I had some kind of breakthrough tonight. I went out for a light 20 minute run, and after just a few minutes I felt completely warmed up. Naturally my stride started lengthening, and I could feel myself speeding up. It was as if someone was pulling me forward. The feeling was too powerful to brush off, so I went with it.
I couldn't have gone more than three miles, but the speed, the speed! Rather than pushing off the pavement I felt like I was gliding over it, sailing. And my lungs felt completely unencumbered, as opposed to the usual asthmatic tightness that always used to creep up during speed work.
The last time I felt like this was in high school, when I would be in the middle of a 5k and I had separated from the other runners; the feeling of being warmed up enough to be loose, but not tired enough that fatigue had set in. And going fast.
I can't imagine what could have causes such a spectacular jump in my performance. My running has been good lately, consistent, some hill work for strength. The only conclusion I can come to is that my body finally absorbed some adaptation that had long been in the works. I started running in very thin shoes about six months back, and it required a complete retooling of my running form to land on the forefoot. Until now it always felt like I was slightly straining the tissue in my lower legs to do so, but not tonight. My legs finally figured out how to run this way.
Normally running is relaxing, tranquil. But tonight I'm so excited I can barely sit still. Good things are coming.