Steven Covey‘s 7th habit of highly effective people is called ‘sharpening the saw’. He states that in order to be – and more importantly – to keep ‘effective’, it is important to invest in yourself. At first, it may seem a good idea to spent all your hours on production (for a developer, that would be coding), leaving little time for social activities, physical exercise or studying. But as time goes by, your physique will not be able to keep up, you lag behind on technological level and friendships evaporate. All these effects will become very detrimental for your productivity at some point in time. And on the long run, your net productivity will actually be less than when you would have reserved time to sharpen the saw.
Enter me running on my new shoes. Aren’t they hideous? But they were cheap (on sale) and they feel so much better than my regular shoes. I hadn’t expected this much of a difference, but they truly absorb a lot of the impact that would otherwise end up in my knee joint.
I’ve picked up running again after my sister ran a marathon. Not that I ever expect to ever be able to do that but it reminded me how your head clears while running (all you can think about is panting and aching..) and the rush afterwards. And as a bonus, it sharpens the saw, keeping me fit for the next coding spree.
Possible TMI: I run 4km now in 28 minutes. This boils down to a pace of 7 minutes per km, which is not super fast, but fast enough for me. I use runkeeper to keep me informed of my progress during the run. This is really different from how it used to be (I timed my runs but since I always took another route I had no way of determining how fast I actually ran). Yet another example of how mobile devices are totally awesome.