Injury meant he didn't play in the final stages of last season's inaugural domestic Super Rugby competition, but he had been involved throughout this season's campaign.
Barrett said the last 12 months had been challenging for him, as he missed much of last year's Aotearoa competition.
"To be in this position to run out on Saturday is like Christmas," he said.
He said the side had benefited from breaking their bye week routine and training on Saturday. That allowed them to come in ready on Monday, and they had been on for the game since then.
Barrett said he didn't think one side in the competition was more physical than another. But, with every week of the competition, points were on the line, as were final places. As a result, play had been at an intensity throughout that took a toll on bodies.
"On Saturday, finals week, it's going to be at another level, so that's what we're preparing for mentally.
"They're skilful players, a physical team and confrontational," he said of the Chiefs.
While the physical demands of the home season had been high, Barrett said with the intensity of play and the amount of rugby he had played during the competition, it was important to use recovery time well.
It wasn't a case of being at his best on a Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday before a game, it was about turning up on Saturday with body and mind in a state where you could perform at your optimum, he said.
"That's what this competition demands and what we try for," he said.