I'm not sure if it was taking some time off of doing hard workouts, waiting until the temperature wasn't utterly oppressive, relaxing from my previous fixation on pacing with several days of running unplugged, or a combination of these, but I set an all time personal record this week. I hit a 3.12 mile run in 24:29, averaging 7:50 per mile.
The sub-25 minute 5k was a revised version of my goal to get a 5k distance run in under 30 minutes, but as I worked my speed up, I ratcheted down my goals to keep trying to get faster. This was, according to RunKeeper, my fastest pace for any run that I've logged with that account which beats out my previous best of 8:00 miles on a 2 mile run.
As is often the case, this comes back to my consistent point of listening to your body. I get too stubborn to do this sometimes and try to keep pushing myself into distances and paces that aren't working for me, but when I take a step back, think about my approach a little more, and factor in some of the feedback I'm getting from my body, I'm able to outdo my pace goals and set new PRs. It comes back to the old adage of how doing the same things and expecting different results is not effective.
Starting yesterday though, I'm in tapering mode to rest up for The Bear next Thursday. If I can even get down close to 8 minute miles for that hill climb, I'll be really stoked and hopefully be in contention for one of their local pottery prizes that go to roughly the top 10% of finishers for men and women. Honestly though, I'll be pretty amped just to get my finish time under an hour which would be an all time best for me in my sixth year running this race.