After driving through 6 states yesterday - Kansas, Missouri, Illinois (very briefly I think), Arkansas, Tennessee - I am finally in Mississippi. Not that I knew I was actually going to Mississippi - guess I should brush up on geography a little more, but last time I raced Memphis in May it was in Tennessee. No the border has not moved but it is a new race venue. Set in a casino resort it has to be one of the most convenient race venues: right now I can look out my hotel window to the swim start and swim course; walk out the front door to transition and finish line and the car is parked less than 50m away again. Wish all races were set up this easily!! I am looking forward to getting out there tomorrow - it has been such a long time since I have raced. In fact a long time since I have been able to race. There is also a significant difference in my feelings going in to tomorrow: normally when I go into a race I feel the pressure. I always place huge expectations on myself based on what I know I am capable of and have proved in training. This time though I have not done the training, I have not done the work and I know I am a long way from fit. So there are absolutely no expectations from me. Quite honestly I will be happy to be out there and I will also be happy to get through it (no joking that 10km in particular is going to feel like a LONG way!!). Three weeks of training after such a long period of forced inactivity is certainly not enough to be competitive - but I am going to enjoy it and fingers crossed my body will remember some of the years of banked training. Still I think pacing will be the name of the game tomorrow!
Best of luck to everyone out there racing tomorrow! And thanks for all the well wishes and hellos I have got in the last day or so - the people in this sport are what makes the sport.