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Let's Go Exploring

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Appalachian Trail
Appalachian Trail
Flickr | Micki2567

"I know we had the best technology team I've ever worked with, but we didn't know if it would work. I was incredibly confident it would work. I was betting a lot on it. We had time. We had resources. We had done what we thought would work, and it still could have broken. Something could have happened."

-- Harper Reed, to Alexis Madrigal in The Atlantic

Any race has a slow, steady build in training that is followed by (for me, at least) a hyper-manic, neurotic freak-out session in the days leading up to the race. This week I've managed to distract myself during the day by being delving deeply into work. At home, though, it's been difficult.

I spent 25 minutes last night staring at my sock drawer and debating which socks to take to the race with me. I then spend 25 more minutes trying to find a single glove. At the time it did not seem strange to me, in any way.

There's nothing more that I can do at this point to do well tomorrow, aside from eating well tonight. Sure, I can leave a little votive out to each of the Gods of GI Health, Nasal Drainage, Sudafed, and Bull-Headed Stubbornness, but my performance tomorrow is completely out of my hands (yet still is totally up to me). At my absolute best, I think I could finish in ~9 hours. At worst, I won't make it off of the Appalachian Trail.

It's extremely liberating to have all of the legwork done and the table set. That's where the above quote comes into play, from the (extremely interesting) piece out today on President Obama's technology team: I've put together the best training I could manage (not the best I've ever done, due to injury), but I don't know if it'll work. I'm confident that I'll finish the race, and I'm betting on it. But it still could break; something could happen.

And that's fine. That's how it should be. Nothing challenging or interesting is ever a given.

Let's go exploring.