As I was sitting here eating my morning oatmeal and listening to CBC Radio I realized how very relaxed I feel this morning. This reminded me of my much earlier racing days back in the mid-90s when I was so nervous on the morning of a race, I could barely eat anything. I remember Marc trying to convince me to just eat one bagel. Now, many years later, I feel much less stressed and anxious on race morning.
Yes of course I still have my neuroses on race day morning but they seem to appear in different ways…
On Saturday while Marc was trying to watch the hockey game, I insisted he review all the cycling gear I had spread out on the floor – was I missing anything? should I not take something? In fact I even listed off everything I was thinking of packing. Marc responded with “You have way too much stuff.” This sent a quiver of panic through my body – too much stuff? but what should I take out? In the end I crammed everything into my race bag… (except the Murphy and the full face helmet)
After the dust had settled on the “what to pack” dilemma, I then started to think about my pre-race warm-up. It has been two years since I’ve done a road race. I feel like I’ve never raced before… When it comes to cyclo-cross I know exactly what I’ll do on race day and how and when I’ll warm up for the race. But I really have no idea what to do for road races. So of course, Marc was peppered with more questions – how long should I warm up for? should I do openers? should I ride hard? easy? Finally Marc simply said “don’t worry about it. It’s a road race.”. Yikes – what does this mean?
Yes, so there is some nervous energy happening it is just manifesting itself differently than it did many years ago. I like to believe I’m less nervous now than when I was a young twenty-something – but honestly I’m not so sure. I’m guessing that I’ll chatter non-stop to Marc all the way to Calabogie and then try to make casual small talk on the start line as we wait for the gun to go off.
Yep, still nervous. Still excited. Still ready to race. All systems are go.