"It's only befitting that I should leave this game just like I came in: beating a big bad monster who knocks out everyone and nobody can whup him..."
And when Norman Mailer saw fear in Ali's eyes he could hear Ali say to himself "you have to get it together, boy, you will get it together..."
So here's this French-speaking guy who, on kilometer 35, thinks of Ali, and says to himself (in English) "you have to get it together, boy, you will get it together..."
Yes, Steve, I can feel the weight (and lightlessness) of fear because I know how I will react when I step up to the start line. I know I will have done the work, I know I'm ready (that's all I can expect of myself) but I don't know if that beast will want me, I don't know how this race is going to behave with me. Will it hurt me? Will it stretch on and on and never let me get into a groove?
You guys have a whole lot more experience than I have (I just know how to stay 'fast' for a long time) and you can disect a race. You can trustingly expect everything, including how you will react given situation A, or situation B... Maybe it's like how I feel at the start line of a triathlon or on the starting block before a 200 meter breaststroke? However, standing at the start line of a marathon is as close as I can stand to the unknown. Except, I just know it will hurt. I also know I will never give up (not an option) no matter how hard it gets, and that worries me about me. Steve, I don't know how to explain this to you but I'm just getting scared (I always do before a marathon, but now I ask myself, will my hip take it or just break?).
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