4 weeks ago comfortable : 9 min/mile pace as Today comfortable : 7:40min/mile pace
Ok, that was my lame attempt at an analogy! Sorry, I'm a math/science teacher!
Moral of the story and what I was trying to say is this: I think I have broken a new barrier with my running. The last week my runs have been getting markedly faster without me putting in too much greater effort. Then, after yesterday's great evening I just thought- "What is stopping me from doing this all the time?" Answer to self: NOTHING. Sooo, after a long day at both jobs, I was driving home in rush hour to my parents' house and pulled over into a random Walgreens, stripped off my skirt, popped on my running shorts and Garmin, and took off. Unfortunately, I somehow turned on my Ipod at 5:30am when I left my apartment, so it had no batteries. All the more reason to run faster!
I hit the road and felt FRESH. I could tell my pace was faster than my normal 'recovery/easy day' pace, but it didn't feel harder, it just felt like I was opening up my stride more and focusing more. I was in a new neighborhood (kind of sketchy actually) but I felt free and just went with the pace. My only stipulation was that if I started off fast, I was going to keep it up! No dying out at the end. First mile = 7:40, second mile = 7:20, but other than that, the rest of the miles were almost dead on 7:33-35 pace. Finished with a 7:33/mile average which is exactly 1 second per mile faster than my marathon PR pace (ha, that seems crazy right now!) So now I have a new 'comfortable.' Not that all the rest of my runs will be at that pace but I proved to myself that it's not really all that hard if I put my mind to it. And, running ipod-less and partner-less was something I never do and I loved it! Listened to the traffic and cars and smelled the smells on the road and let my mind wander. Good for the body and soul.
Then I proceded to battle the tail end of rush hour to get to the gym for some quick strength training, then home. No food at my parents' house so I ended up melting cheese on shredded carrots. Classy.
Question: I've mentioned this briefly, but lately I feel like my appetite and hunger cues are really off/low for me. Like I never get hungry. When I think about food, it sounds OK, but it doesn't occur to me to eat or something. This is rare for me, as a person who has always had a hearty appetite. Today, for example, I totally didn't eat lunch just because I was rushing between jobs and didn't even think about it! Suddenly, I was driving to the gym post-run and thought "what did I have for lunch?" Has anyone ever experienced this? It is so unnatural for me not to be ravenous, so I'm wondering if this is a common training thing, or something I can fix?
Ok, I'm off to bed early tonite. 4am + hour drive back to the bakery in the morn. Good times.