Pain is temporary, failure lasts forever

Lean, agile living for the running mother of Peter

2007-09-02

Programmers, dogs and leashes

After reading an interesting and provocative blog on programmers, I went out on a run with my dog this morning. It was me wanting a dog. My husband, being grown up with dogs, was very skeptic.
One of my dreams was running with the dog. It looked really nice. What I didn't expect was the effort it would take to make me and Maximus running pals. And this morning, I realized many of the problems are similar to problems adapting to agile development methods like scrum.
First, I went for a not so agile method: running with the leash. But the problem was this destroyed all my happiness with running. I had to stop when Maximus stopped. Wait for him taking a leak, and so on. And it destroyed Maximus run as well: we both had to adopt all the time. There was no space for individual strives and ideas: we had to be fully synced all the time. If I'd continued in that path I had to make Maximus a very obedient dog, who just followed me on the run and then I would have had taken him on a separate walk afterwards.
Then, instead I dropped the leash. I can admit there were lots of yelling the first years: Maximus didn't know the rules for running sessions with mommy. But now, at last, we've both gotten it.
We both have the same goal: we're out for a 35 min run. We have two possible routes. We don't actually run together but we both take responsibility keeping up with the other. And when another dog appears, Maximus sits down and waits for me. Sometimes we use the leash and do something like "pair-programming", and that too has it nice moments. But Maximus and I are both free spirits. We like to do it together, but not tied together.

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