Breaking the Wall

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Orem,UT,United States

Member Since:

Jan 27, 1986



Goal Type:

Olympic Trials Qualifier

Running Accomplishments:

Best marathon: 2:23:57 (2007, St. George). Won the Top of Utah Marathon twice (2003,2004). Won the USATF LDR circuit in Utah in 2006.

Draper Days 5 K 15:37 (2004)

Did not know this until June 2012, but it turned out that I've been running with spina bifida occulta in L-4 vertebra my entire life, which explains the odd looking form, struggles with the top end speed, and the poor running economy (cannot break 16:00 in 5 K without pushing the VO2 max past 75).  


Short-Term Running Goals:

Qualify for the US Olympic Trials. With the standard of 2:19 on courses with the elevation drop not exceeding 450 feet this is impossible unless I find an uncanny way to compensate for the L-4 defect with my muscles. But I believe in miracles.

Long-Term Running Goals:

2:08 in the marathon. Become a world-class marathoner. This is impossible unless I find a way to fill the hole in L-4 and make it act healthy either by growing the bone or by inserting something artificial that is as good as the bone without breaking anything important around it. Science does not know how to do that yet, so it will take a miracle. But I believe in miracles.


I was born in 1973. Grew up in Moscow, Russia. Started running in 1984 and so far have never missed more than 3 consecutive days. Joined the LDS Church in 1992, and came to Provo, Utah in 1993 to attend BYU. Served an LDS mission from 1994-96 in Salt Lake City, Utah. Got married soon after I got back. My wife Sarah and I are parents of eleven children: Benjamin, Jenny, Julia, Joseph, Jacob, William, Stephen, Matthew,  Mary,  Bella.  and Leigha. We home school our children.

I am a software engineer/computer programmer/hacker whatever you want to call it, and I am currently working for RedX. Aside from the Fast Running Blog, I have another project to create a device that is a good friend for a fast runner. I called it Fast Running Friend.

Favorite Quote:

...if we are to have faith like Enoch and Elijah we must believe what they believed, know what they knew, and live as they lived.

Elder Bruce R. McConkie


Favorite Blogs:

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Miles:This week: 0.00 Month: 0.00 Year: 1283.13
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
Camouflage Crocs 2 Miles: 75.56
Night Sleep Time: 0.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.00
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Day of rest. Went to church.

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

Fast Running Friend Workout - 2017-05-29 08:18:23
Workout Totals: Distance11.240Time1:30:20.60Pace8:02.26
Chad joined us today. 10+1 total. Did some pickups for 0.25. 84 with William, 75 with Jacob (Joseph was around 74). Usual distances for the kids.
Leg 1:Distance2.040Time17:19.80Pace8:29.71
With Stephen, William, and Chad.
Leg 2:Distance1.000Time7:34.40Pace7:34.40
With William and Chad.
Split 1:Distance0.750Time6:10.40Pace8:13.87
Split 2:Distance0.250Time1:24.00Pace5:36.00
Leg 3:Distance4.000Time31:25.40Pace7:51.35
With Joseph, Jacob, and Chad.
Split 1:Distance3.750Time30:09.70Pace8:02.59
Split 2:Distance0.250Time1:15.70Pace5:02.80
Leg 4:Distance3.000Time23:37.60Pace7:52.53
With Chad.
Split 1:Distance0.750Time5:59.90Pace7:59.87
Split 2:Distance0.750Time5:52.40Pace7:49.87
Split 3:Distance1.500Time11:45.30Pace7:50.20
Leg 5:Distance1.200Time10:23.40Pace8:39.50
Part with Matthew, part alone in the park.
Split 1:Distance0.680Time6:40.40Pace9:48.82
Split 2:Distance0.520Time3:43.00Pace7:08.85

Camouflage Crocs 2 Miles: 11.24
Night Sleep Time: 0.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.00
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Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Fast Running Friend Workout - 2017-05-30 07:27:19
Workout Totals: Distance13.944Time1:47:25.20Pace7:42.22
Ran 10 in the morning, Joseph, Jacob, Julia, and Jenny did 3, William 2, Stephen 1. Then went to the track meet in the evening. Myself, Jenny, Julia, Joseph, Jacob ran 3000. William and Stephen did the 800. It was very hot - around 90F. All of the 3000 runners struggled - some more than others.

Official times:


Myself 10:41.83
Joseph 11:10.71 - altitude PR
Jacob 11:22.66
Jenny 12:08.91 - altitude PR
Julia 13:18.04


William 2:54.36 PR - official as well as time trial
Stephen 3:23.19

I was not running it with super fresh legs having run 10 earlier in the morning, but I was fading a lot. Splits were 81,82,83,85,88, then last 1 K in 3:42, vs Joseph's 3:40. Some of it I can blame on the weather, but Joseph was able to hold the pace better than I did - 6:01 for the first 1600 vs 5:31 for me, and then he was 1 second faster than me over the last 1400. Jacob was 6:01 with Joseph at 1600 as well, he did slow down after that, but much less than I did. It did not feel like I was out of breath the same way as in the 3200 meter race two weeks ago but the legs just refused to move. So maybe it was the effects of the glycogen dump on Saturday.

William ran a great race splitting 84/90 - almost perfect. Stephen was not quite on top of things - never really got going - 1:39/1:44.

Of everybody I think I am most impressed by Joseph's race - negative split in 90F. Jenny also held things together quite well - I was not expecting her to run anywhere close to 12:00 at altitude and in the heat. Julia struggled, need to figure out how to help her.
Leg 1:Distance10.000Time1:13:42.40Pace7:22.24
Leg 2:Distance1.100Time8:41.60Pace7:54.18
Leg 3:Distance1.864Time13:17.90Pace7:08.06
3000 - ran myself, timed everybody else.
Split 1:Distance1.864Time10:41.50Pace5:44.15
My time.
Split 2:Distance0.000Time0:29.00Pace0:00.00
Split 3:Distance0.000Time0:12.00Pace0:00.00
Split 4:Distance0.000Time0:46.20Pace0:00.00
Split 5:Distance0.000Time1:09.20Pace0:00.00
Leg 4:Distance0.000Time3:23.00Pace0:00.00
800 - William and Stephen.
Split 1:Distance0.000Time2:54.20Pace0:00.00
Split 2:Distance0.000Time0:28.80Pace0:00.00
Leg 5:Distance0.460Time3:38.50Pace7:55.00
Leg 6:Distance0.520Time4:41.80Pace9:01.92
With Matthew.

Camouflage Crocs 2 Miles: 13.94
Night Sleep Time: 0.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.00
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Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Fast Running Friend Workout - 2017-05-31 08:15:25
Workout Totals: Distance11.440Time1:28:57.50Pace7:46.56
More or less usual day but decided to try an experiment. I realized that it is hard for me to get in traditional good quality workouts while properly training with the kids. So instead, I though, I could just spread all of the fast running that I would do in one day over several days. This might have its advantages as I can monitor the minor changes in diet and sleep, as well as the training itself but how I feel during my mini tempo or interval on a daily basis. I have tried this idea before with a decent result - 2:33:23 in UVM in 2011 (age 38), but then for some reason did not stick with it.

Some modifications to that routine should be that I should not feel obligated to do a mini-tempo if I am feeling strongly I need a break. And I should also not overanalyze the results as some days are just not good days either due to the weather or the fatigue.

In any case, I first ran with William, and Stephen, then dropped off Stephen and ran 1 more mile with William with the last quarter in 80. Then I did a 2 mile tempo on our hilly out-and-back neighborhood course in 11:38. The first 0.5 was uphill, then 180 turn and 1 mile downhill, and last 0.5 uphill. Do not remember the exact breakdown, but it was around 5:40 average for the downhill, and a little under 6:00 for the uphill.

Then I ran 4 with Joseph and Jacob with the last 0.25 in 73.4 (Joseph). Jacob finished in 75.5. This did not feel too hard even after the tempo. So there is still some kind of endurance problem - probably glycogen.

Usual distances for everybody.
Leg 1:Distance2.040Time17:58.70Pace8:48.77
With William and Stephen.
Leg 2:Distance1.000Time7:31.40Pace7:31.40
With William - last 0.25 fast.
Split 1:Distance0.750Time6:11.10Pace8:14.80
Split 2:Distance0.250Time1:20.30Pace5:21.20
Leg 3:Distance2.000Time11:38.10Pace5:49.05
Leg 4:Distance4.010Time31:57.80Pace7:58.25
With Joseph and Jacob - pickup in the last 0.25.
Split 1:Distance3.760Time30:42.50Pace8:10.03
Split 2:Distance0.250Time1:13.40Pace4:53.60
Split 3:Distance0.000Time0:01.90Pace0:00.00
Leg 5:Distance1.350Time10:55.50Pace8:05.56
With Julia - pickup in the last 0.25.
Split 1:Distance1.100Time9:15.50Pace8:25.00
Split 2:Distance0.250Time1:40.00Pace6:40.00
Leg 6:Distance1.040Time8:56.00Pace8:35.38
In the park, one lap with Matthew, one alone.
Split 1:Distance0.520Time4:58.00Pace9:33.08
Split 2:Distance0.520Time3:58.00Pace7:37.69

Camouflage Crocs 2 Miles: 11.44
Night Sleep Time: 0.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.00
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Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Fast Running Friend Workout - 2017-06-01 09:08:45
Workout Totals: Distance10.116Time1:17:08.20Pace7:37.51
Did 200 time trials on the track with the kids today. Joseph ran 31.7, Jacob 32.1, William 36.8, Stephen 42.6. Matthew set a record in 400 breaking 2:00 for the first time without holding the hand - 1:54.5. His splits were 24,28,32,30. He overcame the severe crash in the second half and maintained a decent pace. I did a total of a little over 10, more or less usual distances for the kids.
Leg 1:Distance0.248Time2:07.40Pace8:33.71
400 - with Matthew - first try.
Leg 2:Distance0.500Time4:49.90Pace9:39.80
Jogged a bit more to warm up.
Leg 3:Distance0.124Time0:32.50Pace4:22.10
Joseph and Jacob - 200.
Split 1:Distance0.124Time0:31.70Pace4:15.65
Split 2:Distance0.000Time0:00.80Pace0:00.00
Leg 4:Distance0.124Time0:36.80Pace4:56.77
William - 200.
Leg 5:Distance0.124Time0:42.60Pace5:43.55
Stephen - 200.
Leg 6:Distance0.248Time1:54.50Pace7:41.69
Matthew 400 - second try.
Leg 7:Distance0.124Time0:32.10Pace4:18.87
Joseph and Jacob - 200.
Leg 8:Distance0.124Time0:42.70Pace5:44.35
Stephen - 200, second try.
Leg 9:Distance1.000Time9:15.80Pace9:15.80
More distance on the track.
Leg 10:Distance1.000Time8:07.60Pace8:07.60
Do not remember who this was with, probably Joseph and Jacob.
Leg 11:Distance6.500Time47:46.30Pace7:20.97

Camouflage Crocs 2 Miles: 10.12
Night Sleep Time: 0.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.00
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Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Fast Running Friend Workout - 2017-06-02 08:16:22
Workout Totals: Distance12.115Time1:34:49.10Pace7:49.59
Did a track workout with Julia (Jacob helped a little bit) - 2000 in 8:34, then 1000 in 3:59, and 600 in 2:22. She was struggling today but completed the workout. Then ran a 2 mile tempo on the ward course (out and back, hills) in 11:32. Usual distances for everybody today.
Leg 1:Distance2.040Time17:37.60Pace8:38.43
With Stephen and William.
Leg 2:Distance1.000Time7:39.40Pace7:39.40
With William - I think.
Leg 3:Distance0.900Time7:49.50Pace8:41.67
To the track with Julia and Jacob.
Leg 4:Distance1.242Time8:34.10Pace6:53.93
2000 on the track with Julia and Jacob.
Leg 5:Distance0.000Time0:01.90Pace0:00.00
False start.
Leg 6:Distance0.622Time3:59.20Pace6:24.57
1000 on the track with Julia.
Leg 7:Distance0.124Time1:24.30Pace11:19.84
Leg 8:Distance0.373Time2:22.50Pace6:22.04
600 on the track with Julia.
Leg 9:Distance1.050Time9:44.80Pace9:16.95
Back to the house.
Leg 10:Distance0.500Time3:58.50Pace7:57.00
Jog to the start of the 2 mile tempo course.
Leg 11:Distance2.000Time11:32.50Pace5:46.25
2 mile tempo on the ward course .
Leg 12:Distance0.500Time4:10.80Pace8:21.60
Leg 13:Distance0.624Time4:59.40Pace7:59.81
To the park alone.
Leg 14:Distance0.520Time4:43.30Pace9:04.81
With Matthew at the park.
Leg 15:Distance0.620Time6:11.30Pace9:58.87
Back to the house with Matthew.

Camouflage Crocs 2 Miles: 12.12
Night Sleep Time: 0.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.00
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Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Fast Running Friend Workout - 2017-06-03 07:44:09
Workout Totals: Distance16.709Time2:13:35.90Pace7:59.74
Did 2x2 down the canyon today in the middle of 12, and then for the last repeat of sorts ran 1500 on the track in the USATF meet. It went better than I expected. I was hoping for about 11:20 for the two mile intervals, but was able to do 11:06/11:01. Then I was able to run 4:59.07 in the 1500. Our boys ran as well:

Joseph 5:08.67 official track PR, though he split faster in 1 mile time trial
Jacob 5:18.69
William 5:51.84 PR
Stephen 6:36.72 PR and much better quality than his 7:17 mile - this one is worth 7:08. Perfect splits too - 1:46,1:46,1:47, and 1:16 (1:42 pace) for the last 300.

Then we ran a cool-down with Evan Coon, a 13-year-old boy that outkicked me by a second in the last 100. Jayden Fitzgarrald won the heat with 4:53.
Leg 1:Distance4.030Time30:30.70Pace7:34.27
Leg 2:Distance2.000Time11:06.00Pace5:33.00
First interval.
Leg 3:Distance2.000Time16:00.60Pace8:00.30
Leg 4:Distance2.000Time11:01.50Pace5:30.75
Second interval.
Leg 5:Distance2.030Time15:35.50Pace7:40.84
Back to the house.
Leg 6:Distance0.298Time2:22.80Pace7:59.19
Warm-up for 1500.
Leg 7:Distance0.000Time6:38.50Pace0:00.00
Timed William and Stephen (a bit off).
Split 1:Distance0.000Time5:53.20Pace0:00.00
Split 2:Distance0.000Time0:45.30Pace0:00.00
Leg 8:Distance0.000Time5:18.90Pace0:00.00
Timed Joseph and Jacob - a bit off as well.
Split 1:Distance0.000Time5:09.60Pace0:00.00
Split 2:Distance0.000Time0:09.30Pace0:00.00
Leg 9:Distance0.931Time4:58.90Pace5:21.05
1500 race. Splits 76, 82, 80, and about the same pace to the finish.
Leg 10:Distance2.900Time25:20.50Pace8:44.31
Leg 11:Distance0.520Time4:42.00Pace9:02.31
With Matthew.

Camouflage Crocs 2 Miles: 16.71
Night Sleep Time: 0.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.00
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Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
Camouflage Crocs 2 Miles: 75.56
Night Sleep Time: 0.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.00
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