Techstars: Day 9 (Marathon, not a sprint)

So my schedule for the week (Monday to Thursday) seems to be get up at 6, get ready for work, eat breakfast, FaceTime the family, leave the flat at 07:30, get into work for 08:00, do an 11 or 12 hour day with a small break for lunch, head back to the flats in the evening with the team, work on the business plan over dinner, debrief, blog, bed for midnight. Friday mornings are the same, but we bugger off back to Norwich in the afternoon so the plan is leave the office at 15:301 and debrief/blog on the train home.

Now that would be great if I was one of these people who only needed 4 hours sleep a night, or if I could go home and die at weekends; but I’m not and I can’t. I suffer if I don’t get my full 8 hours, and my weekends feature disturbed sleep thanks to my heavily pregnant wife who needs to get up several times in the night, plus early mornings courtesy of my young daughter who doesn’t understand the concept of a lie in.

The net result is that I’m pretty tired already and my body is starting to tell me that if I don’t slow down that it’s going to put me down. Yes, I could just knuckle under, quit my moaning and get on with it but I suspect eventually there is a big brick wall that I’d hit and I’d end up being useless to everyone.

So, day off. Sort of.

Mentor meetings in the morning, [extremely] long lunch with a very good friend of mine and colleague who was able to offer some very interesting advice and some possible introductions, back to the office to do a couple of hours work, out by 19:00 with the intention of going home and going pretty much straight to bed.

Didn’t quite manage that as Chris and I started talking about some issues that had been uncovered during the day and then started throwing around some ideas to fix these issues. Next thing you know the notepads are out and diagrams are being drawn. OK, so it’s not exactly high intensity work – and we did range over a number of topics while also cooking and eating dinner – but we still utterly failed in the task of go home, switch off, go to sleep2.

It’s very easy to get caught up in the mentality of working every available hour and pushing yourself as hard as you can. That’s great, but you also have to remember that it’s a marathon, not a sprint. There are no prizes for being the first to collapse in a crumpled heap before the finish line is even in sight.

Some of the Rainbird team playing table tennis

I’m not the only one in the team who decided that a little R&R wouldn’t go amiss – the table tennis table was broken out at the end of the day for a few games

1 Actually ended up being 16:00 last week, but close enough.

2 And it’s going to be midnight before I’m asleep again – tomorrow I really am going to have to make a concerted effort to get to sleep before 22:00.