25, and Benjamin ran a PR as well, 22:02. I was impressed with his last 200 in 45 seconds. Ran some extra, ended up with 25.2 for the whole deal. James even gave me about a mile in my marathon pace zone.

Night Sleep Time: 7.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.00
From Adam RW on Mon, Mar 17, 2008 at 06:53:00

I'm not sure if I laughed harder at the joke or at you being a low flying spy plane. Another great week of training for you...

From josse on Tue, Mar 18, 2008 at 10:53:13

How about Sat. 3-22 for your uneventful 1/2?

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

In spite of getting good night sleep I drifted off during the Sacrament meeting. Then Sarah handed me a kids book that talked about Lehi's dream.

Night Sleep Time: 8.50Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.50
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Got a running book. This is a significant development for me. I am a firm believer that only few books are actually worth the money and the eye strain. The book is Brain Training for Runners by Matt Fitzgerald. I find that many of his ideas are very similar to what I discovered in my own running experience:

  • train six days a week, rest on the seventh
  • it is the brain that initiates the fatigue shutdown, not the muscle
  • excessive shoe cushioning overtime creates feet that are prone to injuries
  • sitting on your bum all day long messes up your running form
  • recovery is as important as stress - beds make champions, miles just help them get ready for bed
  • drink by thirst, do not overhydrate
  • low ground contact is a sign of an elite runner
  • you slow down not because you are out of fuel, but because your brain thinks you are about to run out of it. You speed up not because you got more fuel, but because your brain thinks it is coming.
  • Elite runner stride has a well-time sequence of power surges and relaxations. The primary active agent of the fatigue-induced slowdown is the disruptions of those timings.
  • emotional stress is bad for your running performance, keep it down
I really liked his idea of visualizing that you are running on a non-motorized treadmill.

Another Crocs day. Ran 2 mile warm-up in 17:37 with Hyrum. Then figured the Uneventful-Half would bring me to the target mileage for the run. Ran by feel, focused on running on a non-motorized treadmill. The pace naturally got faster. After a while I decided to see what would happen if I did not monitor it for a while. I hit the 2 mile mark in 12:41 when I decided to stop checking the pace. Next time I checked my split was at 5.05, and it was 31:24, 6:08 average for the unmonitored section. Then I checked it again at 7.5, and it was 47:01, 6:07 average for the unmonitored section. Then I monitored it from then on, and tried not to let the observation influence the pace. It was a fairly steady 6:07 - 6:15 pace that appropriately reacted to the changes in the terrain, which told me I was truly running by effort.

Around 9.3 into the Uneventful Half I ran into Matt and he joined me. He has an interesting quality - whenever you run with him, you always feel like he is pushing the pace. Ran at around the same pace uphill to a little bit past Macey's with him (9:10 for 1.5), and then on the way back we were aided by the downhill, and both of us kind of cranked up the effort. I am not sure if I was responding to his moves, or if I was just making my own, but the pace eventually progressed into the sub-5:40 range. The last mile was 5:33. Total time for 13.11 was 1:20:13 (6:07.11 average). I toyed with the idea of cranking it up and catching the 1:20 guy, but I figured I would have had to run sub-5:20s, and I was not in the mood. Total time for 15.11 was 1:37:50.

Too fast for an aerobic run, perhaps, but I figured since I'd be running slow tomorrow, and I do not schedule hard speed workouts any more, and my body naturally wanted to run this fast, I'd let it.

Crocs - 65.41 miles.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 10:05, 1.5 with Jenny in 12:52, 2.55 in 19:46 including 2.11 with Benjamin in 16:47. All in Crocs.

Crocs - 70.46 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 0.50Total Sleep Time: 8.25
From George on Mon, Mar 17, 2008 at 15:03:32

Good post on several fronts Sasha.

Curious, do you have an opinion on base building be a period in which you need to exclusively train the aerobic system (aka MAF)? It would seem to me that you take a bit more of a multi-phased approach with some work in the aerobic "zone", but then also training of the anaerobic system with work such as today's.

From Katie on Mon, Mar 17, 2008 at 15:33:57

Hi, Sasha!

I was so excited to see a fastrunningblog. singlet in VA on Sunday! I wish I could have qualified and put in another good word for the blog!

Anyway, this sounds like a great book. Maybe it would help explain my 100% complete melt down in Virginia Beach yesterday!

Anyway, I'm thinking about running SLC marathon. Nothing was lost yesterday(except a toenail or two). Even though I've missed the OTQ's I still want to prove myself. Do you think Salt Lake City is a fast course? How does it compare to SGM?

From Tom on Mon, Mar 17, 2008 at 16:02:47

Sasha interesting to hear your thoughts/comments on the brain book. I've had this book for a few months and have incorporated much of the suggested programs into my workouts. When I first read it I could have sworn that you had already read it since many of his ideas were so similar to what you preach on the blog.

I'm you have any opinion on the AccelGel (w protein) vs. regular-Gel (carbs only) debate that the book discusses? Or how about the idea that on at least some long training runs it's advantageous to NOT fuel at all during the run with Gels/GU/Gatorade, etc?

From wheakory on Mon, Mar 17, 2008 at 17:07:32

You mentioned not scheduling speed work in your training anymore. Are you planning on just running tempo's and speed work when you feel a positive sign in your nervous system?

I've found that if I plan a tempo run (sometimes), I've got this dreadful feeling If I don't hit a certain pace then the training is not successful (bad brain signal) and that's happened. But if I'm in a training run (non-scheduled speed work) and feel real good and decide to go faster it seems to show better results. I believe the brain sends that positive feeling and you know you have the confidence in your legs to have an amazing run.

I'm not saying this happens all the time but sometimes.

From Sasha Pachev on Mon, Mar 17, 2008 at 22:31:01

George - I did not train anaerobic system today. I do not get anaerobic until the pace is faster than 5:20. I do believe in aerobic focus, though. Anaerobic running for me is a more of an accident, I reserve it for the kick in a race, or for a 5 K.

Katie - SLC is a slow course. About 7 minutes slower than STG for a 2:20 - 2:30 marathoner. Probably 8 minutes slower for a 2:50 - 3:00. But they have had a fairly weak women's field lately, if you can do 2:55 you'll probably be in the money ($500). And you'll get to meet some bloggers.

Tom - I do not have an opinion on Accelerate vs non-protein sports drink, never tried it. I do fine on runs up to 20 miles with nothing. I do better in a marathon if I take highly concentrated Powerade or Gatorade in the middle, though.

Kory - I plan on doing speed when I happen to have a partner. And runs like this when I go a bit faster on accident. After my experience last winter, I am inclined to think in the direction that the need for speed work is very much overrated. If you race at least once a month, and pick up the pace sporadically on occasion, that is really all you need.

From George on Tue, Mar 18, 2008 at 05:53:21

I am not saying I subscribe to this theory, but there is a thought that you are begining to metabolize from your anaerobic system as soon as your HR goes above a certain number (assumedly a number that is true for most of the population ... 180-age, +5 for an athlete of your level of training). What is your HR at 5:20 pace?

From Sasha Pachev on Tue, Mar 18, 2008 at 17:51:20

According to the 220 - age formula I am 47 years old. My max HR is 173. Somewhere between 2000 and 2004 I suddenly aged 15 years (although I did not lose any of my top end speed, and improved on every distance from 5 K to the marathon). Then I stopped aging, again, if we are going to make the age-based HR estimates right. My resting HR has not changed since the age of 16. So I really do not pay much attention to age based formulas.

However, I race a marathon at over 90% of my max HR. At 5:20 I imagine I would hit around 163. I get 130 at 6:40 pace, 145 at 6:00 pace, and 155 at 5:40 pace.

From saamijeff on Tue, Mar 18, 2008 at 18:31:00

Yes be careful of the 220-age formula. If you want to really know wear a monitor. I went the other way, I have not aged in 15 years,( although I run now and did not during many of those 15), my max HR is 183 same as it was when the formula would have been correct in 1994.

From George on Wed, Mar 19, 2008 at 11:11:33

Sorry - I may not have explained myself well. The MAF theory (at a high level) is that you metabolize from your aerobic system at 180-age. This, of course, is a generalization. You could determine your exact aerobic HR with an expensive test, but for most folks (mean +/- 1 std dev), this works. There are a couple of ways to modify it (for low max HR folks, do a % of max for example; or as an other example do + 5 if you are well trained athlete, -5 if you are a new athlete). The thought is, and one that is heavily subscribed to by Mark Allen, is that in marathon endurance events - you are primarily stressing the aerobic system versus the anaerobic. Hence, you dedicate a significant portion of your training to base work - or training at or below maximum aerobic function. At first, many folks are slow - but then you adapt and become more efficient (faster) at this slower heart rate.

From what I can tell, supposedly your aerobic pace would be currently 6 min pace. Above that and you are begining to stress your anerobic system and metabolize from it.

Much better explained at:

The issue for me is I am not sure I fully subscribe to NOT going above maximum aerobic function at all during the base building - but MAF advocates say this is key.

From Sasha Pachev on Wed, Mar 19, 2008 at 15:48:52

I know for sure that I can race very well off high volume without ever breaking 6:00 pace in any of my workouts. I just experienced a string of PRs off that type of training. I do not know if the cause is in the purely aerobic vs partially anaerobic running, though. I attributed it to letting my nervous system rest and heal.

I would also argue that if racing a marathon is 98% aerobic, then anything slower than 5:45 on a flat terrain in Provo would be very well withing my aerobic territory. Which would have made my morning run purely aerobic with the possible exception of the last mile. And even then, I have watched my patterns of slow-down in marathons, and there is a common theme - I go one pace (about 5:30 sea-level flat equivalent) for 12-16 miles, then fairly quickly transition to another pace (about 5:55 flat sea level equivalent) and maintain it to the end without a further slowdown. I tried starting out slower, what happens is I transition to the slower pace regardless. I wonder if my true marathon pace is really around 5:30 flat sea level equivalent, or possibly even faster, but my nervous system gets tired after 12-16 miles of running hard. The subjective feeling would definitely agree with that theory. I do not feel light headed or sore when I slow down, my legs just start refusing to turn over fast enough. I do not feel particularly tired or sore when I finish, and have no problem running back and pacing somebody.

From adam on Wed, Mar 19, 2008 at 16:27:25

regardless of heart rate, you would be doing anaerobic work for anything that is your 100-400m race pace, or 10-30s sprints. Some say that 800m race pace can be included in that, but I think that is more applicable to runners in the 1:40-1:50 range. (Slower than that and they are in 1500m range, and that is becoming more aerobic).

The percentage of aerobic/anaerobic increases with the increase in distance. And so for a 2:23 marathoner like Sasha, he wouldn't be getting into anaerobic range at all running in the mid 5 minutes (unless he kicked a 28sec 200m at the end).

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Crocs again. Started with Hyrum, Josse, and Jeff. Dropped Hyrum off at 2 miles. On his own initiative he ran his fastest post-comeback mile in 7:35 at the end. He'll be running with us all the way before too long.

Then I needed to go to the bathroom. Jeff and Josse took off. I ran a brief warm-up 0.5 in 3:08, then cranked it up and hit a 0.5-1% downhill quarter in 1:19, eased off under the bridges and with turns on the next one to 1:25, then picked it back up to 1:20 on the following, and then caught Jeff and Josse about 50 meters later. Had a VPB around 8 miles into the run, caught up at around 5:30 pace, no splits.

Dropped Jeff and Josse at 12.1, and ran 3 more by myself. Total time for 15.1 was 1:50:37.

Crocs - 85.56 miles.

P.M. Wore Crocs. 2 with Benjamin pushing Jacob in the single stroller in 16:52, then 3 not pushing anybody with Benjamin riding a bike in 19:43. Was running easy until the last 1000, then picked up the pace. All I wanted to do was catch the 6:40 guy for 3 miles, but once I pressed the gas pedal I was immediately at a slightly sub-6:00 pace. So I ended up with a 3:41 for the last 1 K.

Crocs - 90.56 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 7.42Nap Time: 0.50Total Sleep Time: 7.92
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Ran with Jeff at 5:10 AM. Took a break from Crocs just in case, ran in racing flats. We started out with a 2:11 quarter (yes, that's right, 8:44 pace for 0.25, Kenyan warmup), 7:43 mile, then eased into a slightly sub-7:00 pace. After we crossed 9.6 mark I asked Jeff how he felt about catching the 1:10 guy, he said that would be fine. So we picked it up with around 0.45 to go, and ran the last two quarters in 1:28 and 1:22. I was surprised to see 1:22 on the last one as Jeff was telling me about the challenges of going to bed on time the entire time, and I was listening with more interest than I would normally have at 5:30 pace. Our time for 10.1 was 1:09:49, 6:54.75 average.

P.M. Wore Crocs. 1 with Julia in 10:48, 1.5 with Jenny in 12:20, 5.6 by myself in 36:57, and 2 with Benjamin in 16:34.

Crocs -  100.66 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 6.75Nap Time: 0.50Total Sleep Time: 7.25
From nfroerer on Thu, Mar 20, 2008 at 10:05:27

100 miles in Crocs. That's got to be a guinness world record. Nice job!Are they holding up or do you need a new pair?

From Sasha Pachev on Thu, Mar 20, 2008 at 10:13:27

They are holding up quite well. Most of the damage is in the toe area around 2 inches from the toe tip. I think they'll make it to 300 miles.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Must have eaten something rotten last night. Was not feeling good this morning. Resting HR was 66 instead of the usual 48. Felt nauseous. Went for a run anyway, but kept it short. Ate an apple right before the run, that seemed to help a bit. Ran with Jeff. Hyrum did not make it. We ran the first quarter in 2:21, and I really did not feel like I could go any faster. We finally caught the 8:00 guy around 2.5. Then we hit some headwind, we turned around and it became tailwind. Around 5.5 into the run I thought of Jeremiah 4:19:

My bowels, my bowels! I am pained at my very heart; my heart maketh a noise in me; I cannot hold my peace...

There is a good one in Lamentations 1:20 as well, which I found while looking up the reference on the first one:

Behold, O Lord; for I am in distress: my bowels are troubled...

However, a mile later I started feeling better. We picked up the pace to sub-7:00. I ran to Jeff's house, dropped him off, then added the extra distance to make it 10.02. Thought of going a bit longer, but decided to err on the side of caution and finish the distance later tonight if I really felt better. Total time was 1:13:58.

Crocs - 110.68 miles

P.M. Stomach still feeling troubled. I set a dubious PR on this run for the number of different types of foul emissions from both ends of the digestive tract. Started with 0.5 in 3:44 to find Benjamin. Then 2 more with him in 16:14. Evaluated how I felt, and figured I should be able to handle another 4. Started with a 7:36 mile, feeling painful in the stomach, but nothing I cannot run through. Next mile in 7:05. Started feeling weak, like I wanted to walk home, or better, just lay down and not move at all. But the home is now 2 miles a way, so I'd better run, 2 miles of walking would be a long and painful walk with a sick stomach. Stopped for a VPB hoping it would make me feel better. Started running, still feeling weak, focused on a goal - keep it sub-8:00. After about half a mile I did not feel any better, but the pace got faster - started running 7:15 pace. Then about 3.35 into the run all of a sudden I started feeling extremely weak, I do not remember feeling that bad at the end of my worst marathon, and soon I found out why. A few seconds later I threw up, first time in 7 years. When I thought I was done, I started running, but was still feeling very weak, and for a good reason. I had more stuff to throw up. I stopped, finished the job, and all of a sudden felt almost normal. Finished the rest of the run at around 6:50 pace, 29:36 for 4 miles.

I think this experience provides a good case for the brain-governed fatigue model. I did not have any less glycogen in my muscles in the moment of weakness right before throwing up when I probably would not have been able to sustain 8:30 pace than a couple minutes later when I was comfortably running 6:50s. So the most sensible explanation of what happened I can think of is that my brain sensed extreme stomach distress, and started shutting down the muscles in response to facilitate coping with it. When the distress was over, the muscles started receiving normal signal.

Crocs - 117.18 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 7.83Nap Time: 1.00Total Sleep Time: 8.83
From Tom on Thu, Mar 20, 2008 at 10:16:47

Loved the scripture references, maybe some of those OT prophets were runners too. I couldn't help but think that perhaps the 1st scripture meant to say "...I cannot hold my 'pace'...".

From wheakory on Thu, Mar 20, 2008 at 12:43:16

This is kind of the way James and I were feeling this week. I hope you can too can fight this immune systems attack. Nice way to finish your run.

From josse on Thu, Mar 20, 2008 at 15:46:50

Hope you are feeling better. Is it ok if I join you boys on saturday? Tom you should come too.

From James on Thu, Mar 20, 2008 at 15:52:54

Just don't hold onto it for a month like I did!

From Sasha Pachev on Thu, Mar 20, 2008 at 15:59:25

Josse - that would be great. We'll pace you through the Uneventful Half.

From Sasha Pachev on Thu, Mar 20, 2008 at 16:04:52

P.S - we are meeting at 6:30 AM at my house.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Ran with Tyler. My original plan was to pace him through a 5 mile tempo at 5:30 pace. With the stomach troubles of yesterday that plan was put into question. However, I decided to give it a try anyway. I told Tyler I would run 5:30s until I can't.

I did take some measures to ease the impact of GI distress. There were two concerns. One, if there is something in the stomach that is not being digested, the nausea will come up. Two, with the lack of ability to digest food, low blood sugar, and glycogen depletion would cause problems. I had an interesting experience with a 5 mile tempo after a stomach flu about a year ago when I was able to run 5:30s in the first 2 miles, but then very quickly digressed to 5:55s for the rest of the run. To mitigate the impact of the illness, I ate my standard breakfast meal right before bed (uncooked rolled oats, dates, and peanuts mixed with soy mile) along with some Powerade, and added a large cup of Powerade in the morning as well.

We warmed up 2.62 miles and started the tempo. First mile was 5:24 with perfectly even splits by quarter. I noticed Tyler was struggling a bit at 5:25, and eased off the pace to the 5:30 target. Next mile was 5:31. Around 2 miles my legs started feeling slightly toxic, and I was concerned. But I figured I'd keep the pace for as long as I can and not worry about it. If I have to stop, I have to stop. Then we did a half in 2:45, (13:40 at the turnaround), and the next half in 2:46, which gave us another 5:31 mile. We got into a nice 1:22 per quarter groove after that, and I now started feeling confident I'd be able to sustain it to the end. Tyler struggled a bit around 3.75, so I eased off to a 1:24 quarter, which gave us a 5:30 mile for the next split. The mini-break helped Tyler regain his strength, and he pushed the pace to a 1:23 quarter on the mini-uphill, followed by a 1:21 once it flattened out. With about 500 to go he started struggling again, and a gap began to open up, but I figured he would close it in the final kick especially if he had a moving target, so I just kept the pace. Which is pretty much what happened. I finished in 27:21.6, Tyler was withing 0.5 of a second, which gave him a PR for 5 miles, as well as 4 miles en-route. Last mile was 5:25. Incidentally, this is my 5 mile PR for wearing Crocs, and only 33 seconds slower than my fastest time on that course.

Then we did a long cool down at around 8:00 pace to make the total of 15 miles. I felt like I do at the end of a marathon on the last mile due to the lack of nutrition the day before, but otherwise everything was fine, much better than yesterday. I still could not eat very much at breakfast, but was able to get in enough to make me feel decent.

Crocs - 132.18 miles.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 11:38, 0.15 to drop Julia off at the church and back, 1.5 with Jenny in 12:50, 2.53 with Benjamin to Jamba Juice in 21:55. Stomach still not good, dinner consisted of a small cup of Jamba Juice.

Crocs -  137.36 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
From Mike Warren on Fri, Mar 21, 2008 at 13:20:04

Sasha, you just need to come to St. George and I will take you for a Double Cheeseburger at Carls Jr! That will fix you right up! Extra fry sauce and chocolate milk shake, olympic trials here you come!

From Dustin on Fri, Mar 21, 2008 at 13:36:56

In and Out Burger will be opening soon Mike, and they use fresh ingredients. I have a Cold Stone Card you could use for the dessert. Actually Sasha, hope you get to feeling better and I'm quite certain you would be feeling much worse if you were to dine with me, Mike or the Wildbull down here in St. George.

From Sasha Pachev on Fri, Mar 21, 2008 at 13:50:47

An upset stomach is very bad at digesting any form of meat. When I threw up yesterday, it was all ground turkey + some tomato peels. Everything else I ate in addition to that (whole-wheat pasta, oats, bread) had apparently been processed more productively.

From Tyler on Fri, Mar 21, 2008 at 14:53:33

Sasha, you forgot to mention that you did the whole thing in Crocs. Imagine the commercial appeal if you ran sub-2:30 in those things!

From josse on Fri, Mar 21, 2008 at 15:41:46

ewww yuck! that is a little graffic.

From Superfly on Fri, Mar 21, 2008 at 17:15:18

I'm not sure a picture would be as descriptive. Yuck! Sorry about the tummy. I still can't believe you are running in the croc's!!!

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. We had quite a group this morning. Josse, Tyler, Steve Ashbaker, Cody, and Jeff. We paced Josse to a 1:34:51 Uneventful Half for a warm-up. This is her fastest time of the year on the slowest course she's run so far (if we adjust her Painter's time for the shortness of the course). Then Josse and Tyler were done, Jeff was going 16, Cody, Steve and I went for 20. We ran a tempo for the last 7 miles. I set a conservative goal of 6:00 pace given my stomach troubles lately and expecting a bonk.

I felt somewhat hungry in the morning before the run. That was a good sign. I ate a honey sandwich and drank a large cup of Powerade. I also drank a large cup of Powerade after we finished the warm-up.

Jeff was going to run 1.5 with us, then go back, Cody courageously decided to hang with us until death, then jog the rest of the distance. We ran the first mile of the tempo in 5:46, the pack was still intact. Jeff turned around at 1.5. We hit the next mile in 5:40 with some help from Steve's pace initiative. Then we noticed Cody was struggling, and eased off a bit to help him stay with us longer. He made it to about 2.75 mark. The next mile was 5:43. Steve moved upfront and pushed the pace, I just hung on for dear life. Next mile in 5:36 with a 180 in the middle. Steve was doing surges to 5:20 pace, then easing off. I started feeling a bit fuzzy in the head during the surges, and decided to just keep it steady and not respond. When I stopped responding to the surges, I felt a lot better, 1:23 quarters started feeling sustainable. 5:34 for the next mile in spite of a small net uphill. Steve's fervor died down a bit, he stopped surging. I enjoyed that, but not enough to move upfront and start pushing the pace. Our next mile was 5:37, and it was not a fast mile at all - net uphill, a couple of turns, sharp uphill curve coming from under the Geneva road bridge. On the last mile I finally felt like pushing the pace, so I moved upfront. We hit the next two nasty quarters (rolling net uphill, bridge tunnels) in 1:25 each. Then 1:24, and 1:21 on the last one with the help of a sprint in the last 60 meters, which gave us 5:35 for the last mile. Our total time for 7 miles was 39:31, 5:38.71 average. Total time for 20.11 was 2:14:22, 6:40.9 average.

I suppose my body learned to burn fats better since I've been doing high mileage. I have no other explanation as to where I found the fuel to do two workouts like the one today and the one yesterday while struggling with a stomach flu and putting in the miles.

P.M. Wore Crocs. 3 pushing Jacob in 22:24, then 2 with Benjamin (no Jacob) in 16:34. Still stomach flu issues, although better. Was able to eat my regular oats breakfast, and a large bowl of soy ice cream at night. Somehow managing to live off stored fat, I suppose.

Crocs - 142.36 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 1.00Total Sleep Time: 9.00
From benjamin on Mon, Mar 24, 2008 at 20:05:32

Daddy are you sure that I broke the 6 mile world record?

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Happy Easter. Took a 2 hour nap after church. Improvements on the stomach front. Was able to eat and digest the big turkey dinner Sarah made.

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

A.M. 2 with Hyrum in 16:22, 2.1 more with Sarah in 20:07, 11.1 more alone in 1:11:30. Picked it up on the last 0.5, ran a 1:30 quarter followed by 1:23. Stomach is feeling much better, pretty much normal, although I was not as hungry as I should have been. Wore Crocs.

Crocs - 157.56 miles.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 10:30, 1.5 with Jenny in 13:07, 2 with Benjamin in 16:44, and 0.7 alone in 4:33.

Crocs - 162.76 miles. 

Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
From James on Mon, Mar 24, 2008 at 17:05:16

How are those Crocs holding up?

From Kim on Mon, Mar 24, 2008 at 17:12:24

I can't believe you have 157.56 miles on your crocs! You need to notify the company! Maybe you can be to Crocs what Jared is to Subway......Money, money, money!

From Sasha Pachev on Mon, Mar 24, 2008 at 17:49:04

Still in good condition. No holes.

From James on Mon, Mar 24, 2008 at 18:37:33

I might have to get me a pair if they hold up that well!

From Benn on Tue, Mar 25, 2008 at 08:28:17

Glad you're feeling better!! You really run in Crocs?! that's insane dude. I wouldnt think they were that good or comfortable

From Paul on Tue, Mar 25, 2008 at 11:18:29


You can do so much better for sponsorship than Crocs! Man even UGGS would be a step up!

From Paul on Tue, Mar 25, 2008 at 11:20:30

Sorry about the typo Sasha. I guess I was too excited about posting my lame joke. I blame letsrun.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Stomach issues continued. Still not as hungry as I ought to be, not eating as much, plus the runs. But otherwise, surprisingly I am able to train. Started with 10.1 with Jeff, Josse, and Brad. They ran it in around 1:18, but thanks to 4 VPBs I ended up with 1:15:01 and about 1 mile worth of tempo running. Timed a 0.3125 segment at 1:40, exactly 5:20 pace. Then ran 2.1 with Sarah. Josse joined us for the first 2.1. The time was 21:05. Afterwards 3 more in 19:21, total time for 15.2 was 1:55:27.

Crocs - 177.96 miles.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 11:23, 1.5 with Jenny in 12:46, 2 with Benjamin in 16:01, and 0.7 alone in 4:50.

Crocs - 183.16 miles. 

Night Sleep Time: 7.17Nap Time: 1.50Total Sleep Time: 8.67
From wheakory on Tue, Mar 25, 2008 at 10:45:39

4 VPB's that has to be a record Sasha. With the Crocs not have much backend heel support do you feel any difference with that?

What do you hope on gaining in your training by using the Crocs?

From Sasha Pachev on Tue, Mar 25, 2008 at 12:21:51

Kory - I've had more. I think the record is 6, all serious business. Today only 3 were serious. Not too bad for an upset stomach.

I think backend heel support is what kills your running form. I love having none. Crocs encourage you to not heel-strike. It hurts if you do. The ground contact time goes down. Overall, the stride feels more fluid, more efficient. I noticed less fatigue towards the end of a hard run, and a lot easier to deal with pace variations in tempos. You need to accelerate, boom, you're there in 3 seconds even if you are tired instead of 20. And when you put on racing flats afterwards, you are not afraid to hit the ground harder, which gives you more power.

From Guest on Tue, Mar 25, 2008 at 15:26:25

I get the gist of what a "VPB" is, but what exactly does VPB stand for? Very Private Break? Violent Projectile Barfing? Voluminous Potty Bottom?

From Sasha Pachev on Tue, Mar 25, 2008 at 16:13:23

Virtual Private Bathroom

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Took a break from Crocs. 10.1 in 1:10:12 with Jeff at 5:15 AM. Jeff's quads were tired from a bike ride on Monday.

P.M. Wore Crocs again. 2 miles with Benjamin in 15:22. He started wearing Crocs as well. Yesterday he was getting used to them, today I think he caught on. His last mile was 7:19, and it came naturally with no encouragement on my end to catch any kind of guy. Then ran 8 more alone in 50:35. That makes it 1:05:57 for 10, 6:35.7 average, and 6:19.38 average for the last 8. A bit fast, but Crocs tend to put a bit of a devil in me, so it felt very good. Had a song in my head from one of the later sequels of Nu Pogodi where the savage cannibal rabbits are trying to eat the wolf, and it got me going. Saw Bill Cobler with Breanna on their bikes certifying the Provo City Half. Picked it up to slightly sub-6:00 pace with 0.6 to go.

Crocs - 193.16 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 6.75Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 6.75
From Maria on Thu, Mar 27, 2008 at 10:05:33


strange thing happened just now - I can't find Lybi's blog. I wanted to leave her a comment, but couldn't see in the list or the search. The URL redirects to fast running blog homepage. Did her blog get corrupted somehow?? Do you know what happened? I'm pretty sure it was fine yesterday or the day before.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Jeff was sick this morning with stomach problems, so he did not come. I suppose I passed the baton to him. Mine, on the other hand, was in super shape after taking some acidophilus. Yesterday it was anxious to digest everything in sight, and the trend continued today.

Ran the first 8 miles with Brad. We started with a Kenyan warmup. First quarter in 2:19, first mile in 8:40. Then we sped up a bit, but did not catch the 8:00 guy until past 4 miles. After that we went faster, and ended up with 1:00:59 for the distance.

Dropped Brad off and went for 7 more in 45:25, 6:29.29 average. Total time for 15 was 1:46:24, 7:05.6 average. Picked it up a bit on the last quarter, ran it in 1:22. It was windy, but not too bad.

This run brought my Crocs over the 200 mile landmark. What is interesting that the amount of wear increased at a much smaller rate between 100 and 200 vs the first 100 miles.

Crocs - 208.16 miles.

P.M. 1.5 with Jenny in 13:02, 1.5 alone in 10:27, 2 with Benjamin and pushing Joseph in the stroller in 15:22.

Crocs - 213.16 miles. 

Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.75
From wheakory on Thu, Mar 27, 2008 at 13:57:07

How many ounces are your Crocs? This is an impressive experiment. Next thing you'll run a marathon in them. Good luck and I hope the tread stays on them for a while.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Tyler came to run with me this morning. Benjamin wanted to run part of our warm-up. He wore Crocs again. His first mile was 7:42. Afterwards, he hit two quarters in 1:46 each. I challenged him to break 7:00 on the last mile, and he took off as if his name was Haile or Kenenisa. It was not so much the speed as the long stride and the apparent ease with which it came. His next two quarters were both 1:41, which made it 6:54 for the mile, and 14:36 for 2 miles.

Tyler and I ran another 1.38, and then started our 5 mile tempo. Our first two miles were 5:28 each, followed by 0.5 in 2:45 right before the turnaround. Tyler was hanging back a bit during the first 0.5, but as soon as we turned around he started pushing the pace. We ran the next 0.5 in 2:42, which gave us 5:27 for the third mile. We coasted through another 0.5 in 2:44, and then Tyler started pressing the pace again, and we did 2:40 for the next 0.5, 5:24 for the mile. This started to feel hard, but I thought I'd be able to run at least 5:20 for the last mile. Tyler pressed even harder and hit the uphill quarter in 1:19. I hung back a bit and did 1:20. After that Tyler started to slip away. I thought it was because he picked it up to 5:10 pace, but the split at the next quarter showed that he was just holding 5:20, and I was slowing down. My next quarter was 1:22. In the last half mile, Tyler held a steady pace and finished in 27:06. My legs started to give out, and I slowed down to a 1:24 quarter followed by 1:23 on the last one. 5:29 for the last mile, and 27:16.8 for 5 miles, 5:27.36 average.

Last 0.5 felt like the last leg of Del Sol. Barely breathing, but cannot go any faster even for 50 meters for the life of me. Probably because I've been speeding on my easy runs lately. I am discovering that the nervous system is a funny animal. You cannot tell it is fatigued without trying to run at top end. And because of that, it is difficult to tell if you are wearing it out too much, especially in my case when the aerobic ability is high, the muscles are damage-resistant, but the neurological ability is low. I need to make sure I do not exceed 7:00 pace on my easy runs even if I feel like running 6:20s.

Tyler, on the other hand, got a 5 mile PR, and a 4 mile PR en route as a bonus. His recent increase in mileage is starting to pay off.

Ran some more with Tyler at 8:00 pace, dropped him off at 12 miles, then ran 3 more to make it 15.

Crocs - 228.16 miles.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 10:35, 1.5 with Jenny in 12:33, two more alone in 15:21.

Crocs - 232.56 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 9.33Nap Time: 0.83Total Sleep Time: 10.17
From Clay on Fri, Mar 28, 2008 at 14:51:16

What is the point of running in Crocs? Just curious... Don't your feet get sore in those darn things?

Keep up the good work, you are amazing:)

From Superfly on Fri, Mar 28, 2008 at 15:08:34

So at 228.16 miles how are those babies holding up? Can you see signs of wear or are they still looking and feeling strong. You could be on to something here!

Are you running Striders Half? If so I'll see you up there next week.

From Sasha Pachev on Fri, Mar 28, 2008 at 15:27:57

The point of running in Crocs is to get the benefits of barefoot running without exposing your feet to the debris on the roads. My feet feel just fine in them. The Crocs are fine at 228 miles so far. In fact, they have not gotten any worse since the 100 mile barrier. Which gives me hope that they might make it past 500. I am running the Provo City Half instead of Strider's, as it is essentially in my own back yard.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Long run with Jeff and Tyler. We ran very easy. Around 10 miles into the run a runner named Matt caught up to us, and we picked it up to his pace. Or maybe he slowed down to ours. We invited him to join the blog. I think he just did, but he has not yet posted the workout, or enough bio to be able to tell for sure.

I did 2x200 accelerations each in 37 seconds involuntarily due to being over-hydrated. We dropped Tyler off at 15.1, my time was 1:54:05, Jeff and Tyler would have been a bit slower. Then we ran some more. Jeff turned around after a mile, and I went another mile with Matt, then another 0.5 and turned around. I debated whether I should run the last 2 fast. The benefits would have been getting home sooner, and practicing running fast at the end of a long run. The concern was that yesterday I was showing signs of neural fatigue, and those little pickups day after day may add up. Finally, the desire to be home and eating breakfast sooner prevailed over everything. I thought 5:40 pace would be good, given that there is a 40 feet of elevation gain in those 2 miles, lots of turns, and ups and downs when going under bridges. But it turned out that I had more juice than I thought. My splits by quarter were 1:23, 1:22, 1:23 (under a bridge, then sharp curve to do 270 turn), 1:21, 1:23 (3 underpasses), 1:23 (underpass, uphill), 1:21, and 1:19 for the total of 10:55 for 2 miles. There was an occasional tail wind around 5-7mph.

This gave me 2:27:27 for 20.1. I was pleased to see that I felt very energized in the last 2 miles. My guess is that running at 7:30 pace with friends for me is more like a leisurely walk in the forest. It nurtures my nerves, and then I have the energy, even if it is a long run. Running 6:30 alone, on the other hand, may feel just as easy, but it slowly burns the nerves out.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 11:07, 1.5 with Jenny in 13:17, 2.5 with Benjamin in 21:27.

Crocs - 237.56 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 1.00Total Sleep Time: 8.75
From Hayden on Sun, Mar 30, 2008 at 23:08:36

Hello Sasha this is Hayden otherwise known as Running Warrior on the blog. Good job on all the miles you are putting in. Hey if you ever have any advise or anything feel free to stop by i'm open to anything. Thank You.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Went to church.

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

A.M. Woke up and saw ice on the road again. Bummer. Or maybe a blessing in disguise - it would be easy not to speed on base runs. Decided not to wear Crocs to keep the feet from getting too cold.

Started with 4 with Hyrum and Daniel. It was cold, windy, and slippery. I saw a big traffic jam on I-15 as we went under it, and said to myself - I am glad I am not driving in this! Then I realized that the drivers who saw me would probably think - "I am glad I am not running in this!", but not after a few minutes of thinking. We ended up with 36:55 for 4 miles, but it was about 40 seconds faster for me due to a VPB.

Ran another mile with Daniel in 8:43. Then 10.1 by myself in 1:18:02 slipping, getting blown off by the wind at times, and admiring the scenery. Saw a few birds. Too bad I did not have Karl Jarvis with me. I could only identify the ducks.

P.M. 0.5 with Julia in 5:37, 1.5 with Jenny in 13:17, 2x100 with Joseph in 43 and 41, Joseph got a PR in 100 today. Then 2 with Benjamin in 16:12, and 1 alone in 7:49.

Crocs - 242.68 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 2.00Total Sleep Time: 9.75
From Tyler on Mon, Mar 31, 2008 at 14:53:10

The 5000m starts at 4:30pm on Friday.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. We had quite a group this morning. Jeff, Josse, Brad, and Daniel. It eventually dwindled to just Jeff and Josse. I did 2 post-VPB pickups, first time 0.375 in 2:05, and then 0.25 in 1:20. Then we found Adam on the trail. Dropped off Josse, ran some more with Jeff and Adam. Dropped off Jeff, finished the run with Adam. Total of 15.1 in 1:58:40. It got colder - 20 F, but no snow on the ground.

Just wrote a comment on Lybi's blog that physical youth should continue until 45 under, and remembered that SelectMed (former IHC) decided to give me a birthday present in the form of raising our rate from $268/month to $337. The reason being that I turn 35 on April 21. This makes me furious, and I choose to not restrain the fury.

I can mingle with high schoolers and they will not have a clue I am not one of them unless I open my mouth and reveal my ignorance of whatever matters are considered important in their circles, or unless we run a marathon, in which case they would finish far behind. Neither one of those differences should be considered a reason for a higher health insurance rate.

This is more than a matter of paying extra $69 a month. This is about having to deal with a system that suffers from people making unhealthy lifestyle choices, knows very well that it does, but at the same time is sufficiently inept to fail to reward those who earnestly and passionately strive to be in good health.

I am looking for a health insurance provider that can give our family catastrophic health insurance for less. And particularly for somebody who would honor a healthy lifestyle. If anybody has suggestions, feel free to share. I think we should have a law that requires a health insurance provider to use biological rather than chronological age for calculating premiums. Otherwise, health insurance companies just get lazy and follow the path of the least resistance.

P.M. 0.5 with Julia in 5:37, 1.5 with Jenny in 12:36, 2 with Benjamin in 15:15, and 1 alone in 7:31.

Crocs - 262.78 miles. 

Night Sleep Time: 7.25Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.25
From Clay on Tue, Apr 01, 2008 at 13:32:17

I have Blue Cross Blue Shield of Utah and they are pretty fair. Sasha I am in the industry and there is not an insurer out there that will not go by the age:( And it truly is unfair for those of us who strive to be in good shape and actually take care of ourselves... That is the reason I don't sell it anymore, its just to volatile!!!

They should look at the individual and access a premium based on the physical attributes of that person, but they won't!!

I agree they are to darn lazy!

And I could go on and on, it drives me crazy!!!!!

From Andy on Tue, Apr 01, 2008 at 13:49:36

I guess telling you that I work for SelectHealth would be a bad idea (I even work in the department that sets the rates). Rates are based on averages and it would be be next to impossible to assess the risk and set rates for each individual. It would be nice to have incentives for living a healthy lifestyle but how could you prove that?

From josse on Tue, Apr 01, 2008 at 14:00:57

Let me know if you find one.

From Sasha Pachev on Tue, Apr 01, 2008 at 14:16:50

You could do an optional fitness test. If somebody feels he belongs to a younger age group, have him prove it by running a 5 K on a certified course, for example. Or performing in some other athletic event at a level characteristic of a younger age group.

From Andy on Tue, Apr 01, 2008 at 14:27:11

That still will not prove that you won't get cancer, that your wife won't have a baby, that your kids won't be sick, etc. Athletic people can also cost a lot because of the injuries associated with participating in athletic events. It is frustrating to put so much money into something that you never use but it is worth the security of having it in case you need it.

From Paul Petersen on Tue, Apr 01, 2008 at 14:29:56

Pretty much all of the insurance claims I file are running-related. I would be healthier if I wasn't a competitive runner.

From Clay on Tue, Apr 01, 2008 at 14:45:08

I agree with Andy & Paul there are draw backs and issues assiated with every individual and it is nice to have that added security... But there are some companies that will pay 100% for some procedures if they help with prevention such as, Mammograms and the like... So that is a positive:)

I still won't sell it though, its to hard to keep the client happy because of the frequent rate hikes, and taking away of coverages...

Alot of people complain about having and paying for insurence whether its health, auto, home, commerical or farm, until they have a loss and then there dang glad they have it. Its alot better to have the insurance company use their check book as apposed to using your own:)

From an agents point of view anyway:)

From Sasha Pachev on Tue, Apr 01, 2008 at 14:58:54

No, but how is being chronologically 25 any better than being chronologically 35 for those things? Merely being 25 still does not prove you will not have cancer. Running a 5 K under 20:00 minutes goes a lot further to prove that I will not have cancer or heart disease in the near future than just plain being 25.

My insurance rate went up $69/month solely for the reason of me moving into a higher age group. And this is for a catastrophic insurance, which does not pay for maternity, and has a $5000 per person deductible.

Do not know of anybody has done any research on this, but I would be very surprised if age was a better predictor, or even got anywhere close, of the need for medical treatment above $5000/year than your recent 5 K time.

Are the insurance rates going through the roof because America is now becoming more athletic, and the cost of treating athletic injuries is increasing, or is it more because Americans are becoming obese, and we are starting to pay the cost of treating the consequences? If it is the former, I do not mind paying for the risk of being fit. If it is the latter, I do not want to have to pay for other people's choices to get fat and lazy.

From SAAMIJEFF on Tue, Apr 01, 2008 at 15:02:20

My rates just increased 43% and neither me or my wife hit a new age group this year. I totally agree that age alone makes no sense. Highly fit people must have a statistically lower probability of major medical problems. I am still seeing red over the increase.

From Andy on Tue, Apr 01, 2008 at 15:04:59

Without a doubt, rates are going up because we are generally less healthy because of our lifestyles. Aside from putting every person through a thorough physical and genetic testing, is there really a good way to assess risk? On average, 35 year olds are more expensive than 25 year olds. While this is not true for you or probably anybody else on the blog, it is true for the population as a whole.

From Sasha Pachev on Tue, Apr 01, 2008 at 15:05:50

Paul - it is because you are too healthy to file other claims, and that health comes from consistent exercise and the life style that it forces you to live. If you did not run, you would be filing other claims after a while, which would be more expensive.

Clay - I do not mind paying for insurance. I understand how insurance works. It is all about risk management. You work with statistics, and try to identify the levels of risk for each group. What I mind is paying for the failure of others to manage their own risks, and the failure of the insurance company to recognize that I belong to a different group.

From Sasha Pachev on Tue, Apr 01, 2008 at 15:15:23

Andy - how do you know it is not true for me or anybody else on the blog?

Suppose your boss told you that you could insure a group of 1000 35 year old men that have run a 5 K under 20 minutes every year for the last 5 years at the rate of the 25 age group, and then whatever difference was left over from what you had to pay in expenses for that group was the profit you could take home, but otherwise you had to pay for the loss out of your pocket, would you do it?

From Lybi on Tue, Apr 01, 2008 at 15:26:41

I really really don't think that any insurance company is going to start taking 5K times as a qualification for premiums. So few people out there run competitively! Do you realize how mad it would make most of their customer base if they started evaluating people that way? I know that you really feel everyone in the world should run (I think I even remember seeing a comment that people should be chained to cars and dragged ten miles if they cannot run it (chuckle/wince)). But the reality is that insurance companies work with averages, and the average person does not run competitively, unfortunately.

But I do agree that it would be nice if there were extra bonuses for people who make healthy choices, and penalties for people who, say, ride death-mobiles, I mean motorcycles. (I just made someone mad, I can feel it.)

From Clay on Tue, Apr 01, 2008 at 15:31:35

Sasha, you can be the most physically fit person in the world but you are still at risk for cancer, or whatever!!! A Friend of mine took care of himself and exercised daily, ate right and developed colon cancer and died with in a year of getting diagnosed, and he was 44.

He would probably agree with your argument and like it or not regardless of how well you take care of yourself as you get older your body starts to deteriorate and I can attest to this being 45 years old! There are things that I could do at 35 that I can't do as well at 45 and when I'm 55 I'm sure it will be the same and I consider myself to be in good shape:)

Just food for thought:)

From Lybi on Tue, Apr 01, 2008 at 15:41:57

Not to change the subject drastically, but did you know that you can significantly reduce your risks of developing cancer of any kind by fasting regularly? My brother is learning about this in medical school. He said that when your body goes without food, after a while it starts to break down its own cells for energy. I know that doesn't sound very good, but it is, because the body chooses to cannabalize the older, more damaged cells first, which are the ones more prone to turn cancerous. I'd bet Sasha's risks of developing cancer are significantly lower than that of the average population.

From josse on Tue, Apr 01, 2008 at 15:52:58

Why because he would rather starve than eat the average persons diet? I do agree with you Lybi about the 5k comment and the last one. Insurance coverage is what it is and the insurance plus medical world can and will make money off of us because we need them. Ya this makes me mad just as much as the next person. But what are you going to do?

From josse on Tue, Apr 01, 2008 at 15:54:10

I think Sasha is just trying to get something going here to beat you Lybi in most comment on his bolg.

From Jon on Tue, Apr 01, 2008 at 16:02:22

Interesting discussion. I agree that it is frustrating when premiums go up with age, but that is inevitable. I know my dad's went up $600/month when he turned 50. $600!!! It is true that medical expenses get higher on average as you age, though- higher chance of cancer, heart attack, more medicine, etc.

I like the idea of having fitness bonuses, though. My company is charging employees higher premiums if anyone in their family smokes. I hear they are considering BMI premiums, too, for obese people. And they discount fitness centers and give small rewards for some health improvements.

From Sasha Pachev on Tue, Apr 01, 2008 at 16:03:41

Clay - your friend is an exception. Insurance is not about what might possibly happen. It is about how many times it will happen if the group is large enough, and how to define the group to reduce the probability of it happening. We know that being sedentary and eating junk will make costly things happen more often. We also know how to distinguish with a high degree of certainty between those who are sedentary and those who are not.

Lybi - why would it make anybody mad if the insurance company provided discounted rates to those who met a certain set of fitness standards? Not a lot of people run competitively, but most people who do what they are supposed to and deserve a cut in insurance rates can either run a 5 K under a certain time, or bike 10 miles under a certain time, or swim 400 yards under a certain time. You do not have to be a competitive athlete to meet a certain appropriately determined standard. Anything wrong with having a choice? I can tell the company to use my age to calculate my rates, or my 5 K run time, or my 10 mile bike time, or my 400 yard swim time. As opposed to using something I absolutely can do nothing about - my chronological age. Overtime this would encourage more people to exercise consistently. Going from a 30:00 5 K to 25:00 5 K would mean more than just bragging rights.

And we would also have more data on the correlation between exercise performance and health, as the insurance companies would be tracking it. Which could lead to some important scientific discoveries in the future.

I think the root of the problem is that 95% of the employees of the insurance companies do not regularly exercise themselves. Therefore, they come up with policies that represent only their sedentary perspective. In a democratic society that consists of 19 wolves and 1 sheep, what would be the popular answer to the question: "What's for dinner?"

From Maria on Tue, Apr 01, 2008 at 16:09:43

Sasha, come to the UK. For all its problems, NHS (National Health Service) is absolutely free for everyone. I was skeptical at first, thinking it is too "socialist". After my recent ordeal, I am very impressed with doctors' expertise as well as their attitude. They do not overprescribe medications and they do not order million of unnecessary and expensive tests. They also listen to their patients. I do have private insurance as well, paid completely by my employer (no contributions from me), and I even managed to get money FROM my insurance - simply because I stayed in NHS hospital rather than a private one. I was shocked.

But to your point, I understand your frustration. But I do not know any US insurance company that would not increase rates based on age. The best I've seen were incentives for exercising, like covering the cost of gym membership.

From Jon on Tue, Apr 01, 2008 at 16:13:06

Sasha, I think you reached the root cause when you said that 95% of people don't exercise. I'm sure it is not worth the time/money to come up with exceptions like this from the insurance company's perspective. Besides, if you allow exercise exceptions, then someone else will want exceptions because their family has a history of living to 100 years with no heart problems and no cancer. I'm sure there are lots of people that could seek exceptions, but it would be too difficult to figure out what was legit. Hence, the simple, age-based cost.

From Jon on Tue, Apr 01, 2008 at 16:15:23

One thing you can be sure of, though. Regardless of your premiums increasing, your out-of-pocket costs should be lower because you are fit. So in some ways, you are saving money versus unhealthy people.

From Sasha Pachev on Tue, Apr 01, 2008 at 16:51:43

Jon - it should be. Because we are talking about rewarding a behavior that moves an individual into a lower risk group. Rewarding somebody with good genes does nothing to change the behavior.

There are two types of companies - the ones that are there just to make a profit, and the ones that are there to make a profit while making a difference. An insurance company that cares to make a differences will not be satisfied with accepting the current patterns of behavior and merely profiting from them. It would try to contribute to improving those patterns. And it would reward any exceptional pattern of behavior that is proven to reduce health risks if there existed a logistical feasibility. They would also seeks ways to reward those patterns for the cases when it was not logistically possible at the time.

From cgbooth23 on Tue, Apr 01, 2008 at 17:49:41

WE need more Sasha's running these types of business's! I agree 100% with what you are saying and get frustrated every month when my auto draw takes out my health ins. premium!

At one point health ins. companies were considering lowering premiums to companies that had a Welness program, I am out of the cooperate world now so I don't know if that is happening??

From air darkhorse on Tue, Apr 01, 2008 at 17:53:52

Wife says everybody wants grandma to live sicker and longer and they all want Cadillac treatments at Hyundai prices.

From air darkhorse on Tue, Apr 01, 2008 at 17:55:39

She would know,believe me being in health care management.

From josse on Tue, Apr 01, 2008 at 17:57:57

I can see it now, everyone lining up for the annual 5k fintess dicount program, winner gets free insurance for a month. No I do think it is a good idea but, I don't think it should go off time just completion of something that shows you are active. Like a 5 or 10k or a mini tri or something of that sort. The fact is that these are money driven businesses and they don't want to give healthy people discounts.

From Benn on Tue, Apr 01, 2008 at 18:10:11

I know from my own experiences this past year, I haven't had a physical in 3 years, yet when I went to get one, despite my insurance saying they cover 1 physical / year, I was informed I owed 165 bucks. Why you might ask? Because they don't cover "preventative" medicine. Go figure that even with super high premiums, they'll only cover it if you're actually in grave danger. FYI I have Blue Cross Blue Shield. Currently looking for a different one. I think there was a commercial about one that gives discounts if you have an active lifestyle.

From Jody on Tue, Apr 01, 2008 at 18:24:16

Wow, quite the discussion. Being in the healthcare business, there is not a real solution to the problem. I will say, however, that IHC has a big strong hold on the Utah market. Other carriers offer private policies. A lot of it depends on what facilities and physicians you want access to. I have DMBA, they offer incentives for healty living in the form of CASH! I also have a policy from Colonial life which pays extra (cash to me) for healthy choices, annual exams and screening.

I completely recommend that before signing up for any policy that all coverages are understood completely. My biggest frustration with patients is their lack of understanding what they pay for with insurance.

I agree with Steve Ashbakers wife!!

But bottom line - Would anyone risk going without insurance?

From ryan on Tue, Apr 01, 2008 at 19:19:52

pres Hinckley was asked once if he runs. He said something like "no, but all of my friends that did are dead". there is a lot more to health and longevity than just excercise.

From josse on Tue, Apr 01, 2008 at 19:26:38

Well said Ryan!

From Jon on Tue, Apr 01, 2008 at 21:57:15

So the solution to long life is to not run and to be the prophet! Hmm... not too many could sign up for that one. :)

From Sasha Pachev on Tue, Apr 01, 2008 at 22:21:07

Or to drink a beer and smoke once in a while. Check this guy out:

he could very well say that his younger friends who never smoked or drank are dead too.

From Cody on Tue, Apr 01, 2008 at 23:06:01

I have mentioned this before and it is actually a thread on the message board. There are alternative methods for health insurance in the form of HSA's. You would carry the high deductible insurance (which I agree is over priced due to many reasons), but from then on YOU manage your own health costs from a tax free account. The account grows when you don't use it (there is your incentive to not see the doctor unnecessarily). If people were actually responsible for paying more than $20 co-pay health care cost would decline for everyone.

That being said, I agree that people should have good health due to exercize incentives. How they do it can be argued forever, but there should be some. However, that COSTS money to the company in the short term so they dont do it. They always choose the easier/cheaper routes.

The bigger problem is all the genetic disorders or cancer or high risk pregnancies that people have (I am speaking from experience here). Do you punish the people that have them? Since they raise the average cost for everyone, should they be charged more? THAT is the whole point of insurance. It is easy for people to say, "Insurance costs too much" but they are probably not the people who were not the recipients of aid. Do the people who have cancer or a genetic disorder complain that they paid $450 a month for thousands of dollars in aid? Could they also run a 5K in 20 mins or less, many could. Would it change much of their actual costs if the ones that couldn't actually could? No I do not disagree that many americans are over-weight and could benefit from exercize, but that is not my point.

Fix the Hospital/Doctor overpricing issues and the insurance will go down. That is the main problem. Having everyone run a physical fitness test would help, but stopping the doctor from charging $100 for a 5 min poke and prod would help more.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. 10.1 with Jeff in 1:17:43. Discussed the effect of high mileage on all out speed and high school performances. Supposedly science says that if you do high mileage, the midgrade fibers become more slow-twitch oriented, and that kills your explosive power. If that is true, I must not have any of those because I've never gained all out speed by reducing mileage, or lost it by increasing it. Nor have I ever seen a reasonably well documented case when this has actually happened to somebody. If anybody has one, feel free to share.

Crocs - 272.88 miles.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 10:41, 1.5 with Jenny in 12:41, 5.53 alone in 41:33, and 2 with Benjamin in 15:30.

Crocs - 282.91 miles. 

Night Sleep Time: 6.75Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 6.75
From josse on Wed, Apr 02, 2008 at 15:04:56

Only 10 this morning, are you cutting back for the race?

From Sasha Pachev on Wed, Apr 02, 2008 at 15:05:40

No, it is the temple day. I only had time for 10. Will do 10 more in the evening.

From cgbooth23 on Wed, Apr 02, 2008 at 15:52:08

Are you doing striders on Saturday? If so look forward to meeting you, I am running and also live on the route, towards the end in Eden!

From Sasha Pachev on Wed, Apr 02, 2008 at 16:00:10

I am running the Provo City Half, but I will be there for the Ogden Marathon.

From wheakory on Wed, Apr 02, 2008 at 16:21:47

Sasha, are you also running the Salt Lake Marathon?

I've read that the more high mileage runs with less quality explosive runs will cause you to loose or not use the fast twitch fiber muscles.

Now the question is how much do you need to use them to keep the fast twitch fibers active, and keep them at the same performance level or obtain a higher level?

From Adam RW on Wed, Apr 02, 2008 at 21:39:03

I'll have to look it up. But in the meantime York High School would be the argument against this. When I was in high school they were in the area and most of their runners were running in the 90-110 mpw range and they beat everyone. I don't think many did much after high school but for the short term it worked for them.

"The most successful American high school cross country coach is Joe Newton from York Community High School in Elmhurst, Illinois. His teams have won 26 Illinois state titles in 50 years. York was also the first winner of the Nike Team National Cross Country meet in 2004." from Wikipedia

From Lulu on Thu, Apr 03, 2008 at 12:54:21

Ok Sasha, I went back through your blog and figured out why you are running in Crocs (or Walmart's version of Crocs). Have you tried Nike Free shoes? (This is a retorical question as I know that if you can get Walmart Crocs for $5 you wouldn't bother with $85 shoes). The Frees are supposed to be for near-barefoot running. I have run in those before and found that for the first few years, they don't cause any injury, but eventually it did catch up with me. My current peroneus issues may be from running in the Frees. My arch on the outside of my right foot is non-existant now and the left is on its way. Just something for you to consider. I will follow your experiment.

From Jon on Thu, Apr 03, 2008 at 17:55:07

Sasha, the big question is if you are going to race Saturday in crocs...

From josse on Thu, Apr 03, 2008 at 18:24:38

Lulu-I think Sasha could run on his hands and not get injured.

From Sasha Pachev on Thu, Apr 03, 2008 at 22:21:20

Just to be safe I'll run in my racing flats. However, if somebody offered me an incentive I would race in Crocs. I think speed-wise they are comparable to racing flats.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Tempo run with Jeff. Jeff wanted to do something shorter and faster, and I was not opposed. So we decided to do 3 miles starting at Geneva road, 1.5 out, 1.5 back. The plan was to go 5:30 pace. We stuck to the plan through the first 0.5. Then I led a quarter in 1:20, and Jeff did his in 1:19. This gave us 5:24 at the mile. We were both feeling good so far. Then a devil got into me and I did the next two quarters in 1:17 and 1:18, which gave us 7:59 at 1.5. After that I realized I did not want to run my race today, and told Jeff I did not want to go that fast. He took us through the next quarter in 1:24, which felt great, expect it was too slow. I thought I'd recover from the earlier adventure, and now would want to pick it up, but I did not - next quarter in 1:23, 10:46 at 2 miles followed by a 1:24 up the mini-hill. Jeff had had it, and took the next quarter in 1:21. I took over and eased off to 1:24 without trying. I suppose that is what happens when you focus on not breathing too hard. Then Jeff put the hammer down and hit 1:18 on the last quarter. I reluctantly followed, very reluctantly, but at least I could do it. I ended up with 16:13.8 on my watch.

Ran a long cool down, part of it with Jeff, part with Derek Davis on his way to work. Total of 15.6 for the run.

Not sure what to think of this workout. It was definitely odd with 5:24.6 average, a mid-mile in 5:14, and a 5:21 mile pieced together of the 4 fastest quarters. Wanting to run 5:10 pace after the first mile is good. Slowing down to 5:36 pace to recover from it, and feeling the effects for so long is bad. I am wondering if I am ready to start racing a half at 5:10 pace in some ways, but some glue is lacking to make it happen. And if so, the following training might supply the glue - run 5:10 pace until I can't hold it without a heroic effort or at all. Stop, jog 200 meters. Try again. Repeat until I have 5 miles total in at 5:10 pace. Any thoughts?

Crocs - 298.51 miles.

P.M. Ran the Costco Relay with my kids. We start at our house, and each kid does his run as Sarah drops them off/picks them up on the way. First 1.06 with Julia in 11:30. Then 1.54 with Jenny in 13:03. Then Benjamin being full of energy ran 21:07 for 2.77 with 100 feet of elevation gain which is 7:38 average. This put my Crocs over 300 miles. Still no holes, but one place in the forefoot wore out to about maybe a half of the original width on both feet.

I have run a marathon with a holey shoe before (Moab 2005). The hole was not big at the start, and I thought the race would be all on asphalt, so I would be OK. Then we hit a dirt road around mile 21, and a rock made its way through it which expanded the hole. To make things worse, it started raining too. Then when I got to the finish, the chute was not set up. So I timed myself, and went to work with one other helper to set up the chute and the computers before the second place finisher would make it. My hands were too cold, and not moving very fast, so even though there was a 15 minute gap, we had to time the second finisher manually, as well as third, and forth. After that, everything was smooth.

Something interesting always happens at the Moab Marathon. In 2006 I had to crawl under a barbed wire to get to the finish because of getting on the wrong side of it in the last quarter mile. It was on April Fool's Day, but it was no April Fool's Day joke.

Crocs - 303.88 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 7.50Nap Time: 1.50Total Sleep Time: 9.00
From Brent on Thu, Apr 03, 2008 at 20:14:16

Sasha, you will run brave and strong saturday, you are the leader of all out effort.

Stay Kool, B of BS Rools out

From adam on Thu, Apr 03, 2008 at 20:58:56

was this in the crocs? have you run 5:10 pace in the crocs before?

From Sasha Pachev on Thu, Apr 03, 2008 at 22:07:49

Yes, this was in Crocs. And this was the fastest mile I've run in Crocs so far.

From adam on Thu, Apr 03, 2008 at 23:03:33

if it were me, I wouldn't base a new training idea off of what I felt running one mile on experimental shoes.

if you noticed this on a consistent basis, in normal conditions, then it might be cause to think something is missing...but for right now, you are just beginning to run in beach sandals- so you have to factor that in.

i wish i could even get one of those 5:10 miles in again, let alone in crocs.

From Paul on Fri, Apr 04, 2008 at 08:27:34


Why are you running in Crocs?

From Paul Petersen on Fri, Apr 04, 2008 at 08:51:09

Sasha - see my race entry for 8-25-07. I basically did an interval workout during the race, but ended up just a few seconds off my PR (with a tailwind). I found that just a minute of easier running was enough to recover. It would not surprise me if you had success with long intervals with short recoveries. However, I would keep the intervals at a controlled distance, rather than go until failure.

From Sasha Pachev on Fri, Apr 04, 2008 at 16:15:42

Paul - the purpose of running in Crocs is to practice barefoot-like running. Eventually I will probably transition to Virbam Five Fingers once St. George Running Center gets them in.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Hibernated my way through 15.1 in 1:55:48, 11.1 of it with Jeff. My body thought 7:40 was a good pace, 7:45 even better. This is a good sign. I noticed that when my body wants to hibernate before a race, I often have good races.

Crocs - 318.98 miles.

P.M. 2 with Benjamin in 15:30, then later 2 with Lybi and James in 18:48, and 1 more with James in 9:02.

Crocs - 323.98 miles. 

Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.75
Race: Provo City Half Marathon (13.11 Miles) 01:13:19, Place overall: 2
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Brief report. Provo City Half, 1:13:19, 2nd pace after Shin Nozaki, a Japanese runner living in Orem who ran 1:11:20, great time for that course on a windy day. We ran together up to about 5.2, then he made a strong move and dropped me, then kept increasing the gap throughout the race.

Full report to follow. Drove up to the start with James, Lybi, and Adam. Warmed up around 2 miles with Adam. The race started 20 minutes late due to the chip pickup problem. I wonder why they were not handing the chips at the packet pickup. Talk to Shin at the start. Checked out the crowd. Did not identify any trouble otherwise, but was aware that some may still be lurking.

In the report, I did not use a GPS, and am giving the splits from my $9 Walmart watch by the mile markers painted on the road (as opposed to the race signs. You should ALWAYS go by what is painted on the road on a certified course), and the elevations are from the official race course profile at MapMyRun.Com.

BYU ROTC cadets fired the gun. I somewhat embarrassingly nearly missed the turn on 2nd West. The pace felt slow, and I was already upfront. Shin was right with me. There was a headwind, or possibly just a cross-wind on 2nd West. I saw Ted on his bike up ahead, and figured I'd just pull up and get right behind him. So I did make a bit of a surge and caught up at around 0.5 mark. Shin fell back a bit, but then caught up once I had eased off the pace. We already had nobody with us.

Made a turn on 800 North and headed towards the Provo River Trail. The head wind picked up, I think now this was a true headwind. We went through the first mile in 5:24, which had a net elevation gain of 43 feet. Good, hope not too good.

After about half a mile we finally got off 800 North on the Provo River Trail, finally no headwind. Ted on his bike, I am right on his back wheel, and Shin right on my heels. Second mile in 5:23, net elevation drop of 30 feet.

The third mile almost entirely overlapped the course I run almost every day. Lots of turns and going under bridges, ups and downs. Knowing that we were approaching a nasty headwind section I made a couple of moves on the under the bridge micro-downhills to gap Shin, but he would always close. That is one difference between an American and Japanese runner I noticed. The American will do everything he can to not reveal any signs of weakness until he just cannot hide it anymore. The Japanese runners I've raced completely ignored my moves, let me gap them, and then gradually closed the gap. They also make a lot of noises that may trick you into thinking they are struggling a lot when in fact they may still have a lot of juice left. We got off the trail and turned on Geneva Road heading north. Our third mile had a net drop of 16 feet, and we did it in 5:21. 16:08 at 3 miles, 16:43 at the 5 K.

We turned on the Boat Harbor Drive. Now the fun starts. We are directly against the headwind. Missed mile marker 4. 27:24 at 5 miles, 2 miles in 11:36, 5:38 average. Net elevation drop of 43 feet over those 2 miles. A very nice gradual drop. Too bad we could not make good use of it.

More headwind fun after that for about another quarter mile. It seemed like it gradually picked up as we got closer to the Utah Lake. I am starting to not feel super-snappy. I can tell Shin is getting a bit antsy to go, but waiting for the headwind to be over. We turn off the Boat Harbor Drive on the Provo River Trail, and Shin quickly shifts gears and picks it up to about 5:15 pace. No response from me, I just do not have it after over 2 miles of fighting the headwind. He is gapping me as if I were standing still. Ted went with him for a while, then figured that since he already had a guy on a scooter with him, he could wait for me to catch up and start yelling at me.

I am now getting a lecture from Ted on mental toughness. I've heard those lectures before, but they were directed at his son James while we were pacing him. And now I am getting the grown-up male version of it as well. Clean language, but tough words. At first I just wanted to ignore it but after a couple of minutes I realized that I could either ignore it and run 20-30 seconds slower, or I could obey everything he tells me to do and run 20-30 seconds faster. So I decided to do the latter.

6 miles in 33:04, ouch, 5:40 mile. Elevation gain of 13 feet.

While we ran into a headwind on an open section, now that we had the tailwind the Murphy's Law made it so that we had a tree cover. So we were not getting very much of it, and to make things worse, with the trail being windy we were getting a mild cross-wind on some sections.

At 6.8 the course overlapped a bit with the earlier section around mile 4, and it just happened that James and Lybi reached that particular point at the same time I did. So I got some cheering from them.

Missed mile marker 7. Watching Shin gradually open the gap. Getting a continuous pep-talk from Ted, and trying to respond to it. We got off the trail and headed south on Geneva road. Soon mile marker 8 came, 44:24, 11:20 for the last 2 miles, net elevation gain of 15 feet in 2 miles.

With some friendly cross wind and tail wind, a slight downhill, and some strong encouragement from Ted, was able to regroup on the next mile and hit it in 5:27, 49:51 at 9 miles, 21 seconds behind the 5:30 guy. The mile had 15 feet of elevation loss.

Mile 10 had some cross-wind and a net drop of 2 feet, but it first dropped 10 feet, and then gained 8. I did miss the mark though. Mile 11 was similar to mile 10 wind-wise, but had a net elevation gain of 5 feet with the initial climb of 10 feet, followed by a drop of 5 feet. 1:01:05 at 11 miles, 11:14 for the next 2, 5:30 guy now has 35 seconds.

Mile 12 was the toughest mile of the race. What made it tough was running into a headwind on University Avenue up the railroad overpass. The elevation data from MapMyRun.Com shows a gain of 30 feet, but looking at the actual location of mile 12, it was right on top of the bridge, while MapMyRun.Com shows further climb after mile 12. And the whole length of the course comes out to 13.24. So I assume MapMyRun data is about 0.1 off the certification. This would make the elevation gain to be 40 feet. I ran that mile in 5:59 and was glad it was over when we started going down the bridge.

Mile 13 had a lot of turns, headwind for about 0.5, and net gain of about 23 feet in spite of the quick drop of 10 feet in the first 0.1. Caught a split at the 20 K - 1:09:29. That would make it 52:46 for the 15 K from 5 K to 20 K, acceptable for the conditions and the course. I managed a 5:42 for mile 13, 1:12:46 at 13 miles. Tried to pick it up on the last 0.11, but did not have much of a kick due to fatigue and the last of competition nearby - 32 seconds. Got 1:13:18 on my watch, 1:13:19 officially.

Afterwards, Ted gave me the greatest compliment - "1:13 is not that bad for that wind!". That was exactly what I needed to hear. It means something to me because I know that Ted does not tell you you did a good job when you did not. He'll say: "What happened, were you sick, did you have a cold, did you have a stomach flu, or are you overtrained?" when you do not run the time that he expected you to run.

Since James could run with Lybi only part way due to his recent knee issues, we had planned the operation "Lybi relay". Adam paced her for the first 3 miles, then ran his regular pace the rest of the way passing people and advertising for the blog. James paced her to 8 miles from there, then drove to meet me on Center street as I ran in his direction after the race, picked me up, and took me to a little bit past mile 9 from where I paced Lybi to the finish. I had several concerns for her - slowing down to slower than 12:00 half way through the race due to a severe fuel crash, muscle fatigue, or injury, and how she was going to handle mile 12 with the overpass and the headwind. She performed in the top 20% of the expectation range of what might possibly happen. Her slowest mile was 10:46 (the notorious mile 12), last 5 K in 30:49, 9:54 average, and total time was 2:03:17, very good result for the first half marathon on a tough course on a windy day and with the lack of training recently.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 9:15, 1.5 with Jenny in 13:02, and 2 with Benjamin in 15:24.

Crocs - 328.98 miles. 

Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.75
From jtshad on Sun, Apr 06, 2008 at 08:44:34

Great job on the second place finish on a windy race day!

From Jon on Sun, Apr 06, 2008 at 10:03:43

Nice job. This should give you some good motivation to go beat him next year! That, and the get Shin to join the blog!

From Kim on Sun, Apr 06, 2008 at 11:11:26

Ready for the rest of the story....

From Pat on Sun, Apr 06, 2008 at 17:10:13


Great race considering the conditions. I passed you on the warm-up and wanted to thank you for your thoughts on the book "Brain training for Runners" It's been a great find and I agree one of the read's on running in my experience. Great race!

From air darkhorse on Sun, Apr 06, 2008 at 17:52:47

Sasha, You are definitely dedicated but when is your BIG race? I saw no taper this week and yet you still ran really well. This makes me wonder. Are saving it for Ogden or Des News?

From Paul Petersen on Mon, Apr 07, 2008 at 17:40:56

1:13 is not bad for that wind.

From Sasha Pachev on Mon, Apr 07, 2008 at 18:05:27

Steve - probably Ogden. I'll probably do 120/100 taper for Salt Lake, and 100/70 for Ogden.

From Lybi on Tue, Apr 08, 2008 at 01:47:11

Oh. Dang, I liked the old numbers I had for the race better. What was my Garmin thinking? And did I actually run slower than 12:00 pace, or were you just saying that COULD have happened? Thanks for the help!

Anyway, great job on a tough race day. It's very interesting to hear about you getting paced by Ted. Personally, I'm glad you didn't yell at me...very much (and only when I really needed it).

PS, if it is not below 100 miles a week, it just can not be considered a taper, by definition.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Good sleep. Listened to General Conference. Went on a walk with the kids. Took a nap.

Night Sleep Time: 8.50Nap Time: 1.00Total Sleep Time: 9.50
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Started with 4 with Hyrum in 35:33. He needs volunteers for the Utah Valley Marathon on April 12th. Call him 472-7866 if you would like to help. Then continued with 11.1 more at around 7:30 pace until it started hailing. Then picked it up to 5:30 for a quarter (1:22). It stopped hailing. I backed down to 7:30. Then it started hailing again. I began to wish I had not backed down, I would have already been home. Picked it up, ran the last 0.35 at 5:20 pace, timed the last quarter in 1:20. 1:56:56 for 15.1.

Crocs - 344.08 miles.

P.M. 2 miles with Benjamin in 16:14, then 3 more pushing Joseph in the stroller to Albertsons, and then a long detour back home to make the distance goal.

Crocs - 349.09 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 7.00Nap Time: 2.00Total Sleep Time: 9.00
From adam on Mon, Apr 07, 2008 at 18:38:15

where's a good 1% hill to do 200m repeats on nearby? I would like to do this tomorrow. How many should I look at doing, and at around what kind of pace?

From Sasha Pachev on Tue, Apr 08, 2008 at 11:29:01

The best hill in the 1 mile radius of your house is the one that leads from the roundabout on 820 North to Grandview. Do about 6 at a mile race pace effort to start with.

From Benn on Tue, Apr 08, 2008 at 11:33:28

they make 1% hills? lol

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. 15.11 in 1:56:34. First 12.11 with Jeff and Josse. Did my standard post-VPB speedwork. 0.25 in 1:23, 0.1875 in 59, and 0.3125 in 1:40, total of 0.75 of unplanned tempo running.

Crocs - 364.20 miles.

P.M. 2 with Benjamin in 14:22. A devil got into him, and he made me run my fastest continuous mile of the day in 6:56. Ran 3 more in 22:21.

Crocs - 369.20 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 7.25Nap Time: 1.50Total Sleep Time: 8.75
From wheakory on Tue, Apr 08, 2008 at 12:07:15

How are the Crocs feeling after close to 400 miles? You should do a experience and run those Crocs in the Salt Lake Marathon.

(just kidding). Nice workout Sasha as always.

From Andy on Tue, Apr 08, 2008 at 12:53:35

I am running UVM this weekend and was thinking that could give my jacket to Josse or Hyrum and I can pick it up from them. Thanks,Andy

From Lybi on Tue, Apr 08, 2008 at 23:23:38

Sasha, I have a little off-topic thought. Regarding looking at your hands when learning your piano music...looking at your hands is like tapering for a race. If the individual piece is the priority, then it is okay. If the priority is to learn to read music better, then try not to look. So it's okay to taper, but not all the time. Comprende? This is why I usually have my students work on one challenging piece, and several easier pieces at the same time. It's kind of like a runner that races every weekend, but only tapers 3 or 4 times a year.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. 10.1 with Jeff in 1:19:55 at 5:10 AM. Aerobic hibernation. The Crocs have made past the 50 additional miles demise point predicted by Josse on Sunday. Still no hole. And they weigh only 3.9 ounces. Vibram Five Fingers weigh 6.2!

Crocs - 379.3 miles.

P.M. 1.5 with Benjamin and Jenny in 12:56, 0.5 more with Benjamin in 3:42 (16:38 at 2 miles), 1 with Julia in 10:40, and 7 mostly alone (a couple of miles with Derek who I found on the trail running home from work) in 50:56. Did a couple of pickups.

Crocs - 389.3 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 6.75Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 6.75
From Bonnie on Wed, Apr 09, 2008 at 16:51:42

hi Sasha, I was thinking about one of the discussions from your blog last night - the medical insurance one (I laughed at the tie with 5K time - I would hate that since I would have to pay more, not necessarily because I don't work hard, but I suspect I really don't have any talent). This our month to change providers if we would like and I learned last night that the U actually gives us up to $40/month off of our premium if we belong to a program that keeps track of health indicators (cholesterol, HDL, etc.). When I was at Vanderbilt they did this too ...

On the one hand it is great that more employers are doing this, on the other hand it doesn't help those of you that don't have the benefit of large company policies (which means that none of us pay more as we get older since employers absorb these types of costs).

Anyway - I like your aerobic hibernation idea - I think this is why you can function at such a high level for so much of the time!


From josse on Wed, Apr 09, 2008 at 16:55:05

Ok, ok another 75 miles.

From Jon on Wed, Apr 09, 2008 at 17:05:23

Josse, with those additional 75 miles, the crocs are approaching the 500 mile mark where many people retire normal running shoes. The question is if Sasha will run 5000 miles on the crocs like he does on some of his shoes.

From josse on Wed, Apr 09, 2008 at 17:07:38

He better get out the shoe goo if he does.

From Scott Zincone on Thu, Apr 10, 2008 at 01:15:52

Economically speaking, how much money per mile are the Crocs so far?

From Lybi on Thu, Apr 10, 2008 at 01:34:13

Those crocs weigh less and less after each long run, I'm sure.

Scott, wouldn't it just be about a penny per mile? If they make it to 500 miles it will be exact.

An $80 pair of shoes that were retired after 400 miles would be $.20 a mile. 20X more expensive! But an $80 pair that lasts 4,000 miles is only $.02 a mile, right? So the crocs are cheaper by about half.

From Scott Zincone on Thu, Apr 10, 2008 at 01:40:32

From what I have read of Sasha's high mileage on a pair of shoes, he will probably get to 1000 on these Crocs. This reminds me of that chewing gum commercial where the flavor lasts so long nobody ever buys anymore and they go out of business unless somebody chews a second piece.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Ran with Jeff and Brad. We did our regular hibernation run, except Jeff wanted to shake his legs at 5 K race pace since we are running one this Saturday (Utah Valley). Well, we got carried away on those. I think Jeff just wanted to burn a hole in my Crocs. Our first quarter was 69 instead of planned 75. Our second was 67. On the third one a devil got into Jeff and he hit the first 200 in 31. As if that was not fast enough, he sped up and dropped me. I caught a split of 46 at 300 and complacently eased off to finish in 64. Jeff ended up with 59!

Dropped Jeff off at 10.1, dropped Brad off at 12.1. Ran another 3 miles. Total time for 15.1 was 1:56:48.

Crocs - 404.3 miles.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 11:20, 1.5 with Jenny in 13:20, 0.5 more with Benjamin in 3:36, and 2 more alone in 15:22.

Crocs - 409.3 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.75
From JohnK on Thu, Apr 10, 2008 at 19:39:08

I can't believe the Crocs have held up for you so well, 400+ miles and day after day. Have you thought of contacting the manufacturer and doing some paid advertising? I'm serious! I've never owned a pair so don't know what they're like but I'm pretty curious now. What particular model do you have? Do you wear socks with them?

From josse on Thu, Apr 10, 2008 at 19:54:41

Sasha I don't like the new setup for the discussion board. It is very hard on the eyes. I would strongly advise to change it back.

From Lybi's Mom on Thu, Apr 10, 2008 at 21:24:13

Hey Sasha. What's with the width of the comment section of Lybi's blog. It was hard to find it because it was all off the screen. Can you fix it?

From Sasha Pachev on Thu, Apr 10, 2008 at 22:37:54

I can only fix it by removing Kerry's comment, which has a long URL. This is not a new setup. This is the only way most browsers would be willing to display that type of text.

From Lybi's Mom on Thu, Apr 10, 2008 at 22:46:00

I actually just figured it out myself. I hadn't noticed the long, unbreakable name thing. Oh well. I had to call her to find the comments. I think I will call her and suggest she put a statement in her blogging to tell that you have to scroll sideways to find the comments.

From Lybi's Mom on Thu, Apr 10, 2008 at 22:50:32

When I was ending blogging that last comment I happened to notice the little ad things the browser puts on. It was definitely not family friendly. You probably don't have any choice over that. Do you have the ability to complain to them?

From Hayden on Thu, Apr 10, 2008 at 23:24:07

Hey this is Running Warrior, i have an injury right now, you can check it out on my blog. If you have any advise im open to anything for a fast and good recovery.

From Sasha Pachev on Fri, Apr 11, 2008 at 09:47:28

John - I have actually contacted Crocs (even though my Crocs are not real Crocs, they are No Boundaries, a generic Walmart brand, but I figured I'd have better luck with Crocs than with Walmart), and the only thing I've gotten from them is an e-mail from CSR saying she was forwarding it to the right person.

Hayden - to understand why you got injured double-check the Top Ten Training Mistakes list (link at the top), specifically the stuff about pushing the pace on easy runs and anaerobic speedwork without proper aerobic conditioning. I realize unfortunately being on a high school team you may not have a lot of choice on the latter, but I would still talk to your coach about it. I can talk to him as well if you want me to. On the former (pushing the pace on easy runs), it is all under your control.

To recover from the injury run easy pace (with the girls, if they cannot keep it up, it is too fast) until you feel no pain, and for another week after that. Keep the mileage, though. No less than 8 miles a day unless the pain is getting worse even at a slow pace.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Jeff was sick this morning with a cold. So I ran alone. Took it easy. Ran about 7:20 - 7:30 pace for 12.5 miles. Then a biker with a dog was catching up to me, and I began to wonder how fast I would have to run for them not to pass me. Turned out that about 6:50 pace was enough to hold them off, and then they stopped anyway. But I was already in gear, and figured since I had only 2 miles left, I'd be OK. So I just ran that pace to the end. 1:49:58 for 15.1. The Crocs are on the verge of developing a hole, there is a small crack on the right one, but I cannot yet feel the asphalt.

Crocs - 424.4 miles.

P.M. 1.5 with Benjamin and Jenny in 13:16. 3.5 with Jeff later in 27:40.

Crocs - 429.4 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.75
From Superfly on Fri, Apr 11, 2008 at 14:32:29

Ironically there is a full page ad in Runners World this month for Croc's. I think you might be on to something here Sasha. You may be able to market them to runners for running...

From wheakory on Sat, Apr 12, 2008 at 00:20:48

I think its amazing how many miles you've put on the Crocs. Nice work today and good luck on the race tomorrow.

Race: Utah Valley 5 K (3.107 Miles) 00:16:20, Place overall: 2
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Woke up this morning at 3:00 AM to go to the bathroom and then could not fall   asleep. Oddly enough was worried about Steve getting lost on the course again and getting a bummer instead of $1000. After about an hour of wondering I finally decided to call Hyrum (figuring he was up setting up the course anyway) and make sure everything is OK. Hyrum reassured me everything was fine, but by then I was wound up enough that I could not fall back asleep.

Had a bit of an adventure at the start with Jeff not realizing the race was chip-timed and not bringing the chip. We finally got his chip, but that gave us only 0.5 warmup in 27 F weather. With me not getting enough sleep, Jeff fighting the cold, and neither one of us getting a good warmup for such a short race it was lame racing the lame. So we did our best under the circumstances.

Traded leads every minute through the first mile, then I took my lead and Jeff fell back. Caught 4:39 split at 24 mile marker of the marathon, which is 5:14 pace. Got 9:55 at mile 25 marker, 5:16. With about 0.5 to go Jeff made a strong move, and caught, and passed me. I latched on to him, but then he started the kick and gapped me. 15:14 at mile marker 26, 5:19. I closed a bit half way through, but not enough, and then he opened up what I closed again. We ended up 1-2, Jeff 16:19.7, me 16:20.9. The course was flat, the last 5 K of the marathon. I would say the time was acceptable for the lack of sleep, the cold weather, and the lack of warm-up.

Paced Benjamin. He ended up with 21:32.2 running in Crocs, a PR by 28 seconds. Then drove to around mile 18 and paced Steve from there. Steve won with 2:37:08 with a gap of over 19 minutes in spite of having a cold. Then paced Andy, he got a decent time for a training run - 3:02. Then paced Josse, and watched her move into the lead on the last mile performing the proverbial lamb sacrifice as she moved into big money and left her opponent with none. Then ran some more with Jeff back to where we left our cars. Ended up with about 18.4 miles total.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 11:20, 1.5 with Jenny in 13:04.

Crocs - 432.9 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 5.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 5.00
From air dark horse on Sun, Apr 13, 2008 at 10:21:13

Hey, thanks again for towing me home to the finish. Considering where you started it definitely must given you some miles today.

From Christi on Sun, Apr 13, 2008 at 11:50:07

Wow- considering I ran a 5k the same day, I am blown away by your time! Congrats on the 2nd place- awesome!

From josse t on Sun, Apr 13, 2008 at 22:37:18

Thank you for the extra push at the end of the marathon. You do know how to make someone mad enough to want to run faster. Really it was great and thanks for the teaching along the way. Close race for the two of you.

From barry on Mon, Apr 14, 2008 at 08:55:07

I have a question for you. I am running a half-marathon this Saturday, how much should I cut back on my mileage?

From Sasha Pachev on Tue, Apr 15, 2008 at 12:37:48

Barry - I would actually increase it or at the very least keep it the same. You have been running only 20-40 miles a week. At this volume, cut back does not produce the effect you would expect from a taper. Rather, you just lose fitness. I would, however, ease off on your pace, not just this week, but in general. Try running more mileage at no faster than 8:00 pace. You gain absolutely nothing from running at your 10 K - half marathon race pace more often than a couple of times a week. If you do it daily, it overloads the nervous system and/or beats up your muscles, bones, joints, and ligaments. So that puts a cap on how far you can run each day, which in turn puts a cap on how much you can develop your aerobic endurance, which develops much more in proportion to distance than in proportion to speed. I think if you developed it properly you could run 1:18 half marathon, maybe even faster.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Made up on lost sleep. We had a Stake Conference. A couple of interesting moments. First, there is a Latino brother on our High Council whose first name is Angel, and whose middle name in Moroni. So while they were sustaining the officers, they went through the entire High Council, and finally got to him. Every member of the High Council stood up as his name was being announced. Finally they got to Angel Moroni, and to make things more interesting, for one reason or another he could not be there, so his seat was empty.

Then there was a talk on the Articles of Faith. A story was mentioned (probably from around 40 years ago) of how a man was traveling on a bus from New York to San Francisco, and in Salt Lake City a little girl sat right next to him. He saw a sign on the highway that said "Visit the Mormon Sunday School", and asked the girl to tell her what Mormons believed. She recited all 13 articles of faith, and discussed each one. The man was impressed, and looked up the missionaries at his first opportunity. He ended up getting baptized.

I thought about how the times have changed. The girl reminded me of my daughter Jenny. First, I would not trust Jenny to go alone on a bus even for a short trip, and, unfortunately, if for some reason she had to and there was no other alternative, I would definitely tell her not to talk to any men. Second, when I drove on I-80 from SLC to San Francisco a couple of years ago I do not recall seeing signs inviting you to visit the Mormon Sunday School. Instead, there are plenty of signs inviting you to gamble in Wendover, followed by several signs later on once you pass Wendover telling you not to pick up hitchhikers because you are near a correctional facility. Ironically, the correctional facility is located in a place called Independence Valley.  

Later in the evening we went to Jeff and Kimia's house for dinner. After dinner we found some good use for his wedding present - Cooties, which is a game for children ages 3-6 where you have to assemble strange insect-looking six-legged creatures. I thought this would be a great manual dexterity/eye-hand coordination test. So we tested everybody on the task of attaching all 6 legs. Results:

Jeff - 9.96 seconds - tried many times, most of the time was around 11 seconds.

Kimia - 12.1 on the second try

Sarah - 14.? on the first and only try

me - 14.65 on my best attempt. I've tried many times, and most of the time got 18.

Benjamin - 15.2 in his best attempt. In all others he got too nervous and was taking longer than 20 seconds.

I would be interested to see what others can do. 

Night Sleep Time: 9.00Nap Time: 2.00Total Sleep Time: 11.00
From Jon on Mon, Apr 14, 2008 at 15:30:01

It doesn't look like you should petition for a reduction in health care insurance costs based on dexterity...

From Lybi on Tue, Apr 15, 2008 at 10:19:11

Funny! Brother Angel, some parents are so brave. I met a lady who had always wanted to name her 1st daughter "Liberty," but then she married a guy with the last name "Bell."

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. 15.1 alone in 1:48:03. Did 8x100 strides, and a pickup for a mile in 5:53. I did the strides because I remembered it would be a good idea. The mile pickup was accidental. I saw a lady riding a bike in front of me, and decided I wanted to pass her. Then I did not want her to pass me back, so I sped up. Then I decided to hold the pace for the whole mile.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 11:28, 1.5 with Jenny in 13:24, 2 with Benjamin in 17:21, and 0.7 alone in 5:15. Pushed Jacob in the single stroller when I ran with Jenny and Benjamin.

Crocs - 453.2 miles. 

Night Sleep Time: 7.50Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.50
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Ran 15 in 1:57:56. First 8 with Brad and Josse. Did 0.25 in 1:27 on a post-VPB chase. The right Croc now officially has a hole. About 2mm wide. Still in runnable condition, though.

Crocs - 468.2 miles.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 10:56, 1.5 with Jenny in 13:16, 2 with Benjamin in 15:23, 0.7 alone in 4:49, and also ran to the ESL class at the church and back because it was cold. Saw a small leaf-burning fire on the other side of the Provo River that apparently got out of control. They had to call the firefighters.

Crocs - 473.65 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 7.50Nap Time: 2.00Total Sleep Time: 9.50
From Jon on Tue, Apr 15, 2008 at 14:48:05

They still lasted almost 500 miles. Did you wear them for anything other than running?

From Sasha Pachev on Tue, Apr 15, 2008 at 14:53:54

Yes, I used them as regular shoes as well.

From Jon on Tue, Apr 15, 2008 at 14:58:50

So they probably lasted more than 500 miles- not too shaby.

From josse on Tue, Apr 15, 2008 at 15:13:45

After looking at them today I really thought they would make it 500 miles without a hole. Maybe it was all that bounding and sprinting.

From wheakory on Tue, Apr 15, 2008 at 17:44:17

Sasha what have you noticed as far as performance with Crocs vs racing flats.

What type of effort could you have performance wise in Crocs if you were to run a marathon?

My concern would be the support they would have on a lot of turning in a course, but maybe there fine. I think you should be a new pair and run them in SLC.

From Karl on Tue, Apr 15, 2008 at 23:52:40

I know I need to keep up the mileage, but I got a bad cold and I didn't want this year to end up like last year so I've got to work back into it. Have any advice on how to do that safely?

From Sasha Pachev on Wed, Apr 16, 2008 at 15:38:05

Karl - when increasing the mileage you have to be very careful in order to avoid injury/overtraining. You must run slow. Nothing is too slow. Running with girls at 8:30 pace is not too slow. Running 6:30 pace is too fast. 7:30 is good, 7:40 better. You must get enough sleep and eat right. Track speedwork greatly interferes with your ability to safely and productively increase your mileage. You may not have a lot of choice in this area being on a high school team - high school coaches are addicted to speedwork. Do what you can to minimize the damage. Most high school runners will slack everywhere else except a track workout. That is backwards. They would do a lot better if they slacked in the track workout, and saved the effort for extending their easy runs, not skipping them to begin with, eating right, and getting to bed on time.

You should up your mileage to about 60 a week, and hold it there for 6 months. Do not cut back when racing unless it is something very very important. After that you might be ready to go up to 70-80 if 60 does not make you feel tired. If it does, go through the checklist of training mistakes - is it really a consistent 60, or is sometimes 40, or even worse, 20, are the runs easy enough, do you sleep enough, do you get to bed early enough, do you eat right, are you pushing yourself too hard in the track workouts?

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. 10.1 with Jeff and Josse in 1:22:57. Had some interesting conversations. Discussed potty training since Joseph started his yesterday and was very successful. Then discussed the importance of mothers. A home without a mother is like an ice hockey team without a goalee. Then discussed when it is appropriate to do speed work. I told Josse she should not do any until she breaks 1:26 in a non-aided half in Utah, and that Michelle should not do any until she breaks 1:20. The logic is that both have plenty of natural speed to do it, and if they are not doing it they are being held back by the lack of aerobic endurance rather than the lack of speed.

Crocs - 483.75 miles. The hole on the right shoe is up to about 4mm. It is about under the attachment point of the big toe. Still runnable, I could not even tell there was a hole.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 10:08, 1.5 with Jenny in 13:15, 2 with Benjamin and Jared in 17:12, 0.7 alone in 4:48.

Crocs - 488.95 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 6.75Nap Time: 1.00Total Sleep Time: 7.75
From Adam RW on Wed, Apr 16, 2008 at 22:26:17

Sasha, I don't think this is fair. If you are racing in those crocs Saturday you will need to carry some weights. The aid that you will get from the weight difference is just not fair to the rest of us mere mortals, especially now with some of the bottom missing :)

From air dark horse on Wed, Apr 16, 2008 at 22:48:29

Interesting analogy on the goalee statement... Anyway, I left you an e-mail on a couple of things. And by the way, are you really going to race in Crocs?

From Walter on Wed, Apr 16, 2008 at 23:24:54

Hey whats up my man!? I wanted to give you a tip I heard from my brother with potty training his boys. He put cheerios in the toilet and told them to try and sink them. It really worked good and since I have all girls all i have to worry about is them falling in the toilet. Keep up the good work buddy! See ya

From Benn on Thu, Apr 17, 2008 at 11:04:48

I was telling everyone at work about Sasha the Crocs runner, and you've achieved superstardom - borderline superhero status among the local Borders employees. We even spent about an hour designing a whole plot for CrocMan. haha. It'll be sweet if the one guy can design a cartoon sketch of it, because he's a comic book artist and also works for Disney. Have you contacted the company yet? For all you know they could sign you onto the wear and tear test team, and send you free $40.00 Crocs for life! You know, like if you get a million miles on a car sometimes they buy you a new one for free? :)

From Sasha Pachev on Thu, Apr 17, 2008 at 13:29:55

While I like running in Crocs, I would not race in them without a pre-arranged compensation because they may slow me done should the race hit a rough spot. I can go normal pace on a smooth surface but my feet are still too tender to go on rough asphalt with small rocks sticking out without caution. I have contacted Crocs, but have not gotten anything except the note that the CSR was forwarding my message to the appropriate person. If I were to sign a deal with Crocs, I would want something more than just a life time supply. I would go for something like $100 cash for every race I win in them + the entry fee covered for every race run in Crocs where I cannot get a comp. If I got a deal like that, my Saturday long runs would always include a 5 K tempo, and sometimes even 2 or 3!

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Ran the first 2 with Ted and Jeff. Then 6 more with Jeff. Decided to freshen up my sense of pace for the race on Saturday. Ran a mile at a conservative marathon pace in 5:42. Earlier Jeff and I were talking about the lazy girls on his brother's cross-country team that go out for 0.5 until they are out of sight of the coach, and then sit in the bushes for the remainder of the run. No wonder high-school coaches overdo on speedwork. They are probably afraid there students would do nothing otherwise. So I was feeling just like those girls at the start of the tempo mile and we ran the first 200 of it at 6:00 pace. Then we got into a good rhythm, but it still felt easier than I expected for the conditions - it was about 27 degrees and I was wearing pants and a jacket. Total time for 8 miles was 1:01:02.

Crocs - 496.95 miles.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 9:42, 1.5 with Jenny in 12:36, and 2.5 alone in 18:30.

Crocs - 501.95 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 7.50Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.50
From Scott Zincone on Thu, Apr 17, 2008 at 15:15:30

We had some girls on my high school team like that as well. Most of the boys were good about practicing, but we did have some days we played more than ran.

I only wish I had the running discipline back then like some of the other teenagers on this blog do now. I may have been all-state if I had worked harder.

From James W on Thu, Apr 17, 2008 at 15:18:04

You're not planning on wearing the crocs for the marathon, are you?

From Sasha Pachev on Thu, Apr 17, 2008 at 15:24:22

If somebody gave me $500 I would. I am figuring I would race slightly better in my racing flats, and "slightly better" could possibly be worth $500. I have raced a marathon in a pair of beat-up racing flats that had a hole at the start before, though.

From josse on Thu, Apr 17, 2008 at 18:59:51

Ya but didn't you get a rock in your shoe from the hole?

From Sasha Pachev on Thu, Apr 17, 2008 at 19:10:04

Yes, but it did not bother me very much. I could put up it for $500.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. 1 with Julia in 9:41, 1.5 with Jenny in 12:07. She PR'ed on the last mile of it with the time of 7:30. Then 2 with Benjamin in 15:26. SLC marathon tomorrow.

Crocs - 506.45 miles.

P.M. Jogged from the car to the SLC marathon expo, back to re-park it, an back from re-parking it. It was windy.

Crocs - 507.75 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 9.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 9.00
From josse on Fri, Apr 18, 2008 at 13:17:55

Good luck tomorrow. Looks like the crocs made it to the 500 mark!

From Little Bad Legs on Fri, Apr 18, 2008 at 13:23:45

Good luck in the marathon!

From Paul on Fri, Apr 18, 2008 at 15:39:49

Best of luck!

Does Crocs make a racing flat?

From Brent on Fri, Apr 18, 2008 at 21:23:16

Sasha, best to you on race day

Stay Kool, B of BS Rools out

From Lybi on Fri, Apr 18, 2008 at 23:40:08

Since I won't be there to cheer for you...



B I N G O your way to victory, coach!

Race: Salt Lake Marathon (26.22 Miles) 02:34:07, Place overall: 6
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Executive summary: Salt Lake Marathon, 2:34:07, 6th pace. Windy day, slow times. Overloaded field, got outclassed into the no money land. On the positive site, collected nice LDR circuit points for being first in the circuit, and for the first time in my life (out of 43 marathons) ran a negative split on a non-St. George course. Talk about being a slow learner.

Details: Stayed with Adam and his family the night before. That made it very nice for getting to the start as he lives right next to it. Met up with Kory, and Dave Holt at the start. A pack of Kenyans/Ethiopians at the start, Shin Nozaki, Alexander Thomas, Matt Harmer. Trouble, but hopefully there will be enough Kenyan DNF's / jog-ins to make top 5. In all truth, though, I need to work on being fit to race those guys honestly, being able to beat them in the half marathon to begin with, rather than counting them at the start and hoping enough are going to have a bad day.

Adam made a nice map of the Salt Lake City Marathon on the Course Tool, so when I say the mile was supposed to be X it means based on 2:30 pace projection and the elevation profile the Course Tool thought this how fast I was supposed to run it.

We started with the Star Spangled Banner. Oh, say does that star-spangled banner yet wave? You bet, it was waving quite a bit today in the wind, you could see it all over. I wish they had sung the second verse as well, it would have been even better:

What is that which the breeze, o'er the towering steep,
As it fitfully blows, half conceals, half discloses?

Half and full marathon started together, so that was nice. Relaxed through the downhill first mile with mild headwind in 5:49 (target 5:31). Perhaps too much relaxation. Adam and Kory fell back a bit. I motioned to them to catch up, but they thought the pace was too fast. So I made a move and caught up to the Kenyans accompanied by some half-marathon runners. Next mile was 5:39, it was into a more significant headwind, but not a complete killer (target 5:44) . On the third mile the Kenyans were done with the warmup. Nate Hornok, who was running the half at first went with them, the later came back to me. The headwind was the same as in mile 2. Got 5:49, target 6:02. Good, lets hope not too good.

On the fourth mile we turned on 21st south and headed down a nice 4-5% grade. I passed Nate and did not care. Finally no headwind, but not for long. So I figured I'd make up some time. Got 5:04, target 5:11. Eased off on the next mile, Nate caught up to me, we chatted a bit, I sat on him for a quarter or so. Then at around 4.6 it was time to say goodbye, it was half-marathon turnaround point. So I was left alone. Could see Alexander Thomas up ahead. A little further Shin and a Kenyan that fell off the lead pack. That is a good sign for me. Kenyans, the type that come to the caliber of Salt Lake Marathon races usually hang on with the leaders until they literally cannot go any further at that pace. Next mile in 5:31, projected 5:22. Why so slow? But the split at 5 was 27:53, only a second slower than 2:30:00 projection.

Hit the Sugarhouse loop. This has been one of my least favorite parts of the course. Today it ended up being my favorite part of the stretch between 5 and 13 miles. Next favorite was the climb on Keller Lane between miles 8 and 9. The reason being not that all of a sudden I've become a terrific hill runner. Rather, those were the only sections on that stretch that did not have headwind today.

Mile 6 in 6:01, target 6:05. Encouraging. And then the wind got stronger. Do not remember my splits on the next few miles, but I got to 9 in 52:24, losing to 25 seconds to 2:30 projection. I believe I gained a couple of seconds on the Keller Lane mile (from 8 to 9). Mile 10 was supposed to be 5:37. Good luck with that headwind, only 5:57, 58:21 at 10 miles, last 5 in 30:28. Followed by a 5:59 for mile 11 that was supposed to be 5:25! Either the headwind picked up on that mile or I wore myself out trying too hard on mile 10.

No worries, though. I had already realized that 2:30 ideal conditions effort today would not result in a 2:30 time today, and not just for me, but for everybody else as well, and I was going by effort while making a mental note of what kind of split that effort produced rather than stressing out about not hitting a target split.

Mile 12 was 6:01 vs target of 5:49. Mile 13 6:25 vs target of 6:08. That is where we got the full gamut of adversity - headwind + uphill. 1:16:46 at 13 miles, 1:17:25 at half-way. The 2:30 guy put a good 1:34 on me on that stretch between 5 miles and the half.

No more headwind, tailwind all the way back, or at least so I thought. On mile 14 just a cross-wind, but it feels so nice to be running downhill and with no headwind. 5:42 on the next mile, target 5:36. Not bad considering I had to shift gears from 6:25 pace earlier. Next mile in 5:36, target 5:25, followed by 5:34 right on target. I think the tailwind helped on this one finally. The weather started getting uncomfortably warmer. Mile 17 was 5:49, target 5:33. I think that is where the subtle fatigue of battling the wind in the earlier miles started to catch up to me in combination with a temperature that was not that warm (maybe 65 degrees), but being not used to it from the winter training took its toll. Do not recall my splits in the next 3 miles, but I got to 20 in 1:56:41, 2:15 behind the 2:30 guy. Passed a Kenyan, and then Alexander Thomas.

Discovered a new way of fighting the fatigue. Loud grunts. Found them to be very effective. Ran the next 5 K in 18:43, and incidentally the last one in 18:43 as well. Worked my way through a crowd of half-marathoners. Saw Ryan Gurr. He told me I was in 7th place, and gave me the update on who was ahead and how they were doing. Not much hope. However, I anticipated that the weakest Kenyan/Ethiopian in that pack will either DNF or jog in, but only one. And sure enough, with about 1.5 to go I see him walking. Suzanna Thomas was there on a bike and yelled that I am now 6th or maybe 5th. So this Kenyan (his name is Festus Kioko), heard that, caught up to me and then pulled ahead. I got right on his tail, and I got really mad. I decided I'd sit on him, and then we'd duke it out in the kick, and he would have to work to beat me. Shortly afterwards he either remembered that there were 5 guys already ahead or for some other reason decided the fight was not worth it, and went back to the jog-in/walk-in mode.

2:34:07 at the finish, 1:17:25 first half, 1:16:42. Genna Tufa won in a very close race in 2:23:10. Race results are available at

P.M. 1 with Julia in 10:57, 1.5 with Benjamin and Jenny in 13:13, then 1 more with Benjamin in 7:43, which gave him 20:56 for 2.5. Toyed with the idea of running another 4 to repeat  Clyde's feat of running the same number of miles as the same number of years I was going to turn on Monday, but my body told me 31 miles for the day would be plenty, and I decided that being more fit for Ogden and other races was more important than hitting a magic number in training. So we can say that I made it to 31 with 26 at marathon pace, and then my age got to me :-)

Night Sleep Time: 7.83Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.83
From Hayden on Sat, Apr 19, 2008 at 18:11:19

Great job on the Marathon man. Way to represent the State of Utah. Hey thanks for the advise on the quad it helped me this week alot and i am almost right back up their.

From josse on Sat, Apr 19, 2008 at 18:12:39

I think all runners are slow learners. And when we do learn we forget the next day;) Great job!

From sarah on Sat, Apr 19, 2008 at 18:50:38

Good job are my hero!

From Brent on Sat, Apr 19, 2008 at 19:33:10

Sasha, I knew the course would be trouble for the marathon runners, I did the bike tour. The wind was pretty darn tough. Great effort on a tough day. You always have such a strong spirit.

Stay Kool, B of BS Rools out

From Paul Petersen on Sat, Apr 19, 2008 at 19:51:35

Nice job. I used loud grunts at Ogden and St. George last year, it is very effective. It's even better when combined with dumping cold water down your neck.

From Christi on Sat, Apr 19, 2008 at 20:03:28

Great job Sasha! Tough wind today. I saw a quick post race interview from you on the 5pm news,(channel 2, CBS I believe)- you'll have to watch it tonight!

From Cody D on Sat, Apr 19, 2008 at 20:03:46

Nice Job Sasha! Top Local runner. Tough conditions today too.

From Tom on Sat, Apr 19, 2008 at 20:05:12

Great job Sasha. I'll have to remember the loud grunting trick next time.

From barry on Sat, Apr 19, 2008 at 20:17:43

Great Job on the race Sasha. Thank you for helping me with my running; I was able to take off thirteen minutes off my best half marathon.

From Lybi on Sat, Apr 19, 2008 at 20:26:28

Heroic effort, Sasha! Way to be the first American. And nice negative split!

Loud grunts, huh? I'll have to try that. I remember you tried to get me to make sounds in my race, but they all sounded so weak and pathetic to me they were draggin me down. A nice, hearty grunt would be much better I'm sure. :)

From Jon on Sat, Apr 19, 2008 at 20:44:17

Great job, Sasha- nice negative split in some windy conditions.

We'll start calling you Paul if you do too many loud grunts...

From Chad on Sat, Apr 19, 2008 at 20:50:53

Congratulations on the great finish. You looked very strong at mile 20.

From josse on Sat, Apr 19, 2008 at 20:53:45

I have used screaming before, if anything it make the person you are passing not want to come with you:)

From Kim on Sat, Apr 19, 2008 at 20:57:55

Great job Sasha! I wish the whole FRB community could have been there to cheer you into the finish line! You are an incredible runner and so nice to share all of your knowledge with all of us!

From Superfly on Sat, Apr 19, 2008 at 21:02:40

Good race Sasha. Your extra training is paying off with a strong run like this in the wind. Keep up the good work and I'll see you in Ogden in a few weeks.

From adamr on Sat, Apr 19, 2008 at 23:26:57

Caught you and Adam on the news tonight. There were three or four clips of you running plus interview with you both. Catch you monday, 6:30 (schools gone, I'll be back much more), and way to tough this run out, especially with much of it on your own.

From Dale on Sun, Apr 20, 2008 at 11:05:10

Excellent race. Glad you figured out how to run a negative please teach me! Congrats.

From Michael on Sun, Apr 20, 2008 at 11:16:20

Way to run Sasha, congrats on negative split, your toughness will get you ready for your next races

From Dave Holt on Sun, Apr 20, 2008 at 11:45:26

Sasha, very good job. I think you made the smart move when you decided to close the gap on the leaders at the end of mile 2 - then it was just Matt H. and I a ways back and that's not where you needed to be.

From Adam RW- on Sun, Apr 20, 2008 at 15:01:01

Great report and great race. It was nice conversing with you on Friday and I think we both implemented some of that discussion in our races.

From James on Sun, Apr 20, 2008 at 16:02:55

Solid race! It was very windy yesterday, so a good time considering. Did you get anything special for being the first Utah runner?

From Lybi on Mon, Apr 21, 2008 at 11:27:33

Happy Birthday, Sasha! Hope it is your BEST birthday ever. Here's to having a metabolic age of 12 for at least another decade!

From Christi on Mon, Apr 21, 2008 at 13:10:59

HAPPY BIRTHDAY! I think its cool that you're thinking about running 35 miles on your BD!

From James on Mon, Apr 21, 2008 at 13:46:14

Wow 35! Happy Birthday! Now you are in the true elite age group for marathoners, what are you going to do about it?

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Had to pick up my mom at the airport very late at night, so did not get a lot of sleep. My mom will be with us for the next month. She brought my training logs from 1986-87, I was 12 at the start and 14 at the end. They are all in Russian. I noticed a pattern. Good runs and races are recorded in very neat penmanship, while the entries for the bad ones look like chicken paw or physician's writing. I will enter the info a bit at a time in the next few months.

Conversation in the Primary after they announced Cub Scout Olympics. Scott (Benjamin's friend): Last year I won. Benjamin: That's because I was not there to beat you! Scott: I challenge you to a 50 yard dash! Benjamin: I challenge you to a 10 K! 

Night Sleep Time: 5.75Nap Time: 1.50Total Sleep Time: 7.25
From Michael on Fri, Apr 25, 2008 at 14:02:45

Interesting how postive results trigger postive thinking which even trigger good penmanship (your Russian running journals)

Good attitude for Benjamin challenging the othe rkid to a 10K - I dont think the other kid would know what he is in for against a kid with Benjamins running talents

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Started from my house with Daniel and Adam. Picked up Jeff at his house. Then ran on the trail. Daniel turned around half-way through, then Adam a couple of miles later. Jeff and I ran to the end of the trail and then back to my house. Then Jeff ran some more, I was done. 11.6 in 1:33:11. Got beat by the 8:00 guy, but I could not care less. Nice recovery run, had a good chat.

P.M. 1 mile with Julia in 10:28, 1.5 with Jenny in 13:24, 2 with Benjamin in 15:50.

Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 1.00Total Sleep Time: 9.00
From Seth Wold on Tue, Apr 22, 2008 at 13:11:35

Way to go on the SLC marathon. You are the man Sasha.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. 12.1 with Jeff and Josse in 1:34:57. Chatted the whole way and did not particularly care about the pace.

Night Sleep Time: 0.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.00
From Jon on Tue, Apr 22, 2008 at 21:35:26

It's good to see you taking it easy after the race.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. 10.1 alone at 5:10 AM in 1:13:23. Started out slow, did not feel like breaking 8:00 by much for a while. Then sped up to around 7:20, with three miles to go to 6:40, and to 5:50 on the last 0.6.

P.M. 2 with Benjamin in 17:23. He had an assignment not to break 17:00 today and he somewhat reluctantly complied. Then did some bounds and sprints while my mom and the kids took pictures. I'll post those in a bit. Then 1 with Julia in 11:16, 1.5 with Jenny in 12:28 pushing Jacob (she closed with a 7:56 mile on a whim), and another mile on my own with Jacob in the stroller. Did a 100 meter bound, covered it in 44 steps. 

Night Sleep Time: 6.75Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 6.75
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Eventful run. Started out with Hyrum and Daniel. Ran to Jeff's house. Ran back to my house to drop Hyrum off. Saw cops on the trail, police car driving on the trail as well. Saw a truck parked on the 820 N bridge. Something was going on.

Then ran with Jeff and Daniel to BYU Smith's Fieldhouse to do a leg extension test. I did 200 on the left leg and 180 on the right. Jeff did 160 on the right and 180 on the left. Then we ran back in the direction of my house, dropped Daniel off and did 4x100 on the trail with full jogging rest. I wanted to do this workout because I noticed that I am able to push my top end speed a lot more when following somebody. So my reasoning was - whatever it is that keeps me from running fast is partially overcome when I follow somebody running fast. Not sure why, but it works, so I should try it.

On the first one I got 15.3 (standing start, 0.5-1% downhill grade), then another 15.3 from a standing start slightly rolling and into a mild headwind. Then 14.7 jogging start, rolling and into a slight headwind. The last one was 14.3 from a jogging start, slightly rolling and with a slight tailwind. Jeff put about a second on me on the last one in the last 50 meters or so.

After doing this I think I've figured out what is going on and I am very excited about it. Suppose I am following somebody at 5:00 pace until I can't. Well, I can run with bad form and by the time I know it I am too tired to do anything about it. I just cannot hold the pace anymore. I can even do the same all the way up to 4:00 pace. But if you make me go 3:50 pace, I can do it for a little bit, but not unless I fix the form. If I am running with bad form, I know immediately because I start falling behind. This critical training speed needs to be fast enough that it is impossible to run with bad form but slow enough that I can do it within my ability to auto-correct. The only way I can keep up the pace at all at that speed is by running with a better form. I do not need to know what it is that I am doing wrong as in not lifting up knee, not extending the leg, running too tight, etc. Nor do I need to worry about it. The desperation of being left behind and the lightening fast immediate feedback makes me intuitively find it and fix it.

A bird decided to make our run more eventful and did number two on Jeff. I asked him if he knew if birds did number one as well. He said yes, and he happened to know it from personal experience as well.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 10:49, 1.5 with Jenny in 13:16, 2 with Benjamin in 16:00 with 2x100 in the middle, first in 19.4, second in 17.8. This was Benjamin's PR in 100 meters. He also decided to run the last quarter fast, we did it in 1:33.

Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
From tyler on Thu, Apr 24, 2008 at 15:37:05

Sorry, I was up late studying and slept through the alarm.

From James W on Thu, Apr 24, 2008 at 16:43:46

I thought the birds mixed the two together . . .

Interesting observation about the form - this makes sense that as you speed up, your form will become more and more efficient. It sounds like what might be helpful is to videotape yourself running at the faster pace so that you can consciously correct at a slower speed what is done intuitively at the higher speed. I am not sure that form corrections made at critical speeds will automatically carry over to slower speeds.

From Sasha Pachev on Thu, Apr 24, 2008 at 17:35:09

I am currently of the opinion that conscious form correction is ineffective. Reasons:

a) I have never heard of anybody who has produced a data-backed claim to have gotten faster via conscious form correction.

b) In my own experience, whenever I tried to correct it consciously I could convince myself I was running with a better form but never saw any measurable results in terms of speed or economy.

c) It is next to impossible to know what you need to correct. Some defects are of purely visual nature. Others are affecting the speed but are invisible at least to a naked eye. Some of those might even be invisible to an instrumented eye as well.

I think for slower speeds I just need to learn to be more sensitive to the level of discomfort and have somebody pull me at the slower critical speed for longer.

From Cody on Thu, Apr 24, 2008 at 18:59:04

The only "form correction" I have been able to do is to focus on wasted up-down movement. Focus on a distant point and don't let it go up and down. Smooth form = more efficient = less wasted energy.

From Lulu on Thu, Apr 24, 2008 at 21:40:54


Birds only have one opening for expelling their wastes. Usually, the bird mixes #1 (white because of the uric acid) and #2 (black) in the same elimination through the cloaca or vent. If someone thinks a bird peed on them, probably they just got a "watery" dropping. Bird droppings are bird droppings. Those are my words of wisdom for today.

From Steve Hooper on Fri, Apr 25, 2008 at 13:30:18

Group Run 15- 20 from the store at 6am Sat.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Easy run, started out with Hyrum, ran to Jeff's house, then we all ran together to my house and dropped Hyrum off. Then ran 7.5 more with Jeff and finished the last half mile by myself. A devil got into me with a quarter to go and I picked up the pace, the last quarter was 1:25, total time for 10.3 was 1:19;58.

P.M. Drove to St. George to go to Zion's Park. Stayed with Steve and Kendra. Did my second run there. 1.1 with Julia in 11:57, Isabel joined us for the second 0.55, Julia was a  great pacer: "Come on you can do it. Just say I think I can I think I can like the little engine. If you get a side ache hit yourself on the side and breathe in deep and out." Then 1.65 with Jenny and Steve in 13:02, and 2.2 with Benjamin in 15:43. Then 6.7 with Steve in 52:00.

Night Sleep Time: 0.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.00
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Had an interesting dream. Was racing Dave Holt in a marathon. We got to mile 18. I wanted to drop him. Decided the only way I'll be able to push myself to achieve this would be if I started screaming. So I started screaming, in the dream and in real life as well. This woke Sarah up, she punched me and told me to be quiet.

Ran 20.1 with the St. George Running Club in 2:13:38. Started at the St. George Running Center. Crew: Steve Hooper, Wild Bull, Dustin, and Ken Carlson. Clyde was not there to push the pace, but Wild Bull did it for him instead. So the whole run was somewhat of a fartlek. Wild Bull pulls away, then Steve tells me where the next turn is, I catch Wild Bull to make sure he does not get lost. Add a post VPB catch-up to it as well. Then around 10.6 or so Steve started to push the pace. We moved into sub-6:00 zone, eased off out of it, then moved in it again. Then we saw a sign "reduced speed ahead", and I asked Steve if he wanted me to take the wind. He said sure, so I did. Instead of reducing the speed with the help of some downhill we increased it first to 5:30, then 5:20, and then 5:00. Hoped to find a bathroom at the Hamblin's house during Steve/Ken's water break, but it was locked. Decided to go another mile and a half. At that point Steve stayed behind, and I ran with Ken. Then it was Ken's turn to push the pace and he briefly went into sub-6:00 zone, but then eased off. After my bathroom stop which this time provided some real rather than virtual privacy, Steve caught up to us and we ran together again. Then we saw Marcie. Ken and I just gave her a Brezhnev's wave (this reveals my age, I remember seeing it on TV quite a bit), while Steve stopped to talk. With about 1.5 to go I challenged Ken to pick up to sub-6:00 and he did, and was able to hold it until we got to Steve's hill where he slowed down to around 6:15-6:20, but effort-wise it was probably worth 5:50. Finished at the St. George Running Center.

Went to Zion's afterwards.

P.M. 1.5 with Benjamin and Jenny in 13:08, then another mile with Benjamin in 8:04.

Night Sleep Time: 7.33Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.33
From dave holt on Mon, Apr 28, 2008 at 16:59:52

No more dreams about beating me! You do it enough in real life!

From Lybi on Mon, Apr 28, 2008 at 17:04:35

Hahahahaha! James has done stuff like that in his sleep. Sarah and I could commiserate, I'm sure. I'm just grateful that he never dreams about doing karate or kickboxing, or anything painful like that.

Hope you guys are having a great trip to Zion's!

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Made up on the sleep. Heard a good talk in church. One brother was speaking about his ancestors. Some did interesting things like riding in two truck next to each other and reaching out from one to the other with a metal pole. They learned you get nice electric shock this way. But on the more serious side, he had a good story about his great grandfather. His family came to America on a boat. He was a baby. On the ship he contracted plague and they thought he had died. The rule on the ship was they had to bury the dead in the sea. The mother refused to bury the baby in the sea and hid him in a trunk. Right when they were about to get off the ship they heard crying from the trunk. The baby was alive.

Night Sleep Time: 9.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 9.00
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Ran with Jeff. We did 8x100 in the middle of an easy run. Missed the split on the first one. 15.6 on the second, then 15.1, 14.7, 15.1, 14.9. Then we did a 100 meter bound test. I covered it in 42 steps, Jeff did it in 45. Then I wanted to see what Jeff could run all out. He did not have his watch, so I gave him mine. To make things interesting he gave me an early start and chased me down. However on the first try he timed himself at the wrong mark - too early. So we did it again, but did not give him enough rest - only 100 meter jog back. The second time around he ran 13.6. Dropped Jeff off and ran some more - total of 15.2 for the run.

P.M. 1 mile with Julia in 11:38. Then 1.5 with Jenny in 13:09, and 0.7 alone in 5:08. Then 2 with Benjamin in 16:53 with a 200 meter time trial in the middle on the trail done twice. The first one was on a slight uphill and we had to go around a dog - Benjamin went all the way to the grass, he is afraid of dogs. He still got a PR of 40.6. Second time around we ran on a slight downhill and he ran faster - 38.6.

Night Sleep Time: 7.83Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.83
From MarcieJ on Mon, Apr 28, 2008 at 15:14:24

THanks again for telling me about azure standard. I just put my first order in and they are only a couple months away before they will start dropping in ST. George. THe lady I ordered with was super nice! I am excited about all the products they offer.

From wildbull on Mon, Apr 28, 2008 at 15:43:12

it was great to see you down here Sasha! Glad you made it back home safe!

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. We had quite a company for 5:30 AM - Jeff, Hyrum, Josse, Michelle, and Brad. Michelle and Josse were running the Uneventful Half. Brad and I started with Hyrum at a slower pace, hit the first mile in 8:21, then Hyrum turned around at the mile as planned, we shifted gears and caught Michelle, Josse and Jeff right before 2 miles. We were going a bit under 6:00 at first, then sped up to around 5:40. Our mile split was 5:58 but that included easing off to around 7:00 once we caught up. Then I had a VPB a bit after 3 miles, and caught up in about 0.4 miles. Timed 500 of it in 2:06, a bit under 5:40. We cruised along at a bit sub-7:00 pace after that until Josse started struggling. Brad and I stayed with her while Jeff and Michelle went ahead. Then Brad had a VPB, and never caught up. Josse and I continued. She had a small mental lapse right before the 10 mile mark, but then recovered and was able to finish strong - 6:59 on the last mile, and 1:34:07 for the whole distance - new PR for a loop course.

Afterwards jogged about a quarter with Michelle and Sarah, then went for another 2 miles and found Josse's gloves on the trail. Total time for 15.35 was 1:51:46 minus VPB time. This was actually a brisk pace. Jeff and I have been really enjoying nature and conversation lately running as slow as 8:00 on some runs. Our near all out sprints did help in that cause though - you do not feel like going much faster than 8:00 for a while after sprinting and you need to jog very slowly so you could sprint well again.

P.M. 1 mile with Julia in 10:56 pushing Joseph in the single stroller with Jenny riding a bike. 1.5 with Jenny running, Julia and Joseph in the double stroller, in 13:02. Saw Ben Crozier on the trail with a girl, it is about time, he is 31 years old, 4 years past the menace to society age supposedly defined by Brigham Young. Stopped to talk to them. He said he would run with us Friday morning. Added another mile in 9:29 with Benjamin and Jacob in the double stroller. Benjamin was not feeling well, which why we ran less and slower than normal. Then another 1.5 in 11:47 pushing Jacob in the double stroller.

Night Sleep Time: 7.25Nap Time: 0.50Total Sleep Time: 7.75
From josse on Tue, Apr 29, 2008 at 19:08:58

Thanks for the extra push today, I would have been so mad at myself if I wouldn't have finished. I guess that is the plus with running with you, don't ever let me quite. And thanks for getting my gloves they have been with me for over 10 years.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Did not get good sleep. Had odd stomach issues in the middle of the night. Ran a total of 10 miles, 2 of it with Hyrum, most of it with Jeff. Easy pace, around 8:00 average. Jeff and I did a standing broad jump test on the sidewalk by my house. There was some headwind which skewed the results but it was probably equal for both us, and all we cared to know was the comparison anyway. He jumped 7 feet and 5 inches, I did 6 feet and 7 inches.

In summary, our differences in power exercise measurements with Jeff - leg extension - I am 10% stronger in raw power, but 4% weaker relative to body weight. All out speed - we have not done a good measurement yet, but comparing 100 meter PRs (12.6 vs 13.9), which appears to be consistent with the differences we get during our sprints as well, Jeff is 10% faster. 100 meter bound (cover the distance bounding in the smallest possible number of steps) - my average stride is 7.1% longer and I also move faster. Height difference - I am 3.6% taller. Standing broad jump - Jeff jumps 12% further.

P.M. Windy and rather cold. 2 with Benjamin in 16:31. He felt significantly better. 1.5 with Jenny in 13:12, and 1 with Julia in 10:58. Then 5.5 alone in 38:14 with one event. I saw two girls on roller skates shortly before my turnaround.  After jogging a bit my  "impress the ladies" instinct  woke up. After being married for  over 11 years I still have it. I still could not see them, but I figured if I go about 5:40 pace I'd catch them pretty fast. So I ran a 5:32 mile passing them about half way, then eased off back to 7:20 or so.

Night Sleep Time: 6.00Nap Time: 1.50Total Sleep Time: 7.50
From Bonnie on Wed, Apr 30, 2008 at 16:39:53

That made me smile - thinking of you two doing that on the sidewalk. I used to compete in the standing broad jump in junior high (on the St. Michael's Track Team in 1976).


Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. 2 miles with Hyrum. Dropped him off then ran with Jeff. Originally thought of doing a 5 mile tempo at 5:30 pace, but Jeff had some fatigue and tenderness in the legs, so we decided to do a 2 mile shakeout instead at 5:30 pace along the course of our standard 5 mile tempo. Turned out that Jeff was feeling better than he thought, so 5:30 quickly became 5:20 and then 5:15. Jeff was itching to go when I was doing my quarters. We ended up doing 2 miles in 10:39 with the splits of 5:24 and 5:15. Got some moderate cross-wind. 5:15 felt good behind Jeff, but not so good otherwise. On the way back we did 0.5 to feel the 5 K pace in 2:32 (1:17, 1:15) into a rather strong headwind with Jeff leading the way. The pace was not even as Jeff was trying to adjust for the effects of the headwind so we would still hit 5:00 pace in spite of it. Last 200 in 36 into a headwind felt too fast, but no surprise. Dropped Jeff off and ran some more. Total of 15.1 in 1:58:40.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 11:38, 1.5 with Jenny in 13:12, 0.7 alone in 5:04, and 2 with Benjamin in 15:37. Benjamin appears to be back to full health - running strong and volunteering sub-8:00 pace.

Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.75
From Walter on Fri, May 02, 2008 at 15:54:27

Hey big guy! I had a question on the USATF LDR circuit for this year. where do I find the results and current standings? I clicked on your usatf ldr website and its pretty vague, or they havn't updated it yet. Thanks for your help. see ya

From Sasha Pachev on Fri, May 02, 2008 at 16:06:17

Those will not be available until after the registration deadline because we cannot know who is in the circuit and who is not.

From Walter on Fri, May 02, 2008 at 16:37:15

okey dokie, thanks. When is the deadline?

From Sasha Pachev on Mon, May 05, 2008 at 13:29:52

June 30th.

From Walter on Mon, May 05, 2008 at 18:27:06

Ok thanks Sasha. Are you running Ogden? and how are you doing?

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Started out with Jeff and Hyrum. We ran 2 miles in 16:31 with a pickup at the end at about 5:20 pace for 0.15. I wanted to see how much juice Hyrum had left, and challenged him to pick up the pace. He did quite well.

Then Jeff and I ran another 2 miles and ended up back at my house again. We were supposed to meet Ben Crozier but he never showed up. We looped around the block for 1.75 miles waiting, finally decided to go. Then Jeff noticed that he had only 30 minutes left, so we picked up the pace to about 7:00 so we'd make it back in time. We did 0.5 pickup on the trail to feel the 5 K pace. The target was 2:30. Jeff took off pretty quick and I felt it immediately. No wonder, 17 seconds for the first 100 meters. So we eased off but not much. Hit the quarter in 73, and then did one more in 73 to finish in 2:26. This pace hurt, definitely not sustainable for the entire 5 K (it would be nice if it was, that would give me 15:10), but I felt could finish OK if I started this fast.

Dropped Jeff off at 10 miles, went for 5 more. Saw Sarah on the trail, ran about 0.8 with her. Then added some more to finish 15.

Jeff and I are racing in the Law Day 5 K on Chad's firm's team. Whenever a corporation gets interested in competitive running, I am always willing to do something to support it. Who knows, one step at a time maybe one day we will have something similar to the Japanese corporate running program or maybe even better. I have never heard of a Japanese runner going under 27:30 in a 10 K, but they have had 11 guys go under 2:08, with 3 of them going under 2:07 in the marathon. The population of Japan is 127 million. In the US we have had 7 people run 27:30 or faster in a 10 K, and only 2 go under 2:08 in the marathon, one of them being Khalid Khannouchi and the other Ryan Hall. The population of the US is 301 million. Clearly the Japanese are doing a lot better in the area of carrying the 10 K speed to the marathon, and I believe having a corporate level running program is an important part of their success.

A.M 2 - Ted told me about a race at the Rock Canyon Elementary that Jared was going to run in. I figured Benjamin would like to participate somehow especially since Jared was involved, and asked if they would let Benjamin run. Ted did not think they would, but he thought they might let him just run along and pace Jared. However, when we got there, we were told Benjamin could be officially in the race. So we signed him up. I was not sure which grade Benjamin would be in, and under the stress I completely forgot the correspondence between ages and grades in the US school system. Not that I remember it very well when I am not under stress to begin with as we home school our kids and let them progress at whatever rate they are ready for. Which happens to be quite a bit faster than their public school peers. So figuring that Jared and Benjamin would be in the same grade, I asked Ted which grade Jared was in. He said 4th. So I wrote 4th grade on Benjamin's tag. Later it turned out that Jared was actually in the 3rd grade, but it ended up not mattering for two reasons - a) Benjamin beat everybody except one 6th grader, and b) since Benjamin was not enrolled in the Rock Canyon Elementary they were not going to give him an award. Being a mature 9 year old and knowing that it would be just a medal or a ribbon he was not particularly disappointed, though, especially after I told him he was going to get a carob bar at Good Earth for his performance. How about this: Awards provided by AskSasha.Com/FastRunningBlog.Com?

The race was advertised as 2.5 miles, but ended up being 2.33 miles long according to Ted's GPS. The participants were kids from 6th grade down. The course was not fast at all - first 0.6 and last 0.2 on grass, the rest on asphalt with some serious uphill and then downhill to come back. Everybody started out very fast as expected, so Benjamin worked his way through the crowd in the first quarter mile of the race. Finally he passed Spencer Jarvis paced by his uncle Karl, a serious challenger his age to watch out for, and moved up on Joe Rowberry, the 6th grader that eventually would beat him. Joe had a quote from Prefontaine on the back of his shirt - "Most people run a race to see who is fastest. I run a race to see who has the most guts." And he raced accordingly - very competitive.

Joe pulled away from Benjamin on the uphill around 0.7 into the race. Then Benjamin started to close on the downhill, and eventually closed the gap to 7 seconds with about 0.7 to go. Then Joe looked back, got concerned, and found some juice to start pulling away. He ended up beating Benjamin by about 20 seconds. Benjamin finished second in 16:22, which is 7:01.46 average. Spencer was third about 20 seconds behind.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 11:38, 1.5 with Jenny in 13:18.

Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.75
From wheakory on Sat, May 03, 2008 at 02:52:08

Very nice race for your son Sasha, and a good day of running for you as well.

Race: Law Day 5 K (3.107 Miles) 00:17:09, Place overall: 5
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Law Day 5 K 17:09.4, officially 4th, fitness wise 4th as well, 5th if you use a non-chip way of determining who cross the finish line first. Details below.

Jeff and I volunteered to run for Chad's law firm's (Manning Curtis Bradshaw & Bednar) team. Let me use this chance to put a plug for them. Aside from my own AskSasha.Com one man show that has been sponsoring the Fast Running Blog and my 120 mile weeks and a few small business owners that have donated to the Fast Running Blog I have never dealt a non-running business that was so supportive of competitive running. If you are in need of legal services (I understand they specialize in business law and commercial litigation), I would recommend visiting their website. My impression of them is that they are the type of people that care to excel and are willing to put their money where their mouth is.

Chad took us for a tour of the course. for a warm up. It was well marked except one spot. And that was the very spot when I would get lost later.

Our team consisted of Jeff, Josh Steffen, his wife Megan Call, and Johanna Nielson in addition to myself. We were racing BJ Christensen, Grant Rotunda (Westminister College), BJ's brother Ed, and two women I do not remember the names of. The course was a beast - uphill for the first 1.7 miles, some of it very steep, lots of turns, which really hurt once you got going downhill as you could not use that speed very well. Also the downhill was in short bursts.

Knowing Jeff's increased level of fitness we had hopes that he'd be able to neutralize BJ's advantage if not beat him outright. Jeff and I took it fairly easy early on to keep him from starting out too fast. About half mile into the race we used a flatter section to come up on Josh, Grant, and Ed. We hit the 1 K mark in 3:24. Not bad for the uphill. Shortly before the mile mark there was a short downhill section. I felt good, so I moved up and pushed the pace to give Jeff a break and get him going at the same time before the major uphill. First mile was 5:26.

Ed and Grant dropped back, Jeff and Josh pulled ahead. I tried to take it easy on the uphill, but still managed to get myself into some serious leg fatigue. Jeff dropped Josh but could not quite close on BJ. Josh had a 7 second gap on me around 3 K mark. 2 K in 7:00, 3 K in 10:29. I guess there was more uphill there than I realized. We started going downhill shortly before 3 K, but I had a hard time shifting gears, and the turns were really messing with my rhythm. 3 miles in 11:16. I started screaming like a wild animal to get myself going. Interesting that I could and actually found it helpful. It tells me that it was not the breathing that was limiting my speed.

I think the 4th kilometer was too long, and I do have an idea why. Up to that point it followed the certified route. Then it could not follow the certified route any longer because of construction on the U of U campus. I hit the 4 K mark in 13:54. This gives me 3:25 for a downhill kilometer. I'd be willing to believe to a point it except the next one with about the same amount of downhill was 3:15 including the additional 10 seconds from getting lost, so really more like 3:05, and I am quite certain it was not that much faster. I would guess we added about 10 seconds going around the construction.

Shortly after the 4 K mark I approached a confusing spot. Because of fatigue and the high speed I did not see the chalk-written arrow on the road showing which way to go, and also due to fatigue I was disoriented and did not remember which way the course was supposed to go. I eased off trying to figure out what to do, then headed the wrong way, then saw no cones or anything and stopped. Then the volunteers yelled at me and showed me the way, and during that time Grant passed me and gapped me by a couple of seconds. I closed the gap in about 0.2 or so, and then passed him. I think I was able to gap him by another second or so right before the final turn. Then I said I am not going to give him even one tenth of a second on the kick and just floored it. But he kicked as well and edged me out at the finish line. However, my leg with the chip crossed the line 0.1 of a second before his did. So he outleaned me but I outchipped him. Since there was no difference between 4th and 5th, and for the team purposes we had won either way, it did not matter.

We got $20 gift certificates to the Salt Lake Running Company for our team win. 

Went for some more miles with the team, and then later on with just Jeff and Chad. We ran to Liberty Park and did a 3 mile tempo in 17:28 with the splits of 6:00 - 5:51 - 5:37 by Chad's  Garmin. Ran  back, total of 17.5 for the run.

P.M. 2.15 with Benjamin in 17:27, about 1 mile with Julia by time (11:00), 1.65 with Jenny in 14:21.

Night Sleep Time: 0.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.00
From Chad on Sun, May 04, 2008 at 23:43:41

Thanks for running for our team, Sasha, and for the nice plug for the firm. Also, thanks for dragging me through 3 more tempo miles in the park. I think they were actually very helpful.

From Christi on Mon, May 05, 2008 at 19:42:19

Hi Sasha- Sounds like a fun race! Thanks for your comments on my Hurricane Half. You tell me the things that are hard for me to hear about consistency, etc. But I appreciate it! It plants the seeds I need planted to get in the shape I want to be in.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

No running, day of rest.

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

A.M. Started the run with Jeff and Daniel. Daniel went to 3.5 then turned around. After a while I started messing around with landing technique trying to see what happens if I consciously tried to power the muscles harder in the early ground contact phase. The result was that we started running the easy not easy 6:40 pace. The breathing was not affected due to the slowness of the pace, but I could definitely tell I had to focus more - surprise, surprise. I was fed up with that and decided to test this at a faster pace to see what differences I would observe. So we ran a 600 in 2:01 (5:23 pace). Legs felt stale from the 5 K on Saturday, otherwise the pace felt good. At a faster pace I felt I could push in the early ground phase any harder that my natural push at that pace. So I would have to say the experiments were inconclusive.

Dropped Jeff off at 10.1, and ran back to meet Sarah on the trail. Figured that since I'd be running slower with her it would be OK to run fast until I meet her, and that way I would get to meet her sooner as well. This time I felt different, I really liked the feeling in my feet. The strike felt lighter. I think there is a bit of a paradox. The harder you push into the ground right away the lighter it is going to feel because it reduces the time on the ground and there is not enough time for the mind to register the full burden of body weight on the foot and the leg. So maybe my experiments did produce some results after all. I did not know how far I was going, but I figured I'd meet Sarah around 2 miles into the tempo. Ran the first 0.5 evenly in 2:50 (5:40 pace), then hit a 1:19 quarter on the downhill on the trail, slowed down to 1:23 with turns and bridges (5:32 at the mile), then ran the next mile in 5:26, 10:58 for 2 miles. Felt staleness in the legs, but surprisingly was holding pace OK without too much struggle.

Saw Sarah about 100 meters before the 2 mile mark, so I had to do a 200 meter pickup on the way back to catch her after jogging a bit. Ran home with her, then added another mile. Total time for 15.1 was 1:54:46.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 11:16, 1.5 with Jenny in 12:19, she closed with a 7:50 mile, 2 with Benjamin in 14:58, last mile in 7:08, got chased by a small dog at the end, 0.7 alone in 4:46.

Night Sleep Time: 7.50Nap Time: 1.50Total Sleep Time: 9.00
From ron on Mon, May 05, 2008 at 22:50:36

small dogs are the best to be chased by... they are fast enough to push you and harmless enough to eliminate fear of being bit.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Ran with Jeff, Josse, and Daniel. We paced Josse through the 5 mile tempo in 34:10. She was holding almost 6:40 pace through the first 2.5 (6:43 - 6:39 - 3:23), then faded a bit and did 1:44 quarters (6:56 pace) until 1 mile to go, and then the uphill did her in, but she still survived the last mile in 7:04. Total time of 34:10, 6:50 pace. Daniel ran back to his house, the rest of us finished 10 miles. Dropped Josse off, she said: "Thanks for torturing me, I really enjoyed it." Ran some more with Jeff, then he turned around, I continued. Met Sarah, about 500 meters away from the 2.5 turnaround, decided to go all the way to the turnaround and then catch her. Ran 5:42 mile, caught her right by the swing. So we stopped and had a little swinging date. I figured Benjamin would be interested in knowing how long the swing rope was, so I measured the period of swing oscillation, which was 4.7 seconds. Benjamin later calculated that the length of the swing rope was 5.48 meters long using the formula L = (T/(2*pi))^2*g where T is the oscillation period in seconds, and g is the acceleration of gravity in meters per square second. Finished the run with Sarah, total of 15.08 in 1:56:13.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 10:31, 1.5 with Jenny in 13:14, 2 with Benjamin in 16:28, and 0.7 alone in 5:00. 

Night Sleep Time: 0.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.00
From Lybi on Tue, May 06, 2008 at 18:13:16

That seems like a really hard way to measure a rope! But I am impressed that Benjamin can DO that kind of math! Jeepers.

From Sasha Pachev on Tue, May 06, 2008 at 20:22:35

Much easier than climbing a tree 18 feet high and stretching out the measuring tape. All you have to do is punch numbers into a calculator.

From air dark horse on Wed, May 07, 2008 at 11:57:49

Either way I'm impressed and I am still trying to solve the equation with my limited education.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Started with 6.25 with Jeff, then Hyrum joined us for 3, then we finished with 1 more mile. Did a short pickup with Hyrum at 5:40 pace. Total time for 10.25 was 1:21:32.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 9:39, 1.5 with Jenny in 12:58. Then 5.5 alone in 36:35. Was plodding along and then decided to catch Josse's tempo run time for 5 miles (34:10) 1.5 into the run. Figured it would not wear me out too much, the faster pace distance being only 4 miles. I started out 50 seconds behind, and at first all I wanted to do was catch the proverbial 7:00 guy. But then I saw that he was coming to me pretty quick, so I decided to set a more ambitious goal. Passed Josse's schedule shortly before 4 miles, and I got to 5 miles in 33:40, 30 seconds ahead of target. Then I saw that the 6:40 guy was only 20 seconds ahead, and 6:00 pace over the last 0.5 would catch him. At first the voice of reason spoke to me and said relax. Then a devil entered into me and said, this is only 6:00 pace, you can do it. So I fell for the temptation and ran 5:50 pace for the last 0.4. Added another 2 with Benjamin in 14:38 afterwards. He was having devil problems as well.

Night Sleep Time: 6.75Nap Time: 1.00Total Sleep Time: 7.75
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Started with Jeff and Daniel. Ran 2 times around the block waiting for Hyrum (0.7) then took off. Daniel turned around 3.2 into the run. Jeff and I ran to the end of the trail and back. Did some sprints on the way back with full rest. 2x100 15.2, 15.5 and then a 200 in 30.5. All with a slow running start. Jeff did 14.2, 14.7, and 29.8.

Dropped Jeff off, ran back to meet Sarah. Found her hiding under the railroad bridge. Turned out she did not want to step into a large puddle of water in the tunnel and took a very round about route. Ran back with her, then added another 3 to make it 15.1 for the run. A small devil got into me with 0.6 to go and I sped up to 5:50 pace. Most of the run was done at around 8:00 pace, though.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 10:46, 1.5 with Jenny in 13:20, 2 with Benjamin in 17:09, 0.7 alone pushing Jacob in the single stroller in 5:08.

Night Sleep Time: 7.50Nap Time: 10.00Total Sleep Time: 17.50
From wheakory on Thu, May 08, 2008 at 17:56:27

Now, Sasha you scare me when you say devil. You need to repent, and instead say "a small burst of energy go into me". :-)

Your training is solid and I think you will have a PR for this course.

From sarah on Thu, May 08, 2008 at 22:53:10

It was great that you came right when I was walking under the railroad tracks...perfect timing for a fun surprise.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Ran with Jeff and Daniel. It was an eventful run with live entertainment. Yesterday I found out that Jeff and his whole family are very good singers and love to do it. This morning I began to realize the implications of having a training partner that can sing. So I challenged Jeff to sing the Star Spangled Banner at 5:30 pace. We picked up after a bit over a mile warm-up, waited for 100 meters so that Jeff would have a chance to get into a 5:30 breathing rhythm, and then he started. We ended up doing 600 in 2:03 (5:28 pace), and Jeff got a 5 (with 10 being good stationary singing) for his performance from Daniel. According to Daniel he hit about 80% of the notes on key.

Jeff thought his singing at 5:30 pace did not sound that good. To help him feel the magnitude of his accomplishment I sang the same song at 8:00 pace. Daniel gave me a 2. I kept changing keys as I went along, something I do even when I am stationary. Then Jeff sang at 8:00 pace. Daniel gave him 7.5. Reasons for not 10 - some notes slightly flat, and struggles with breathing.

Daniel turned around at 4 miles. Jeff and I went to the end of the trail and then turned around. Then at 7 mile mark Jeff began to be concerned about making it to class on time. So we picked up the pace, went through a few gears and eventually ended up running 6:00 pace. I became curious about how well Jeff could sing at that pace and challenged him to do it. He gave himself 6.5 on Daniel's scale as we did a quarter in 1:29. Then I tried it. Our quarter time was 1:32. We saw Sarah right as I was finishing "o'er the land of the free and the home of the brave". She gave us an interesting look. Jeff said it sounded worse than 8:00 pace singing as I was changing keys more often, but not much. I asked him if that was because it just could not get much worse, he said no, even at 6:08 pace I was still singing better than one of his mission companions.

As Jeff was analyzing my performance, we slowed down to a 1:34 quarter. Once we were done with the analysis, we picked up again and ran the last 1 K in 3:28 (5:33 pace).

Dropped Jeff off, ran back to Sarah, ran some with her, then we saw Iain Hunter on the trail. Sarah suggested I should join him, so I ran 5:20 pace for 0.5 while catching up to him and then ran with him some more. Total of 18.1 in 2:16:28.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 9:13, 1.5 with Jenny in 12:39, 2 with Benjamin in 14:30, and 100 with Joseph in 43.

Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.75
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Long run. First 10.1 with Tyler, the rest alone. During the easy part did a pickup for 0.5 in 2:49 to show Tyler the breathing at marathon pace. Jogged and chatted otherwise up to 7.1 into the run. After that picked it up. First 2 miles at 5:48 pace. Lost focus some on the next mile which was uphill and went through tunnels, got 5:58. Dropped Tyler off without stopping with a 180 at my house and continued the tempo. Had a hard time getting into a good pace, the legs were feeling stale. Not a surprise given the end of a high mileage week and 18 + 4.5 yesterday. Started moaning, that helped me speed up. Eventually settled into a 5:42 rhythm. Figured would do it while I can. Hit the next 5.05 in 29:03. Moaned every 10-30 seconds. Lots of runners on the trail, every one I passed that was going in my direction inevitably had a startled look when they heard the moan. Probably wondering why I just would not slow down and run quietly. On the way back was going a fairly steady 5:45 - 5:48 pace, again moaning. Kept waiting to hit the wall, but it never happened, I just happily moaned along. Last mile, same one with the tunnels and uphill was 5:46, last two quarters 1:25 and 1:23. Last 5.05 was 29:11. Total time for 13.1 was 1:15:49, 5:47.25 average, total time for 20.2 was 2:09:21.

Was happy to break 1:16 on a half with a net elevation gain at the end of a 20 miler and a high mileage week. This gives me confidence that on a good day I can run 1:14:30 second half in Ogden or maybe even faster if I improve my moaning. I have to say that moaning does wonders. Not quite sure why, maybe when you start acting like you are in pain your body becomes willing to bring itself to that level of pain.

Benjamin did the Cub Scout Olympics today. 7.7 in the 50 yard dash, fastest time of all the kids, including the 10 year olds. 47 feet softball throw, average. 24 push-ups in 1 minute, average. 41 sit-ups in 1 minute, highest of all the kids. 59 inches standing broad jump, second longest among the kids his age, short of the longest by 2 inches.

P.M. Ran in the Hobble Creek Canyon downhill with Benjamin and Jenny. First 1.5 in 11:49, then Sarah picked up Jenny and we ran 6:34 mile with Benjamin.

Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 0.67Total Sleep Time: 8.42
From Lybi on Mon, May 12, 2008 at 09:35:41

Man, thanks for giving me a chuckle. You are going to become a Provo legend with all that moaning...little kids will be afraid to go out at dusk because of the "Moaning Man" who might suddenly appear.

What a great tempo run--without even a race! It'll be fun to see what you do in Ogden this year. Good luck.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Took it very easy today. Tried to move as slow as possible and do as little as possible. Stayed awake in church, enjoyed the talks and the lessons in Sunday school. Took a nap in the afternoon. Went from 143 lb at the end of my run yesterday to 152 lb at night, and my stomach did not feel exceptionally full.

Night Sleep Time: 9.00Nap Time: 1.50Total Sleep Time: 10.50
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. 10 miles in 1:15:55 with Jeff. Hyrum joined us for the first 3 in 24:39. Actually my time was a bit faster as I did a VPB and did not stop my watch at around 2.5. After two more VPBs and some minor sweating my weight went down to 146 lb at the end of my run from 152 lb last night. It was rather wet and chilly this morning. The positive way to interpret the weight change is that I do not need a fuel belt.

Finally taper time, and I am looking forward to it but not too much anticipation, which is a good sign. I suspect one week is the optimum taper length for me. We'll find out in Ogden.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 10:23, 2 with Benjamin in 16:51, Jenny joined us for the first 1.5 in 13:09.

T4 Racer -  37.7 miles.


Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 1.00Total Sleep Time: 8.75
From Jon on Mon, May 12, 2008 at 12:41:57

What sort of mileage will you be doing in your taper?

From josse on Mon, May 12, 2008 at 14:29:41

Are you up to pacing me for a 2 mile tempo @ about a 6:30 pace tomorrow?

From Sasha Pachev on Mon, May 12, 2008 at 14:47:09

Jon - probably about 70 including the marathon. Josse - yes that would work.

From cgbooth23 on Mon, May 12, 2008 at 16:10:28

So for someone who has run 7 marathons, but this is the first time I have trained on schedule, and I am shooting for under 3:30, and have been averaging around 40/week for last 4-5 weeks, what do you suggest on tapering?? I felt fatigued last week and got 39 miles, but did a hard spin class and Pilates!

From Sasha Pachev on Mon, May 12, 2008 at 16:31:08

cgbooth123 - I would recommend training through the race. Do not taper at all. Start the race tired, this will keep you from going out too fast. The fatigue will also keep you from getting too antsy before which will allow to end up with more fuel in the tank at the start. When you get too excited you do not store the fuel as well. So the calm from the extra mileage could very well make up for the fuel you spend doing it.

Do not target any particular time. With only a few weeks of 40 and no significant training earlier expect trouble at the end. Treat it as a training run, and then go for a time goal once you've put in a few months of solid training in your next marathon (St. George?).

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Ran with Hyrum, Jeff, and Josse. Hyrum turned around after 1.5. Paced Josse through a 2 mile tempo in 12:53. My time was actually faster as I had a VPB stop. Took me about 0.4 to catch up, timed 600 meters in 1:59. Total time for 7 miles was 55:27 minus Tvpb .

P.M-1. Did some tests at BYU with Jeff with the help of Iain Hunter on the force plates. Still analyzing the results. Ran 0.75 from the car to the lab and back.

P.M-2. 1 mile with Julia in 10:25, 1.5 with Benjamin and Jenny in 12:37. Joseph set a 100 meter PR of 34.7. 

T4 Racer - 47.95 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 7.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.00
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. 6 miles with Jeff in 47:55 - Tvpb, Hyrum joined us for the first 3 in 24:17 with the last mile in 7:07, his mile PR since he started running again.

T4 Racer - 53.95 miles.

P.M. It was the afternoon of PRs for the girls. On Saturday I bought some honey sticks at Good Earth. Over the week I've been marketing them to Jenny and Julia explaining that they could be had if they ran fast. For Julia the standard was a mile under 9:00 and for Jenny under 8:00. Those times were slower than their PRs but I figured they needed some motivated practice in pushing themselves. Benjamin does it naturally, I actually have to hold him back a lot.

Finally Jenny succumbed to my marketing efforts and decided that today was going to be a prize run. We warmed up the first 0.5 in 4:27, then she went to the bathroom at the park and we started the fast portion. I did not expect her to break the record, but she ran the first quarter on pace - 1:51. I told her she could get the record and and that there will be additional bonuses. So she ran the next quarter in 1:48 followed by 1:53 and 1:47 for the total of 7:19 - a PR by 11 seconds.

Julia heard about Jenny's rewards and wanted some as well. Knowing the rules she asked if she could do a prize run too. She started out very fast - 26 at 100, 54 at 200, 1:24 at 300 and 1:55 at the quarter. I was holding her back figuring let her run fast while she is motivated as she might have a fit later on. Sure enough she did. When Benjamin was her age he understood math very well, he knew what the splits meant, if he was on pace or not, etc. Julia is a bit behind the Pachev curve in this area. At 5 years and 7 months her reading is at the level of Bob Books and her math is at the level of adding numbers less than 20. Benjamin and Jenny could read anything on their own at that age, although Jenny's math was at about Julia's level. However, Julia is a very emotional creature and can get upset a lot more easily. So she did not understand that we were going to the second four-triangle mark before the turnaround. She thought we were going to turn around at the first and when we did not she went into utter panic.

It took me about a quarter mile to convince her that if she just coasted she could still get her record along with the prize, during which we slowed down to 2:18, which gave us 4:13 at the turnaround. To Julia's credit, very few 5 year olds would be running  9:12 pace in her emotional state at the time. She calmed down and finally believed me that she could still get the record. Her next quarter was 2:10, and her last one was 2:06. Her mile time was 8:29, a new record by 12 seconds. Fitness wise she did have a sub-8:00 in her. She could talk on the second half, asked me several times if we were on pace, and made a comment about people walking on the trail. The first thing she wanted to do afterwards is draw a picture of us running on the trail, which she did while we were driving back.

Benjamin ran with Jenny, and then finished the last 0.5 of his run with me in 3:13, which gave him 15:00 for 2 miles.

My Five Fingers have arrived (St. George Running Center now has them), and I did the run in them. I like them very much.

Five Fingers - 3 miles. 

Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 1.00Total Sleep Time: 8.75
From wheakory on Wed, May 14, 2008 at 13:58:08

Wow only 6 miles this morning thats a record low for you. Question: are you running in the T4 racers for Saturday's marathon?

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. I greeted Jeff with: "Hi, I am Sasha the Duck" this morning as I came out the door wearing my Five Fingers. 3 with Jeff and Hyrum in 25:37, then dropped Hyrum off and finished 6 in 45:44, last mile at marathon pace trying to be honest in 5:40.

One challenge with Five Fingers is getting each toe in its own compartment. But I suppose eventually this becomes natural. I really like having the toes like that when running. And unlike Crocs there is no cushioning in the heel at all, so you have to do a better job of finding inner sources of cushioning.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 10:49. 1.5 with Benjamin and Jenny in 13:00, another 0.5 with Benjamin to finish 2 in 16:58.

Went to Sarah's ultrasound for the baby. It is a boy. Sarah is due on October 24th. We are going to name the boy William (Bill, Willie Billie Boy).

Five Fingers - 9 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 0.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.00
From Superfly on Thu, May 15, 2008 at 14:01:05

I just got a pair of Five Fingers from Steve today at the store. I agree it is a challenge to get each toe in it's own compartment. It should be fun to have them and maybe even makes some running improvements.

Are you going to Logan's for the pasta party tomorrow? If not I guess we'll see ya at the start.

From randy on Thu, May 15, 2008 at 20:19:41

thanks, i enjoy reading your running blog, very detailed. hopefully ill learn from it

From ryan on Thu, May 15, 2008 at 23:01:29

what the heck is a five fingers?

From JohnK on Fri, May 16, 2008 at 09:36:36

I'm really wondering how Five Fingers work for most people. My doubts have to do with the fact that everyone has toes of different corresponding sizes (length, especially). My second toes are a bit longer than my first, for example. It seems Five Fingers would work for maybe a third of the population (at most) but for many of us they'd be bad news. Still, I'd be willing to try them!

From wildbull on Fri, May 16, 2008 at 11:21:16

Five finger socks. let me know howyou le them. my toes need all the help they can get! sometimes they get in a fight and they need to be seperated!

From Jill on Fri, May 16, 2008 at 14:47:33

everyone is commenting on five fingers. I am curious to know what they are too but... (Obsessed runners!) I just wanted to say congrats on William!

From Sasha Pachev on Fri, May 16, 2008 at 14:55:33

Jill - thanks. Jill and anybody who wants to know more about Five Fingers. Enter Five Fingers into the search box on the right, click search, then follow the first search result entry. If you are using Firefox with Google Toolbar (you can get it from the button on the right). Highlight Five Fingers with your mouse, right click, Search Google for Five Fingers.

Five Fingers are now available at the St. George Running Center. Highly recommended footwear. I think overtime you can develop a Kenyan/Ethiopian like running form especially if you start young. They make you look like a Fast Running Duck.

From Tom on Fri, May 16, 2008 at 15:02:49

Better a Fast Running Duck than a Fast Running Dork! I may have to try me a pair of those 5 finger thingies.

From Craig on Fri, May 16, 2008 at 15:16:13


Funny you mention the Vibram Five Fingers. I have been scouring Ebay for a couple months trying to get a good deal on a pair, but I couldn't ever find some in my size. I finally bit it and bought some off I would have bought them off the St George Running Center if I had read this earlier.

Anyway, I got the KSO model 'cause I run on dirt trails so much. KSO stands for "keep stuff out" or something, so this model covers your foot. It seems you'd need to wear Injinji socks with these or run bearfoot, right?

From Jill on Fri, May 16, 2008 at 15:41:03

wow! They are crazy looking, but I just bought a pair. If they are too strange for running, I can wear them in the garden. :o) Got them direct from Vibram. Enjoy - thanks for the tip!

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Hyrum did not make it this morning. He called later and I gave him a motivational talk over the phone. Let's hope it results in a run later today. He said I should be coaching cross-country. I'd be glad to if I could do it with no red tape. Good luck :-) Just the thought of having to deal with a school district makes me quake and tremble. I have very little tolerance for paper work. One time I told a potential client that was going to pay very well I would have nothing to do with them because they sent me 6 documents to sign. They cut it down to 3 which put it at the boundary of the barely acceptable. When I was interviewing for my first job at Novell they had me talk with five people, one at a time. I already had two offers. After five interviews there was no offer, no idea what kind of offer it was going to be if I was going to get one, and they handed me a four page application form. I started filling it out, but after a couple of minutes just said forget it, put it in the trash and took another offer.

Maybe if some coach wanted an informal assistant, I could help.

Ran 3 miles with Jeff and Benjamin in 25:13, then 3.13 more with Jeff. Total time was 49:12.

P.M. 1 with Jenny and Julia. Julia finished in 9:43, Jenny was around 9:30 as she pulled ahead. Then another 0.5 in 4:12 with Jenny.

Drove to Ogden, picked up the packet, went to the party at Logan's house. We discussed the plan, then drove to Michelle's in-laws house in Perry and stayed with them.

Five Fingers -  16.63 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 7.67Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.67
From Lybi on Fri, May 16, 2008 at 15:43:16

Good luck tomorrow, Sasha! Have a great race!

I see that you got your five fingers...are you sore at all today from your run yesterday?

Congratulations on the forthcoming little boy! You're going to spread the "Pachev" name all over this country!

Wow, you REALLY do not like paperwork.

Race: Ogden Marathon (26.22 Miles) 02:32:28, Place overall: 2
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Ogden Marathon, 2:32:28, 2nd place. Fast Running Blog sweep of 8 places in the top 10 in the men's plus 2nd place in the women's (Michelle). Not perfect score but getting there. Did some FRB recruiting to fix that. Stay tuned for updates...

The morning started at 4:00 AM with a short scripture study, then I followed Michelle in my car to the bus pick-up. On the bus sat next to an older runner named Ryan. We had a good talk.

The temperatures were quite comfortable at the start, which was a bad sign of things to come as that meant it would be too warm later on. It was nice seeing a crowd of uniformed bloggers. I took advantage of every opportunity that turned up to promote the blog. When none turned up I would create one. "Hey guy, how are you? Do you want to get faster? Go to our site - FastRunningBlog.Com!"

Examined the competition, found Ken Pliska and Seth Wold, invited them to run with us. Pretty soon Seth, Logan, Clyde, and I separated from everybody else. During the first mile we had a guy with us whose name I forgot, I think it was Ken, (I hope he finds this post and reminds me) that was targeting 2:40. After we found out his background and his goal we recommended to him to ease off and join the 2:40 pace group (Ogden Marathon race directors did not know that they had one, courtesy of the Fast Running Blog :-)).

I love those first couple of miles of a marathon. Time for introductions and chit-chat. But it ended too soon. Clyde and Logan were a bit edgy, and Seth was playing along. As it would turn out that pace was just right for him. I noticed Clyde was struggling and suggested this could possibly be a bad sign that our pace is too fast. My thinking was that a pace that is too fast for either myself, Logan, or Clyde could easily be too fast for all three, except the other two might feel too excited to notice it. Clyde said he was OK. I said : "OK for the half, OK for 15, OK for 20, or OK for 26?". Clyde said: "we will see at the end".

In the beginning we agreed that we may try a joint effort for Paul's course record (2:26:24) as there were rumors about a possible bonus, and if we were going to do it, the honest way is that all three of us try. Otherwise, the one that does not will have an unfair advantage at the end. So even though the pace started feeling too fast, I decided to go along with it for a couple of miles. At around 4 it really started not feeling right. I wish I could have sat down right there with Clyde and Logan and presented my reasoning for backing off, and to convince them to back off with me, but I did not have the time. I just said that it was too fast and I needed to ease off.

The mile markers were messed up in the early miles due to the last minute course adjustments, but I think by 5 miles they were correct. My 5 mile split was 27:41, with Clyde, Logan, and Seth a bit a head. When I eased off, I think they did as well after a while, and also with them being ahead I felt some pressure to keep a faster pace as I did not want to lose contact in case we started getting gusts of head wind.

Finally Clyde came to grips with the idea that the pace was too fast and let Seth and Logan go. That was nice because now I could work with him better. At first I tried to do trading leads, but it did not work. Clyde's mind works better when he is up front. This was fine with me, I like drafting.

One we turned into the valley, on the 9th mile all of a sudden 6:00 pace became a chore. Then I knew it was getting warm enough to make a difference. This was going to be a survival race. Those are both good and bad for me. The splits are depressing, and the projected finish time is disappointing. I do not like slow pace when racing, well, who does? On the positive side, however, I am very good at survival games, this gives me an edge over the competition.

56:03 at 10 miles, 1:14:45 at the half. I started moaning to keep the momentum and just because it felt right. Sorry Clyde. Learn to moan with those that moan :-) We did a 6:10 mile from 12 to 13 and it felt too good all of a sudden. So I figured it was time to put the pedal down. With a few moans I was able to accelerate and thought I was going at least 5:45. Good luck, 5:53 on a mildly downhill mile. OK, it must be hot. Clyde is falling back pretty quick, and nobody is coming up from behind or is even close.

Moaned my way up the hill, tried to get into a good rhythm afterwards, but still cannot break 5:50. That's OK, just focus on good rhythm, good form, glide along, stay in the money position, don't try too hard to upgrade it, let it come naturally if it is supposed to happen today. 1:26:34 at 15 miles.

Got past the dam, still feeling strong, but it is not showing in the mile splits. But at least they are all under 6:00, and I am even hitting 5:40s on some downhill miles. Passing half-marathoners and scaring them with my moaning. 1:55:45 at 20 miles.

Getting different reports on the gap with the leaders, figuring it is 2-3 minutes. Not much additional info. I want to know if it is 2 or 3. Finally at 24 Josh Steffen, who was on the course, yells at me that Logan is only 30 seconds ahead. I caught up to him in what seemed like forever, and asked him what was wrong. He felt good enough to run with me and answer that his legs were cramped up, but then had to stop and massage them. This happened to me in my first marathon.

Having moved into 2nd cheered my spirits, but I still did not feel secure. Based on how well Logan ran when he was actually running, he could possibly find an extra gear that would allow him to block the pain signals and start running sub-6:00 pace. And somebody like Ken Pliska or one of the bloggers having a miracle race could all of a sudden come from behind.

I was able to keep my miles under 6:00 until 24, then had a 6:04, and a 6:10 in spite of trying to pick it up. I did not feel bad but I guess being out in the open sun on the last mile did not help. Kicked in 1:15 for the last 385 yards, and ended up with 2:32:28 in second place behind Seth Wold who finished in 2:27:43 in his first marathon. Logan came in third holding off Clyde who was 4th. Then Jeff Shadley, Chad, Kory, then Ben VanBeekam created a hole in the blogger dominance which we hope to fix soon, rumor has it that he has been learning and has entered the "almost thou persuadest me" state, after that Cody, Walter, Jon and the Lost Sheep Bill Cobler, a picture with him holding a Lost Sheep sign is on its way.

After the finish three ladies one at a time insisted on giving me the finisher medal. I said, no thanks, I think I had to do it three times for each of the ladies. They could not understand why I did not want a finisher medal. I hope some of the readers will. Suppose you could sing well enough to be paid to do it. How would you like to get a medal every time you sang on key? While singing on key is a feat for a lot of people, myself very particularly included as those who have heard me sing would testify, and  the ability to do so is a gift from God which should not be taken for granted, nevertheless for a decent singer this is a basic element of performance, not a stellar accomplishment. For a number of obvious reasons he would not want to pile up token awards of this kind and put them up on display for his friends to see.

So it is with finishing a marathon. To get a finisher medal all you need to do is get to the finish under 6 hours. In some marathons you can be even slower. For some people such a goal is not trivial. It takes a lot of preparation and focus. Others would be able to do it with ease and with no prior preparation. I believe that if you would able to run a sub-6:00 marathon comfortably even you did not train at all or very sporadically you should not take a finisher medal. God gave you a gift and He expects you to do more with it than just finish a marathon. At least that is what I decided to do for myself. For as long as my health makes it so that just to finish before the course closes is not a challenge I will not be taking finisher medals anymore.

As far as the reward for running a race is concerned when the budget of the race does not permit the race director to reward my performance with cash, a mention of my time in the race results means more to me than any kind of a trophy or a medal. In the context of the competition it speaks for itself, and does justice to what I've done that day. That is all I need as far as recognition is concerned.

T4 Racer - 81.17 miles.

P.M. 3 miles with the kids. 1 with Jenny and Julia in 10:10. Jenny pulled ahead a bit - her time was 10:05. Then 0.5 with Benjamin and Jenny in 4:09. This gave Jenny 14:14 for 1.5. Then 1.5 more with Benjamin to finish his 2 miles in 15:56.

Five Fingers - 19.63 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 6.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 6.00
From Jon on Sat, May 17, 2008 at 19:00:07

8 of the top 10, and 10 of the top 12!

Nice race today, Sasha- very consistent training and race paid off for you today.

From cgbooth23 on Sat, May 17, 2008 at 19:25:31

great job today, always impressed! Thanks for the words of confidence, I am encouraged by the run today and found out I may have an in to St. george with a corporate sponsor, love to see what I can do down there with continued training!

From James W on Sat, May 17, 2008 at 19:36:11

Great job on the 2nd place finish, Sasha. I can't wait to read more of your race report later.

From Tracy Atkinson on Sat, May 17, 2008 at 19:50:30

It was really nice to meet you, You have helped inspire me to take training more serious. I got to see you at mile 18 you looked strong and fast. I didnt know for sure if you could catch the first two runners, they were going so fast too. but looks like you did it. what happened to them??

From James on Sat, May 17, 2008 at 21:39:20

Nice running! Did you ask Seth to do the blog thing yet?

From haynes on Sat, May 17, 2008 at 22:00:03

Nice race! Bringin home the bacon, or that is, fruits and vegetables, lol. I am wondering--What is your marathon nutrition/hydration strategy? I think that part of my previous failures in the marathon were lack of both (because most things used to make me sick while running). It doesn't correspond exactly because I will be racing for 30ish minutes longer than you since I am so much slower, but I was wondering what you do.

From Adam RW- on Sat, May 17, 2008 at 22:07:38

Great report.

From Superfly on Sat, May 17, 2008 at 23:21:48

Smart race!

From Lybi on Sat, May 17, 2008 at 23:34:26

Great job Sasha! It's a very big day for the blog, too. Congratulations on a very well-played game of survival out there!

From Daniel on Sat, May 17, 2008 at 23:49:02

Great race and surviving the heat! I would have loved to see the looks on the faces of the people you passed while moaning.

From Chad on Sat, May 17, 2008 at 23:56:24

You're definitely a survivor, Sasha. Way to stick it out when no one was feeling very good.

From jtshad on Sun, May 18, 2008 at 09:46:25

Congrats on the 2nd place and very smart tactical race. You ran very well for the conditions.

From Ian on Sun, May 18, 2008 at 10:54:54

Well done Sasha, your training and racing inspires us all.

From Burt on Sun, May 18, 2008 at 13:56:22

Congratulations! That's awesome.

From Paul Petersen on Sun, May 18, 2008 at 14:57:56

Nice job. Very smart, patient race. Did you wear the 5-toe shoes?

From MichelleL on Sun, May 18, 2008 at 18:06:50

Congratulations Sasha! Yesterday was a personal and a group victory for you! Thank you for all of your support!

From Logan on Sun, May 18, 2008 at 20:37:40

Great race Sasha! You worked really hard for this.

From Dale on Sun, May 18, 2008 at 20:51:48

Excellent race!

From Walter on Mon, May 19, 2008 at 00:36:58

Well sasha, Im glad I took your advice and I can definately thank you for it. I would have started out with your group and finished alot slower than I did. Cody pushed me and pulled me and the important thing was my finish and how my legs felt after. 100% better! Now I will get my mileage up and get in gear! Good race yesterday and Im so amazed at you and your performance! It gives me hope!

From Michael on Mon, May 19, 2008 at 10:24:48

Way to fly Sasha. Wow 5:48 per mile, wish I could run one at that speed yet alone 26 like you!

From runnate on Mon, May 19, 2008 at 11:25:30

Great job on the race and good report. I really enjoy reading your blog and appreciate the ideas and support from it. I ran my best marathon yet with a 3:14:48 time. I loved the race!!

From Sean on Mon, May 19, 2008 at 11:39:59

Nice race. It would be great to see you at Twin Cities. Skip SGM and join us in Minneapolis.

From Jed on Mon, May 19, 2008 at 14:08:23

Nice work, Sasha. Sorry I couldn't give you a more accurate idea of the gap around 20. It was good to chat with you at the finish. The FRB world is growing in number and dominance!

From wheakory on Mon, May 19, 2008 at 14:17:29

Great race Sasha your really had a good strategy and pace in the race. Your always so steady in the marathon and never seem to have any trouble miles. You really have a strong mental toughness that God has given you and you use that gift to the fullest. Second place is a great accomplishment with the fact of enduring the heat.

I was trying to find you after the race to introduce my wife and kids (their on the blog). My wife and daughters ran the 5k and I ran the kids k with my three year old son.

From Sasha Pachev on Mon, May 19, 2008 at 14:50:07

Everybody, thanks for the cheers. James, I did the recruiting effort with Seth in the first mile. Let's see what happens. You guys give him some words of encouragement as well when you see him. Seth, if you are reading this, it it time to join the blog. Send me a private message to discuss the team details if you are interested.

Paul - I ran in T4 Racers instead for two reasons. Five Fingers had not yet been tested in long runs. I would have still taken the risk if somebody would have been willing to pay $1000 for breaking 2:35, but obviously nobody was around to offer it. However, if somebody is willing to offer that + travel expenses if the race is too far away, I would be willing to do it in a non-Sunday marathon on a reasonable course.

Sean - I do not run on Sundays, so Twin Cities is out for sure. Also, finishing in 25th place with 2:28 on a technically aided course and bringing nothing home does not excite me even if the race expenses are paid. If I go to St. George, they give me $150 for being there, which is quite a bit more than the cost of the trip (just gas). Being the first one from Utah County gives me $100. With this year being a non-qualifying year and St. George losing its status due to the OTQ standard change, I think sub-2:23 will be good enough for top 3, which would hopefully give me enough in travel certificates to get to either St. Jude in Memphis or Rocket City in Hunstville in December. This way I get to run a loop course sea level marathon, the costs are covered, and if everything goes well, I bring money home on top of it.

From Twinkie on Mon, May 19, 2008 at 15:38:41

Sasha, Why do you say that Twin Cities is an aided course? Just because it's a point to point? I've never heard anyone say that before of that marathon.

Just curious.

From Sasha Pachev on Mon, May 19, 2008 at 16:16:57

Point to point is aided is the USATF book unless you can prove that there was no tailwind. Granted, Twin Cities will probably be included in the exception list for qualifying, but still.

From Paul Petersen on Mon, May 19, 2008 at 16:46:33

So you're saying this doesn't remotely interest you?

Seems like they are compensating American runners with cold hard cash (and all sorts of bonuses), something St. George does not do. I figured this would gain "Sasha Approval".

Furthermore, start and finish lines of TCM looks to be borderline at the 30% USATF point-to-point threshold. The finish of a marathon needs to be less than 7.9 miles from the start, as the bird flies, and TCM is very very close. I am not sure if it makes it or not, but is interesting in itself (makes you wonder if it helped dictate the threshold - I think IAAF for record-eligible is 20%).

From jtshad on Mon, May 19, 2008 at 16:48:29

As far as I can tell it is a qualifier as it is the host of the US Championshipd and Master's Championships.

From Superfly on Mon, May 19, 2008 at 16:50:59

Wow. That's an awesome pay scale!

From Paul Petersen on Mon, May 19, 2008 at 16:54:20

Self-correction: IAAF start/finish separation for record-eligible course is 50%, so the USATF standard is actually more harsh.

From Sasha Pachev on Mon, May 19, 2008 at 18:12:50


When a race is on Sunday, I do not have an interest in it. However, if it was not, I would have a remote interest, but still run St. George unless I was sure I could run under 2:21 in Twin Cities. But on the flip side, if I were that fast, I would probably run Akron, Baltimore, or Hartford.

Aside from the financial reasons, I get a bigger kick out of racing a Kenyan than out of racing an American of the same fitness.

If it were at some time that did not conflict with other more interesting marathons, and it were on a non-Sunday, I might consider it.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Good sleep. Went to church. Struggled to stay awake, but making comments in class helped. The afternoon nap was short due to the need to do home teaching. I felt tempted to complain in my mind, but restrained myself by remembering what others had to do to accomplish what the Lord had asked them in the history of our church. Legs felt stale but not sore.

Night Sleep Time: 9.00Nap Time: 0.50Total Sleep Time: 9.50
From Burt on Mon, May 19, 2008 at 17:47:16

Ha! I make comments in class all the time to try and stay awake. I only hope I don't say anything stupid.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Ran 3 with Hyrum, Jeff and Daniel in 26:13 - tvpb. Then another 2.5 more with Jeff and Daniel, then Daniel turned around, and I finished the rest of the run - last 0.46 with Jeff as he headed home at that point. Total time for 10 was 1:19:59 - tvpb. Two VPBs was the reason for tempo running today. Timed a quarter in 1:23, and 600 in 2:04. The tempo pick ups felt as good as around mile 5 in the race on Saturday. I think I am still not acclimated to the heat. I could really feel a difference between around 50 this morning and 65 in the race.

If anybody wants to read my thoughts on the finisher medals and other token awards, I have added them to my race report from Saturday.

P.M. Benjamin and Jenny made me work tonight. Did all of the kids runs with a double stroller loaded with Joseph and Jacob. 1 mile with Julia in 10:47, then 1.5 with Jenny in 12:05, but she closed with a 7:26 mile, and 2 with Benjamin in 14:40 with the last mile in 6:55. Then a nice and leisurely 0.7 in 5:10 without the stroller.

Five Fingers - 34.83 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.75
From Jon on Tue, May 20, 2008 at 09:11:29

Sasha- with the finishers metal, I certainly understand not wanting it. It doesn't take many races before you get a large pile of them built up, so in some ways it either ends up in your trash or in theirs.

2 thoughts, though- using your singer analogy, the marathon is not quite like a singer who sings on key. It is a singer who pays $60 (most of us pay) to compete in a huge competition that he has spent hundreds of hours training for. So the medal is not for singing on key but rather for paying for and participating well in the competition, whether or not he wins. Not all singers want the medals, I'm sure, but they are offered to everyone.

Also, if some people volunteered to hand out participant medals at the end of the competition, I imagine they have a lot of respect for the competitors and what they have done. I know I can't sing, like you, so I would think the singers were rather amazing and deserved the medals. Likewise, the volunteers at the end of a race probably are amazed at the marathon runners, especially the fastest ones. If the second place finisher refused the medal, it may seem a bit rude and prideful to them, whatever the reason. They probably think the top finishers are more deserving of the medals than anyone else, since they put in the most training and performed the best (in absolute terms, not relatively, which is your point that other runners work harder to finish than you). In that case, I would be inclined to simply take the medal and quietly dispose of it later rather than possibly offend the volunteers or race organizers. But again, I do understand your views that finishing does not seem a huge accomplishment for you (though I think it is since it reflects your dedication and training) so a medal is not required. I will admit, my medal is already sitting in some box in my storage room and may never again see the light of day.

From Jon on Tue, May 20, 2008 at 09:12:19

Boy, I didn't realize my comment was that long... Probably the first time a comment on your blog is longer than the entry itself... :)

From jtshad on Tue, May 20, 2008 at 10:19:40

I can respect your opinion for your not wanting to take the finisher's medal. However, be careful that you do not alienate or downgrade others accomplishment's in running and finishing a marathon. Marathoners are a small percentage of the population and deserve any measure of success and pride that is afforded to them by others or just internal satisfaction. While you preface you comment about the prepartion and focus it takes to run a marathon, your statement can be taken as rather demeaning to those that don't run as fast as you. God gives everyone gifts, your gift to run at your pace in no greater than that of others who are running their 1st marathon or those who are running their 100th and whatever pace they can. You have stated your required recognition and we understand why you run, just don't downplay the recognition others receive for their efforts as the reason they run can be significantly different than yours.

I for one appreciate the time and energy the volunteers and organizer's put into these races and still appreciate the "token" awards I receive. It is a reminder of the effort I put into my preparation and my ability to keep improving my results.

From Cal on Tue, May 20, 2008 at 11:02:06

Obviously receiving the finishers medal will mean more to some people than to others.

But to the volunteers who are giving freely of their time to hand out the medals, I'm sure it means a lot to place it around someones neck and say congratulations. It probably means even more when they get a simple 'thank you' from the runner.

I say take the medal. If you don't want to keep it, take a sharpie with you to each race, sign your finisher medal and give it to one of the youngsters in the crowd. You might make someone's day and inspire them to go out and run.

From Paul Petersen on Tue, May 20, 2008 at 11:11:05

A finishers medal might mean more to you after you can't run anymore. Don't take finishing a marathon for granted.

In any case, it would be polite to accept the medal (and certainly not morally compromising), so if anything it helps the cause of FRB world domination when we accept tokens graciously.

From Kim on Tue, May 20, 2008 at 11:17:44

I love Cal's idea! Think of what it would mean to some youngster, (or maybe a not so youngster), out there who just ran the race of his or her life! Just like the Coke commercial where the kid gives the guy a Coke, (sorry I don't know who the football player is, he is probably the most well known guy out there), and the guy tosses him his jersey. That is a great way to be gracious of the gift and then pass it forward!

From Jon on Tue, May 20, 2008 at 11:19:18

Good idea, Cal- sign the medal and give it to a kid. Inspire a new generation! And as an added challenge, see if you can run the whole race with the Sharpie in your sock...

From Jon on Tue, May 20, 2008 at 11:20:00

Kim, that was Mean Joe Greene... I think.

From Kim on Tue, May 20, 2008 at 11:23:08

I knew he was a really famous guy! At least I recognize the name.

From Sasha Pachev on Tue, May 20, 2008 at 23:07:17

An argument is often made that anybody who can finish a marathon is elite of the elite, 0.1% of the US population, etc. But I wonder to what extent it is true. Suppose we create the following series of marathons throughout the country with the following terms (yea, right, where will the money come from?):

* free entry

* every performance is age graded and gender adjusted to match a man in his prime

* free coaching is available

* using the adjusted time we pay $1000 for under 6:00, $2000 for sub 5:00, $5000 for sub 4:00, $50,000 for sub 3:00, $100,000 for sub 2:50, $200,000 for sub-2:40, $500,000 for sub-2:30, $2,000,000 for sub-2:20, and $100,000,000 for sub-2:10 with the linear increase in compensation for the times in between so that each second gives you a little more, and the faster you get the more that second counts.

If we could do that, we would see some interesting results.

From Paul Petersen on Wed, May 21, 2008 at 11:09:31

Maybe the Gates Foundation should divert their funding from humanitarian issues to running. Or maybe the U.S. should cut all military funding and divert that money to running. Then we could try your idea! ;-)

The point you are making is probably true. If everyone in the U.S. trained hard and ran a marathon, a BQ wouldn't be a big deal anymore, because so many people could do it. An interesting thought is that even with gross financial incentives, I bet that tons of people STILL wouldn't try very hard, or try at all. Think about this: smoking a pack of cigarettes/day @ $4/pack will cost a person about $1500/year, and $75000 over a span of 50 years. Yet people still choose to smoke. Even worse, if they had taken their cigarette money and invested it in any decent mutual fund compounding at 10% for 50 years, their cigarette money would be worth 1.9 million dollars. Yet people still choose to smoke. I guess you could do the same calculation with a daily Starbucks latte or a monthly car lease. We do things anyway, even if it's a bad value or leads to financial loss.

So the point is that even you gave free entries, free coaching, age grading, and financial incentives, I think about 50% of the people would choose to sit on their rumps anyway.

Perhaps the internal drive to get off one's rump and train is what makes a person "elite" in our culture?

From Jon on Wed, May 21, 2008 at 11:20:46

I think you have a good point there, Paul- many, many people do not have the drive to regularly discomfort their body through intense exercise. Are there lots of people who have the physical skills to be fast but do not ever exercise? Certainly. But like we discussed in Sasha's "Quality X" post a while ago, elite runners need physical ability AND internal drive/dedication. And personally, I prefer to be involved in activities that people do simply because they enjoy it (running, hiking, frisbee) rather than because they want finacial gain. Once big money is involved, it either becomes more of a job or would evolve into a pro sport-type event (baseball, football) with rich team owners, etc. I want to keep running pure. Not to say I wouldn't like to see more "minor" finacial incentives, but 7 figures seems excessive.

By the way, Paul, I think you could fund Sasha's race by only cancelling a few small military projects (5 airplanes or so) rather than the whole military budget. Just goes to show where the country's priorities are.

From Paul Petersen on Wed, May 21, 2008 at 11:44:00

Yes, what is our Iraq spending/day? Somewhere in the xx BILLIONS? Not that I'm anti-military (I'm not, we need defense of various sorts), but WOW!!

Or if we canceled the space program, that would free up a few billion. It would put Jon out of a job, but think of the running opportunities!

There's an interesting study that Dave Ramsey quotes for his class. I will paraphrase the best I can. In the study, the test subjects were told they would be paid $10/hr for work. They show up, and are told to start digging a trench. They dig all day. Near the end of the day, they are told to fill in the trench. "Why?" they ask. "Doesn't matter. We're paying you, so just do your job." At the end of the day, they are paid and are told that if they come back tomorrow to do the same thing, their pay will double ($20/hr). The next day, only half of the subjects show up. They do the same thing: dig a hole and then fill it back in. At the end of the day, they are paid and told that they can come back the next day and make $30/hr. The next day, nobody shows up.

The point: financial reasons alone are not enough to do something; a task must be fulfilling and purposeful. For us, running is fulfilling and we find many intrinsic and extrinsic benefits. But for many, running is pointless and is like digging a hole and filling it in every day. After all, you usually start and end in the same don't even get anywhere! It also causes physical discomfort (at least at first) and sucks time. Pretty pointless. There are better forms of exercise that work more muscles, such as swimming or XC skiing. Most of us run because we LIKE to run. Period. Yeah, we talk about the health benefits, social benefits, and all that, but really it comes down to the fact that we like the act of running. And we who LIKE running are a small percentage.

From Sasha Pachev on Wed, May 21, 2008 at 11:53:54

Paul - what kind of subjects did they have in that experiment? If you did it in a poor country where $10/h is a lot, families are big, and opportunities for income are scarce, they would all show up the next day and bring their friends too.

From Jon on Wed, May 21, 2008 at 11:56:26

I think there are a fair number of runners today who tolerate running and a fair number who like it. Some who initially tolerate it grow to like it. But certainly, the body of the general population does not like it. Which, actually, is fine with me. I have often said that if everyone enjoyed the exact same activities (running or anything else), they would be too crowded for me. I like a diversity of hobbies/activities. I also am happy to see the number of runners increasing, but that is based on the understanding that the growth is somewhat limited.

From josse on Sun, May 25, 2008 at 11:08:57

Interesting, all I have to say is Sasha if your goal is building the blog and running community you had better be careful what you say. Most of them are really proud of there small little tokens they recieve from finishing a marathon or even a 5k at that matter.

From MarcieJ on Sun, May 25, 2008 at 18:08:37

I love all my finisher medals! In fact I kinda get bugged when they dont hand them out. Its something to hold onto and remember all the races that I have ran and the hard work I have put in. To me the sentamental value of them in invaluable!

From Christi on Mon, May 26, 2008 at 11:20:39

I don't think I've caught all the of the conversation- but just a thought... My friend Heather gives her finisher medals to her kids. I think this is a very sweet thing to do. She runs her races in her kids honor and give them the finisher medals.

From Kim on Mon, May 26, 2008 at 11:26:21

Tom and I were just talking yesterday about how fun it would be for future grandkids to come and be able to play around with all the medals. We even thought it would be fun to award them to the grandkids for running with us while they are here. But that is a few more years down the road.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. 10 in 1:19:41 - tvpb. First 7 with Jeff and Josse. Jeff's leg was bothering him a bit, he stopped at 7 just ot be sure. Caught up to Sarah with 0.1 to go and finished with her.

Just checked our web stats on Quantcast.Com. Record page impressions and uniques yesterday - 9K+ impressions and 450+ uniques. AdSense revenues on running pages are terrible compared to what the Loan Interest Calculator is making. AdSense says you are not allowed to reveal how much you are making, but I think I would still be within the terms of the agreement if I said that if all of my running pages produced as much revenue per impression as the loan interest calculator, I would be able to work on the blog full time.

P.M Kids took it easy on me, which was nice since I pushed the double stroller with Jacob and Joseph the entire time. 1 with Julia in 11:19, 1.5 with Jenny in 13:20, 2 with Benjamin in 17:28, and 0.7 alone in 5:18.

Five Fingers - 50.03 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 7.25Nap Time: 0.50Total Sleep Time: 7.75
From wheakory on Tue, May 20, 2008 at 19:32:11

Sasha, is the Five Fingers a good value for training, and making your feet muscles stronger?

From Sasha Pachev on Tue, May 20, 2008 at 19:53:12

I like the feel, but we'll see in a couple of months how much they help. One thing I can tell is that you cannot be sloppy on ground contact at all, it hurts when you space out.

From Jon on Tue, May 20, 2008 at 22:53:02

What is the definition of an impression and a unique?

From Sasha Pachev on Tue, May 20, 2008 at 23:10:42

Impression - you look at one web page. Unique - a computer used for viewing a site. This is of course never exact, but the estimates are pretty accurate.

From Karl on Wed, May 21, 2008 at 01:04:09

Hey how many miles do you think I should be putting in during the summer per week in preparation for next year's cross-country season?

From Sasha Pachev on Wed, May 21, 2008 at 11:30:43

Karl - about 60-70 to start. You will not see dramatic effects for a few months. Do not think of it as getting ready for something such as cross-country season. Think of it as a life style to maintain. You will see some improvements in the fall if you start now, but most of them will come in a year, two years. And you need to keep it steady. Doing 60 miles a week for a couple of weeks, then taking a break, then doing it again for a couple of weeks is not very effective.

Make sure to keep the pace slow. Do one tempo run a week to get the legs moving and feel some pain, maybe quick strides a couple of times a week to help you remember how to run fast, race once in a while to test your fitness. But otherwise keep it very relaxed. Do not break 7:00 on most of the runs.

The exciting news is that you are only 4 seconds slower than Ryan Hall in 800 meters. High mileage will help you find out if you have the same predisposition to endurance as he. If you do, 1:55 in the 800 will give you about 2:10 in the marathon once you start running 120 miles a week.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Ran with Hyrum, Jeff, and Daniel. Actually did most of the run with them in the vicinity but not with me since I was doing a different workout. First the philosophy behind it.

I noticed from the force plate test that my form is very efficient at a slower than marathon race pace. You can see from the force graph that on landing my foot is already going backwards. In the half-marathon and marathon pictures I am often caught in a position that looks like I am about to do a serious overstriding action, but I know I don't - it would have been awfully difficult to run in Crocs, and particularly Five Fingers like that. I think what happens is that I swing my foot forward and then backward right before landing, which is very good - this gives you a forward momentum to start with.

The fast speed test was botched, but after some thought I decided to go off with the assumption that the form at faster speeds is not as efficient as it is at slower speeds. I am going off the intuitive assumption that a serious quality breakdown takes place somewhere around 5:10-5:20 pace. Reasons - up to 5:20 I feel I can hold that pace forever. 5:10 is very miserable, I can barely hold it for a 5 K on a good day. Also, intuitively it feels like at slower speeds I have enough time to do my forward-back foot swing, but onces we are sub-5:20, there seems to be not enough time for it.

So I want to do an experiment. Can I train myself to do the magic forward-backward swing efficiently enough to stay aerobic at 5:00 - 5:10 pace? Today the experiment started. I did a 30x200 fartlek with the goal of running at around that speed, but the focus being not so much on maintaining the speed, as on maintaining good form. Wearing Five Fingers was a lot of help. I discovered that at those speeds they are different even from Crocs. They put a cap on how hard you can pound the pavement. Crocs do to a certain extent, but not nearly as much as Five Fingers. So you cannot run faster by just hammering harder, which is what I would have done even in Crocs, and especially in racing flats. You have to land a certain way that reduces the breaking and loads the ankle well at the same time, and then time your ankle extension properly and do it very vigorously. If you do it right, you can relax quite a bit more than normal while airborne. I think today I got a glimpse of understanding of how Kenyans and Ethiopians develop a form that helps them go under 27:00 in a 10 K.

The pace varied from 5:00 on the fastest to 5:20 on the slowest. Last night it was windy, and the wind knocked down a lot of branches and twigs. The pace greatly varied with the number of twigs I had to step on. The amount of rest varied a lot as well, but was 100 meters on average. Sometimes I would take a longer break to get to a better section on the trail, and a few times I just ran a full quarter.

Total time for 10 miles was 1:16:20.

P.M. Had the double stroller with Jacob and Joseph for the entire run except the part with Benjamin. 1 with Julia in 9:58, 0.18 more to drop her off at the church (she got 1.18), picked up Jenny, 1.62 with her  in  14:26,  dropped her off at the church,  0.18  home. Then  2 with Benjamin  in  17:24.

Five Fingers - 65.02 miles. 

Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.75
From todd on Wed, May 21, 2008 at 15:23:40

This seems to me to just be more evidence that you have potential as an ultra marathon runner more than as a marathon runner. Why not try a 50 miler and see what you can do? You clearly seem built for it and the lack of speed wouldn't even be a factor.

From Sasha Pachev on Wed, May 21, 2008 at 15:34:34

I would be even better at a pinky toe twitching contest. I can make my right pinky toe twitch like there is no tomorrow. But there is just not as much buck for the bang either in ultras or in twitching a pinky toe. And, besides, I really do not like running that much to run for over 3 hours straight. My long runs are rarely over 20 miles.

From adamr on Fri, May 23, 2008 at 13:39:59


I understand your assumption that your form is not as effecient at faster speeds, but didn't you notice a few weeks ago that your body gets to its most effecient fast form when you are trying to catch up to another runner? I thought you noticed it automatically did what it needed to get the job done. So do you think it might be a better way to improve your effeciency at these speeds by having someone to chase over each 200m repeat, like another runner or a bike pacer, thereby allowing you to practice that effecient "catch up" form? Or am I misunderstanding what you meant?

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. 10.1 with Jeff in 1:19:12. Had a VPB, caught up, thus 0.15 at marathon pace, took me a while to get up to speed. Hyrum joined us for the first mile in 9:28 or so, Daniel joined us for the first 4. We were all asleep, took forever to get going, were getting beat not only by the 8:00 guy but also by the 8:30 boltushka . But then we woke up and ran around 7:10 pace.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 9:55, 1.5 with Jenny in 13:22. Julia ran the first 0.18 with Jenny to play with her friend. Then 2 more with Benjamin in 17:14. His friend Stephen joined us for the first and the last quarter.

Five Fingers - 79.53 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.75
From wheakory on Thu, May 22, 2008 at 14:42:00

It's okay to run slow you just ran a marathon, and you can call this a good recovery run. Nice run Sasha.

From Adam RW on Thu, May 22, 2008 at 16:38:16

So I guess I’m an activist at heart. I noticed we’ve only had 13 votes but 144 views and there are more of you out there. I know some people don’t use the discussion board of the blog so I’m posting this comment on everyone’s blog that has updated in the last few days or so to bring your attention to both the discussion section and the mileage board. Please read the discussion here (,324.0.html) and then vote here (,348.0.html) if you have an opinion. If you already voted, I am sorry about the “spam.” Thank you!

From Burt on Thu, May 22, 2008 at 18:38:41

I believe the first sentence should read "You can choose what training variables YOU want to log by..."

From Scott Zincone on Thu, May 22, 2008 at 23:00:37

HELP !!!

I was reading your blog and clicked on the link inside the comment left by Burt. I did not think I made any changes, but then all of my blog entries disappeared. I hope you can get them back for me.

Thanks !!

From Sasha Pachev on Fri, May 23, 2008 at 14:49:57


As you have already noticed, I've fixed your blog. I've also fixed the temptation to break it on accident (I hope), and the typo that Burt has pointed out.

From Scott Zincone on Fri, May 23, 2008 at 18:19:39

I realize this is the second time I have done this, and I am not sure if you trying to get a point across to me or not with your response. But if you were, I certainly deserved it.

I know you hear this all the time but I am very appreciative of this blog and all you do. I may not have had a 30 minute Marathon PR because of the blog, but I am definitely a better runner because of it.

Thank You.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. 10 miles in 1:18:26. Ran with Hyrum, Jeff, and Daniel. Hyrum set a post-break PR of 32:21 in 4 miles with the last 3 in 23:14. And this week he had 80% attendance, which is a record as well. I keep telling him he has a 2:30 marathon in him, but he still does not quite believe me. But we are working on it.

Today was a day of singing again. First I sang Come Come Ye Saints at a slightly sub-8:00 pace and then Jeff sang the same song. I got a 2 from Daniel, Jeff got a 7 with 10 being good singing while stationary.

Daniel went another 2, then turned around. Jeff ran with me the whole 10.

A funny story about Jeff. In his class at BYU they had an assignment to estimate their maximum heart rate. The formula included measurements of weight, height, resting heart rate, and a heart rate at a pace that one thought he could sustain for 30 minutes. It gave Jeff some odd results. He took it to his professor, who said it was not meant to work on somebody who could sustain 5:25 pace for half an hour.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 9:58, 1.5 with Benjamin and Jenny in 13:21, 2.5 by myself with 2x400 first down 1% grade, second up, both in 1:17 to feel the 5 K pace for Magna. 

Five Fingers - 94.53 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.75
From Jon on Fri, May 23, 2008 at 14:42:29

What result did the formula give? What is his actual heart rate?

From Sasha Pachev on Fri, May 23, 2008 at 14:48:23

I think the formula said that his max is 177 while he hit 172 at 5:25 pace after a mile. I push my HR relative to my max very very well, very much out of range for a non-East African (I race a marathon at 90% of my max start to finish, and a half at 93%) and at 5:25 pace I would still be about at least 10 beats a minute off my max. I asked Jeff to dig up the formula.

From Cheryl on Fri, May 23, 2008 at 15:58:56

Sasha-I'm reading The Paleo Diet for Athletes by Loren Cordain and Joe Friel. Are you familiar with it? In it they say for optimal athletic performance you should avoid all dairy products--no milk, cheese, yogurt, etc. What is your opinion of that?

From Sasha Pachev on Fri, May 23, 2008 at 16:32:54

Cheryl: I have not read The Paleo Diet for Athlete. However, in 2003 I stopped using milk products along with white flour and red meat, and started running better. I have always been allergic to plain milk, but seemed to handle sour milk (yogurt, cheese) more or less OK. I would not say that milk is necessarily bad for everybody, but I've done very well without it. You can give it a try and see if it makes you run better or worse.

I think what is important about diet is not so much what you do and do not eat, as that your diet is a) balanced and b) consistent. I think a) will happen more or less naturally if you eliminate popular products with a brand name and eat healthy foods whose names your 19th century ancestors would have recognized according to your natural hunger, sense of taste, and overall body feedback. Most people struggle with b) always finding exceptions to eat less than ideal foods.

From Jon on Fri, May 23, 2008 at 16:45:17

Sasha- how do you get iron in your diet?

From Cheryl on Fri, May 23, 2008 at 16:48:18

Sasha--Thanks for the reply. In the book they also say that protein is very important and most athletes don't get enough. If you don't eat red meat, what are your main sources of proten?

From Sasha Pachev on Fri, May 23, 2008 at 16:54:19

Jon - when Dennis asked me the same question a while ago my answer was I don't know but somehow I do because I am running more and feel better. But that got me curious and I studied the chemical composition of what I was eating. Turns out oats have a lot of iron.

I think too often we worry too much about a particular isolated nutrient and forget about the element of harmony that each food either brings or takes a way.

From Sasha Pachev on Fri, May 23, 2008 at 16:59:26

Cheryl - grains and nuts have a lot of protein. In fact, I think you will get more protein eating grains to satiation than you would eating meat to satiation and your ability to digest it. But again, it all goes back to the focus on the end result vs the focus on individual nutrients. I have not had a single piece of red meet since 2003, and I have not lost any muscle mass. When I exercise a muscle, it gets bigger off my red meat free diet. So the protein and whatever else it needs for growth and healthy function must be coming from somewhere.

From Cheryl on Fri, May 23, 2008 at 17:20:53

Thanks. Is there anything else in the typical American diet that you avoid? (not referring to junk food, I assume you avoid all junk food.) Do you eat chicken, turkey and fish? What do you eat immediately following a big run?Thanks for answering all these questions, I'm really curious about an elite runner's diet.

From Sasha Pachev on Fri, May 23, 2008 at 17:29:38

I eat small amounts of chicken, turkey, and fish. During the winter maybe three times a week, during the summer maybe only once.

Note however, that the "eliteness" of a runner poorly correlates with the diet. 90% of the "eliteness" comes from what I call Quality X, see the discussion on the board for more details at,156.0.html

Good diet, however, helps you preserve Quality X as you get older, sustain your speed over longer distances, handle the training load better, and be less prone to injuries.

From josse on Fri, May 23, 2008 at 17:44:55

Cheryl Do realize that everyone body is differant and like Sasha said you need to pay attention to what make you feel good and what doesn't. If we all ate like that fast food places would go out of business. I have changed my diet in the last year and really feel a differance in over all health and well being. I eat similar to Sasha but I do eat dairy and some red meat.

When eating this way you have to really pay attention on making full protiens with mixing grains and beans. Or beans with a milk protien.

Allso beans have alot of iron in them.

From Cheryl on Sat, May 24, 2008 at 19:15:20

Josse--Thanks for that info. I'm going to see if paying more attention to diet makes running better.

Race: Magna Classic 5 K (3.107 Miles) 00:15:25, Place overall: 8
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Magna Classic 5 K 15:25, 8th place, new course PR.

The course in my opinion is equivalent to Carlsbad - aided but at an elevation. You can see the course map and profile at Magna 5K link. At least Dennis Simonaitis ran 14:47 in Carlsbad and 15:00 today, and 14:55 last year in Carlsbad and 15:12 in Magna. Adjusting for putting in less effort in a lower-key race we get the times that are about equivalent. The Course Tool says we are getting about 13 seconds a mile speed up, which would give us a good 40 seconds, which would be 20 seconds more than an NCAA altitude adjustment. In practice, though, I am seeing people run 30 seconds faster at sea-level so I wonder if the adjustment is tailored to make sure that the best altitude runner does not get too much. Also RunWorks.Com calculator says Magna should only be 32 seconds faster than a flat course at the same elevation.

Drove up with Jeff, his wife Kimia, Tyler, and Steve Ashbaker the Air Dark Horse. Warmed up 2 miles, and got ready.

Trouble at the start: in addition to what I've brought in my car, Teren, Seth, Mike Vick, Dennis, Josh Steffen, and Adam Wende. Turned out there was even more trouble - John Cole, a high school runner that has been putting in the miles. Lots of lions going after $275 worth of antelope meat.

The gun went off and the lions said: "Grrrr" Went through the first mile in 4:34. Course Tools says it should have been 4:45 for an even effort for this time. It felt hard. We had some sort of a pack. Teren and Seth way ahead, then Mike Vick a little closer, then Dennis, Jeff, Josh, Tyler, John, and myself.

In the second mile Dennis made a move. Josh tried to follow. Tyler fell back. Jeff fell back but then passed me and pulled away. 9:26 at 2 miles, 4:52. Course Tool even pace projection was 4:55. I was very happy with that 4:52 mile. Last year my first mile was 4:36, and second mile was 4:59.

I expected some difficulty in the last mile given my lack of 5 K training combined with the fast start. But there was not as much difficulty as I expected. We had some tailwind or maybe friendly cross-wind in the first 1.7 miles. However once we turned we had either a headwind or an unfriendly cross-wind. I was drafting behind John, and actually started feeling somewhat good after a moaning stretch, but I did not want to take over as he was going fast enough. I passed him once we turned the corner off 2700 South (around 0.4 to go), then he passed me back with about 0.25 to go, I stayed with him until about 0.1 to go, then he had a kick and I did not. So I ended up in 8th place with 15:23 on my watch, 15:25 officially. This is 19 seconds faster than last year, and a course PR by 6 seconds.


Other finishers: Teren 14:12, Seth 14:48, Mike Vick 14:51, Dennis 15:00 (masters course record), Jeff 15:08 (got a $20 piece of antelope meat, last lion that got to eat today), Josh Steffen 15:16, John Cole 15:23, Tyler 15:28 (9th), Steve Ashbaker 16:06 (10th), Adam Wende  16:09 (11th). Zuzana Thomas won the womens in 16:51 (if I remember right), then Carre Joyce 17:02, and Carol Cabanillas 17:08.

Ran a moderate length cool down with Jeff, Tyler, Steve, Seth, Adam, and Mike.

At home ran 1 with Julia in 9:30 (Benjamin joined us but ran ahead later and finished in 9:04), and then 1.5 with Jenny in 13:23.

P.M. 8.05 in 56:43. First 1.05 with Joseph and Jacob in the stroller.

T4 Racer - 90.76 miles

Five Fingers - 104.96 miles

Night Sleep Time: 7.00Nap Time: 2.00Total Sleep Time: 9.00
From Tom on Sat, May 24, 2008 at 20:18:00

Good job Sasha, congrats on your course PR.

From Dave S on Sat, May 24, 2008 at 21:35:03

Sasha, nice race expecially after a difficult marathon last week. It was nice meeting you after the race.

From Lybi on Sun, May 25, 2008 at 00:17:18

Wow! You are running amazingly well this season--PR's all over the place. It's especially noteworthy because of how long you've been running, and how solid your training always is!

From James W on Sun, May 25, 2008 at 00:36:43

Congratulations on a course PR. I agree with Lybi, you are doing extremely well this season. Looking forward to seeing you no later than St. George.

From Michael on Mon, May 26, 2008 at 18:20:27

Wow - fast race Sasha - great effort and great improvement, especially with running the marathon a week ago. The saying "you beat me by a mile" was really true, I was probably at mile 2 when you finished

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Got good sleep. Went to church. We had a good lesson on Mosian 18-20. The people of Limhi were outnumbered by a large group of the Lamanites that had enslaved them. They were originally conquered by the Lamanites when they fell into sin under king Noah which resulted in a loss of morale of their army, weakening it to the point where they could not defend themselves. Three times they tried to free themselves with their own strength without relying on God, and three times they were severely defeated. Finally they decided to humble themselves, repent of their sins, and come before God in prayer and fasting.

When they did God showed them a solution, which was to escape and head towards a larger group of the Nephites while the guards of the Lamanites were drunk.

I thought the story was very instructive. It is important to humble ourselves before God. Christ taught that whoseover exalteth himself shall be humbled and whosover humbleth himself shall be exalted. I have pondered last night what it means exactly to be humble, and especially as it applies to running a marathon. Suppose you are fit to run 2:40. If you apply the virtue of humility you go through the first half in 1:20. 1:15 errs on the side of overconfidence, while 1:25 errs on the side of self-deprecation. Both are not an expression of true humility. I would define humily as being in tune with the truth and acting accordingly. The ability to be humble in this sense is key to success in a distanace race, especially the marathon.

Another thing that impressed me was that when the people of Limhi were out of tune with the truth they attempted a brainless impluslive brute force solution which did not work. Three times! When they humbled themselves, they were finally ready for the solution that would work. Earlier they were too proud to even think about it. I saw a lot of parallels with my own life experiences in that story.

Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 1.50Total Sleep Time: 9.50
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Started the morning with 8 in 1:03:27 with Daniel, and Jeff. Hyrum joined us for the first 2, Tyler stayed with us for the first 3.5, then his ankle started hurting and he turned around. Did 500 in 2:03 to catch up after a VPB.

Afterwards drove to American Fork to pace the kids in the Harrington Memorial race. Jeff came along with us to help with the pacing job. First I paced Jenny through a 7:09 mile, a new PR by 10 seconds. Jeff paced Julia through a 9:23 mile. Julia decided to take it easy today, was chatting as she went along. She is still little, once in a while she gets goofy. Josh McAdams won the mile in 4:12.

As soon as we finished, I dashed back to the 5 K start to try to catch as much distance with Benjamin as possible. I only missed about the first quarter or so. Benjamin ran great, kidded a lot of adults, was untouchable by anybody his age, taught the hill by the cemetery a lesson, that same hill that humbled him two years ago. His first mile (downhill) was 6:33, then 7:19 uphill, and third downhill mile in 6:41. He finished in 21:12, a new PR by 20 seconds. He almost outkicked a high-school age teenager on the last quarter with his Lasse Viren style kick. The only problem was that his legs are not yet quite Lasse Viren's length. But still, 21:12 is very decent for a 9 year old kid.

Ran some more miles with Jeff afterwards. Seth Wold ran 15:29 for second, with Dustin Bybee a few seconds ahead.

P.M. 3.5 pushing Julia in the stroller in 27:52. 

Five Fingers -124.96 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 1.00Total Sleep Time: 8.75
From JohnK on Tue, May 27, 2008 at 10:17:30

Congrats to Benjamin on the new 5K PR!!! 21:12 is outstanding.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Ran with Jeff, Josse, and Daniel. Matt joined us on the trail later. Dropped Josse and Daniel off at 8. Dropped Matt off at 10, and Jeff at 12. Ran some more. Ended up with 15.17 in 1:53:31.

P.M. Had Jacob and Joseph in the stroller the entire run. Took Julia for a mile in 9:58, then did the swing run.  Benjamin ran 2 in 15:41 while Jenny rode a long, then we played at the swing, and Jenny 1.5 in 13:16 while Benjamin rode along. A funny thing happened. A procession of a dad in Five Fingers pushing two kids in a very beat up stroller accompanied by a 9 year old boy on an old undersized bike and a 7 year old girl in Crocs was advancing at about 8:45 pace along the trail. We passed a young running couple. Both looked fit. He says, "what, you are passing us with two kids?", and then he sees that there a little girl passing them as well and she is on foot!

Added 0.7 untimed afterwards. 

Five Fingers - 145.33 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 7.25Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.25
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Started with Hyrum, Jeff, and Daniel. Hyrum ran the warm-up with us then ran back to the house. Paced Daniel through a 5 mile tempo. The plan was to see if he could handle 6:00 pace, and then see how easy it was by picking up at the end. Mile splits were 6:00, 5:58, then we had 14:57 at the turnaround, third mile was 5:57, then 5:51, and 5:47 on the last mile which had some uphill. Total time 29:33, last 2.5 in 14:36. Very decent, he is starting to get in shape. Makes Daniel a good substitute for the Wasatch Back in case we need one except his wife is due on June 16th. Matt was out on the trail and joined us for some sections of the tempo.

Dropped Daniel off at 9, ran another 1.05 with Jeff, and then finished 15 alone.

P.M. 0.7 alone, 1 with Julia in 9:47, 1.5 with Jenny in 13:19, 2.1 with Benjamin in 17:24. 

Five Fingers - 165.63 miles

Night Sleep Time: 7.50Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.50
From Jon on Wed, May 28, 2008 at 16:18:45

Tell Daniel that my wife is due Jun 11 and I'm still doing WBR (just in case we need him as a backup). No excuses accepted!

From Kim on Wed, May 28, 2008 at 16:24:09

ooooh Jon! Be very careful! You are treading on very thin ice with a comment like that! =)

Your wife is a very understanding person to let you be doing the WBR at such a time! I hope it works out well for both of you. Congrats on the new daddy status that will be coming up. You'll have to keep us informed!

From Jon on Wed, May 28, 2008 at 16:29:19

Don't tell anyone, but I'm actually missing her sister's wedding, too, in order to run the race. I'm a dedicated team member, I guess.

From Sasha Pachev on Wed, May 28, 2008 at 16:33:31

All social events that weekend should take place in Logan if they are scheduled on Friday, and in Park City if the are scheduled on Saturday :-)

From Jon on Thu, May 29, 2008 at 13:43:39

Looks like we have another "Top Runner" to add to the board.

By the way, I loved your story of passing the couple out for a jog with your procession of kids. Very funny.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. 15.6 in 2:06:43. Started with Jeff and Daniel. Matt joined us in the middle. Dropped each training partner off eventually, then ran a bit by myself, and then found Derek Davis and ran with him a bit, then more alone. Miscalculated the turnaround and ended up with extra distance.

The subject of discussion today was Quality X. We concluded that a good portion of it is built during the time in the womb and early childhood.

P.M. 0.7 alone in 5:46, then 1 with Julia in 10:00, 1.5 with Jenny in 13:21, and 2 with Benjamin in 15:27. Went to a missionary training meeting. Half of the audience was Caucasian, but it was conducted in Spanish.

Five Fingers - 186.43 miles. 

Night Sleep Time: 7.50Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.50
From Jon on Fri, May 30, 2008 at 12:18:48

How do you "build" Quality X, as opposed to being just born with it as part of your genes?

From Sasha Pachev on Fri, May 30, 2008 at 12:51:04

It starts in the womb. The mother needs to eat healthy and exercise. Then the child needs to be active in a variety of ways. Ideally, run a mile or two a day, then play active games like tag, play ball games, etc. Also get proper nutrition, regular healthy meals. I think the time will come when we will have scientific proof that a mother's lifestyle during pregnancy + child lifestyle early on has more effect on Quality X than the genes.

From Jon on Fri, May 30, 2008 at 15:17:20

Unscientifically, I could understand that being active as a child could result in being a better athlete (or is it that children who are better athletes/high Quality X are naturally predispositioned to be more active?). I can also picture that a healthy eating mother can help in terms of fetal development. The iffy one is that the mom needs to exercise- the only link I can see there would be if the additional endorphins in the mom's blood somehow plays a roll or something, because I can't picture a parasite (the baby) benefitting from host (mother) exercise other than how it affects what is in the mother's blood.

From Jon on Fri, May 30, 2008 at 15:18:01

Interesting topic, anyways.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Ran with Jeff, Daniel, and Matt. Jeff ran 10, Daniel 8, Matt ran 10 as well but he started from his house and we found him later. So I ran the last 5 miles alone. Total time was 1:54:31.

Matt at one point wondered if VPB was a special running term he did not know and he even Googled it. He thought maybe it was some kind of a speed workout. It sure is if your training partners do not wait for you. So I did my VPB speed workout today, about 0.4 at 5:40 pace.

Interestingly enough, a search for VPB on Google finds my blog, but does not find the definition. So maybe if I define it again we could improve the relevancy of the search and help those who are confused. Definition: VPB = Virtual Private Bathroom, or in other words a bush. It does not stand for Virtual Potty Break, the break is very real, it is the privacy that is virtual.

P.M. 1 mile with Julia in 9:46, 1.5 with Jenny in 13:17, 2 with Benjamin in 16:35, 0.7 alone.

Five Fingers - 206.63 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 7.50Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.50
From jona on Fri, May 30, 2008 at 15:35:21

Sasha, I see your "Five Fingers" have 200 + miles on them, how many miles to those typically get, and can you give us an update or final on your crocks?

From Sasha Pachev on Fri, May 30, 2008 at 15:42:22

Crocs developed holes that were too big for my comfort by 510 miles, so I retired them. If somebody paid me to take them further, I could have, though. I do not know how long Five Fingers are supposed to last. They appear OK after 200 miles with the exception of a small hole in the fabric on top of one big toe. But I have to say that Crocs are super-cushioned shoes compared to Five Fingers.

From Jon on Fri, May 30, 2008 at 16:03:57

Sasha- one of the main sponsors of the Bolder Boulder is crocs. Maybe you can contact them and see if they will sponsor you if you win the race wearing crocs!

From jona on Fri, May 30, 2008 at 17:20:03

I was going to say that you should hit croc's up as a sponsor. What great advertising!

From cgbooth23 on Fri, May 30, 2008 at 17:39:18

thanks for the update on VPB, well needed definition!

From Sasha Pachev on Fri, May 30, 2008 at 17:49:37

Crocs just offered me 4 free pairs for a video of me wearing them. They showed no special interest in me winning a race. I figured it was not worth the time.

From Lulu on Fri, May 30, 2008 at 23:35:18

So glad no one thought that VPB stood for ventricular premature beats. Surely your search turned up a cardiology journal article or two...

From jeffmc on Sat, May 31, 2008 at 16:21:17

I looked up my time online from when I ran the Sound to Narrows while "completely out of shape" and it ends up that it was faster then I thought. I finished in 44:29 in 2003.

From josse on Sat, May 31, 2008 at 16:54:44

You could wear your FBR shirt and it would be great advertising.

From Lybi on Sat, May 31, 2008 at 17:08:17

Sasha, you should do the video/shoe thing! They probably want to see how it works, and if there is a possibility of making crocs that are better suited for running. So, in the name of science! And Josse is right--it would be great advertising for the blog, too.

Race: Bridal Veil 10 K (6.214 Miles) 00:34:25, Place overall: 2
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Ran the Bridal Veil 10 K, 2nd place in 34:25.

Jeff and I were timing the race, so we ran it as well as part of our Saturday workout. We warmed up a bit over 4 miles. It was windy, the wind was blowing out of the Provo Canyon, which meant head wind for the first 3+ miles. We did a couple of strides to gage the wind. On the first one we ran 43 seconds for 200 uphill into a headwind. On the second one we ran 37 downhill with a tailwind.

Got to the start, found some competition. Bryan Summers, a coach at West Jordan High, 4:35 miler, winner of the Salt Lake 5 K this year (16:31), one of the 4 runners who saved the male field from being chicked by Emily Jameson. He was wearing the Wasatch Running Center uniform, my former sponsor, to make things more interesting.

To better deal with the wind Jeff and I decided to stick together in the first 3 miles trading leads at 1 minute intervals or more often if necessary. So I would push the top end of how fast I was willing to start, while he would push the bottom end of how slow. This meant that I was having a bad day, Jeff could end up 10 seconds slower that he should have from starting too slow, and if Jeff was having a good day I would end up 10 seconds slower from starting too fast. But that was OK, since this was a low profile race with no prize money. And in any case, the cooperation against the wind would wipe out the losses anyway, so it was all good.

We did everything according to the plan. Official mile markers were not exceptionally accurate, but not too bad either. I ran that race a year ago, and it came out 6.21 on my GPS as well as on Ted's. I did not wear a GPS this time, and was going off the official mile markers as well as the triangles on the trail to double check on occasion. First mile was officially 5:41, second 5:59. Brian was still with us. He sat behind the first 1.8 miles, and then moved up. That was good, I did not have to take my turn, nor did Jeff. At around 2.2 Bryan was done leading, and Jeff moved up, but the wind was so strong he asked me to help. So I moved up, did what I could, then Jeff took over again. As Jeff turned up the heat, I started moaning, and we dropped Bryan. The wind died down a bit, so Jeff was OK putting more fuel into the fire while running up front. Our third mile was 6:13, but it was probably long. We did hit bad gusts, but they were not any worse than in the second mile, and the climb was about the same level of steepness.

Shortly after 3 we hit the turnaround. I moved up for a little bit, but then Jeff took over again and now was going full steam. Things started getting miserable for me, but I wanted to be with Jeff for as long as possible, because I knew that once I was left alone I would not have the drive to push. We hit the next "mile" in 4:51, which was definitely short, probably by the same amount as the third mile was long. Shortly after 4 I lost concentration and Jeff was gone. From then on I ran in survival mode, but it was still decent. Next mile was 5:18, which was probably right (and it agreed with the triangles), followed by 5:23 that was long, and 1:00 to the finish, which was definitely short as I was not kicking that hard. I ended up beating my last year time by 1:10, which I was pleased with. Some of it came from working with Jeff, but I think some of it came from being in better shape. Jeff won with 33:46, Bryan was third with 36:28.

We timed the race, and then went to run the rest of the miles. Ran another 7.6, found Bryan shortly after we started, and he joined us. We did a fair share of FRB propaganda on him, hopefully it will bear fruit. Total of 18 miles for the run.

P.M. 1 with Julia in regular walking shoes in 9:32, then 2 with Benjamin in Five Fingers in 17:18 with Jenny doing the first 1.5 with us in 13:15.

T4 Racer - 108.76 miles

Five Fingers - 209.63 miles

Night Sleep Time: 7.50Nap Time: 1.00Total Sleep Time: 8.50
From wheakory on Mon, Jun 02, 2008 at 13:59:57

Nice race Sasha. It's always good to better your time on the same course. Do you like the T4 Racer's?

From Sasha Pachev on Mon, Jun 02, 2008 at 14:08:36

Kory - yes, they are OK. I took the insoles out to make them lighter.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A day of rest. Went to church. Stayed awake. Having to teach in the Elders Quorum helped. This also helped me remember a mission experience. My companion and I sat on the stand during a sacrament meeting rather tired as I hoped that we would have a dynamic speaker that day. Falling asleep on the stand would be rather embarrassing. Then I remembered that I was the speaker. But still I managed to fall asleep during my companion's talk.

Night Sleep Time: 9.00Nap Time: 1.50Total Sleep Time: 10.50
From wheakory on Mon, Jun 02, 2008 at 13:55:18

Do you feel tired most of the time on Sunday's? I have to get up early on Sunday's to help do our worship music. I haven't had to preach for a while so I don't have too big of a part there too much anymore.

Sasha, I think it's a wonderful discipline you have made not to run races on Sunday. I myself have a problem running a race and missing church on a Sunday. I've done it and felt bad and might do it again, but it does really make me think. It's something that I really have to look hard at and decide what's important. Were not here to just run but to spread God's word and have a deep relationship with him. I wanted to commend you on your choice.

From Sasha Pachev on Mon, Jun 02, 2008 at 14:07:04

Kory - on Sunday I tell my body to rest, and it is anxious once I let it. So it shuts down pretty good. Sometimes things get busy with church and family, but I make sure to take a nap in the afternoon if at all possible.

From wheakory on Mon, Jun 02, 2008 at 14:24:01

I think that's my problem even though I don't usually run on Sunday, unless I want the dog to get some exercise my body just shuts down. I feel week and fatigue the whole day regardless if I take a nap or not. Have you experienced this?

From Sasha Pachev on Mon, Jun 02, 2008 at 14:51:22

Yes, I do feel sluggish, but that is OK. It means your body is taking the required rest. No need to wake it up, let it rest.

From josse on Mon, Jun 02, 2008 at 15:03:07

I feel this way on sundays, I call it my running hangover. I feel tired, get a bad headache, and just want to sleep. But I think it is very important to take sundays (or at least one day a week) as a day of rest. Our bodies will only thank us.

From wheakory on Mon, Jun 02, 2008 at 15:17:40

It's funny how the nervous system just shuts down when it knows your not going to go aerobic or anaerobic. My body just doesn't want to do much of anything, but there's things I have to get on Sunday, so I don't completely rest. There's always yard work if I don't get it done on Saturday.

Also I eat different on Sunday's where I eat breakfast then a huge meal after church at about 2pm, and then I don't eat the rest of the day, because I'm so full. This might be an affect on my body.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. 15.1 in 1:57:32. Started with Jeff and Hyrum. Then Matt joined us briefly. Dropped Hyrum off at 4. He did have quite a pick up on the last quarter, it was 1:32 with the last 100 in 18. He made a resolution that he would not eat on a training day (Mon-Sat) until he ran. With as much as he likes to eat, this would hopefully get him to run more regularly.

After than ran with Jeff and he realized he needed to get his car back to his wife so she'd make it to work on time. So we picked up the pace. We figured we needed to run 6:40 for 4.5 miles. That sounded tedious. We were going 6:20, then 6:10 at first. Then I figured if we just hammer a mile and a half, we can relax at the end. So we gradually picked up to a little under 6:00. Saw the new blogger Luz on the trail. Then we picked it up even more, ran 0.5 in 2:51 followed by 2:45, 5:36 for the mile. It hurt more than it should have. Some of it could be the fatigue from the 10 K, but some is probably just because it is hard to run fast in Five Fingers because you cannot pound the ground as hard. But that is OK, good practice running fast without pounding the ground.

Dropped Jeff off at 10, he moved his car and rejoined me for another 2 miles at 11.5. Then I finished the run alone.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 9:36, 1.5 with Jenny in 13:21, 2 with Benjamin in 16:40, and 0.5 alone. 

Five Fingers - 229.73 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.75
From Sweetiepie on Mon, Jun 02, 2008 at 14:39:45

Thanks for your comment. I don't walk when I run, I only walked this morning due to my daughter coming along. I have a question about running 6 days a week. I am overweight, won't that be hard on my knees (which have been a problem in the past)? I run 5 days a week now, with Fridays off (day before long run) and Sundays (day after long run). Is that not sufficient?

From Sasha Pachev on Mon, Jun 02, 2008 at 15:01:18

It is odd that running 5 days a week you are still overweight. I would suspect two problems:

a) Because of the weight and the knee stress you cannot run far or fast enough to burn the calories you are eating

b) Your diet is less than ideal

To fix a) keep your running routine the same, but add some biking on top of it. If possible, ride up a small grade. Make sure you are breathing fairly hard the entire time, do not make it a leisurely ride, but at the same time keep it controlled enough to where you are able to do it for an hour.

To fix b) start with "if I know it is bad I do not eat it, no excuses, no exceptions", and go from there.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Ran with Daniel, Jeff, Michelle, and Josse. We warmed up and then did the tempo. Josse and Daniel just did a brisk mile, Daniel stayed with us, Josse fell back a bit. Jeff and I paced Michelle at 6:00 pace on the Provo River 5 Mile Tempo until she could not go anymore. She hoped to make it to 3, I had suspicions that she could go longer than that and told her we would try to make it to 5 miles. She laughed at me as if she had been 90 years old and had just been told she could have a child.

After 2.62 of warmup we started the tempo. Knowing the importance of proper pacing to maximize the distance that Michelle could hold the pace for I checked the splits nearly every 1/16th of a mile to make sure we were hitting them as close as possible. First mile was 5:58 followed by a 5:59. No "give me five" were necessary to keep Michelle on pace until we've done a 180 and had to get back to speed. 18:00 at 3 miles, 6:03 with a 180. She did the next quarter in 1:29, and after that mentally lost some steam because in her mind she was done. I tried to convince her to go longer but she was too stubborn, and we did not have $100 per quarter on pace in the FRB budget to keep her going. Not yet, at least. She stopped at 3.625 mark slowing down to 1:35 quarter followed by a 1/8 in 48.

Finished 13 with Jeff and Michelle, then added another 2.1.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 9:40, 1.5 with Jenny in 13:10, 2.5 by myself in 19:26. Pushed Jacob the entire run.

Five Fingers - 249.83 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 7.25Nap Time: 0.50Total Sleep Time: 7.75
From MichelleL on Tue, Jun 03, 2008 at 23:30:22

It's all about the incremental gains, Sasha. I went 48% farther today than back in December so I am guessing that's a-ok. You are right though I could have gone a little farther. Next time I'll do better. Thanks so much for helping me through it.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. 10.1 with Jeff early in the morning in 1:19:32.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 9:51, 1.5 with Jenny in 13:13, 2 with Benjamin in 16:35, 5.5 alone in 40:59. 

Five Fingers - 269.92 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 6.75Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 6.75
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Ran with Jeff and Daniel. Did a 200 meter time trial on the BYU track in the middle of a 16 mile run. It was not the best day for a sprint time trial - the track was wet and there was an odd wind blowing on the curve. And we had been doing distance on top of everything with very little sprinting. But it was OK, since all three of us had to deal with the same issues, and I just wanted to know the differences in all out speed rather off distance training than a true all out speed potential. Did 4x100 for a warm-up, missed the first, second in 16.6, then 15.3 and 15.6. Then ran a 200 racing each other with a jogging start. Jeff got 27.1, I got 30.0, Daniel was right there with me. Decided to see if we'd be faster the second time around. Jeff did 28.0, me 30.4, Daniel 30.5. Then did a control 100 meters staying together on purpose to see the differences in self-timing. I got 17.6, Jeff got 17.3 even though we ran together.

T4 Racer -  124.78 miles

P.M. 1 with Julia in 10:09, 1.5 with Jenny in 13:23, 2 with Benjamin in 17:45. 

Five Fingers -  274.42 miles

Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 0.67Total Sleep Time: 8.42
From wheakory on Thu, Jun 05, 2008 at 15:54:54

Nice run Sasha. I really believe with the high mileage your doing your marathon times are going to improve from last year.

I really wished I lived in Provo because I would love to run with you guys every morning. That's how much I love running.

I think sometimes to get faster it's an advantage to have someone run with you that can push you.

From Sasha Pachev on Thu, Jun 05, 2008 at 16:09:23

Kory - we could probably find a job for you at Novell or some start-up in the area. Let me know if you are interested, I hear from recruiters about once a month on average.

From wheakory on Fri, Jun 06, 2008 at 18:15:55

Right offer Sasha I would be interested. There's really not any dedicated groups here that help to prove your running. We have a small running group, but mostly for beginners, and it's only a Saturday run that they do.

From Sasha Pachev on Fri, Jun 06, 2008 at 18:17:21

E-mail me your resume.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. 15 miles. Total time 1:58:36. Started with Daniel and Jeff. Matt joined us. Did some VPB pickups, thus 1.3 miles of marathon pace. Dropped Jeff and Daniel at 10.1. Ran a lap around the block with Sarah. Her legs were hurting, so she cut her run short. Went for some more afterwards.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 9:59, 1.6 with Jenny to the church picnic in 14:13 pushing Jacob and Joseph, then back the scenic way 2.4 still pushing Jacob and Joseph total time for 4 miles was 33:31.

Five Fingers - 294.42 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 7.67Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.67
From Hayden on Sat, Jun 07, 2008 at 15:46:22

Hey Sasha i will talk to Dave about that. I am running the Summer Games 10k next weekend and Dave might be doing it. But i can do a 10k with him too, or more. I am excited for this relay and yes i would love to be on the White Team. Hey Check out my blog and the training i got this weekend at Fish Lake.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Did a DesNews specific workout with Jeff. Since he is not running DesNews marathon and is more injury prone than me, we modified his workout a bit to eliminate Squaw Peak decent for him. So he warmed up two miles then met me at my house. We did a leisurely warm-up at around 7:30-7:40 pace to the base of the Squaw Peak road which turned out to be 8.3 miles. The we ran a tempo up Squaw Peak Stairway to Glory. According to the Course Tool, it gains 1694 feet over 4.25 miles, which turns out to be 7.6% grade on average. So basically paved Ragnar leg about 2000 feet lower. My GPS measured 4.29 on the way up and 4.35 on the way down. There were painted marks on the road and the GPS was measuring less than the painted marks on the way up at 4 miles. I imagine we did better tangents that whoever painted the marks. But who cares about the exact distance anyway on a grade that steep - the times and paces are meaningless unless you have a comparison context.

Jeff was having a fun time - had to ease off for me a couple of times to keep the gap smaller, his wife Kimia called him on the phone a couple of times and he talked to her without too much trouble. She was supposed to pick him up at the top and drive him down. So she just wanted to make sure she was going the right way. I was working pretty hard and still could not keep up with Jeff. We were beating the 7:30 guy up to 3 miles, and then the grade got steeper and the elevation increased as well. So we slowed down to 8:00 pace. The last quarter was miserable - the grade is the steepest there. I ran it in 2:16, Jeff already had a gap on me, and he increased it some but not much. My time was 32:37, which is a 20 second PR. Last time I ran it was 2006, and I did get my old PR of 32:57 then.

I rested for a couple of minutes at the top, then Kimia took Jeff down, and I ran another tempo in the opposite direction. The road was wet, and it did matter at faster speeds. Additionally I was not used to the grade of this steepness, had not had enough practice lately. Plus the fatigue of having run 12 miles already was starting to affect me. So 5:00 pace was about all I could do. Was not breathing very hard. Ran the decent in 21:44. In the past with more downhill practice and doing it earlier in the run I've been able to do it a good minute faster. When I did that in the past I was breathing like a mad man and my HR was around 163. On the ascent I could only get 160 until the steep section, and then it got into 162-163 area. Today I did not have an HRM with me, but based on how I felt I would guess by HR was around 163 on the ascent and 155 on the decent.

Met Jeff at the bottom, we jogged to the Provo River trail (about 0.1) and started another tempo. Ran 4 miles down about a 1% grade to Wills Pit Stop where Kimia picked us up. Our time was 23:19 with the last mile in 5:31. That last tempo was hard, my head was fuzzy and the legs did not want to respond, I felt very unmotivated to be sub-6:00 but pushed past the barrier out of a sense of duty. Jeff started turning up the heat on the last mile, and I did not think I had much juice in me, but I was able to zone out, ignore the fatigue and stay with him. The feeling is not a surprise as I was between miles 17 and 21 for the whole run. Good preparation for DesNews.

T4 Racer - 145.83 miles. 

P.M. 1 with Julia in 9:50, 1.5 with Benjamin, Jenny, and Jared. Benjamin went ahead and ran 12:40, Jenny got 12:42, I stayed with Jared and we did 12:55. I pushed Jacob in the single stroller. Then ran another 0.5 with Jared in 4:28, Benjamin ran ahead and did 3:55, total of 16:35 for 2 miles for Benjamin.

Five Fingers - 297.42 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
From Hayden on Sat, Jun 07, 2008 at 23:37:31

Hey i left you a message on yesterday's just in case you didn't get it. Here is a reminder.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Eventful Sunday. Sore quads from yesterday, but that was to be expected. In fact, the level of soreness exactly according to the plan. Still makes chasing kids difficult.

Jacob was being fussy in the sacrament meeting, so Sarah told me to take him out. He calmed down while I was carrying him, so I just sat down on a back row. I tried to pay attention to the talks, they were good, but I missed the second talk almost entirely due to a special spiritual experience with the code name of Lehi's dream. The problem is that I cannot sleep past 6 AM any more. But I do very well later in the morning :-)

Taught a class in Sunday school, and then Sarah reminded me that Benjamin had a talk in Primary, and we totally spaced it out, and he was not prepared. So I went to fix that. His talk went OK aside from the fact that he did not think so and hid behind a chair after he finished it. Some interesting behavior from a guy that can average 6:50 pace in a 5 K. He also can boast being spoon fed at breakfast the day after he broke the 8:00 mile (he was a month away from his 6th birthday then). I suppose we all progress at different rates in different areas.

Got a good nap in the afternoon.

Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 1.00Total Sleep Time: 9.00
From James W on Mon, Jun 09, 2008 at 14:45:36

I think I had a little "Lehi's Dream" spiritual experience of my own in priesthood yesterday - unfortunately I was holding my pocket pc at the time and accidentally dropped it (how embarrasing). Luckily for me, it was protected by a metal rhinoskin case . . . interestingly, just after that experience, I actually had some insights to add to the lesson . . .

From Sasha Pachev on Mon, Jun 09, 2008 at 14:52:36

I used to embarrass Sarah by trying to add insights to the class discussion during my Lehi's dream when we were taking a humanities class together at BYU.

From James W on Mon, Jun 09, 2008 at 14:58:11

Don't get me started on embarrasing situations - one time I fell asleep during sacrament meeting when Lybi and I were either going out or engaged (I don't remember which) when the sacrament was being passed, and woke up with a start, kicking the chair in front of me. The people in front of us started laughing so hard they dropped the sacrament tray . . .

From Sasha Pachev on Mon, Jun 09, 2008 at 15:02:43

I am always concerned that the sacrament tray is going to get dropped one day when it gets to us with all the children doing odd movements. So far it has not yet happened.

From MichelleL on Mon, Jun 09, 2008 at 15:09:58

Paul calls it "Closing my eyes, so I can concentrate on the talk." Now that I lead music in sacrament meeting he gets to wrestle the three boys instead. Some callings help the spouse grow!

From Sasha Pachev on Mon, Jun 09, 2008 at 15:27:33

Some men are hopeless. Sarah is the ward organist, but I can still fall asleep while sitting with all five children. Maybe I should post on the Bragging Board that I can handle five children nine and under in church alone in my sleep :-)

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Quads still sore. Worse than after any marathon except DesNews. Which was exactly the purpose of the workout on Saturday, so no complaints about that.

Ran 8 with Jeff and Daniel. Matt joined us en route for a portion. Then did 2.1 around the block with Jeff, and 5 more alone. Total time was 1:56:45. A little faster at the end than normal, last 5 miles in 36:33. I think I am getting used to Five Fingers, faster pace is not as painful on the feet as it used to be (which was the reason for running 8:00 pace on most of the runs in the last three weeks). I am excited about this. I figured running in the Five Fingers will either injure something or correct something. I was not sure which direction it was going for a while, as the right foot sometimes would hurt, but it never got worse, and I could not feel anything in racing flats, so I figured keep trying. I think the right foot is starting to straighten out.

Measured the sizes of various parts of the leg with Jeff. Measurements in inches. Lower shin, thinnest part - Jeff 7.5, me 8.375. Calf, the widest part, flexed - both 14.5 inches. Quad, widest part, flexed - me 21 inches, Jeff - 20 inches. Wrist - both 6.5 inches.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 9:58. Then pushed Jacob in the single stroller for the rest of the run. 1.5 with Benjamin and Jenny in 12:59, then another 0.5 with Benjamin in 3:58, and 2 with no running kids in 15:43. 

Five Fingers - 312.52 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.33Total Sleep Time: 8.33
From josse on Tue, Jun 10, 2008 at 10:29:00

Hey if you are needing a runner for WBR me and Michelle where thinking Steve from Heber would be a good person, his blog is cutika99. He is a fasty.

From Jon on Tue, Jun 10, 2008 at 10:31:52

He's already on the team...

From josse on Tue, Jun 10, 2008 at 10:32:50

Oh didn't know for sure. He is new to the blog so we had no idea.

From Jon on Tue, Jun 10, 2008 at 10:35:23

Yeah, next we may recruit you or Michelle if we can't stop all these injuries...

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Ran with Jeff, Josse, and Matt. Total distance was 15.1 in 1:55:57. Did a VPB pickup - 0.5 in 2:41. It felt easier than it ever has in Five Fingers. I also noticed that the balls of my feet are developing pretty thick callouses. Some natural padding.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 9:48. 1.5 with Benjamin and Jenny in 12:50, then 0.5 with Benjamin in 3:36, then pushed Jacob and Joseph in the double stroller for two miles - 15:43.

Five Fingers - 332.62 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 7.25Nap Time: 0.50Total Sleep Time: 7.75
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Ran with Jeff and Matt. We did some sprints. 2x100 15.3, 15.2. Then 200 in 31.3, and 2x100 14.6, 15.3. Because we jogged so slowly in between, and because of how much we got into a conversation, our time at 10.1 was 1:24:08, I think we earned the title of boltuny, which would be the masculine plural of boltushka. Then I ran 5.05 alone in 34:47 with a 0.5 pickup in the middle at 5:20 pace. The magic mark 0.5 into the pickup was erased, but I hit the first quarter in 1:21, and was 2:20 with 1/16th to go. It felt very good. The reason I did this pickup was that for some reason 7:00 pace felt hard. I wanted to see if there was a real problem or if I was just being lazy. 5:20 felt nice and relaxed, I felt like I could hold it forever.

T4 Racer - 160.98 miles.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 9:56, 1.5 with Benjamin and Jenny in 11:57, 0.5 more with Benjamin in 3:48, 2 alone in 13:43.

Five Fingers - 337.62 miles. 

Night Sleep Time: 7.50Nap Time: 1.00Total Sleep Time: 8.50
From wheakory on Wed, Jun 11, 2008 at 13:53:56

Wouldn't it be nice if you could feel like you could hold a 5:20 forever in a marathon. Although, you've almost done it and it can still happen.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Ran with Jeff and Tyler. Jeff was running easy because is running in Sound to Narrows and wants to be reasonably fresh. Tyler and I did a tempo run. The plan was to measure how long Tyler can handle 5:40 pace going up to 7.5 miles but no more. I wore Five Fingers, which made 5:40 pace a challenge for me as well.

We warmed up 3.88. The warmup was brisk. We put over a minute on the 8:00 guy. This is brisk by our new boltun standards. I think Tyler was the pace pushing element. If you leave Jeff and me alone, and we are talking, the pace can be easily slower than 8:00 until we realize we need to get home in time.

Went through the first 200 in 43, it felt brisk, and I said to myself - done with 1/60th of the run. Then after a quarter I said, done with 1/30th, and that felt better. First mile in 5:38, then 5:39. Felt hard. Lost concentration before the turnaround, and lost all of the lead on the 5:40 guy. 14:10 at 2.5. OK, done with 1/3, that sounds a lot better. Pushed the gas pedal to get back on pace, overdid it a bit, started hitting 1:23 quarters. Tyler seemed to be OK, so I figured we'd just keep the pace. 16:58 at 3 miles (5:41), 22:31 at 4 (5:33). Wow, almost done, and I am feeling stronger than I was earlier. I think the increasing proximity of the finish was progressively cheering me up. Noticed that if I tense the ankle and the glut I get a very good push off without making the feet hurt.

At 4.5 Tyler started feeling tired and said he only wanted to do 5. I said more. He said 6. I said 6.25. He said OK. We hit 5 in 28:13 (5:42), then did a 180 and were 33:57 at 6 (5:44), and finished 6.25 in 35:22, that would be 35:09 for the 10 K, which is a PR for Tyler. I set all kinds of Five Finger PRs as well - I think all distances 1 mile through 10 K.

Found Jeff on the trail afterwards, cooled down together. Dropped Tyler off 12.75 into the run, he threw up shortly after stopping, first time he threw up after a run. He is now a proud member of the elite Clyde/Logan vomit on the run club. Jeff and I ran loops around the block to add extra distance. I ended up with 15.2 for the run.

P.M - 1 with Julia in 9:52, 1.5 with Benjamin and Jenny in 12:54, 2.5 alone in 18:39. 

Five Fingers - 357.47 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 7.25Nap Time: 1.00Total Sleep Time: 8.25
From James on Thu, Jun 12, 2008 at 16:04:12

I love my Five Fingers on the grass but I don't think I could handle them on the road like you do. And not for a 6 mile tempo run!

From jtshad on Thu, Jun 12, 2008 at 16:29:44

Yeah, but Tyler didn't scare people like Clyde did...unless he tried to get you?

From wheakory on Thu, Jun 12, 2008 at 16:42:43

I tempo run in five fingers on the road that's impressive Sasha. Way to be good coach and push Tyler to achieve a great run.

From JeffC on Fri, Jun 13, 2008 at 11:06:45

I think I know the reason why I am slow to improve my times....I have never puked during or after a run....must not be running hard enough...:)

From Logan on Fri, Jun 13, 2008 at 11:16:48

I didn't know that we now have a vomit on the run club. We should have t-shirts made up!

From Lybi on Fri, Jun 13, 2008 at 15:27:32

Interesting what you said about tensing your ankle and your gluts running fast in Five Fingers. One of the biggest differences I've noticed running barefoot is that the gluts are more active in the push-off stage. Well, good--it's a darn big muscle. About time it did something other than just make it hard to find jeans that fit.

Poor Tyler, but good for him! That's a really nice PR.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. 15.02 in 1:50:56, first three with Tyler, the rest alone. Jeff is flying to Washington to see his family and to run Sound to Narrows 12 K.

P. M. 5 in 40:59, including first 1.32 to the library with Benjamin, Jenny, Julia, and Jared. Jared is not our kid, he is Ted's son, he is with us for a sleepover. Ran into Daniel and ran with him some as well.

Five Fingers - 377.49 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 0.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.00
From Hayden on Sat, Jun 14, 2008 at 15:50:00

That is cool i ran as fast as him. I am really excited about this race and Wasatch Back. Hey my calves are pretty tight and sore now today though. Do you have any advise to fully recover these calves.

From Sasha Pachev on Sat, Jun 14, 2008 at 16:00:05

Better ask Josse. She know more about this stuff.

Race: Heart of Holladay 5 K (3.107 Miles) 00:16:38, Place overall: 9
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Ran Heart of Holladay 5 K in 16:38, 9th place. The race was very competitive as expected. The whole family came. It does not happen very often anymore due to the difficulty of bringing everybody at an early hour. But Benjamin and Jenny were racing, and Sarah wanted to go to a special discount grocery store (NPS) in Salt Lake, so we all came.

Warmed up 2 miles. The gun went off, and I really did not like being in a 5 K. I wanted it to be a 10 K. But you cannot place high in the circuit without running 5 Ks, and we were also doing a campaign for Kim to get into St. George, so I was there. Plus a little push and a kick in the pants a hard 5 K gives you is good once in a while. A fairly sizeable pack pulled away. I considered going with them, but then I saw that Nate Hornok and Matt Harmer were going out a little slower, and I fell for the temptation to run with them. The slow start was right for them but wrong for me. They would later be strong on the uphill if they started slow, but I would run it at the same pace regardless of how I started. I knew that, but I erred on the side of laziness anyway. First mile in 5:14 instead of a more appropriate 5:08 on a slight rolling uphill.

The second mile starts with a slight up, then goes down, and flattens out. Matt dropped back a bit, we passed James Moore (Fiddy), Nate pulled me up closer to Steve Ashbaker, John Coles, and Dave Spence. Josh Steffen was a bit ahead of them, then Dennis Simonaitis and Alexander Thomas together, and Teren Jameson ahead of everyone. I caught a 3 K split - 9:41. By that time Nate was starting to press the pace, and I was barely hanging on. The feeling was odd, though previously experienced and expected. I felt like if I eased off by as little as 5 seconds a mile I could race a 15 K or maybe even a half. But I could not find 5 seconds a mile within me to run one more mile 5 seconds faster. In theory you should be able to address that with speed work. In practice, what has happened in the past is that speed work does help me keep the gap between the half and the 5 K pace bigger, but mostly because the half is slower. I gain 10-15 seconds in a 5 K and lose a minute in the half compared to high mileage, and no speed work other than occasional tempos and races.

2 miles in 10:25 (5:11). That is encouraging. Not 10:25, but 5:11 after 5:14. Maybe the momentum would help be get up the hill at a good pace. Well, we hit the uphill. I did not feel too miserable. But I could not go any faster. Nate pulled away like there was no tomorrow. But that time I had passed Steve, but everybody else was still ahead. Matt Harmer went by, and I could not latch on him. I closed the gap on John Cole a bit. Once it flattened out I pulled up to him, he pressed harder and dropped me, I pulled up again, he pressed again and dropped me, I reeled him in, 3 miles in 16:04 (uphill mile in 5:39, unspectacular but not exceptionally horrible). I was about to pass him, and thought for a moment the deal was done and was planning a forward lean at the finish line, but then he found another gear and beat me by a second. My time on the watch was 16:36, officially 16:38. Others:

Teren 15:18, Dennis 15:44, Alexander 15:56, Nate 16:02 (his last 1.1 split was 5:38, same as Teren's), Josh 16:07, Dave 16:19, Matt 16:25, John 16:37, Steve 16:48, James 16:52.

Went back to pace Benjamin (9 years old). His back and muscles all over the body have been hurting lately (growth pains?) so I was not expecting much. He toughed it out and finished in 22:09, 2nd place in his age division (1-11) after Alexander Berry who got 21:23. Jenny goofed off today. I think she is still too little to run well without a pacer. When I found her, she was jogging along (without much effort) with a 6 year old girl at around 8:30 pace. I suppose Jenny was feeling overwhelmed by the adult crowd and decided to just run alongside a little kid. I told her to speed up, which she did, but not enough to drop her. They both started flying by the adult crowd. Jenny's 6 year old competitor was quite a speedy girl. At the end Jenny pulled ahead of her competitor, which gave her third place in her age division (1-11) and 26:19 for the time, which is quite a bit slower than what she was capable of. We'll try again in another race, this time I'll be there start to finish. Nevertheless, it is interesting to note that even with this level of effort Jenny (7 years old) would have gotten an age division award in a number of non-master adult age divisions.

On the positive side, our blogger Kim Lee who we put on the forms got into St. George. This is good not only for Kim but also for the blog. Will make it easier to convince race directors to advertise their races with us.

Passed out the FRB/St. George Running Center cards. Benjamin, Jenny, and especially Julia helped. Then ran a short cool down. Will run more tonight.

T4 Racer - 168.59 miles.

P.M. 1.1 with Julia in 11:14, then 11.5 with Daniel in 1:19:32. We kept it brisker than normal, but still within an acceptable range. The temperatures were in the 80s. The asphalt was warm and soft and I could feel it in Five Fingers. So sub-7:00 happened more naturally than it normally does when it is only 50-60 degrees and the asphalt is hard. Interestingly enough, I was not the only creature that liked warm asphalt today. We saw a short green snake warming itself on the trail and I jumped over it. Ran at 5:30 pm, had no food or drink since about 1:30 pm, but I was not feeling either hungry or thirsty, so I decided to see how well I will do in the heat off blood volume. Did OK, could not feel the heat very much.

Five Fingers - 390.19 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 7.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.00
From marion on Sat, Jun 14, 2008 at 17:59:47

I am just amazed at you all! Really, this blog has been a godsend for me! So much inspiration and encouragement all in one little cyberspace! Thanks so much for making this available to even us polkier new folk. (think fast- be fast- think fast- be fast :) oh yeah, and run, run, run!

From Seth on Sat, Jun 14, 2008 at 20:38:15

Sasha, my cell phone was dead so I didn't call you. I just got back from Lake Powell and had planned on racing, but I have a terrible cold and thought it would be unwise to race. Looks like you did a great job at the race. I still don't have anything from St. George Running Center.

From Michael on Sat, Jun 14, 2008 at 21:05:51

It was nice to see you and your running family. Alexander had fun talking with Benjamin after the race. Great effort and time - thanks for the encouragement

From Kim on Sat, Jun 14, 2008 at 22:11:48

Thank you Sasha for running in my name! What support I feel from friends and family! To have Benjamin and Jenny running for me also made me cry! When cute little Jenny came up to me and said, "Hi Kim" and talked to me about running for me I just wanted to squeeze her! Will you and fast running mommy give her and Benjamin a little squeeze from me?

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Day of rest.

Night Sleep Time: 8.50Nap Time: 2.00Total Sleep Time: 10.50
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Ran with Jeff. First 10.1 in 1:09:09. Then ran 0.35 with Sarah and the rest alone. Saw that I was behind the 7:00 guy by 25 seconds with 2 mile to go and decided to beat him with the minimal casualties. Ran a mile in 5:56 to make him give up, then jogged the rest of the way. 1:44:42 for 15 miles.

Did some more limb measurements with Jeff. Was about an inch longer than him in the thigh length as well as the shin length. In the earlier measurements my quad was an inch bigger in circumference in the widest part. We measured the narrowest part near the knee. I was 15.5 inches, he had only 13.5. I think we finally got to the reason why my quads look so big. They are actually rather normal width for the length of the thigh, but unusually wide in the lower thigh by the knee. My vastus medialis looks a lot bigger than Jeff's.

P.M. 1.2 with Julia to the park in 12:00 with Benjamin and Jenny following on their bikes. 1.5 with Benjamin and Jenny running in 12:58. Then 2.35 in 17:41 with Benjamin and Jenny on their bikes in the last 1.2.  

Five Fingers - 410.24 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.75
From James on Mon, Jun 16, 2008 at 22:01:01

What are you doing for a run tomorrow?

From James on Mon, Jun 16, 2008 at 23:54:43

Thanks for calling me. If I can roll out of bed at 5:00am I will come. If not then I'll hook up with you guys another time.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Ran with Jeff and Josse. Jeff and I did an interesting workout. The target was to go 73 seconds per quarter until I could not hold the pace, then once the failure became obvious finish at the closest quarter mark. The first quarter was right on target - 73. On the second one Jeff put a bit too much pepper on my plate - 70. No wonder it felt so hard - I began to think wow, my anaerobic capabilities are so bad that I can barely make it to 0.5 doing 73s? Hit the 0.625 mark (a bit over 1 K) in 3:00, that was good. Then 3:37 at 0.75 (74). Around that point I started falling apart. No heavy legs, just all of a sudden cannot go, and do not understand why. That was not good. Next quarter was 78, stopped at the mile in 4:55.

What was interesting about the experience is that the boundary between, well, I can do this for a while and no this is not sustainable for more than another quarter was very thin. Which is expected when you do purely aerobic training, and is actually good in the marathon because the moment you start running too fast it hurts enough to alert you to the problem. With some anaerobic training I could of course train myself to sustain 73s for longer. But that would do me no good in the marathon. I want to be more aerobic at that pace, and sufficiently aerobic at 5:00 pace to make it through the 5 mile tempo. How do we do that? Big mystery, exciting mystery.

Here is an idea - find out a way to shut down the anaerobic gear without shutting the nervous system down with it, and do some high volume speed work as fast as the aerobic gear will let you.

For the rest of the run we ran easy with Josse and had her do 2x100. She did the first in 16.4, and the second in 16.6. Dropped Josse off, went around the block twice while Jeff went to the bathroom, then ran another 4.25 with Jeff. Total of 15.05.

T4 Racer- 183.64 miles. 

P.M.1 with Julia in 9:55, 1.5 with Benjamin and Jenny in 12:55, 2.5 alone in18:29.

Five Fingers - 415.29 miles

Night Sleep Time: 7.25Nap Time: 0.67Total Sleep Time: 7.92
From Katie on Wed, Jun 18, 2008 at 08:06:38

Two years ago when I was doing regularly 120-140 mile weeks, I maintained hurdle drills (high stepping, leg swings, ect) and 1x wk, high volume short intervals to maintain turnover/speed/flexibility. I think they were mainly aerobic, never hard. I started with 20 x 200/200 rec and built to 30 x 400 with 200 recovery. I wore a watch to keep track, but the point was to finish and recover and train the next day, so it wasn't too fast.

Is this what you mean by "high volume speed work....?

From Sasha Pachev on Wed, Jun 18, 2008 at 13:20:24

Something like this would work if you could guarantee that while trying to maximize the slow twitch fiber recruitment you would not start cheating by engaging fast twitch. You can do something to wear your fast twitch fibers out so that they will be too tired to get recruited (e.g run first few reps very hard and keep the rest very short), but at the same time you will shut down the nervous system and your slow twitch will not be getting recruited very well either. So in other words, you'll just run too slow. I am thinking of the following:

2 or 3 times 2.5 mile reps starting at 6:00 pace then gradually winding down to 5:00 pace at the end. So we put the fast twitch fibers to sleep, and gradually increase the pace hoping that when we reach the critical threshold the body will still think recruit slow twitch, and we can recruit slow twitch fibers at a greater rate than if we just started at 5:00 pace. Also, there are some mechanisms of energy supply that would not be available after 5 minutes of brisk aerobic running so this should discourage fast twitch recruitment as well.

From Jon on Wed, Jun 18, 2008 at 13:36:43

If you nervous system is shut down, wouldn't you be brain dead?

From Sasha Pachev on Wed, Jun 18, 2008 at 13:55:28

Shut down is a relative term, of course. It is not completely shut down, of course, but sufficiently unwilling to signal the muscles to contract where you are limited to running a slower pace even though your muscles could do better if they could get a better signal.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Ran with Jeff and Daniel. Daniel went 10.1, Jeff ran 14.1. I added another mile. Total of 1:55:55 for 15.1. 0.8 of marathon pace is due to VPB intervals.

Jeff has been officially appointed as the chorister and the lead singer in Van1 for the performance of Bingo on my legs. We practiced a bit today trying to figure out the appropriate beat frequency.

P.M. Errand jogging - 0.5 miles. 2.5 alone in 18:25, 1 with Julia in 10:49, 1.5 with Benjamin and Jenny in 12:57.

Five Fingers - 435.39 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.75
From Ashleigh on Wed, Jun 18, 2008 at 16:42:35

What, where? Sorry, I'm new. I don't have the hang of this yet.

From Michelle on Wed, Jun 18, 2008 at 22:40:21

Sasha, How do you get the live web cast of the Wasatch Back? Or rather how do you view it?

From jtshad on Thu, Jun 19, 2008 at 12:33:37

Dang, we have to sing...again!

From Superfly on Thu, Jun 19, 2008 at 12:35:49

Michelle- Mik'L will be staying home and I'll be calling here with updates and then she will post them on her blog.

From seth on Thu, Jun 19, 2008 at 12:43:10

I hope there isn't too much singing in van 2, because I have a terrible voice.

From Jon on Thu, Jun 19, 2008 at 12:49:57

No worries, Seth- Sasha is the only guy who requires singing. And I have to say, Sasha, I won't mind NOT having to sing bingo to you because I get annoyed with that song if it is stuck in my head.

From Sasha Pachev on Thu, Jun 19, 2008 at 13:35:22

Clyde - it would be better if she did it on the forum. Makes it easier to find it. I can create a thread and make it sticky, and also link to it from all blogs. Is she OK with taking calls from all 4 vans?

From Superfly on Thu, Jun 19, 2008 at 13:54:18

She says she will do it. So you'll have to send her a description of what you want done and such.

From Hayden on Thu, Jun 19, 2008 at 13:56:44

Man what am i getting myself into.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Started with Daniel. About 3.7 into the run we caught up to Luz and invited her to join us. Paced her through a mile in 8:02. Then she did not slow down much after that, so we just stayed with her for the whole 8. She ran with us all the way to my house, which gave Sarah a training partner to run as well afterwards. Total time for 8 was 1:06:18.

A bit later a mile with Julia in 8:46.

P.M. 2.5 alone in 18:07, 1.5 with Benjamin and Jenny in 12:53.

Five Fingers - 447.39 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 7.25Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.25
From luzylew on Thu, Jun 19, 2008 at 15:14:29

That was a real treat for me. First to be pushed a little-- I could do more miles at that pace, but I'm going to practice the things you told me to do so I can build up to doing it more freqently (or put it to use in a race where it belongs). It was exciting (after the fact of course)to know it didn't kill me to push it a bit. If I had known I'd get this little treat today, I would have left the dogs behind! I loved running with Sarah too. You guys are great. Good luck at the Wasatch Back! May the good energy you loaned me this morning repay you in kind. Thanks again!

From Maria on Thu, Jun 19, 2008 at 15:27:58

Did Julia really run an 8:46 mile? Wow, very impressive. She is only 5, right? Was it a training run for her, or a "race"?

From Sasha Pachev on Thu, Jun 19, 2008 at 16:33:16

She's actually run 8:29 before with fairly erratic pacing. She went through the first quarter in 1:55, then panicked because she realized she was going further than she thought and threw a fit, ran the next quarter in 2:18, then somewhat calmed down and finished with 2:10, and 2:06 while chatting. She is 5, turning 6 in September. Unlike Benjamin and Jenny at her age, she is still mentally not there to run to her true physical potential. I imagine she could quite easily go under 8:00 if she focused. Benjamin ran 7:58 mile a month before turning 6. Jenny ran 7:41 around that age holding onto the stroller. I do not know how much that helped if at all, but since she absolutely refused to run at that time without holding onto the stroller, I do not know what she was capable of.

Race: Wasatch Back Relay (180.5 Miles) 17:54:16, Place overall: 2
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. 2.5 in 17:29 by myself, 1 with Julia in 9:46, 1.5 with Benjamin and Jenny in 13:07.

Five Fingers - 452.39 miles.

P.M. Ran leg 5 in 47:59. Details to follow.

Now the details. BYU finally put together a real team. Good for us. Will hopefully teach us to be humble, and will hopefully help us get a better appreciation for Quality X and the importance of developing it if we want to run in the OTQ range.

Before the race James and Cody entered some data into Paul's spreadsheet. Whatever came out was called the original projection. I adjusted the flat places, made a few adjustments to the calculations and then went through it leg by leg and manually adjusted the predictions that I felt were still way off to more reasonable values. The new projections were called Sasha Science projections. Interestingly enough, the original projection said we would finish in 17:39:35, while Sasha Science said 17:39:38 - essentially the same end result, but lots of leg time variations. Both ended up quite a bit off, although for different reasons.

First leg. Jeff McClellan on the White Team, Mitch Zundell on the Blue Team, Kyle Perry on the BYU team, and Mike Vick from Runner's Corner. 90-95 degrees at the start. To add a little bit of drama - Jeff ran for BYU before his mission as a walk-on, then after his mission got cut. So he had something to prove. He hit his first mile in 5:05 (uphill), followed by 5:18, 5:27, 5:53 (uphill), 5:53 (uphill). He finished his leg in 28:28 which was 5.14 miles, 5:32 average. Not bad for uphill (0.2 grade, 132 feet of loss, 192 feet of gain) and 90 degrees. 26:32 for Kyle, 27:42 for Mike. His Sasha Science projection was 29:08. The original projection was 31:00. Mitch finished in 29:40, very good for being out of shape. Another reminder of the importance of Quality X.

Second leg. Hayden Hawks on our team against Nate Ogden (BYU) and Jared Kelly (Runner's Corner). Hayden struggled with the heat but still managed 39:44 for 6.73 miles, 5:54 average. Not bad for 90 degrees and 0.7% net uphill grade with 292 feet of gain and 192 feet of loss. His Sasha Science projection was 39:30, his original projection was 41:19. Jared ran very well and gapped Hayden by a couple of minutes. Probably about the same gap for Nate. So we were about 4 minutes behind BYU at this point.

Third leg. 5.65 miles. 0.3% uphill, 42 feet of loss, 275 feet of gain. Iain Hunter for BYU, a girl for Runner's Corner (UVU runner, I think), and Tyler for us. Tyler started out as expected, first two miles at 5:45 pace. Passed the Runner's Corner girl, after that we never saw Runner's Corner. Then a 5:57, and then something really odd happened. 6:24, and 6:45. This should not have happened even in 90 degrees and dehydrated. Maybe 6:10 and 6:20 at the very worst. I told him he needs to eat like a heart patient, lots of fiber, very minimal to no cholesterol. Something somewhere is wrong. Tyler toughed it out and finished in 34:42, 6:08 average. His Sasha Science projection was 33:30, his original projection was 34:43. After he was done he headed straight for the Honey Bucket. I got into one right next to him to address my own needs, and we had a lovely discussion of his leg. On the positive side, he made the first road kill, or in other words, passed a team that started earlier. I thought a fluke, somebody must have gotten a wrong start time, but then there was more road kill on the legs to follow.

Forth leg. 5.09 miles. 0.6% uphill. 315 feet gain, 152 feet loss. Walter Brown on our team against Aaron Robison (BYU). Walter got 31:27, 6:10 pace, Sasha Science projection was 31:37, original was 31:20. Splits: 5:21, 5:45, 6:00, 6:10, 6:22. Cody ran 31:48 last year. Who knows how far behind BYU.

Fifth leg was mine. Avon Pass. 7.41 miles. 2.9% uphill. 1210 feet gain, 54 feet loss. I enjoyed every one of those 54 feet. Ran against Jon Kotter. He showed me what Quality X was all about with a 43:44 against mine 47:59. Sasha Science projection 48:40, original 49:30. Splits - 5:56, 6:13, 6:35, 6:21, 6:33, 6:58, 7:22, next quarter in 1:37 (6:28 pace), last 405 feet in 0:27, 5:56 pace. The leg showed as 7.33 on the GPS. Possibly because of the GPS error, or possibly because I did my tangents very well. 6:33 pace if the GPS was right, 6:29 if the 7.41 distance was right. Paul ran 46:17 last year.

There were some interesting things on that leg. There was a farmer, had a dog, and BINGO was his name, and he was roaming along the road without a leash or an owner in sight. I was in racing mode, and it was a small dog, so I figured if it attacked me I'd give it some James MonaFlash treatment. Passed it without an incident.

More road kill than I expected. Interesting team vehicle - a pickup truck. Actually not a bad idea, makes sleeping easier.

Jeff McClellan demonstrated his singing ability while running at a pace that would make most people throw up. Talents are meant to be shared, and I've been making him practice, so cannot let that go to waste. He sang BINGO to me as he handed me a large bottle of Powerade and ran with me as I took a few sips so he could take it back.

Overall I felt strong, got into good rhythm, used the measly 54 feet of drop very well, the gear box worked when I had to shift.

Leg 6, Jeff Shadley on our team against Tyrell Jensen. 6.92 miles. 3.0 % grade net drop. 277 feet of gain, and 1396 feet of drop. We made a mistake on this leg assignment underestimating the pounding effect of that downhill. It is very nasty - dirt, lots of turns, and a three mile stretch of 8% downhill. More quad-trashing that we realized. Jeff damaged his quads on this leg, and it hurt him for the rest of the relay and threw him off his projections. He ran 39:04, 5:39 pace. Sasha Science projected 37:21, and the original projection was 37:09. Splits: 6:22 (uphill), 6:04 (uphill then start of smoking down), 4:46 (steep downhill on gravel), 4:46 (still steep ), 5:31 (leveling off), 6:01 (flat ), 0.93M-5:33

Error analysis: we should have put Clyde on leg 5, me on leg 6, and Jeff on leg 12.

Iain Hunter told me the gap now was 12:44. I thought it was a compliment to our team that they bothered to time the gap.

T4 Racer - 193.04 miles

Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.75
From wheakory on Mon, Jun 23, 2008 at 18:19:13

Very nice leg Sasha way to put on the gears when you needed it. Did you say you took a whole can of honey with you for refueling?

Very nice performance and detail.

From Sasha Pachev on Mon, Jun 23, 2008 at 19:01:57

No, Kory - Honey Bucket was the name of the porta-potty company :-)

From Paul T on Mon, Jun 23, 2008 at 20:52:55

Thanks for the detailed report. It's a great thing to be able to learn from the elite. You guys are amazing.

I appreciate your comments about Leg 6 being "very nasty - dirt, lots of turns, and a three mile stretch of 8% downhill" and about "underestimating the pounding effect of that downhill". I couldn't have described it better myself. I also ran that leg, although a full minute per mile slower (6:40/mi). Nevertheless, every time I stand up my legs remind me of the punishment I inflicted on them.

From Dallen on Tue, Jun 24, 2008 at 19:23:47

Not sure why you ran the uphill leg when your skills are clearly the downhill stuff, and you admit that uphill is your weakness. Either way, well done.

Did you slow down due to fatigue or due to the elevation profile?

From Sasha Pachev on Tue, Jun 24, 2008 at 19:51:56

Elevation profile.

I had to take the uphill leg because of the team dynamics. Even though I am relatively weak on the uphill, the faster runner takes longer legs. Also, I do not run well in the middle of the night, down or up, so I need to be on a leg that has only one night run.

From wheakory on Tue, Jun 24, 2008 at 21:01:29

Sasha, I don't think any of us perform the best with two night runs. If you had to do two runs at night with the pressure on you would perform well, because your a competitor.

From Sasha Pachev on Tue, Jun 24, 2008 at 23:35:49

Jeff McClellan, Tyler, Hayden, Logan, Chad, and Seth were strong on their night legs. Some people are inspired by the moon.

From wheakory on Tue, Jun 24, 2008 at 23:46:43

I actually felt really strong on my night legs this time around. I learned a lot fro m Del Sol (of course I had more running under my belt this time around). The first one you really can learn from about the amount of sleep, and refueling you need.

The white team did a great job, and they proved it as well as our blue team.

From Dee on Wed, Jun 25, 2008 at 17:14:24

We were one of the teams you passed going over Avon. I was the idiot in the back of the pick-up truck who yelled "Sasha" as you ran past us.

Race: Wasatch Back Relay (180.5 Miles) 17:54:16, Place overall: 2
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Wasatch Back continues. Leg 17 in 36:43, and Leg 29 in 20:18. Details to follow.

The end of the first shift of Van 1 was followed by a logistical mistake. Instead of getting our rear ends into Kimball's Expedition and hurrying over to the next exchange to sleep we lounged around, and then followed Van 1 of the Blue team to Subway. Mental note. Next time find somebody ideally in Huntsville, less ideally but still good in Eden or Liberty that would not mind having six stinky guys + the driver come and crash at his house. Sleep is critical to success on the second and third legs for everybody, but particularly to the neurologically limited runners, which in my estimate would be about half of our team.

We hurried over to the next exchange, dropped Jeff off in a hurry, dealt with a traffic jam. I am sure glad Jeff is as disciplined and detail oriented as he is, or we would have miffed that exchange. It was dark, lots of teams, you could not see one's face well enough to recognize it. I did not recognize Jon Allen from 5 feet away. He said, how is our team doing? My answer was, "which team?", with the implication of - why in the world do you expect me to know how your team is doing? I do not even know who you are.

Mental note for the future. On the van-to-van hand-off, the first runner in the next van must carry a watch with precise time (or at least now exactly how much off his watch is), and must make sure he is at the exchange at least 5 minutes prior to the time estimate given by the previous van in case a miracle happens or the previous leg turns out to be short. Cell phones sometimes do not work. However, the arrival time is fairly predictable, at least the earliest physically possible arrival time. After that deadline, no potty visits, strides, or anything. Stand there, listen with both ears for the team number, and stare like a hawk at the arriving runners. A volunteer could easily miss a Fast Passing Runner, especially in the dark.

Van 2 brought us the baton about 2 minutes behind schedule.

Leg 13. 8.47 miles. 3.2% net drop. 712 feet of gain, and 2128 feet of drop. First mile uphill, the rest steep rolling down. Jeff McClellan against Kyle Perry. Jeff's splits speak for themselves - 6:35, 4:54, 4:53, 5:06, 5:22, 5:05, 4:50, 4:53, and 4:50 pace for the rest of the leg. 44:05, 5:12 average. Sasha Science projected 44:59, the original projection was 45:20. Kyle Perry (BYU) ran 43:33. Sweet for Jeff, only 32 seconds behind the BYU super-runner. We were 16:54 behind after leg 13.

Leg 14. 3.00 miles. 85 feet of drop, 145 feet of gain. Hayden Hawks against Nate Ogden. Hayden ran 16:22, 5:27 pace, was projected to run 16:34 by Sasha Science, 17:40 originally. Hayden's form reminds me of Ryan Hall. Who knows, he might run 2:06 marathon when he grows up, I would not be surprised. Jared Kelly ran this leg in 16:00. No data on BYU times from this point.

Leg 15. 4.95 miles officially, measured 5.05 on the GPS. 208 feet of drop, 265 feet of gain. 0.2% climb. Tyler ran through a side-ache in 29:02. Sasha Science projected him at 28:45, original projection was 28:32. Average Garmin pace 5:45, if the leg was right, then 5:51.

Leg 16. Officially 3.05, measured 2.93 on Walter's Garmin. 31 feet of drop, 74 feet of gain, 0.3% grade. He ran it in 17:02, 5:48 pace. Sasha Science projection was 17:31 (5:44 pace), the original projection was 17:46 (5:49 pace). The projections assumed 3.05 miles. Splits: 5:40, 5:57, 5:48 pace for 0.93.

Leg 17. Officially 5.87, measured 6.03 on my Garmin. 103 feet of drop, 339 feet of climb. 0.8 % grade. Started at 12:33 AM. Felt sleepy and weak on this leg. Ran 36:43, 6:06 average pace. Was projected to run by Sasha Science in 34:18, 5:51 pace. The original projection said 34:23, 5:52 pace. Splits: 5:46, 6:06, 6:08, 5:56, 6:07, 6:31, and 5:55 pace to the finish. It is interesting to compare my splits with Chad's who ran the same leg: 6:09, 6:05, 6:03, 6:00, 6:07, 6:23. So in other words, in the first mile I was myself, from 2 to 5 I became Chad (in his current shape), and on the last mile I was transformed into a runner that is 8 seconds a mile slower than Chad. This was a clear case of neural fatigue. Next year we'll try Operation Huntsville Nap and see if that makes a difference (assuming I am in Van 1 again, which I should be because it would be a disaster to put me in Van 2). I was rather surprised that I was passing mostly fit looking young men running around 7:00-7:30 rather than mostly women running 10:00 pace as I was expecting. Every time I'd come up on one due to my past race experience (you never start behind somebody except a race like this) I would think, well as weak as I am feeling, he's going to try to hang with me. Maybe I'll draft a bit before passing him. But he never did try. Of course, he could not. If you did not even see him a mile earlier, there is no chance he'd be able to go with you. It is like passing somebody who's hit the wall in a marathon. He is a helpless lamb, there is nothing he can do. My mind was playing tricks on me in the middle of the night.

Leg 18. Officially 5.23 miles, measured 5.11 on Jeff's GPS. 201 feet of drop, 695 feet of climb. 1.8% grade climb. Jeff Shadley with his quads already trashed ran 34:40 averaging 6:47. His Sasha Science projection was 33:48 (for 5.23), 6:28 average. Original projection was 32:48, 6:16 average.

We messed up the exchange. It took about 30 seconds for Taylor to find Jeff. Again, a note for the future. We need military discipline in the vans, especially at night. Know the current time, know the earliest your hand off can arrive, and from that time on watch like a hawk without losing vigilance. The runner ideally should never be left alone at the exchange. 5 minutes from the earliest possible arrival the companion should come out and be there to remind the runner to stay vigilant.

Immediately after picking up Jeff we headed over to the North Summit High School in Coalville. Set a PR for the sleep. 70 minutes! This later proved very helpful on the third leg. Being humbled by the hand-off fiasco we were more disciplined. However, we did waste about 5 minutes on a small detail. I forgot the exact location where Tyler and Walter were sleeping, and it was impossible to tell among about 50 sleeping bodies in the dark who was who. So we did a man to man check waking up a few unhappy runners. Some volunteered that they were not either Walter or Tyler before we had a chance to kick them. Note for the future - make sure you know EXACTLY where everyone is sleeping and can find that place in the dark. For the team members - do not go away from the van without telling the van captain (and have an official van captain to begin with) where you are with enough detail that he could find you in less than 60 seconds in case of emergency.

Drove over to the Rockport Lake for Jeff to start his leg. There was a huge jam. We let Jeff out with about a mile to go so he could do his warm up.

Leg 25. 5.60 miles. 385 feet of gain, 155 feet of loss. 1.3% grade. Nasty leg. I ran it last year. Slower than it looks from the elevation profile. Jeff McClellan started his leg at 5:01 AM, about 3 minutes behind Carson Campbell from the Peak Endurance team that started at 4:00 PM, an hour before us. Too much gap for Jeff to make a road kill, but enough to set Hayden up for it. Jeff's splits - 5:34, 5:50, 6:01, 6:30, 6:29, next 0.5 in 2:47, last 509 feet at 5:18 pace. Total time 33:42. Average pace 6:01. The original projection was 33:51, Sasha Science projection was 33:49. Kyle Perry reported that he ran that leg at 5:56-5:57 average. So that puts Jeff at most only a little over 30 seconds behind. Jeff finished about a minute behind Carson. We again lost about 3 seconds on the exchange. This time we did it right for the most part - I was out there with Hayden and kept him alert. But then we both spaced out spaced out, Jeff apparently went by the radio announcer so fast he could not see his number, either that or Hayden and I both spaced out, the volunteers kept us out of the exchange area until the number had been announced, and by the time Jeff got in Hayden was still on the sidewalk. Again shows the importance of being vigilant.

Leg 26. 163 feet of gain, 127 feet of loss. 0.1% grade climb.

Leg 29. I started at 7:05 AM. Splits. 4:52, 4:36, 4:56, 5:30, last 379 feet at 5:40 pace. Average pace 4:59.

T4 Racer - 205.14 miles

P.M. Home to Costco relay with the kids. 1.06 with Julia in 10:48, 1.56 with Jenny in 13:51, and 2.75 with Benjamin in 22:55.

Five Fingers - 452.76 miles

Night Sleep Time: 1.17Nap Time: 2.00Total Sleep Time: 3.17
From seth on Mon, Jun 23, 2008 at 13:13:41


Did you see that Brian Lindsey in on the blog now? byumiler.

From bryan on Mon, Jun 23, 2008 at 15:32:52

I'm living outside of Seattle. My injury is a recurring stress reaction in my femur that also has brought along some chronic groin and lower back injuries. Most people I talk to who have had similar problems have had to have surgery, but it's super expensive. I'm trying to find another way now. I cross train a lot. I ran a 15:44 5k in March off of 25 mpw, but I can't seem to even get that high lately. I'm closer to about 10 mpw at the moment. I hope your running is going well and that you have some good races lined up.

Cool website!


From Sasha Pachev on Mon, Jun 23, 2008 at 17:02:56


I just wrote down my injury prevention/recovery philosophy on the forum:,465.msg4323.html

Hope you find it helpful.

From Jon on Mon, Jun 23, 2008 at 18:54:56

Sasha- with your logistical mistake, I think your best bet would be to find someone where you could all shower. As for sleep, I don't think it is likely- it is too early in the evening, too close behind a hard run, and too short of a time period to make it worth trying to sleep for long. But a shower and good meal would be perfect.

From Hayden on Mon, Jun 23, 2008 at 19:51:00

Good job on the Relay. Thanks for helping me out with everything. It was fun and i am glad i did it.

From cgbooth23 on Tue, Jun 24, 2008 at 00:32:11

any thoughts on why in this race so many people suffer from stomach issues? I don't get this any other races, but man my stomach was doing a number on me again this year!

From Sasha Pachev on Tue, Jun 24, 2008 at 13:35:23

People think they have to eat normal meals, and they mean American normal meals too. You are guaranteed stomach problems in a race like this if you think you are going to a party rather than a death march.

The death march aspect comes in two ways - primarily sleep deprivation. Choose sleep over a meal. You can rock in a 10 K hungry, but not neurally fatigued.

Secondarily, you have to learn to live for 18-24 hours with a relatively empty stomach. Starving people in Africa do it for much longer than that, so really the big deal about this paradigm is breaking the mentality "I have to have three big meals a day every day".

To avoid stomach problems you need to buckle down and eat/drink very minimally. You are only running 13-18 miles total, it is much less than a marathon. Unless you are really out of shape, you will not have fuel issues even if you do not eat at all. During the entire relay I only ate a couple of bananas and drank Powerade to thirst. No stomach issues.

From cgbooth23 on Tue, Jun 24, 2008 at 13:51:45

I think my issue was more not eating enough I had a small sandwich Friday, and other than that ate an apple, half a banana, 2-3 gu's, a recovery drink (Endurox), and alot to drink (water and gatorade), I also did the Ultra so I ran a total of 28 miles, but last year I did the regular and still had stomach issues! Thanks for the reply, I always appreciate it!

From Sasha Pachev on Tue, Jun 24, 2008 at 14:06:52

Probably too much to drink. Clyde and Logan learned that in Del Sol.

From Superfly on Tue, Jun 24, 2008 at 14:37:01

Actually we both got sick from eating too much Subway sandwich too close to running.

From cgbooth23 on Tue, Jun 24, 2008 at 15:28:00

Thats what I can't figure out, I didn't eat much and still had stomach issues especially Saturday morning early about 3 hrs after my 10.9 mile run from E. canyon down to Henefer... I never have these issues on other runs, I also talked to many others who dealt with similar issues... in fact our first runner almost couldn't go for his 2nd run due to stomach issues!

From Sasha Pachev on Tue, Jun 24, 2008 at 15:39:49

Not sleeping and running hard puts additional stress on the stomach. So you have to go real easy on it. It could very well be something you ate the day before.

From Jon on Tue, Jun 24, 2008 at 16:01:25

It isn't often that you stay up for 24 hours, trying to get your body to perform well in 3 races with minimal relaxation time. Stress can often show itself in the digestive system. I'm not sure there is any way around having at least some problems on a relay like this.

From cgbooth23 on Tue, Jun 24, 2008 at 16:06:39


yea thats what I am kinda figuring, based off 2 years in a row... and also pacing a friend in the Wasatch 100 and seeing him deal with it alot! It's a hard one to figure out!

From Sasha Pachev on Tue, Jun 24, 2008 at 16:26:46

Here is what has worked for me - eat well the week before. From 8 hours before the race until your last leg eat a banana when hungry, drink Powerade when thirsty until you don't, otherwise do not eat or drink.

From Jon on Tue, Jun 24, 2008 at 16:29:57

On the Powerade note, I have found that I have less problems (i.e. the runs) when I drink the stuff with no food coloring- arctic blast, or something like that (white). Not sure if it is in my head, but drinking lots of sports drinks with food coloring seems to mess me up versus no food coloring.

From Sasha Pachev on Tue, Jun 24, 2008 at 17:04:05

For the record - the one I drank was white.

From Lybi on Tue, Jun 24, 2008 at 17:27:03

Great job on this leg, Sasha! Man, you really are the King of the Downhill.

I hope Subway doesn't sue us or anything, but I've heard SO many reports of people having stomach issues after eating there. I think it is thought of as a healthier place to eat, but it just doesn't seem to make the cut for race food, from my observations.

Sasha when you came to my house for the first time for the Del Sol relay I felt SOOOO sorry for you that you ended up eating bananas, raw oatmeal, raw peanuts , dates and honey all mixed together with a little soy milk. I felt like such a poor hostess that I couldn't even provide you with normallish healthy food to eat! But now I look back and laugh because that's just how you dig in! It's illuminating to see your perspective--coming from a foreign country for one, and being ultra-dedicated to good fueling. It is helpful... I don't feel as sorry for myself when I eat a pineapple for a treat instead of a cookie.

From superfly on Tue, Jun 24, 2008 at 17:49:41

cgbooth23- Did you eat any of the Fizzolies spaghetti at that major exchange? I did and almost right after I ate it I started having stomach issues. I was doing fine until then and that's where things went south if you know what I mean.

From Sasha Pachev on Tue, Jun 24, 2008 at 18:30:35

Lybi - that leg was Jeff's. I got his splits off my Garmin which he wore. I have not yet written about my other two legs, but my downhill leg went all right as well.

From cgbooth23 on Tue, Jun 24, 2008 at 19:57:01


No I think they were doing that at the top of E. Cyn. and thats where my 2nd leg started... I would have really been hurtin had I ate before that downhill section... and actually my stomach felt fine then it was after that leg when it started acting up!

I think it is due to stress on the body and lack of sleep, i really pushed my first leg (6:59/mile for me fast over 7 miles) to stay in front of this other ultra team that was pushing us and then I really went hard on the downhill going into henefer.

From wheakory on Tue, Jun 24, 2008 at 23:58:35

I think Sasha is right. Eating too much and not getting sleep will whack out your digestive and nervous system. I think the best approach is eating like a granola bar, or banana, or trail mix, or even a bagel with just water. I did this and I had no stomach issues whatsoever.

Jon's right about eating a lot of food while downing powerade. Not a good combination in the middle of the night.

From sarah on Wed, Jun 25, 2008 at 17:44:44

I have two bits to add about the stomach thing. When you body is under stress it sometimes shuts down certain "non-essential" systems for can live for a time without digesting properly and may need all resources to go to essential functions like breathing and heart beating. I am speaking from experience of being pregnant six times and enduring weeks of my digestive system going haywire while my body learns to take care of the essential things....maybe there is some kind of connection when you are doing "a death march" as Sasha calls it.

From cgbooth23 on Wed, Jun 25, 2008 at 17:57:33

thats interesting and makes sense Sarah, I tell you what if you could figure out how to fix it you'd make alot of crazy people who do this kind of thing for fun happy! especially the guys doing 50-100 mile races, it is a very common issue there!

From wheakory on Wed, Jun 25, 2008 at 18:09:56

Sarah you make perfect sense. When your running at hours that you normally don't run that's going to cause fatigue and stress on the body.

I do agree with Sasha that you really don't need to eat all that much. I think staying hydrated is more important. Eating a banana or two is probably all you need. I really didn't eat too much at the WBR event, except I didn't pass up on the Pancakes and Eggs at the School. I had the pancakes regardless if I needed them or not because I love them :-)

I'm glad they did bother me going up the "You Got To Be Kidding Me Leg" or that would have been an ugly site.

From sarah on Wed, Jun 25, 2008 at 18:24:18

Well...if it is a digestive problem then there are many natural ways of helping the digestive system. One of course would be to reduce stress...maybe before the relay really focus on cutting down on stress and taking it easy. May sound impossible but as a mom of several small children I KNOW that it is possible to cut things out if you really have a good goal.

Then there are herbs that help the digestive system and other raspberry, peppermint and charcoal are my favorite but you can research for others and find out which one works best for you..every body is different and so different supplements, herbs, etc work better for other people. I think the low stress before the race will help a ton though for all you crazies out there.

From Jon on Wed, Jun 25, 2008 at 18:38:51

Peppermint sounds good. Charcoal? As in eat it?

From Tom on Wed, Jun 25, 2008 at 18:47:04

I believe Sarah is talking about eating the charcoal.

I remember when I was in the MTC my companion was challenged to eat a goldfish we had in our room that had been dead for a day or so. After he ate it he got worried cause it had been dead for a while so he got the dorm medic to give him some stuff to make him throw up. Well he started throwing up and couldn't stop so the medic then gave him ground up charcoal to eat so he would stop throwing up. I think maybe he drank the ground up charcoal in water. It seemed to work quite quickly and effectively. Oh the things slightly homesick 19 year old missionaries in training will do for fun.

From sarah on Wed, Jun 25, 2008 at 22:11:44

Yes...I am talking about charcoal...the black stuff you start a fire with...Although the version we take is in capsules from Good Earth. Just swallow and enjoy the benefits.

From cgbooth23 on Thu, Jun 26, 2008 at 01:19:45


remind me next year you and your crew can crash at my place I live on the WBR route in Eden if that is convenient. Logan knows where its at. cheers!

From sarah on Thu, Jun 26, 2008 at 11:09:22

Burnt toast can mimic the benefits of charcoal for stomach upsets....:)

From Sasha Pachev on Thu, Jun 26, 2008 at 23:41:36

Chad - thanks for the offer. We really appreciate it, it is going to help us a lot. We'll get in touch with you prior to the race next year. There is a saying in Russian that it is better to have 100 friends than 100 roubles, and it dates back to the time when 100 roubles was worth quite a bit more than what it is now ($5).

From Tracy1 on Sun, Jun 29, 2008 at 23:14:18

This year was the first year I didn't eat at Subway! No stomach problems either! In fact, I didn't eat any solid food at all. Diet consisted of about 10 oz. of CTR Brew immediately after the leg (Crucial to Recovery) with maltodextrin, milk, chocolate/cocoa, sweetner, lecithin, creatine monohydate. Then potatoe chips and a little Coke. I did eat a small plain bagel and plenty of pretzels, but thats pretty much it.

From Lindsey on Mon, Jun 30, 2008 at 00:11:24

Could your stomach upset have been caused partly by motion sickness? That could be the difference between this and other races. Being stuck in the back of a van for many hours like that. It seemed like the only time I wasn't sick during the race was when I was running(Because I was out of the car).

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Fourth leg of the Wasatch Back this morning in the form of a 7:00 AM Stake Semi-Annual Priesthood meeting.  They always have those at 7:00 AM in our stake. I forgot about the last two and missed them, so this time I was determined not to forget. The Lord blessed me - in spite of missing the sleep in the WBR I felt very energized. I even felt energized afterwards in the three hour block. Once I got home I got a good nap, though.

Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 2.00Total Sleep Time: 9.75
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. I got my check from Ogden. $550. And along with that I found on my doorstep "a ball of curious workmanship" from Ogden as well. This is what I like to say when I find a gadget on my doorstep. Just like Lehi found Liahona near his tent one day. Except this one does not work according to your faith. It was Suunto t4 foot pod/HRM toy.

I ran 3 miles with Tyler, and then spent the rest of the run playing with the new toy. Good - HRM works well. The adjustable strap might even make it fit on Benjamin, Jenny, and even Julia. Bad - time display is tiny, hard to see. No display of stride frequency, only an estimate of the running speed. It always irks me when a gadget displays what it does not really know (distance) while fails to display what it does know (stride rate, ground contact time, foot acceleration vector). I knew that display of the ground contact time would be unrealistic to expect, much less the foot acceleration vector in any form, but I did hope that I could at least get the stride frequency. Without it, the foot pod is annoyingly useless even when calibrated. In hopes that it would be somewhat reliable, I went through the trouble of attaching it to my shoe (now I am having a hard time taking it off, too). Before calibration, it was showing a pace 30 seconds per mile slower that actual at around 8:00 pace. After calibration at 8:00 pace it got better at paces slower than 7:00 mile, almost satisfactory. However, at sub-6:00 pace it was showing a faster pace by about 5 seconds a mile.

I could put up with that if it was not for this quirk. I accelerated quickly in one stride, and then eased off in the next in the middle of jogging at 7:50-8:00 pace. It showed 5:05 for the accelerating stride, and 12:30 on the ease-off stride. I can guarantee you I did not go from 7:50 to 5:05 in one stride, or from 5:05 to 12:30 in the next. The manual did warm about it, though. But I do this all the time when I run.

Ran a mile in 5:25, got HR up to 164. Total of 15.1 for the run.

P.M. 1.33 with the Benjamin, Jenny, and Julia to the library in 13:03, back with Benjamin and Jenny, this gave us 25:37 for 2.65. Then another 2.5 in 18:46. Ran into Jacob Howell, and then shortly after a BYU runner Rich Nelson who ran leg 10. Found out from him the composition of their Van 2: Jason Dorais, Warren Davis, Chad Durham, Rich Nelson, Ryan Merriman, and Derek Taylor. According to him they had no pace projections like us, just ran.

Five Fingers - 465.45 miles.

T4 Racer - 212.69 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.75
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Michelle came for a speed workout. We did 4x1 mile on the trail. Original plan was 5:45 each with 200 meter recovery. Michelle rebelled. I suggested we extend the recovery to 400 first time she is slower than 5:45. She did 5:40.1, 200 recovery, Matt joined us for the remainder of the workout. 5:46.5, 400 recovery, 5:45.1, 400 recovery, 5:45.7. Matt pulled away on the last one, was probably around 5:42-5:43. HR peaked at 157 a couple of times, once when we hit two 85 quarters back to back on the third one, and the other time when Michelle kicked with a 39 200 on the last one. Otherwise it stayed under 153. When Michelle struggled (88-89 quarters), it was 148, what a cold insensitive heart! However, when I yelled at her to give me five, it would go up to 152. Next time we should give the watch to Michelle so she could see my HR and play the "make Sasha work" game. If anybody wants to play it, feel free to come. Also, towing subjects wanted for power training. I have a harness I want to use to do some power training without hills (more specific to flat running), but nobody to tow this week. Ideally I want somebody slower so there is no way we can run a certain pace when the partner is being towed by having him just run that pace. This is also good for the slower runner - overspeed training.

After we finished the cool down, ran around the block 16 times.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 10:03, 1.5 with Benjamin and Jenny in 13:08, another 0.5 with Benjamin in  3:51, then 2 alone in 14:40.

Five Fingers - 485.42 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 7.25Nap Time: 2.00Total Sleep Time: 9.25
From josse on Tue, Jun 24, 2008 at 17:25:25

Sorry I missed out to be intow, sore leg and did not want to chance an unjury. Leg is feeling much better.

From MichelleL on Tue, Jun 24, 2008 at 21:01:24

Thanks so much for the workout help. Not a bad kick I had on the last one, eh? 5:46.5, more than one way to win an argument :) No, seriously, though I think that was the fastest I could go with less than a 2 minute recovery between.

From sarah on Tue, Jun 24, 2008 at 23:27:57

And thank you for running around the block :)

From Steve on Wed, Jun 25, 2008 at 12:29:19

What's the run for Saturday? Long run I think you mentioned?

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Ran alone. 15.07 in 1:52:20. This run took my Five Fingers over the 500 mile boundary. I think Steve Hooper will have to tell his sales rep that Five Fingers can go quite a bit over 500 miles.

Did some experiments trying different form alterations and observing their impact on HR at the same pace, or the pace at the same HR. Discovered one thing - we are took quick to conclude that changing the form has given us a performance boost. I would do something different, it would make me run faster, but HR would go up as well. So in other words, I wanted it to work bad enough that I subconsciously sped up and ignored the increased effort, which was easy to do when the pace is in the 7:00 - 7:30 range.

However, I did find something that appeared to be effective. No dramatic effect, but at least something. If I focused on a quick push and then a quick transition to relaxation as soon as the leg was off the ground, I was able to bring my HR down from 125 to 123 at the same pace (7:25 per mile). This was difficult to do properly, though. Not surprising, if it was easy I would have figured it out already. I kept doing one of the two - either relax too much and forget to power, in which case the HR stayed at 123 but the pace dropped to 7:35-7:40, or I would get excited, power hard, but then forget to relax. This would bring the pace up to under 7:10, but HR went up to 126-127.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 9:56, 1.5 with Benjamin and Jenny in 13:07, 0.5 with Benjamin in 3:56, and 2.5 alone in 14:58. Managed to fit the HRM on Benjamin. His HR was around 160 at 9:00 pace, around 174 at  8:00 pace, and after about 0.1 of sub-8:00 pace followed by 100 meters in 23 (6:08 pace) it got up to 186. First time I've been able to observe his HR at different speeds. 

Five Fingers - 505.49 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 1.00Total Sleep Time: 9.00
From wheakory on Wed, Jun 25, 2008 at 14:48:12

Nice work on the Five Fingers. I really need to get a pair to test them out and strengthen the muscles.

When are you going to finish your WBR race report?

From josse on Wed, Jun 25, 2008 at 14:56:02

What up with Jeff, is he gone?

From Sasha Pachev on Wed, Jun 25, 2008 at 15:11:27

Jeff is in Park City at the family reunion. Kory - WBR is still work in progress. I have updated it, but it is not done. I want to get all the details right to help us plan better next year. In my opinion, we were about 15-20 minutes slower than we could have been with ideal planning with the same pool of people. Still slower than BYU, but next year hopefully we will have stronger runners, so 15-20 minutes from stronger runners, 15-20 minutes from better planning, and we become competitive.

From josse on Wed, Jun 25, 2008 at 15:24:06

I think we should try to put together a 3rd team but have it mixed. Then we could have 3 teams in the top.

From Jon on Wed, Jun 25, 2008 at 15:34:45

Personally, I would avoid multiple teams. At least from what I saw, it was very difficult to organize and keep people happy. Or if you do multiple teams, keep them seperate (i.e. don't move people from one team to the other). But I think a coed team would be awesome, especially given how fast some of our women are.

From josse on Wed, Jun 25, 2008 at 15:39:05

I agree with the keeping them separate. We would need to appoint a team captian for each team and not mix and match. Put the teams together based on speed and leave it at that. An extra bonus for being on my team is massage at hand;)

From Jon on Wed, Jun 25, 2008 at 15:58:27

That's it, I'm joining your team, Josse. You sold me.

From Sasha Pachev on Wed, Jun 25, 2008 at 16:40:41

Happiness is subjective. If we want to beat BYU next year, people need to learn to be happy to run on whatever team, whichever van, and whichever legs they are assigned. And if their fitness changes right before the race, and the rules permit us to move them to another team, then they need to be ready to move, up or down without any grumbling. If everyone goes after his own happiness, we are 15-20 minutes slower, and that could cost us the win. This year it would not have made a difference, but next year it likely will.

From Jon on Wed, Jun 25, 2008 at 17:08:18

I'm going for the happiness of unlimited free massages! Plus, happier runners run faster!

From Jon on Wed, Jun 25, 2008 at 17:12:20

Sasha, I think your assumption is what drives the result. For example, you are assuming everyone's goal is the beat BYU. Some people may prefer to be on a certain team (or be on a team with their friends, or run a certain leg, etc), even if it means not beating BYU. I'm all for beating BYU, but you have to make sure everyone is working under the same assumptions as you are for the results to work. I'm not saying I'm not in your boat, but you may need to remember that some people have different goals.

From josse on Wed, Jun 25, 2008 at 17:23:37

I think most in general are ok with what Sasha is saying. Of coarse my goal is not to beat BYU and I know I would not be put on that team. My goal is to beat the other coed teams. But I am also in for a good time and to be with friends.

So you put together an "A" team with the fastest of the fast that all want to compete to win. Then the "B" team of the rejects oh I mean the next fastest that can place in the top 3 and a "C" team which stand for coed and want to be a competative coed team. I do agree you have to make the judgement right before based on recent preformaces and how that person is running. So to avoid hard feelings just don't put the teams together until right before. But Jon you are welcome to run on my team, I just don't know if Sasha will let you;)

From wheakory on Wed, Jun 25, 2008 at 17:44:07

I didn't notice that there was a lot of grumbling and complaining about legs. I know our team didn't complain about what legs they were assigned. The blue team gave what they had in the relay and really didn't need to be serious doing that. Jon's right about, "happier runners run faster".

What I think he means for part of this is you can have fun in a relay and still run your best and don't have to be so serious. If you get a leg that you didn't really want your still going to run good. Sometimes being so technical can cause problems or added pressure.

From josse on Wed, Jun 25, 2008 at 17:51:56

"Sometimes being so technical can cause problems or added pressure." I completly agree, I have to enjoy what I am doing other wise I wouldn't do it. BTW-I enjoy pain and running fast, but I run the best when I am having fun and there is not alot of pressure. And I don't want someone who is having an off day to feel bad for not running their best.

From Jon on Wed, Jun 25, 2008 at 18:43:59

Hey, Josse said I was on the reject team! I'm not sure if that is better or worse than my first year, when my team was named "Team Misfits" cause we were the team no one wanted.

Only one problem, Josse- you have to assign runners to WBR teams about 2 months before the race. Lots of things can happen (and happened this year) in those 2 months- injuries, drop outs, changes in fitness, etc. Plus, when you have 10 runners who are essentially the same speed, who do you choose?

Kory- ask Cody, James, Paul, and Sasha about how much work went into getting the teams together. There was a ton of time spent that you guys (thankfully) were not aware of.

From josse on Wed, Jun 25, 2008 at 18:52:16

No Jon you are just the next fastest. I would think you would be able to move things around (of cousre I don't now the rules) they have to understand people get injured and stuff happens. Right?

From Jon on Wed, Jun 25, 2008 at 18:54:22

"Then the "B" team of the rejects oh I mean the next fastest that can place in the top 3"

See, the rejects! Cool! I was on the reject team!

From josse on Wed, Jun 25, 2008 at 19:57:57

Question-I noticed that the WBR is already registering for next year. I now you got comps for the two teams, do you think we can get one for the coed team or should I pay the registration?

From Sasha Pachev on Wed, Jun 25, 2008 at 20:20:41


If you are on the racing team and you are get a comp into any race that is provided by the blog, the assumption is you are there to race, which is defined as doing everything within your ability to run the fastest possible time.


We are not 100% decided at this point, but I would not pay that entry fee in a hurry. If we end up not putting together a mixed team, there will be plenty of teams anxious to gobble you up in the last two weeks prior to the race.

From josse on Wed, Jun 25, 2008 at 20:54:28

Ya I don't want to fork out the 1000 buck for the entery fee!

From Jon on Wed, Jun 25, 2008 at 21:18:53

Sasha- I realize that if you are on the team and get a comp from the blog, then you should do your best to help the team. That is a given.

From MichelleL on Wed, Jun 25, 2008 at 21:21:38

I have no intention of being gobbled.

From Steve on Thu, Jun 26, 2008 at 11:10:35

THere are too many turkeys around here.

From Paul Petersen on Thu, Jun 26, 2008 at 11:26:00

Josse - Yeah, you can always jump on a team a couple weeks before the event. Some of them are desperate enough to pay your way at that point too!

From josse on Thu, Jun 26, 2008 at 12:13:46

I don't just want to be on any team I would like to put a competitive FRB coed team together. Besides that is the only way Michelle will do it.

From josse on Thu, Jun 26, 2008 at 12:19:53

Goble, goble I like are probably taking about me:)

From Steve on Thu, Jun 26, 2008 at 12:25:15

I'm up for a coed team. My wife would run on the coed team as well.

Of course, I don't want to do all the leg work in setting it up. I don't envy the people who do that.

I like turkeys, especially on Turkey Day!

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Ran with Adam the first 5 miles. First we ran 0.5 to verify that he still had the same problem last time we checked. He did. We went through the first quarter in 1:28, and after that he was unable to hold 6:00, and ended up with 3:01.7. He was not breathing very hard at all, but could not go any faster. Bad nervous system problem. Whatever I've got, he has 10 times worse. Helps me put things into perspective. Then I did a little bit of experimental power training dragging him with a harness 3 times, each time for 10 seconds. After that he was concerned he might aggravate an old injury, so we stopped.

Dropped him off, ran around the block. Then ran with the kids. 1.05 with Julia in 10:24, 1.5 in 13:26 with Benjamin and Jenny, 0.5 with Benjamin in 4:22. Then a dog came. Benjamin identified it as a dalmatian. Wikipedia says that dalmatians have excellent endurance and are very energetic and playful. This one was so energetic and playful that after about a quarter of running (1:37) I did not have a choice except put its endurance to a test. At 5:40 pace its playfulness decreased enough to where it was trailing behind and was not trying to hit my legs with its nose. I was encouraged and picked up the pace even more. Unfortunately we were now on the trail next to the river, which provided a nice shade and cooler temperatures thus favoring the dog. I kept up the pressure and on the last mile the dog started to falter. I was encouraged again because I knew once we got away from the river it would be warmer and I would be able to drop it. My expectations were correct. I put about a 10 second gap on the dog in the last 0.4. It came in huffing and puffing after I finished. I was delighted over my success in asserting human dominion over a small part of the animal kingdom in the area of endurance. Total time for the last 2.5 was 14:10 including the first non-tempo quarter in 1:37. Last mile was 5:31. Average pace over the last 2.25 of my unplanned dog tempo run was 5:34.

Total of 15.1 for the run.

P.M. Ran 5 miles in 39:01 in the evening. HR readings were very low in spite of the 80-90 degree heat. In fact, the were even lower than what I would have expected them in cool weather. About 118 at 7:30 pace on average. Started out very slow, felt exceptionally sluggish in the heat, and HR for a while completely refused to go above 105, while the pace refused to go faster than 8:00. Felt more energetic after 2 miles. I think I am starting to understand why they say "oppressive heat". Looks like the brain starts employing defense mechanisms directly in response to the heat vs in response to reduced blood volume from sweating.

Also did a stair test with myself, Sarah, Benjamin, and Jenny.  The test consists of running up a stairway of 11 stairs as fast as you can landing on every stair. Results - Benjamin - 2.8, Jenny - 2.9, me -3.3 (self-timed), 3.6 (Benjamin-timed), Sarah - 3.8. I timed everybody when I was not running. The test is supposed to measure your ability to quickly contract and relax a muscle, which I believe is an important component in the Quality X. I wondered if the fact that Benjamin was closer to his natural stride length for the stair climb allowed him to contract/relax more efficiently. So we did a test skipping every other stair. The times were 2.3 for him and 3.1 for me, so no, I am just bad it at. The fact that I was not that much better in this ability than pregnant woman 25 weeks along gives some food for thought.

Five Fingers - 525.59 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.75
From Scott Zincone on Thu, Jun 26, 2008 at 22:45:05

A man in our town rescued two greyhounds. I pass him regularly when he is walking them. He always jokes they should run with me.

I know they have the speed, but I wonder about their endurance. Maybe one day I should take him up on his offer.

From wheakory on Fri, Jun 27, 2008 at 15:10:55

Greyhounds have horrible endurance. In fact their rather lazy. They only have the quick sprinter speed than it's gone in probably less than a minute.

From adamr on Fri, Jun 27, 2008 at 19:02:20

Sasha, have you every done blood glucose testing? It might be interesting to get one of the little test kits to bring with you during a run to see if there are changes in that according to particular efforts/length of run.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Total of 15.07 including 1.05 with Julia in 10:07, and 1.5 with Benjamin and Jenny in 13:22.

P.M. 5 alone in 35:50.

Five Fingers - 545.36 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 1.00Total Sleep Time: 8.75
From Walter on Fri, Jun 27, 2008 at 21:13:54

Hey, I think I ended up with your black watch you were using. Ive been using it in hopes that it will rub good luck my way. I havnt noticed a big differance in my running but I have a good feeling about this watch! I can get it back to you just let me know.

From Sasha Pachev on Fri, Jun 27, 2008 at 21:44:07

I have mine. It must be Jeff McClellan's.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Did the Provo Riverwoods 10 miler twice. First up, the immediate 180 and dash back down. Brisk warm up for the first 5 miles, then tempo the rest of the way. A fairly miserable workout as you climb 800 feet in the first half, but great preparation for Deseret News.

I had two goals - beat Josse's race time from two weeks ago (1:07:02) on the way up, then James Barnes' winning time (56:42) on the way back. After a bit of jogging at 7:30 pace I realized that if I had any chances of beating Josse I needed to get down to business. So I started going around 6:40-7:00 pace up the Provo Canyon. Occasional gusts of wind did not help, but I was able to keep respectable pace through them. HR quickly got up to 130-135 range and stayed there. Got through the first 5 miles, and shifted into the tempo gear. To my surprise I had a hard time getting HR above 145 no matter how hard I tried to push it. The pace was around 6:10-6:20 range until I went into the South Fork.

Did the 3.23 stretch up South Fork in 21:26, 6:38 average. Passed Michelle and Josse doing their pre-tempo warm-up. 1:07:40 at the turnaround. Chicked by 38 seconds, bummer!

On the way back tried to crank it up, but had a hard time kicking into gear. HR absolutely refused to go above 145. 3.23 in 17:56, 5:33 average. Not that great of this kind of drop (400 feet in a bit over 3 miles). Better watch out, or I might not only miss James, but get chicked by Michelle on the descent. Her split at that point was only 33 second slower.

Focused on running not slower than 5:40 figuring that if I can do that on flatter portions and James's average was 5:40 I should be OK. With only one caveat. The course is actually about 0.07 longer than 10 miles. Back when Curt certified it it went straight near Bridal Veil Falls. But since then he added a detour on the little bridge to avoid crossing the old highway.

Finally kicked into gear and started seeing 1:23 quarters. HR climbed to 149 but rebelled against the 150 range. Towards the end as it got warmed it got up to 152. Picked it up to 5:20 pace on the last quarter, HR finally progressed to 155 during that. Finished the second half in 56:20, 22 seconds ahead of James's time. Total time 2:04:00.

P.M. Benjamin ran in the state meet. I jogged a bit with him during his warm-up. He won Bantams 1500 in 6:04.20 beating his only competitor by 18 seconds. The effort earned him $4. I set up a bonus structure for him - $1 for every lap 1:35 or faster, $4 for breaking 6:00, $2 for breaking 6:10, $1 for breaking 6:18 which was what he ran last time. Time bonuses non-cumulative. His splits were 1:35, 1:39, 1:39, and 1:11 for the last 300. His last lap was 1:34. So $2 in lap bonuses, and $2 time bonus. Decent effort for 85 degree heat.

Afterwards we went on an adventure drive on the Squaw Peak road from Provo Canyon to Hobble Creek Canyon. Ran with the girls in the middle. Julia ran 1 mile downhill in 8:47. Jenny ran 1.5 in 13:23, first mile was downhill, last 0.5 uphill. That was quite an adventure drive, I think that is my PR for off-road driving both in terms of distance, the closeness to the edge of a cliff, and the bumpiness of the road. Prior PR was Avon pass which pales in comparison.

T4 Racer - 232.69 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 7.00Nap Time: 1.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
From josse on Sat, Jun 28, 2008 at 22:32:13

Wow great job on the run! to bad you didn't get me;) Maybe next time. Tough workout!

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Caught up on sleep. Went to church. Took a nap. In the evening we went to the patriotic fireside at the Marriott Center. When we got there, there were no seats for all of us except at the very top. This actually made things nice for keeping the kids from getting too wild as there was a platform they could stretch themselves on.

As I sat there and looked at a row of American flags at the bottom a thought came to me. It has been a recurring thought in the last 15 years. It comes to me when I look above my day to day labor and am able to see a bigger perspective. America has been blessed in many ways more than any other nations. The reason God allows us to live in America is that he wants us to serve. The scriptures not only confirm it but also add a stern warning:

For behold, this is a land which is choice above all other lands; wherefore he that doth possess it shall serve God or shall be swept off; for it is the everlasting decree of God. And it is not until the fulness of iniquity among the children of the land, that they are swept off.

Ether 2:10 in the Book of Mormon. 

It is dangerous to lose the mindset of service anywhere, but it appears from the scriptures, and I feel it in my heart, that the dangers of doing so in America are much greater than anywhere else. Our country will be strong as long as we reach out to others and are not fazed by the sacrifices it may require.

Night Sleep Time: 8.50Nap Time: 1.50Total Sleep Time: 10.00
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Ran with Jeff and Daniel. Jeff was a lab rat today. He is such a nice rat, always agrees to participate in experiments and measurements. I put my HRM on him and watched his HR at different speeds. It was a lot of fun. At 8:00 pace he was roughly around 130. He wanted to see what happens when he held his breath. His HR did not go up at all, but he just could not keep running while holding his breath. Then I suggested that he should sing. With the Independence Day approaching he sang the first verse of the Star Spangled Banner at 8:00 pace. His HR maxed out at 144. Then he remembered that in his PE class he could get his HR from standing (around 75-80) to 160 in 50 meters of sprinting. I wondered if he really could. So at first he sprinted from 8:00 pace, but the problem was that he went so fast I could not keep up and he moved out of the HRM reception range. Noting that mistake I gave him the watch, and next time we tried from a resting start. We tried to wait for his HR to drop to 85, but there were too many mosquitoes. Daniel and I jogged around, while Jeff stood and sacrificed in the name of science. However, the mosquitoes kept him agitated enough that his HR would not drop below 100. So we decided that was as good as it was going to get and he busted out sprinting. After 15 seconds he was able to get his HR to 159.

Then we decided to measure his HR at 7:00 pace. It was around 150. Afterwards we tried at 5:50 pace. It got up to 172. We dropped Daniel off, and decided to try at 5:20 pace. Well, Jeff was too feisty to run 5:20 and started out at 5:00 pace. So we ran a mile in 4:58. Jeff's HR got up to 187. This was the fastest mile I've ever run wearing Five Fingers. I liked that mile a lot better than the one we did a couple of weeks ago in 4:55 because it did not have a 70 second quarter in the middle. The pacing was perfectly even. We estimate that Jeff's max HR is around 190-192.

Dropped Jeff off after 13 and ran 2 more. Total of 15 miles in 1:54:56.

P.M. Home to Costco relay. 1.06 with Julia in 11:13, 1.55 with Jenny in 13:43, and 2.77 with Benjamin in 22:04.

Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.75
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Ran with Jeff. The run at first was uneventful. Then we stopped for a VPB and got eaten by mosquitoes. Then we ran into Luz and she joined us. I noticed she was going about 8:05 pace while chatting, but I did not say anything at first waiting for a strategic location. Then about 300 meters away from the mile mark from where I started timing her I told her the pace and challenged her to break 8:00 for the mile. She easily met the challenge finishing the last 200 in 51 up a slight grade (6:48 pace) and hitting a 7:50 split for the mile. Afterwards she chose 8:40 pace and maintained it conversationally all the way to our house. She and Sarah continued on from there, while Jeff and I ran around the block. Jeff stopped at 13.25, I woke up Julia, then did two more laps, and then ran with her for the last 1.05 in 10:38. Total time for 15 miles was 2:01:10.

P.M. 1.5 with Benjamin and Jenny in 12:57, then 0.5 more with Benjamin in 3:33. After the first easy 0.5 we played the leapfrog game. Ran 3 more with Jacob and Joseph in the stroller in 21:54, total time for 5 miles was 38:24.

Five Fingers - 585.74 miles. 

Night Sleep Time: 7.25Nap Time: 0.67Total Sleep Time: 7.92
From JamesL on Tue, Jul 01, 2008 at 21:14:43

Hey I fixed this last month but everything before June has dissapeared

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Jeff had to work late last night so only Josse showed up this morning. Ran 10.1 uneventfully in 1:25:13.

P.M. 7 in hot conditions in 55:39, 3 of it with Adam. Then 1 with Julia in 11:15, 1.5 with Benjamin and Jenny in 13:16, and another 0.5 with Benjamin in 3:45, 17:01 for 2 miles.  Five Fingers crossed the 600 mile boundary, 100 miles over the salesman limit.

Five Fingers - 605.84 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 6.75Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 6.75
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Ran with Jeff and Adam. Adam was the lab rat today, wore the HRM. His HR at 8:00 pace was 160. Oddly high, but he is conversational at that pace, and his resting HR is fairly high as well - 52. However, still Jeff's resting HR is about the same, and his HR does not get that high when he is as conversational as Adam.

I did a post-VPB acceleration which gave me some tempo running. Then we did 2x400 with essentially full rest. First one was 81.9. Adam's HR made it to 175. On the second one we got 85.6, and Adam's HR maxed out at 177. This is odd again. Based on Adam's conversational inclinations 8:00 for him is no harder than 6:40 for me. At 6:40 my HR is around 130. When I run a hard quarter (67) I max out at around 160. So 23% increase. Adam could only manage a 10% increase and it was not like he did not try. After two quarters in spite of a low HR increase he felt very fatigued.

We decided to measure his max HR. While Adam stopped to stretch a guy ran by us that knew who I was but I did not recognize him. He greeted me in Russian and demonstrated a reasonable degree of fluency in the follow-up comment. Provo-Orem area is very unusual. Right off the bat I could think of 4 guys in the area fluent in Russian that can do no worse than finish within 1 minute behind me in a 5 K. Not that my 5 K abilities are that great, but only a small percentage of the population would make the 1 minute back or faster cut off. So to find at least 4 Russian speakers in a population of about 200,000 that meet the requirement is remarkable.

On the max HR test Adam was supposed to run 7:00 pace for a mile and then floor it in the next quarter. He only made it to the mile in 6:59. His HR maxed out at 180 and he was not able to continue. This is just plain odd and wrong. Why in the world can his HR not go above 180 when he gives it all, while he is very comfortable and conversational at 160? Some kind of chronic nervous system fatigue. And it also comes on so suddenly. You cannot write it off as the lack of aerobic fitness. Adam has been running consistently enough to where stuff like this should not kill him.

Nervous system fatigue is an intriguing subject. One could argue that you always slow down due to nervous system fatigue. The slow down always happens because the brain is unable to override the negative feedback from the body. We call it cardio fatigue when the heart so weak that it produces too much negative feedback. We call it muscular fatigue when the acidity of the muscles is the driver of the negative feedback. But what about if the negative feedback is coming from somewhere else, or the brain is oversensitive to it? How do you deal with it? One naive solution is speedwork. Desensitize it. It does solve the problem when we are dealing just with an oversensitive brain. But there is another aspect. What if the brain does not have the drive to sustain a level of activity for a long period of time? Not sure if there is a physiology term for it, but I would call it neural endurance. The ability to fire BAM-BAM-BAM signals for a long time. From what I've observed, anaerobic speed work will desensitize the brain in three weeks and then will not do it any more (you can puke to death in your workouts with no results after that) but it does nothing to improve the BAM-BAM-BAM ability. In fact, done too much too often it reduces the neural endurance because the brain/nervous system can take only so much agitation. Even brisk aerobic runs (20 - 40 seconds per mile slower than marathon pace) done daily produce too much agitation and cut my BAM-BAM-BAM ability.

I wonder if the BAM-BAM-BAM ability accounts for 90% of the Quality X. How about that for scientific terminology? When you can feel it but do not know what it is called, invent a term. That is how all the scientific terms were invented to begin with anyway, except they have more scientific sounding names because the papers had to be published.

Cool down with Adam, finished 13 with Jeff, ran a mile alone, and another with Julia in 10:05. Total of 15.

P.M. 2 with Benjamin in 17:01 with Jenny running the first 1.5 with us in 12:47. 3 more after that, total time 39:51 for 5 miles.

Five Fingers - 625.84 miles. 

Night Sleep Time: 7.50Nap Time: 0.60Total Sleep Time: 8.10
Race: Murray Fun Days 5 K (3.107 Miles) 00:16:42, Place overall: 6
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Ran Murray Fun Days 5 K in 16:42, 6th place.

My plan from the start was to go out hard and see what happens. The warm temperatures made it difficult. I have a weird body. I can run well dehydrated but my heat sensors are very sensitive. This makes me quite a bit better than competition average in a survival race (hot marathon) because I am still fine when others start having cramps, stomach problems, etc, but worse than competition average in a hot 5 K because the heat shuts me down and I cannot get going.

There was too much trouble at the start to name. Right now in a 5 K any decent high schooler is trouble for me.

Ran the first mile as hard as I could, but 5:14 was all I had in me. It was uphill and into a slight headwind, but still I hoped to see 5:08. But we were out in the sun and the air just felt too hot. By then I was with Brian Summers and a guy from Montana whose first name I have forgotten but his last name I Michels I believe. Seth and Teren in the lead, they hit the mile in 4:53, and Alexander Thomas about 10 seconds back ahead of us.

Lost contact with the Montana runner and Brian on the 180 turn. Tried to push to regain it, breathing is OK, legs do not respond. Tried to get going on the downhill coming back, not much success, but closed the gap on Brian. The Montana runner had dropped Brian by that time. Caught up to Brian by 2 miles. 10:36. Wow. Only 5:22 for all this work on a downhill. One mitigating circumstance was 180 in the middle. That and the heat. No problem, life goes on. Just keep racing.

Last mile has a small net gain, and is up and down. Starts with a slight up. Brian gapped me shortly after I had caught up. I gradually reeled him in, and was able to attach. Then there was a short steep down. I used that to pass Brian and hopefully discourage him. Did not work, he passed me back and started kicking. Then shortly before mile three another guy from Colorado, his first name was Mike, the last name was either Hutchinson or Huntington, went by me as if I was standing still. We hit the short uphill, it turned out to be less steep than I remembered it. Hit mile 3 in 16:12, 5:36. Not as bad as it could have been.

Turned out Brian miscalculated how far away he was from the finish and started his kick too early. Once his kick was over I was able to pass him back and finish 5 seconds ahead of him. I could hear trouble from behind so I was kicking as hard as I could. I thought it was Brian, but it turned out to be our blogger Kyle Moffet. He finished 1 second behind me.

Times - Teren 15:06, Seth 15:33, Alexander 16:00, Montana runner 16:14, Mike H from Colorado 16:36, me 16:42, Kyle 16:43, Brian 16:48.

Looks like that I was 4th in the circuit, in a 5 K for me that is a steal and a lucky day. It is rather interesting that the best quality 5 K I've run this year was Magna, which was a week after a marathon. I think the two week taper helped me - I ran less than 80 miles the week of the marathon, and after that only 90. Other 5 Ks were run off 120 miles a week. Also I wonder if 120 miles a week affects me more in the summer when it is hot. All this time outside while the heat sensors in the skin keep hearing "slow, slow, slow, it is hot". And then I race, and the same message is still deep under my skin.

Also I am probably feeling it in a 5 K more than in a longer race because you have to run faster.

Ran 7.5 afterwards. Some of it alone, ran 0.5 rabbiting the kids race, a little bit with Teren, and more with Seth.

P.M. 2 with Benjamin in 16:34 with Jenny joining us for the first 1.5 in 12:55. Julia ran 1.5 with Sarah. Then took Jenny to the Y. We hiked from the trail head to the bottom of the Y in 22:21. Looked at the view, took some pictures, identified landmarks, and then headed down. Ran parts while going down, about 0.5 or so. The time on the way down was 14:11. The distance measured 0.95 in both directions. The elevation gain is about 1000 feet, so about 20% grade on average. My best time on that stretch running is 11:38.

Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.75
From marion on Fri, Jul 04, 2008 at 18:21:08

amazing... truly amazing. I love reading your reports. They are full of information and inspiring!

From Hayden on Fri, Jul 04, 2008 at 20:53:13

Mike was about 20 something seconds and Jared was 16 seconds, i think, so not to bad. Nice race to yourself

From Chad on Fri, Jul 04, 2008 at 23:50:03

Nice work, Sasha. I thought your comments about the reduced mileage paying off at Magna were interesting. If you were targeting the 5k it wouldn't make sense to run the miles you do at the paces you do. But perhaps there is a lesson in there that designing the schedule to back off the miles every now and then might give the body more of a break so it is able to respond when you need it.

From bc on Sat, Jul 05, 2008 at 01:04:26

Sasha, good job today. I didn't have my garmin on in the warm up how far do you think we went.

Let's analyze our splits and see what happened, based on the race strategies we talked about before the race.

My mile 1 5:45 yours 5:14 I'm -31

My mile 2 5:41 yours 5:22 I'm -19

My mile3.1 6:46 yours 6:06 I'm -30

It might appear that we both started and finished with the same net effort, but in the middle of the race I must of worked a little harder. If a relaxed a little more in the middle would I have a stronger finish?? Or did I lose focus and effort as I was passed by a master half way up Vine Street. After relaxing about 20 meters, a quick splash in the face, and a hold on for dear life finish. What are your thoughts? I know I'm not going into these races fresh, but we always want to seek a better performance or aprroach to obtaining it.

From Sasha Pachev on Mon, Jul 07, 2008 at 15:57:31

Bill - the gap on the last 1.1 was actually 40 seconds, or 36 seconds per mile. Let's add Teren into the picture:

4:53 - 4:50 - 5:23. Teren's gaps on me - 21 - 32 - 43 or 38 seconds per mile, on you - 52 - 51 - 1:23 or 1:14 per mile. Teren said he actually eased off a bit once he saw that he was safe from Seth, but I would guess it happened late enough in the race and his time was not affected very much.

I actually did not ease off in the second mile. I ran it as hard as my body would let me and was in a lot of mental pain.

I think you and I would have lost it on the third mile regardless of how we started. This is not a lactic fatigue. I bet if they measured our lactic acid levels during the third mile, Teren's would have been the highest, mine would have been the second highest but significantly lower than Teren's, and yours would have been the lowest but not much lower than mine because mine was pretty close to as low as it gets already. Why?

Both of us are aerobically fit as well as Teren if not better. But neurologically we are far behind. Which is the main reason he is able to beat us by so much. The third mile difference would suggest that my neurological fitness is a bit better than yours. Being able to beat you by a minute and half when you run as many miles as I do points in that direction as well.

To see if I am right. Put on an HRM and start running 5:30 pace on a flat well measured surface (track would work) and keep it until failure. After you fail, struggle for another mile or so to maintain the fastest possible pace. Watch the HR. When you struggle does it keep going up, or does it drop by about 5 beats a minute from what you got it up to at 5:30 pace? If it drops, the limit is neurological. If it climbs, I am wrong, it is cardio.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Ran the same workout as last week - Provo Riverwoods 10 miler twice, first up, then immediate 180 and down. Except this time I had Jeff with me. Seth was going to come, but he stayed up late the night before and called in the morning bailing out.

The goal was again to beat Josse's time of 1:07:02 on the way up, and James' time of 56:42 on the way down. In spite of having raced yesterday Jeff's presence made up for the fatigue and we were able to meet both goals. Not without some suffering on my part though.

We did a brisk warmup averaging probably around 6:50 for the first 5 miles. After that Jeff stretched and we started the tempo portion from around the Bridal Veil Falls area right after the Walking Zone warning sign. I wondered to myself if it was OK to run through it, but did it anyway. About 6:10-6:15 while the grade was 2% then when it flattened out to about 0.5-1% about 5:55 pace with Jeff's initiative. Once we got to the South Fork climb, Jeff threw more fuel into the fire and put me in pain. I had to ask him to back off several times. This was an odd feeling. My HR never went above 155. But I felt like I was racing a 5 K, almost. At the same time, when I asked him to back off I was not thinking so much "we've got another 12 miles of this still ahead", but more "if they told me the finish is at the top and I am done for the day, I do not think I could go any faster". The good news is that I had enough confidence in my endurance to have no fear of bonking at the end.

We did the control 3.23 stretch in 20:42. 6:21 average, 48 seconds faster than last week. I think is my PR for that stretch period, not just in the middle of a 20 miler. If not, it would be awfully close. 1:06:05 first 10 miles, beat Josse's time by 57 seconds. Unchicked myself and very satisfied. Now 10 miles going down.

We hard a hard time shifting gears and goofed through the downhill where we really could have made up some time. Probably from the fatigue of climbing. 17:57 on the control 3.23 stretch, 1 second slower than last week. No problem, though. With Jeff pulling me we'll be OK.

We ran strong through the flatter parts although I did have to ask Jeff to back off a few times and finished the second half of the run in 56:11, 9 seconds faster than last week, and 31 seconds ahead of James. 2:02:16 for 20 miles, 1:44 faster than last week. Actually it is more like 20.14. But who cares, the run is Double the Provo Riverwoods 10 miler however long it may be. With all the climbing and then dropping it is not a normal course anyway.

Went to a show by the Provo Tabernacle with the family afterwards. During a puppet show the performer asked the kids if they knew who had written the Declaration of Independence. Benjamin raised his hand and gave the correct answer - Thomas Jefferson. The performer said - "Wow, they teach well in school nowadays!" Little did he know that Benjamin had always been home schooled.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 10:10, 1.5 with Benjamin and Jenny in 13:23, 2.5 alone in 18:43.

Five Fingers - 630.84 miles.

T4 Racer - 268.70 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 1.00Total Sleep Time: 8.75
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Day of rest. Managed to play the Star Spangled Banner on the keyboard without mistakes with Sarah listening. Called Lybi, and being a bit more nervous with her listening over the phone made a couple of mistakes but recovered and was able to play it through. That is an improvement for me.

Also, a few days ago sang the Star Spangled Banner solo for Sarah and she gave me 5.5 out of 10. Off key only on a couple of notes. So, assuming  her rating system matches Daniel's, on a good day and a very familiar tune and stationary I can sing as well as Jeff running at 5:30 pace.

Night Sleep Time: 9.00Nap Time: 1.00Total Sleep Time: 10.00
From Chad on Mon, Jul 07, 2008 at 14:21:16

Sasha--perhaps your Star Spangled Banner singing would improve if it were performed on a flat, sea level course in ideal conditions? Anyway, 5.5 isn't bad! I'm sure Sarah is a tough judge.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Decided it was time to cut back the mileage and add some intensity. This is going to be more experimental. The purposes are to test a) how it will affect the performance in shorter distances now that I've run 8 months of very solid base and b) how much of that speed will be retained once I go back to base mileage. My recent HRM data suggests that while I've received significant cardio gains from base building, I am running more and more into the 5 K speed limit. In other words, I cannot go any faster in the half because I am almost at my 5 K pace already. My hope is that the 5 K speed limit will budge more than it has in the past now that there is a huge aerobic base breathing down its neck.

Ran with Jeff and Daniel. Dropped Daniel off, finished the run with Jeff. Did one post VPB pick-up and we also tried to chase down a guy to recruit him for FRB, but he turned around early. Thus 0.6 of tempo running. Total of 13 miles in 1:41:50.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 9:52, 2 with Benjamin in 16:58 with Jenny running 1.5 in 13:11. One more without running kids in 7:28. Pushed Jacob in the single stroller the entire time. Played freeze tag in a park with Benjamin and two other kids. Lots of places to climb and hide at that park, so it was tough. Finally wore all of them down and froze them all. With reduced mileage felt energetic.

Five Fingers - 647.84 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 7.50Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.50
From Adam RW on Mon, Jul 07, 2008 at 15:28:14

I look forward to the test. My prediction is that you will see some great gains in speed. I hope I'm right.

From Jon on Mon, Jul 07, 2008 at 16:06:56

Glad to see you trying something new. Your huge base, complimented with some speed work will produce amazing results!

From Sasha Pachev on Mon, Jul 07, 2008 at 16:17:02

Jon - "amazing" is an unrealistic expectation. I've done lots of speedwork before with hardly any improvement as a result. Truly amazing results are much slower to come than the word "amazing" flies out the mouth of the average American. Marginally better if I am lucky would be more accurate. But marginally better is better than the same.

From Adam RW on Mon, Jul 07, 2008 at 16:36:26

So does that mean "great" is more realistic?

From Jon on Mon, Jul 07, 2008 at 17:08:25

Sasha- when the men's marathon world record improved by 29 seconds recently, I thought it was amazing. Granted, 29 seconds was less than 0.4% improvement from the old time, so the number itself is not overly impressive. But there is such a group of fast times right up to that point, that actually breaking it is impressive.

Likewise, you have a huge body of miles and race times in your running background. A 0.4% improvement in your 5k would be less than 4 seconds. But once you have established a firm history and then break through, it is amazing. Call it marginal if you want, but it is a breakthrough. And that is what I am predicting will happen with you. I seem to remember you commenting recently how you tried 120 mpw previously but with poor results compared to what you are accomplishing now. We shall see if the added intensity running has likewise more-successful results this year.

By the way, a simple "Thanks for the compliment" will suffice, rather than arguing with an intended compliment.

From Sasha Pachev on Mon, Jul 07, 2008 at 17:48:01

Jon - was that meant to be a compliment? If you call a 0.4% improvement for me "amazing", this implies, "15:33 on the old Draper Days course in cool weather with no headwind is all you've got". Or "a low 2:23 in St. George on a good day is all you've got, you'll never do better".

From Jon on Mon, Jul 07, 2008 at 19:33:44

It was meant to be encouraging/complimentary as you are trying something different. And I am not implying that .4% improvement is all that you will see. I meant that improvements can be small but still be amazing (like taking 29 seconds off the marathon world record). For you, I expect much better improvements than 4 seconds on a 5k or 30 seconds on the marathon. Something on the order of 2-3+ minutes at St. George.

From Paul Petersen on Tue, Jul 08, 2008 at 00:11:14

I'd love to have a 4-second PR in a legitimate 5K. Those are hard to come by. I haven't had one in almost 10 years.

From sarah on Wed, Jul 09, 2008 at 22:39:55

Hey Jon...I'll give a word of did right but just beware...Russians are really weird about compliments and smiling for cameras.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Power workout for me today. Ran with Jeff, Josse, and Michelle. Matt found us on the trail and joined us. The workout was 6x1 mile with 400 recovery on an almost flat stretch on the Provo River Trail alternating directions. The power training aspect came from towing Josse in a harness. This was going to give her some overspeed training. Who needs an overspeed treadmill when you have a harness and somebody to pull you? And who needs a hill when you have a harness and somebody to pull?

I did not know what to expect, but a rough goal was to allow Josse to stay with Michelle. This proved to be too hard of goal for a couple of reasons - Michelle was stronger than I expected, and the pulling Josse in a harness was not as easy as I initially thought. I expected to work at about 1-2% grade uphill effort, but it ended up being more like 3% grade or 20-30 mph headwind.

Splits: 5.47.9 (on this one we managed to stay with the pack), 5:51.5, 5:50.9, 6:02.1, 5:46.6, 5:53.4. Peak HR was 164 on the first repetition, after that it was between 166 and 168. Michelle chicked me on all the repetitions except the first. It was an interesting experience. I am running with everybody, and all of a sudden I am working the same, even harder, and they are pulling away as if I were standing still, and there is nothing I can do to keep up. The harness handicap turned Michelle into a virtual Kara Goucher from my perspective. This was a good chance to learn humility.

Towards the end I started to get the grasp of the art of pulling. Which is probably the same as the art of running uphill or into a headwind. To be successful it is very important to fire up the leg muscles as quickly as possible the very moment your foot lands. A quick explosion of energy, once you get going start relaxing the muscles, they've done their work, you're going, they can rest. Easier said than done, it is like saying all you need to do to play a piece on the piano is hit the right keys at the right time.

Overall a good debut of the FRB Towing Service. Josse enjoyed the workout, felt good, but we'll have to see if she gets the delayed onset soreness. I estimate she had just run the equivalent of 6x1 mile down a 3% grade. This could be hard on the quads.

Total of 12 miles for the run.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 10:55, 2 with Benjamin in 16:58 with Jenny running the last 1.5 with us in 12:56. 1 more with no running kids in 7:51. Pushed Jacob in the stroller the whole run.

T4 Racer - 280.68 miles.

Five Fingers - 651.84 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 7.25Nap Time: 0.33Total Sleep Time: 7.58
From luzylew on Tue, Jul 08, 2008 at 16:52:22

I saw the tow rope action this morning. So I had to read your entries to see what that was all about. After reading a bit, I have thank you for saying that if over time (speedwork, resistance,aerobic base) one becomes marginally better, then "marginally better, is better than the same." I know the application of that principle is vastly different for different types of runners, but that thought was very inspirational to me. Thank you for sharing it here. In fact, that phrase may be the title of my blog soon.

From adamr on Tue, Jul 08, 2008 at 17:52:04

Sasha, I have a pile of old tires that I might be able to lend you if you are ever unable to get a person to tow. There are even a few little ones (maybe 20-30lbs) that you could just drag on a normal run. Let me know and I'll see if I can get them to you.

From Walter on Tue, Jul 08, 2008 at 21:30:40

great workout sasha! I remeber doing that in high school. I should try it. Where do you get the harnesses? By the way, do you know who ended up with the 2nd place awards from WBR?

From Superfly on Tue, Jul 08, 2008 at 21:47:20

We need to get the Del Sol and WBR awards out to all the runners. Who has them and what do we need to do to get them out?

From James on Tue, Jul 08, 2008 at 22:41:21

I just got the white team battons from UPS today. Clyde, I'll bring your award to you next week. Sasha, I'll get the Provo guys awards to you. Do you still have all of the Del Sol awards and my headlight?

From Superfly on Tue, Jul 08, 2008 at 22:45:01

Sweet. If your coming down try to grab all the awards for me and the other guys down here. I know Dave and Logan were asking me about them a while ago.

From James on Tue, Jul 08, 2008 at 22:47:52

I'll get them for the half.

From MichelleL on Wed, Jul 09, 2008 at 10:30:59

Humility is good. I'm happy to hand you some, even if having you tow someone is the only way I can do it :) I think that's what I'm going to be handed at DesNews. I looked at the 2007 results again and the #5 girl was 35:19, and all top five seemed to be local, so not sure if 2007 was normal. If so I'll be knocked off the podium.

Thanks for the workout once again. I need to get better at doing hard workouts on my own. My gas tank is killing me.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Ran with Jeff and Daniel. Daniel ran 3 miles then turned around. Jeff was with me the entire time. We talked about education, how much difference motivation makes in the ability to learn and how to motivate kids to learn. Just as we were talking we saw the Provo High team with their coach Phil Olsen who also teaches Spanish. So we joined them, and gave them a pep talk. 13.2 miles in 1:43:13, 7:49 pace, avg HR 115.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 10:55, 2 with Benjamin in 16:49 with Jenny joining us for 1.5 in 13:10. 1 mile alone in 6:59.  Pushed Jacob in the stroller for the first 2.5 of the run.

Five Fingers - 668.04 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.75
From Breanna on Wed, Jul 09, 2008 at 14:41:54

Sasha, I was just wondering which course do you think is harder Heart of Holladay or Murray?

From Sasha Pachev on Wed, Jul 09, 2008 at 14:48:00

Not enough data to tell. They are very very close, close enough to where little variations in wind, temperature, and runner fitness could make one or the other produce faster times.

From cgbooth23 on Thu, Jul 10, 2008 at 18:01:49

sasha, why isn't the blog page bringing up the daily running blogs?

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. 6x400 with 200 recovery with Jeff on the trail on a mostly flat section alternating directions. The target was 72 seconds but it was rather approximate. I did not want it slower than 73, nor did I want to hurt like 67. I was OK running a 67 if I could do it relaxed, but I did not want to become preoccupied with running 67s once I happened to get into that zone on accident.

On the first one we were overcautious in the first 200 - Jeff was waiting for me to go and I was waiting for him, so the first one was way off pace. After that we settled into a brisker groove and were ahead of target on all others. Splits (max HR in parenthesis):

75.2 (153) - 70.5 (161) - 69.8(161) - 67.6(166) - 67.6(165) - 68.0(164).

We had a forced extra stationary(for me) minute of rest before the last one due to Jeff's VPB. Thus lower HR at the same pace in spite of doing it later in the workout.

The thought that entered my head while we were in the 67-68 zone - why can't you run a 10 K like this? It would be nice, 68 400s gives 28:20 in the 10 K. I left that I lacked the power in the legs to sustain it. The heart could handle it just fine, I think. I would only need to be able to sustain the HR of about 180 for 28 minutes. I could do that in 2000. Then by 2004 I apparently experienced some dramatic cardiovascular gains and since then was never able to get my HR above 175.

Ran a long cool down (total of 13.35 for the run). Luz joined us shortly after we were done with the speed portion. Since she commented earlier about how easily Jeff handled 6:00 I volunteered him to sing for Luz. He got 8 out of 10 from her on the Star Spangled Banner at about 9:00 pace. Then I did it as well. Luz gave me a score of 5, I am wondering if that was too generous. She also gave me a more objective evaluation - completely off key 3 times, and flat 10 times. Have not counted the total notes in the song, but it appears that this would make it about only 20-25% error rate. This is a great improvement for me even for stationary singing.

Ran a mile with Julia in 10:00.

T4 Racer -  294.03 miles

P.M. 2 with Benjamin in 16:28 with Jenny running 1.5 in 12:17. 1 more alone in 7:49. Pushed Jacob in the stroller.

Five Fingers - 671.04 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 7.50Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.50
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Total of 13.1 in 1:43:10. Started with Jeff, Matt joined us for a few miles. Did a VPB tempo for about 0.5 miles. Ran the last mile with Julia in 9:17.

P.M. 2 with Benjamin in 16:11 with Jenny running 1.5 in 13:03. Benjamin ran a 0.5 without Jenny in 3:08. It was out and back, and nasty rolling going under the bridge at 800 N on the trail twice. I was pushing Jacob in a stroller, so I figure this was about marathon pace effort for me. Then I ran 2 more in 15:25 pushing Jacob, most of it slow, but a biking couple passed me, and they were not going very fast. They were going slow enough to tempt me into picking up the pace, and I fell for the temptation. When the guy noticed that he was being followed by a runner with a stroller, he signaled the girl to pick up the pace, and they were gone. But not for long, they eased off and starting coming back. Then it was time for me to turn. I ended up running a quarter in 1:23 down about 0.5% grade.

Five Fingers - 688.04 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.75
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Ran with Jeff and Thatcher. Thatcher is 18. He set a PR for the longest distance ever run. I set a PR for the negative gap in age (17 years younger) with a running partner to go over half-marathon distance in one run. We ran 14.1 in 1:47:08, 7:35.8 avg. The weather was cool, so that kept my HR below 120 for most of the run. Then we had a 0.15 mis-start with Julia - she realized she need to go the the bathroom shortly after we left the house, so we went back. Ran 9:58 mile with her and Jeff. Then we ran 1.5 with Jeff, Jenny and Benjamin in 11:47, and Jeff continued with me and Benjamin for another quarter, and then Benjamin and I turned around. We finished Benjamin's 2 miles in 15:32.

Five Fingers - 705.29 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.75
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Day of rest. Set some serious recent sleep PRs.

Night Sleep Time: 9.00Nap Time: 3.00Total Sleep Time: 12.00
From Samarai Smith on Fri, Jul 18, 2008 at 23:25:10

Thanks for your encouragement with the running,I will certainly keep it in mind.

All the best with your running too, I will keep an eye on your blog to get some good training tips.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. DesNews practice run with Seth and Jeff. Got up at 4:30, picked up Jeff, met Seth at Hoggle Zoo. Drove up to the top of Big Mountain, the boundary of Utah and Morgan counties. Right on the Pioneer trek. Come come ye Saints, No toil, no labor fear, but with joy wend your way. Though hard to you this journey may appear, grace shall be as your day... And should we die before our journey's through, happy day, all is well. We then are free from toil and sorrow too, with the just we shall dwell...

In that spirit we started the run. The plan was to see how Seth's and my legs handle 5:00 pace down 8% grade. I was going to rabbit him running as hard as I could for as long as I could to keep him on pace, after I could not we were going to slow down to my marathon pace. Jeff drove down 3 miles to avoid the 8% down, and also to make it so he would not have to run the whole 16 miles.

Due to the differences in terrain mile splits were all over the place. I did have the Garmin for backup in case we missed the turn in the subdivision or a mile marker. But all the painted marks were visible and we were able to follow the course without problems. Splits are by the painted markers:

4:50, 4:51, 4:48, Jeff joined, 5:10. End of crazy downhill. I am hurting like it is time to sing the 4th verse of Come Come Ye Saints already, but still going. 5:24, 25:03 at 5 miles.

5:51. Now Little Mountain. Seth and Jeff are chatting, I am in pain. We are now definitely in my marathon pace territory, this is too slow for Seth. 6:36 mile and we are not done with the hill. Seth and Jeff are still chatting. I am thinking about those near death experience accounts when the nearly dead person is aware of what is going on in the room, even sees his own body, but cannot communicate. They are talking but I cannot add anything to the conversation. Done with the hill finally, now going down. Next mile in 6:07, then 5:19, and now I feel like I can talk more. Into the subdivision, up, then back down. Next mile in 5:52, 54:49 at 10 miles.

Seth at that point said he got the idea of course and the pace, and wanted to back down. We backed down to about 6:00 pace, but then he and Jeff backed down more, and I wanted to keep it faster than 6:00. So I took off.

5:58 (with some easing off), next two miles in 11:27, 1:12:49 at the half. Last three miles 5:35. 5:37, and 5:49 (with uphill). Total time 1:29:15 for 16 miles, 5:34.7 avg.

Jogged from mile marker 16 to the car and met Seth and Jeff. With that and the warm-up this added another mile.

Felt very energetic in the last 3 miles in spite of the aggressive start and the near death experience up the Little Mountain. Afterwards both Seth and I passed the hop test, no muscle soreness, at least yet.

T4 Racer - 311.03 miles. 

P.M. 1.25 with Benjamin, Jenny, and Julia in 12:46, dropped off Julia at the park, finished 1.5 with Jenny and Benjamin in 14:57. Then ran 3:08 half mile with Benjamin.

Five Fingers - 707.29 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 6.50Nap Time: 0.50Total Sleep Time: 7.00
From Lyman on Mon, Jul 14, 2008 at 17:41:28

I did the same route 9 days ago but u turned at wasatch and went back through the golf course and to the zoo. So what's the hop test?

From Sasha Pachev on Mon, Jul 14, 2008 at 18:38:12

You hop on one foot. If you can without pain after running 15-20 miles hard, it is good.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Ran with Jeff and Josse. Did a VPB tempo of about 0.6 at marathon pace. Then we saw Matt and he said he was going to run a 5 mile tempo. So I decided to pace him 2.5 out and however long it took to get back to Jeff and Josse afterwards. We did 6:05, 6:02, then three more quarters in 1:32, 1:32, 180 turn, and 1:29. At that point Matt was 10 seconds behind the 6:00 guy. I admonished Matt to catch him. Do not know if he did, he has not yet posted his workout report. Total time for 10.6 was 1:18:37.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 10:51, then 2 with Benjamin in 16:46 with Jenny joining for 1.5 in 12:53.

Five Fingers - 720.89 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 7.25Nap Time: 1.00Total Sleep Time: 8.25
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. 10.1 with Jeff. Matt joined us for most of it. Total time was 1:19:50. Did 0.4 VPB tempo. 5:40 pace felt very easy, I was surprised it was 5:40, I did not think I was going sub-6:00.

Discussed various subjects from the art of fly swatting to DesNews pacing. We even discussed unsigned vs signed database fields and what happens when you insert a negative number into an unsigned field.

P.M. 2 with Benjamin in 15:57, Jenny joined for 1.5 in 11:37. 1 with Julia in 9:25. Pushed Jacob in a stroller. 

Five Fingers - 733.99 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 0.67Total Sleep Time: 8.42
From Jon on Wed, Jul 16, 2008 at 19:01:24

Am I the cause of the negative number discussion? Don't worry, I'll fix all my miles for the week by tomorrow.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Easy run with Jeff. 10.1 in 1:17:55. Avg HR 115. Discussed nutrition, thus a lot of nutrition comments by me today.

P.M. 1.06 with Julia in 11:00, 2 with Benjamin in 16:25, Jenny joined for the first 1.75 in 14:38.

Five Fingers - 747.15 miles. 

Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 0.67Total Sleep Time: 8.42
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Easy run with Jeff. 10.1 in 1:16:50. Avg. HR 116. Discussed running form.

Tape worm story. Julia asked a question about mosquitoes and Benjamin explained that mosquitoes carry malaria. Then Jenny had follow up questions about the symptoms of malaria, which Benjamin answered as well. That got his mind on a related subject and he started telling the girls about tape worms, and how there is a kind that causes sleeping sickness when the parasite enters the brain and shuts it down. I did not know about that until Benjamin told me, and was not quite sure if he got his facts right, but after some research I found this:

and realized that Benjamin knew what he was talking about. Maybe a bit off on terminology, he could not remember  the term Trypanosoma brucei, so he called it a tape worm.

So right after we went to bed Jenny comes into our bedroom crying. "I am afraid to go to sleep, because Benjamin told me about the tape worm, and I am afraid that I will not wake up." It took some time to convince her that it was very unlikely that she would get infected with an African parasite.

P.M. Jared was visiting with us. Ted wanted him to run 3 miles. So he, Benjamin, and Julia first ran 1 mile in 8:54. Then we dropped of Julia and picked up Jenny, and ran another 1.5 in 12:53. Jared was not feeling good and ran slower. Benjamin was not feeling good after the run and decided to forgo the remaining 0.5 with Jared. Jared jogged through the remaining 0.5, his total time for 3 miles was 28:26. 

Five Fingers - 760.25 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.75
From keri on Fri, Jul 18, 2008 at 18:18:45

Hey Thanks for the info what I'm not sure about is on 1 day a week Sat I need to run as close to the 13 mile mark as I can or should i work up to farther. With my first 1/2 I was up to 12 miles once a week I would like to pr

on my next 1/2 any suggestions would be much appreciated!!

Thank You again!

From adamr on Fri, Jul 18, 2008 at 20:17:27

Sasha, is this week part of your taper?

From Sasha Pachev on Sat, Jul 19, 2008 at 13:14:09

Adam - yes.

From Jennifer Pachev on Sat, Jul 26, 2008 at 18:09:14

Daddy I read that .

Race: Draper Days 5K (3.107 Miles) 00:16:28, Place overall: 8
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Draper Days 5 K, 16:28, 8th place. The course has been changed. It is now a loop course with some moderate hills. The grade for most of the course is about 0.5-1%, a short (about 0.1) stretch of 3-4% climb about 2.6 miles into the race, not a spot that is flat - you are either going up or down. Definitely slower than what it used to be.

On the positive side of things, the temperatures were ideal this morning. If felt perfect.

Warmed up with Carol Cabanillas and Carre Joyce. Steve Ashbaker ran by with the ladies he is coaching. He was not in the race, but stopped by for a visit. We chatted a bit. He predicted that I would run 16:26.

Lots of trouble at the start. My plan was to run with Alexander Thomas regardless of how fast he went for as long as I could, then hang for as long as I could with every runner that passed me after that. Seth, Teren, and Stephen Clark were a few seconds ahead, then Alexander, Dennis, and me. I made it to about 0.75. Nate Hornok caught me, I managed to make it to the mile with him. First mile in 5:02. I was pleased. It was a slight up.

Nobody passed me in the second mile. It started out with a downhill stretch, and then it was a slight up. 5:17, pretty much what I hoped to run it.

Right after mile 2 mark Kyle Moffet passed me, and I was able to hang with him to the middle of the uphill at 2.6. Caught a split at 4 K - 12:58. Did the math, realized Steve was going to be right. Pushed myself as hard as I could on the last mile. 15:54 at 3 miles, 5:35. Not spectacular but acceptable.

Kicked at the end, last .107 in 32 seconds. My watch said 16:26, but my official time was 16:28.

Other times: Teren 15:08, Seth 15:26, Stephen 15:33, Alexander 15:36, Nate 15:41, Dennis 16:10, Kyle 16:20, Neal Gassmann 16:34, Thatcher's friend 16:36.

Ran back, paced Alexander Berry for the last 0.15 or so. He finished in 20:37. Then cooled down with Bill Cobler. Then talked with Mark Olsen and he had his timing gate handy. So we did a few sprints measuring top end speed for 10 meters. My best time was 1.42. Bill got 1.38. Breanna got 1.50. Thatcher's friend from Ethiopia whose name starts with a G (I will learn how to say and spell it some day) ran 1.11.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 10:48, 2 with Benjamin in 16:38. Jenny joined us for 1.5 in 12:36. Her friend Brinley joined us for a little over a mile and the mile that she ran was 8:25.

T4 Racer - 319.73 miles

Five Fingers - 763.25 miles

Night Sleep Time: 7.00Nap Time: 0.83Total Sleep Time: 7.83
From Kim on Sat, Jul 19, 2008 at 17:05:31

It seems crazy to me that you can run a 5K in 16:28 and be in 8th place! What is your 5K PR? You are an amazing runner! Have I ever thanked you for all you do for me and the rest of us? If not...thank you! You really have offered a lot to a lot of runners!

From Walter on Sat, Jul 19, 2008 at 17:54:38

Nice run Sasha! Everyone was running so fast today! I havnt seen Neal Gassman around forever. Did you talk to him?

From jhorn on Mon, Jul 21, 2008 at 19:04:35

Thanks for pacing Alexander Berry and inspiring me to kick it in to have a little pride in my kick. My name is Jesse, by the way. Neal hangs with the slc track club but I haven't seen him race til now. He's still crazy fast and is probably just rounding into shape.

From Sasha Pachev on Tue, Jul 22, 2008 at 18:05:30

Kim - my loop course PR is 16:00. I've run 15:37 on the old Draper Days course which you could consider an honest course - certified, 0.4% elevation drop, but with some uphill.

The big question I have is what we can do to make the average runner to be more likely to come to a 5 K race because 10 people or more go under 17:00 on a certified hilly loop course at altitude rather than because it has good food, pretty age division trophies, or a raffle.

Walter - Neal is recovering from an injury. So he is not quite in his top shape yet.

Jesse - I did not realize that it was you, but figured it out later by looking at the race results. Odd that we've never met in person yet. I'll try to find you at the next race. Are you running DesNews or Minuteman 5 K?

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Glorious day of rest. I told my body to relax and it did.

Night Sleep Time: 8.50Nap Time: 2.00Total Sleep Time: 10.50
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Started with Jeff and Daniel. Daniel turned around at 1.5. Then we met Luz and she ran a little bit more than 3 miles with us. Her 3 mile split was 24:21, mile splits - 7:57, 8:04, 8:21. This was not a planned tempo run for her. I noticed she was going around 8:00 and chatting, and I just did not say anything until she started slowing down when we hit the bridges and uphill with less than a mile to go. What boggles my mind is how in the world she manages to chat so much at a pace that she cannot sustain a mile later. She chats with as much ease at 8:00 pace as I do at 6:30.

Total time for 8 miles was 1:05:26, avg. HR 113.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 10:04, then 2 with Benjamin in 15:49, including 3:09 0.5. Pushed Jacob, and it had some hills, so counting this 0.5 as marathon pace. Jenny joined us for 1.5 in 12:40.  

Five Fingers - 774.25 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.75
From luzylew on Mon, Jul 21, 2008 at 17:27:48

It's not rocket science -- it's my lack of endurance (particularly the mental kind). Plus, it's the chatting that keeps me going easy. Once I focus on the running, it's all pain and suffering (all those boltushka training years....). Today however, was the first time I've done 3 miles in a row whilst trying to push 8:00 m/m. So far I've only ever run two full miles without a significant slow down on the third mile(30 or more seconds). I'll be running toward another 3 mile tempo run on Wednesday. So I'll keep practicing until I can do 4 sub 8:00's in a row. You'll see. But it's going to take me a while (also, not a good idea to suspect that ANYTHING IN THE WORLD can ever shut me up.... Aside from all the Danish Genes, I have a whole bunch of annoying scottish ones too).

From luzylew on Mon, Jul 21, 2008 at 17:37:04

P.S. For the record, THAT is why I'm giving up chocolate. Anything I can do to build mental endurance/discipline will hopefully have a farther reaching effect than just being able to maintain a consistant 4 mile tempo run. Right?

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. 6 miles with Jeff in 47:55. Daniel and Matt joined us at different times.

P.M. 2 with Benjamin in 15:30. Jenny joined for 1.5 in 11:55. 1 with Julia in 9:08. Pushed Jacob while running with Benjamin and Jenny. 

Five Fingers - 780.25 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.75
From JeffC on Tue, Jul 22, 2008 at 14:20:04

Are you on a mission to put 1,000 plus miles on those Five Fingers? :)

From Sasha Pachev on Tue, Jul 22, 2008 at 14:32:38

If they last only 1000 I'd be disappointed. I can take regular shoes to 2000-3000 miles. I hope to see 5000 miles out of them.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. 4 with Jeff in 31:59, then 1 with Julia in 10:03, and 2 with Benjamin in 16:41 with Jenny running 1.5 in 12:34. Pushed Jacob in a stroller. Jeff joined us for the entire run as well.

Five Fingers - 787.25 miles. 

Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 1.00Total Sleep Time: 8.75
From luzylew on Wed, Jul 23, 2008 at 16:35:02

Good luck tommorrow Sasha! We're all rooting for you to do your very best! You've put in some 'charitable service hours' training the 'less fortunate' local runners (me)-- I hope some of that good Karma will come back to you in the form of feeling great on race day--wake up that sleeping tiger, right?

From cgbooth23 on Wed, Jul 23, 2008 at 16:49:06

So Sasha i am going to bring up the subject, how do you advise on computing crosstraining miles? I remember you doing some X-country skiing this winter, did you do those mile for mile? Wondering because I usually start biking more as the fall rolls around and I'd like to keep track of these miles as accurately as possible.

From Sasha Pachev on Fri, Jul 25, 2008 at 16:41:33

Chad - I convert cross-country skiing miles at face value. For biking, if you have an HRM, and assuming you did a fairly steady effort, take your average HR, calculate the pace you would have to run to keep up that HR, add a minute per mile or so just in case, and then divide the ride time by the virtual pace. I think this works for a ride under 1 hour quite well. Of course, you need to keep your HR above what you would get at the slowest pace that you still call running.

From Jon on Fri, Jul 25, 2008 at 17:01:45

Chad- a lot of people on the blog use a rough 3-to-1 conversion for miles (30 bike = 10 run). Sometimes less, if it is hilly, etc.

From cgbooth23 on Mon, Jul 28, 2008 at 11:53:46

Sasha and Jon,

Thanks for the input on the bike miles, i will begin to convert these miles into running miles, as of now I never do a conversion, but to keep track of overall output it is nice to see what i have done on the rolling mileage board, especially as i look back to see what i did on my training!

Race: Deseret News Marathon (26.22 Miles) 02:34:43, Place overall: 8
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Executive summary - 2:34:43, 8th or 7th place (depending on what they do with the Colorado runner that missed the turn into the subdivision), 1st from Utah, $500. 6 Kenyans at the start, 6 Kenyans at the finish. Looks like Bob Wood said no travel expenses unless you finish. Good move for him. Tight left calf from the start of the race contributed to running slow, and is hurting like there is no tomorrow now, but on the positive side quads seem intact. Details to follow.

Stayed with Adam Wende the night before. Got up at 2:45, made the bus without an incident (unlike last year). Noticed a tightness in the left calf during the warm up. I've actually had this tightness the entire week, but figured it was one of those taper cramps. For some reason the muscle responds to reduced mileage with occasional cramping. So when I felt it I thought, no big deal, it will go away because it always has even when I felt it on race day.

But it did not before the start. I figured it would go away as the race progressed, and proceeded to execute the plan. The plan was to hit pretty much exact same splits I did in the 16 mile tempo 10 days earlier, and then see how I would fare after that. Last year I started slow, ran strong after 10, then by 20 the strength had left me, and I finished at about the same pace I did in 2006 when I started fast only it took me a minute longer to get to 20, so I ended up finishing a minute slower.

I ignored the competition, and took off. I figured they would eventually catch me, and when they did try to hang with them for as long as I could, and I figured I wanted to be at the top of the Little Mountain with the Kenyans because then it is downhill again and I'd be able to hang with them a little more. Seth told me he was not feeling that great, so he wanted to start a little slower. Steve Ashbaker was there as well, and acted as a threat from behind if I let my guard down.

Downhill, 8% grade. 4:50, 4:51. Perfect. The first mile felt good, I was going to guess 5:00-5:10 by the effort. So I was pleased to see 4:50. Then the calf started hurting more and I eased off on the third mile. 4:52 instead of planned 4:48. Now gradual flattening out. 5:18 (plan 5:10), 5:35 (plan 5:25), and 5:56 (plan 5:45). Reached 6 miles in 31:15 vs 30:54 in the tempo run. Calf pain has been getting progressively worse, but I took it as a positive - when it goes away I'll be able to run faster. On the positive side, the breathing kept getting lighter. So at least the fitness was OK.

Right around mile 5 a white guy whose exact name I still do not know who is rumored to be from Colorado went by me and I could not latch on.

After the first 6 miles we started a climb up the Little Mountain. Back in the days of the old DesNews course when we did not experience the Big Mountain I wondered why that mountain was called Little. It is a climb of 1.5 miles during which you gain about 300 feet of elevation. That sounded pretty big, but not when you look at the Big Mountain that drops 1500 feet or so in 3-4 miles.

6:38, plan was 6:30. Seth passed me. However, he was not moving as fast as I expected him. That could mean two things. He is either holding back, or is he is as sick as he thinks he is.

I think the climb gave my calf a break and stretched it a bit. Next mile in 6:03 (plan 6:00), and I felt strong. However, now a VPB is looming. Does not look like I can hold it. Had to pull off to the side of the road and do my patented (clean!) 5 second job. Still managed 5:32 mile (plan 5:20).

The Kenyans finally caught me, and I ran with them for a minute or so. Went into the subdivision. This allowed me to measure the gaps. Seth had a bit less than a minute on me. Steve and a stray Kenyan runner were about 30 seconds behind. Next mile 5:56 (plan 5:45). I was hoping that running with the Kenyans would give me a better time on that mile. Reached 10 miles in 55:22, vs 54:49 in the tempo run.

Next 2 miles were both 5:37. I had an approximate plan of 5:30-5:35 for them as I was not exactly sure about their quality. During the tempo run I eased off at that point to about 6:00 with Seth and Jeff. But this was within range. However, 5:46 on the next mile gave a cause for concern. What was strange is that I was not feeling bad, nothing was wrong except I felt I was running way too easy but could not go any faster. Probably what was happening is that the calf kept getting tighter and tighter, but because of the endorphines the pain was not getting any more acute, nevertheless the push off power kept getting reduced, so I was running slower and slower.

1:12:57 at the half vs 1:12:49 in the tempo run. Even with the ease-off between 10 and 12 I still could not catch my tempo run guy. Next two miles in 5:50 and 5:49. 1:24:01 at 15 miles vs 1:23:26 in the tempo run. The plan was 5:35 for both. At this point I realized I needed to ditch the plan and just hang in there hoping Steve won't pass me, and hoping for the best in general. Maybe the calf pain will go away and I'll be able to close strong.

Saw Seth in the distance. My first thought was that he failed to keep up with the Kenyans when they caught him, and from that point just decided to run for first Utahn, the slowest it takes. Which would mean he would run with me, then blow me away on the last mile. That's OK, at least I'll have somebody to run with. Or maybe not, maybe he is just plain out of commission with no guile involved.

The stray Kenyan runner caught up to me, and I followed him for about a mile. We ran the next mile in 5:48, which had the uphill by the Hogle Zoo. This gave me 1:29:48 at 16 miles vs 1:29:15 in the tempo. This gave me some hope. However, the next two miles showed the hope was vain. I felt decent but the pace kept getting slower. The next two miles which were a net downhill produced a split of 12:24, 6:12 average, and a 1:42:12 split at 18 miles. The grim reality of having to run slower than 6:00 for the rest of the race began to show its ugly face.

By this time I had caught up to Seth. We chatted. He told me he was struggling. I told him to run with me and finish the race no matter what. 1:54:41 at 20 miles. 12:29 for the next 2 downhill miles. At least it is not getting any uglier. Seth dropped back.

I felt very perky on the next uphill mile. So perky that I thought for sure it would be under 6:20. Good luck - 6:42. Last year 6:33. I guess the quads were perky, the fuel system was perky, but the dysfunctional calf spoiled the show. Next downhill mile in 6:07. Last year 5:45. So we are starting to see a pattern. I am losing in both direction, but more on the downhill.

Mile 23 brought some excitement into the drudgery. 6:14 with some uphill on 13th South. I see a Kenyan ahead of me, but do not feel like going out of my way to chase him down. What's the glory in passing a Kenyan that is in a hopeless out-of-money position? He is just doing a training run to finish. Now if passing him meant his money is now yours then it is a different story. Then you indeed are racing a Kenyan.

Mile 24 in 6:20. Two more to go, and all of a sudden it is warmer as the course turns from the shade South Temple into the sun on 300 East. The downhill ends as well. Mile 25 in 6:24.

Now the nasty last mile. It starts going uphill, it is still out in the sun, and it has a long stretch of straight road, you count the blocks. I guess the problem with the straight road is that when you are in pain you can maintain your focus better by setting small goals. Get to this landmark, then get to that landmark. Luckily I know how nasty it is, I also know exactly where you turn, and I know how blocks work in Salt Lake City. So that makes it easier.

2:33:15 at mile 26, 6:47 split. Very unspectacular, but with the calf problem could be a lot worse. And as usual, my local competition suffered more than I did at that point, so nobody passed me. Last 385 yards in 1:28, 6:42 pace for the "kick".

Steve Ashbaker was about 30 seconds behind me at 20 miles, about 1 minute behind me at 25, and then he had to stop for a couple of minutes to throw up. So he finished in 2:38. Seth barely held off Bill Cobler at the end finishing in 2:45.

The top Kenyans were very fast. The results have not yet been posted, but according to:,5143,700245616,00.html

Joseph Chirlee 2:18:16, Jynocel Baswell 2:19:31, Edward Korir 2:19:51, Jon Ndambuki 2:20:33. Ndambuki ended up out of money with the fastest time he's ever run on this course (2004 does not count, it was short).

P.M. The calf was very sore. Could not walk without a serious limp for a while. Iced it, Sarah massaged it, then Josse massaged and scraped it. After Josse's magic it felt a lot better. I could walk without a limp and could even jog a bit. Nevertheless I rode my bike for the kids run tonight just to be safe. Julia ran a mile in 9:37, then Benjamin ran 2 miles in 17:07 with Jenny running the first 1.5 in 12:59. Not counting biking miles because they were too slow.

T4 Racer - 346.45 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 5.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 5.00
From sarah on Thu, Jul 24, 2008 at 16:37:52

Well I think it's only fair that I get to be the first to post on here...I don't think that's ever happened before. Yay for 500 more dollars towards the van fund...keep reminding me to massage that calf and we will get it feeling good by Tuesday is my guess. Good work despite some opposition. I love you.

From superfly on Thu, Jul 24, 2008 at 18:59:05

Good job. Somehow you pull it off every year. Hope the calf feels better.

From luzylew on Thu, Jul 24, 2008 at 19:44:45

I'm so sorry to hear about the calf muscle. That must have been rough running. But still, 8th place! Sounds like Sarah's pretty happy about that! I mean, yay for the family van right?! You are a great example and inspiration to us all. Hopefully, you can nurse your leg back to health very soon.

From Adam RW on Thu, Jul 24, 2008 at 21:29:44

Way to stay strong the whole way through even with a nagging calf. That alone would have done in a weaker runner. As always great to talk to you the night before and I'm glad the race worked out for you. Can't complain about top Utahn and $$$.

From Dallen on Thu, Jul 24, 2008 at 22:21:03

I looked back and it appears that your time in this race has gone up a minute each year since 2005. Any explanation? It seems like overall you are improving, why the negative trend here?

From Falcon on Thu, Jul 24, 2008 at 23:27:57

My dad and I saw you finish. Way to run Sasha and congrtulaysions on winning $500

From Lucia on Fri, Jul 25, 2008 at 10:22:07

Congratulations Sasha! What was your hydrating/fueling strategy through the race? Do you elite runners have special treatment and can have your own energy drinks/gels at water stations?

From Sasha Pachev on Fri, Jul 25, 2008 at 10:54:33

Dallen - not exactly sure. This year I do have an explanation. It was an odd race due to the calf issue. It is very apparent from the splits, perception of effort, and post-race quad soreness (none). Last year I think I had not done enough downhill training. 2005 was on a different course, but I trained more on the Squaw Peak Road. In 2004 I lived on the Squaw Peak Road and in the Provo Canyon. The course was short by about 900 meters, so my adjusted time would be around 2:29. That year I also hit much faster splits in the first 3 miles which shows a better downhill ability - 4:36, 4:41, 4:29. The Kenyans did not get me until 9.5, and I was able to stay with them until 11.

Lucia - DesNews did not offer elite aid stations, but St. George does. However, after my last year experience I decided it was not worth the hassle. I find it sufficient to drink whatever they happen to have at aid stations when my body tells me it needs it. No special strategy. I just listen to my body and obey the signals.

From Tom on Fri, Jul 25, 2008 at 11:56:10

Congratulations Sasha on hanging tough as usual in the face of opposition (your misbehaving calf in this case), and getting the 1st from Utah along with the $$$. Hope with some help from Sarah you can get the calf all worked out and be good as new soon.

From wheakory on Fri, Jul 25, 2008 at 13:20:20

Great run Sasha. Great determination to run when you find your body not quite at a 100%. Your fitness is what really pulled you through. Getting some cash while not at a 100% can't be bad at all.

From tarzan on Fri, Jul 25, 2008 at 15:26:01

Congratulations on hanging in there and being first Utahn. I am impressed - the Des News is a tough race and must have been even harder with a calf injury.

From lybi on Fri, Jul 25, 2008 at 16:07:03

This is the course that always beats up the quads so much, right? Good job! Look at those sub-5 splits! So sorry you had to battle it out with a painful calf. This might be a good time to finally experience scraping! You'll be impressed, I think.

From peggy on Fri, Jul 25, 2008 at 23:22:45

Congratulations, Sasha, on hanging on and running a good race under less-than-ideal conditions. I was at the finish line and saw you finish, and you looked good coming in. Way to go!

From Jennifer Pachev on Sat, Jul 26, 2008 at 18:00:39

You call that biking slow. I had a hard time keeping with you.

From walter on Sun, Jul 27, 2008 at 22:44:28

Very nice race Sasha! I wish I could remember my miles split times from a year previous! I know exactly how Seth was feeling on that course it is the hardest course ive ever run on! Good to be patient and let the fallen soldiers play out in the race huh!? I still think you should have worked on beating that kenyan! maybe if the calves were better. Im proud of you man! Good Job!

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. The calf was runnable, but I decided to give it some rest and bike anyway. Rode my standard 10.1 course in 37:12, 3:41 per mile average, or 16.29 mph. Was pleased with that given that the trail has a lot of places where you have to slow down, and I had to get off the bike to make a 180 (did not stop the watch for that). On a straight flat stretch I was going about 3:20 per mile pace, or 18 mph. The bike does have issues. It is a 30lb old mountain bike that has not been maintained. The third (highest) front gear does not work. The second gear makes a funny noise, the chain is rubbing against something. The frame is too short and the seat does not go up very high. I did 17:52 going out, and came back in 19:10. Out is a slight downhill. HR maxed out at 149, and averaged 134. To get that HR running I would need to be going about 6:20 pace. So I figure if we say I worked at around 7:30 pace equivalent we can call this a match for 5 miles of running. Will run with the kids tonight and possibly some more if feeling good.

P.M.  1 mile with Julia in 11:25, 2 with Benjamin in 16:44. Jenny joined for 1.5 in 12:48. Calf felt good enough to run on without limping, but still painful. Wore my cushioned old running now mostly walking shoes. Nike something, do not remember what, too lazy to take them off to find out. I did run DesNews in them last year, though. I imagine they have about 3K miles. But for me it is a cushioned shoe.

Night Sleep Time: 8.75Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.75
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Woke up, the calf felt significantly better walking, but still quite a bit of pain. Nevertheless, good enough to run 10 miles on. Was originally planning on running in my old Nike shoes to get more cushioning, but then had a crazy thought - try Five Fingers. Somehow in spite of all logic against it the feedback from my body was that Five Fingers would be a better option. So I put them on.

Was able to run with only minor pain right from the start. As the run progressed, kept adjusting the form to minimize the calf strain. Eventually I figured out how to turn the calf slam into a calf stretch. Amazing! All you do is dorsi-flex the ankle (pull the foot towards yourself to make it look like you are duck) prior to landing, and it does not hurt. You are just getting a pleasant calf stretch from the impact. I kept speeding up from 9:30 pace at the start to 7:00 pace at the finish. My total time for 10.1 was 1:16:58. The calf felt the same when I was done.

Jogged another 0.1 to meet Sarah and jogged with her some more, but will not count is as running mileage since she was going around 15:00 pace. My rough standard for running mileage is sub-12:00 unless recovering after a hard interval.

The quads were only very slightly sore, but so were the gluts and the hamstrings, and I am not sure if it is from the marathon or yesterdays bike ride. So the calf problem perhaps was a blessing in disguise. It forced me to run slower, and not hammer the rest of the body so much. This is actually the first time I came out of DesNews with quads that I can run on the next day without wanting to scream. So I guess now I know the secret, or at least one way to do it. Run race pace for the first 2 miles, a little slower later on, get to the half in 1:13, then gradually taper off to 6:20-6:30 pace in the last 8 miles. I have always wondered if I could avoid soreness by running it slower, now I know.

Recalled a conversation after DesNews. I could barely walk afterwards. As I limped towards Matt's car, I wondered out loud: "How in the world did I manage to run 6:45 pace in the last mile on a calf that now would not even let me walk without a serious limp?!" One runner overhead it and answered: "By the grace of God!"

I contemplated the depth of the answer and agreed with his assessment. Of course, there is a physiological explanation. I was already running at mile 25, my HR was higher, there was more blood flow to the damaged area, the muscle was warm, the endorphines were helping me dull the pain, and being in a mental state of racing helped my brain disregard pain signals as well. But I wonder how often we provide those technical explanations that in essence say something to the effect "it worked because it worked", "the car was moving because its wheels were spinning while in contact with the ground", and in the process having filled our minds with enough non-essential detail and thus satisfied our curiosity, or at least having satiated our ability to receive knowledge, we fail to understand the more profound force behind the event. We acknowledge the creation and its mechanics, but fail to give credit to the Creator. Why? Because He does not reveal Himself unless we have faith. With faith, we gain the ability to see past the fact that the spinning wheels make the car move and are able to recognize that the car is moving because somebody is driving it, and that it will go where the driver wants it to be.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 10:48, 2 with Benjamin in 16:34, Jenny ran the first 1.5 in 12:43.

Five Fingers - 800.55 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.75
From JeffC on Sat, Jul 26, 2008 at 13:59:34

I enjoyed your comments for the past couple of days. Thanks for sharing. It lets me know that even the elites are human and suffer many of the same aches and pains as the rest of us, they just have a god given talent to run and recover much faster. Due in no small part to their incredible training, drive and dedication. Thanks.

From marion on Sun, Jul 27, 2008 at 19:34:49

Thanks for the last paragraph. It's is SO true! I really needed it today! :)

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Day of rest.

Night Sleep Time: 10.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 10.00
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. 10.1 with Jeff in 1:20:38. James, Matt, and Daniel ran with us at some points. Then 2 with Benjamin in 16:49. Jenny joined us for 1.5 in 12:40. Jared ran with us for the first 0.75, but then fell back. He finished 2 miles in 17:57.

Had a thought about modern day scientific understanding of running, the dark ages, and the printing press. Back in the dark ages only select few knew how to read and had access to books. The two were connected. If you do not get to read, there is little motivation to learn how to read. If you do not know how to read, books present little value to you. You can only learn by talking to those who know how to read and have access to books. You have no choice but accept their word, that is the best you can do. Vicious cycle of ignorance.

I think our understanding of running (and many other things as well) is still in that cycle to a great extent. The average runner has no way of measuring much - distance, time, heart rate, body weight and stride rate are about the only things that a middle class home budget runner is able to measure on a daily basis. Maybe blood glucose and cholesterol if you are willing to poke yourself every day. Lactate levels if you are willing to poke yourself and pay $900 for the device. You could measure pH of your body fluids, and electric properties of the body. There are a number of smart alec devices that think they know how much body fat is on you from the electric properties of your body. But I would not call this a body fat measurement. This an electric current measurement that is being used for an almost wild guess estimate. Maybe I missed a few more measurement opportunities, but the point is, there are lots of things we can measure in a lab compared to what we can measure at home.

Because lab equipment is so expensive, most people do not have access to it. Because they have no access to it, even those who can study how that equipment works have only a superficial knowledge of the meaning of those measurements. Even those who have access to it who we consider experts are still at the level of a dark age scholar compared to what it could be if those measurements were affordable enough to be done by the general public in their own homes. There is little motivation for the general public to learn what that equipment can do and how to read the results. Thus we have the same vicious cycle of ignorance. On a different level than in the middle ages, but still the same pattern.

The vicious cycle of ignorance was broken by the invention of the printing press. All of a sudden your average Joe had a reason to learn to read! It is starting to happen a bit in the way we understand how our body works, but there are obstacles. I believe we would see a lot more affordable scientific equipment if the public was more interested in practicing science than in watching a TV show about science. But a TV show about science is about as scientific as we get in our pursuit, for most people that is a pinnacle of their mind training for the day. If we could make it the very low point instead of the very high point, eliminating the mind-numbing, aptitude decreasing, and time wasting entertainment from the lower spectrum we might see more sub-2:10 marathoners among with many other positive developments from this change. If, only if. If mushrooms grew in a mouth, it would not be a mouth, it would be a garden!

P.M. 1.07 with Julia in 11:05.

Five Fingers - 812.65 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.75
From haynes on Mon, Jul 28, 2008 at 18:52:42

Interesting post. I don't have much to add. But how many miles are you planning on putting into those five fingers? I guess that the rubber doesn't wear down the same way that most shoes' foam parts do. They seem a little risky at least for a high mileage runner like you. Stress fractures take 6 months to heal.

From luzylew on Tue, Jul 29, 2008 at 11:45:28

Sorry I couldn't run with you guys on Monday. It looked like a good running party. Everyone recovering from the Marathon and such. I hope the calf is healing. It's not a stress fracture is it (per Haynes's comment)? I hope not.

From Sasha Pachev on Tue, Jul 29, 2008 at 13:38:58

Luz - no, it is basically a taper Charlie horse problem. Similar to what Logan experienced during the Ogden marathon, except not so drastic. I woke up with a tight calf a couple of days before the race, and it never fully healed before I started. Today it was still a bit tended but good enough to run 6:00 pace to pace Michelle. It has been getting better ever since Josse scraped it.

Haynes - my goal for Five Fingers is to see if they will still be runnable by 5000 miles. I have been taking my shoes routinely to at least 2000 miles in the last 23 years. One time I took a pair to 5600 and was upset because I had to replace them. I thought, this is not some Soviet made piece of junk, those are good American shoes. I've only had them for a couple of years, why is there such a huge hole in the sole?

Never had a stress fracture or any other injury that would make it impossible to run for more than 3 days the entire time. I documented my life time injury history at,465.0.html

From haynes on Tue, Jul 29, 2008 at 14:26:29

Well, if stress fractures aren't a problem, the vibram rubber used in five fingers is about the toughest stuff I know of. I just worry that the non-vibram material which I think includes elastic might break down especially if exposed to heat. Do you wear socks with the five fingers? If so are they socks with individual toes? And what surfaces do you run on? Is it mostly pavement or do you get a fair amount of dirt? I am impressed that you get 2k miles out of shoes regularly. When I don't turn them over on purpose they tend to get holes around 1000 miles. What kind do you buy?

From Sasha Pachev on Tue, Jul 29, 2008 at 18:46:39

Haynes: I wear no socks, run on asphalt, and use the classic version of Five Fingers.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Ran with Jeff, Michelle, and Josse. Jeff paced Josse, while I paced Michelle through a 3x2 mile workout with 200 meter recoveries. We ran them on the trail alternating directions starting at the start of the 5 mile tempo. The times were 12:00.7, 12:01.4, and 11:51.2. Michelle wore the HRM while I wore the watch so I could see how hard she was working in terms of cardio. She was not working at all according to the HRM. Most of the time her HR hovered around 174-175. It would get there in the first 5 minutes of the interval and then just stay there or even drop a bit. But she struggled maintaining the pace. I challenged her to get her HR to 190 in the last mile of the last interval. She tried, was able to hit 177 briefly, then lost it back to 174. Then in the last quarter (1:22) she was able to bring it to 180, but she could not hold it there. Last mile was 5:53. I told Michelle she needed to remove stress out of her life and get more sleep.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 9:04, 2 with Benjamin in 14:58. Jenny joined for 1.5 in 11:30.

Five Fingers - 826.78 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 7.25Nap Time: 1.00Total Sleep Time: 8.25
From Maria on Wed, Jul 30, 2008 at 14:50:25

Are you sure Michelle did 2x3 miles? Because the times you listed are a bit too fast, even for you and Michelle :). I'm guessing it was either 3x2 miles, or 3x3K.

From Sasha Pachev on Wed, Jul 30, 2008 at 14:52:41

Maria - it is a typo. The workout was 3x2 miles.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Ran with James, Jeff, and Matt at different times. Total of 10.27. James, Jeff, and I started together and warmed up for 1.38. Then I paced James through 6:00 pace until failure test. He made it to the mile in 5:56 with HR reaching 199. After that he suffered through another quarter in 1:36. His HR dropped to 197. I challenged him to bring it over 200, but he could not. He said the limit was not being able to get enough air. Looks like a cardio weakness, probably maturation related. Breanna had a similar problem about a year ago, and eventually grew out of it.

Then ran with Jeff the rest of the way after jogging back to him. Of all things the subject of our conversation drifted to microwave safety. I recalled a time when I was messing around with a microwave trying to crash its computer. So I was pressing lots of buttons randomly. Eventually the microwave responded with a message that said : Child. Jeff recalled a story about how he and his brother fried oats in a microwave. His younger brother (2 at the time) put in his oats into the microwave and tried to cook them. He was pressing all kinds of buttons randomly. Then Jeff (5 at the time) came and said, no this is not how you do it - Mom told us pres 1,3,0,Start. So he did that, except there was a number on it earlier from his brother's messing around. So the oats cooked for quite a while and caught on fire.

Ran into Matt and ran with him some as well.

A.M-2 Took VanGoGo to Computune to check out the anti-lock break light on problem and ran back with Benjamin and Jenny - 2.25 in 19:31.

P.M. 1 mile with Julia in 8:57. She earned the Saturday lunch out with Daddy prize. The standards are 9:00 for 1 mile for Julia, 1.5 in 12:00 for Jenny, and 0.5 in 3:10 for Benjamin. Benjamin has a shorter distance because he normally runs 1.5 with Jenny - I decided to make him do that to keep him from speeding on his daily runs.

It did take a trick to get Julia to do it, though. I pulled ahead shortly before the turnaround and said - Julia, if you are behind at the turnaround, we are going past it until you catch me. This got her to pick up the pace and hit the half mark in 4:35. After that it still took some work to convince her that she was capable of getting the standard with some reasonable effort, but it was not exceptionally hard.

Five Fingers - 837.05 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 0.50Total Sleep Time: 8.25
From Runnman on Wed, Jul 30, 2008 at 19:54:29

Sasha, I have a calorie question for you. As I do some running on the treadmill I notice the estimated calories burned. The monitor says I burn about 115 calories per mile. If that is correct I will be burning just over 3000 calories during the marathon. How many of those calories do you think need to be restored DURING the race? Gel packets only contain about 100 calories each.


From Sasha Pachev on Thu, Jul 31, 2008 at 11:30:27


I don't know and I honestly don't care. Fuel is important, but I do not know of anyone who has run a better marathon by counting calories. Just eat normal healthy amounts before the race as you taper, get good sleep, avoid stress, and during the race fuel according to the patterns that have been successful in your training, and you'll be fine.

From Jon on Thu, Jul 31, 2008 at 14:34:25

Ken- lots of running guides say studies have shown that your body has enough stores to get you through about 20 miles without additional fuel (depending on diet/carbo load). So you would need about 600-700 additional calories, either through sports drinks or gu's. I find that 2 gu's and taking gatorade at the aid stations is enough. Some people do more gus, some do none, some only drink water. Like Sasha said, it is an individual thing, but this should give you an idea of what you need.

From MichelleL on Thu, Jul 31, 2008 at 15:03:38

What does lunch out with Daddy mean in the Pachev family? You get the privilege of running a noon run with Daddy? Or you get to walk to the park and eat your raw oats and dates there instead of at home? Or did you take her to an all you can eat pizza buffet (my kids favorite place to go)?

From Sasha Pachev on Thu, Jul 31, 2008 at 15:21:08

Michelle: Lunch with Daddy = a sandwich at Great Harvest + a smoothie at Jamba Juice.

Ken: To throw a curve to the calorie scientists. Mike Kirk beat me in Ogden 2006 coming from behind and running stronger in the last 3 miles. I did OK, but he did better. After the race he was clean - no Gatorade spill. Somebody asked, he said he took nothing except water the entire race! He was not loafing, either, racing at a speed that very closely approached his 5 K performances around that time ADJUSTED FOR THE COURSE PROFILE. Where did his calories come from?

From MichelleL on Thu, Jul 31, 2008 at 15:25:59

Oh, that sounds so good. I consider myself chastised for my snideness. But I could appeal to your frugality: Do you know that a slice of bread at Great Harvest is 50 cents if you don't buy anything, and a jamba juice and a slice of bread have comprised many breakfasts and lunches over the years. The cost of a Jamba Juice has gone up, but the 50c slice hasn't had any food inflation yet.

From Jon on Thu, Jul 31, 2008 at 15:48:51

Sasha- there are certainly exceptions and some people can do with just water, like Mike. But 500 or so calories of gu, gatorade, or bananas is helpful for many people.,7120,s6-238-244--12522-0,00.html

You burn more per hour in a marathon than an ultra (running faster) but the calorie absorption would be about the same- ~260 calories/hour.

Sasha, glad to see you like Jamba Juice. I often get Jamba cravings during my long runs- I went there and got a large after my long run last Saturday. Very yummy.

Michelle- your snideness made me laugh.

Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. 10 with Jeff in 1:19:24. Benjamin rode his bike for 2 miles, then ran a warmup, then we did 6:00 pace until failure, which came at the quarter (1:29). Then he jogged 400, then tried 0.5 under 3:10, went through the quarter in 1:37, was losing it, and eased off to a jog. Still ran 0.5 in 3:30, and then we jogged back to his bike. Then we took him home, and ran 4 more miles. Ran 0.5 in 2:29 to feel the 5 K pace for the Minuteman 5 K this Saturday.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 10:48, 1.5 with Jenny in 13:15, and one more mile with no running kids in 6:40. Pushed Jacob the entire time. 

Five Fingers - 850.55 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.75
From Katie on Thu, Jul 31, 2008 at 15:10:36

Yet another downhill race?

From Sasha Pachev on Thu, Jul 31, 2008 at 15:13:30

No, it is a loop course with some hills. Exact same course as Draper Days. Pretty much exact same competition to establish the curve if it is hot/windy. So this gives me a chance to measure the effects of the marathon on my body in addition to earning circuit points.

From katie on Thu, Jul 31, 2008 at 16:22:17

okay. cool. couldn't find an elevation profile and i'm beginning to feel suspect about races in your region.

this spring i ran a pr 5k only 6 days after a marathon. mind you, i mostly jogged the 26.2, so that may be a difference, but it seemed to me the 5k required a different system and with the fresh memory of running of 26.2 feeling lousy, 3.1mi fast felt super fun and easy, like a treat.

not the same for everybody though. high mileage does = speedier recovery though. i suppose not too many runners would/could even attempt it.


Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. 10 miles in 1:18:49. Jeff ran with me all the way. Daniel came to borrow the bike, and rode with us for a little bit to test the tire before taking off. Benjamin rode with us to a nice part of the trail, then ran 2 miles in 15:28 with 0.5625 in 3:32 (this was supposed to be 0.5, but we missed the mark and went 1/16 of a mile further). About 0.6 into the run we found Matt and he joined us.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 9:57, 1.5 with Jenny in 13:13, and 1 more with no running kids in 8:02. Pushed the double stroller, first with Jacob and Joseph, then traded Jacob for Julia. Benjamin rode along on his bike during Julia's and Jenny's runs. Jenny almost got bit by a German shepherd that got out of the gate and was roaming the street attacking the passers-by. It sniffed her but then got scared of something and ran away. 

Five Fingers - 864.05 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 7.75Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.75
Race: Minuteman 5 K (3.107 Miles) 00:17:07, Place overall: 15
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Minuteman 5 K 17:07, 15h place. Same course as the new Draper Days.

Warmed up with Seth and Jeff. At the start was not feeling super-energetic. Part of the problem was warm weather, but only a part. I could blame it on the post-marathon fatigue, but there was not that much of it. Maybe the combination of reduced mileage, the marathon itself, and the tight calf issue brought on the slump. Something was not right, I suppose we will find out if this is just a post marathon slump or something more serious.

First mile was OK, 5:04. 2 seconds slower than Draper Days. I brought the HRM this time. HR climbed up to 168. I was running with Dennis at this point with a whole bunch of guys led by Teren ahead of us. And I knew they were not coming back. I did not feel like I was breathing too hard, but legs started feeling a bit shaky.

On the second mile the legs started to give out, and I backed off. HR dropped to 165-166. Neal Gassmann passed me. I tried to latch on, and was able too, HR climbed to 168, but then the legs started feeling too weak to hold the pace, and I backed off. Danny Oliva passed me, again the same story as with Neal - was able to follow a bit, then legs feel weak, cannot do it. 9:49 at 3 K, 10:33 at 2 miles, 14 seconds slower than Draper Days.

4 K 13:23, now 25 seconds slower than Draper Days. Not good. HR hovers around 166-168. Managed to push it to 172 on the hill. Steve Ashbaker passed me shortly after the hill. Made it to the finish in 17:06.3 on my watch, 17:07 officially. 39 seconds slower than Draper Days!

Jeff ran great - third place with 15:31 in that company, only 17 seconds behind Teren. Seth was second with 15:30 (officially, mistimed, though, his time should have been 15:27), Teren won with 15:14. Alexander Tomas was fourth with 15:33. Some other times that I remember:

Dennis 16:01, Josh Steffen 16:16, Neal Gassmann 16:20, Augustus Grey 16:21, Thatcher 16:48, Steve