Apprehension. Confidence. Fear. Excitement. Doubt. Mostly, doubt. Its all there in my head, its all running around, the course is zooming around my head in fast forward, over and over. Can't stop. Can't wait. Paralyzed. Ready to drop the hammer. Scared the hammer won't be found.
Its that feeling, on the line, when you are so nervous you can hardly breathe. Your heart hammers in your chest, the butterflies are practically in your throat. Poles are shaking, even planted in the snow. Your whole body is shaking, so nervous, so strung-out, any second now and you'll false start. Five ... beep, beep, beep, beeeeeep. Two strides into it and you've completely forgotten the butterflies of the start; your adrenaline is now working with you to make every stride as much as it can be. Hundredths of a second count, here, a tenth could separate 16th from 23rd. That feeling-- I live for that feeling.