Justin, also Im not sure if you have ever seen a person do this but I think it would help you big time. If you get on www.scag.com
they explain in detail how to "stripe" a yard. This way of mowing is not only waaaaay faster than mowing in circles but looks a lot better than mowing in circles. you still wont be able to mow full speed doing it this way but I think you would see a big improvement.