To code, or not to code. Surviving your first week at Flatiron Bootcamp.
It was Monday morning, i had to wake up bright and early for my first day at the Flatiron school Software Engineering Bootcamp. it was 7am and i was already setting up my working area. Very excited i entered my first zoom call with my group mates and our coaches. It was very awesome to see that my teammates were so eager to start learning.
The first day was very intense, we had to set up our computers with all the right apps, Slack for communication with coaches and teammates, Zoom for our online lessons, Visual Studio as our text editor, and many more apps that are necessary.
Setting Up your work desk
one of my biggest mistakes was no having everything a needed to have a productive day. Little did i now that i was no where ready to embark on the bootcamp trip. I didn't have a proper desk, a proper chair and believe me, spending 10–12 hours daily on a bad chair and desk brings a big toll on your body. The first week my body was feeling awful, i had back pain, shoulder pain, neck pain, and more. So please don’t be like me, be prepared before starting the boot camp.
First and most important thing you need, a desk, its so important to have your table on a real and comfortable desk at the right height and with enough space for your computer, books, and anything you need. A chair is equally important and a perfect match to a good desk.
The other great addition i would recommend is a second screen, since you have you use many apps at the same time having two screens works like magic, its an upgrade that i would never change, it has made my coding much easier, faster and more fun. By the way, another great tip! look for the blue light filter on your computer and/or monitors, it helps so much! your eyes will thank you so much.
There are some optional gadgets that could help a lot but are not necessary, first a wireless keyboard and second a good pair of headphones
Its not necessary to buy expensive chairs, desks and monitors to have a good experience with them. i got practically the cheapest options i found on amazon.
Teamwork makes the dream work
Even thou you have coaches and instructors to help you understand they work only on office hours, and believe me you are going to be coding much after office hours. So if you get stuck and need help after hours you can always rely on your teammates, thats why you have slack. A quick question to your friends can go a long way.
Remember to eat and rest!
The first week for me was very intense and time consuming. I had to find better ways to manage my time. Normally you are given one hour for lunch, but i would recommend to have your meals ready from before lunch time because its not enough time to cook something from scratch, and also you need some time to rest and get prepared for the afternoon lessons. Since the first week fiasko i started to meal prep on Sunday's, i would cook my lunch for the entire week and that helped me a lot with my time management.
Resting is so important, since you are going to spend from 10 to 12 hours a day you HAVE to take breaks. Resting 5 minutes for every 40 minutes you work its a good practice, your brain and eyes need some rest to functions at max capacity.
Study! Study! Study!
The most important tip i can give is to study a lot. Even thou normally you have classes from 9am to 6pm, you still are going to need more time to keep up with the labs and homework. As it was said before, you are probable going to spend 10+ hours daily on the bootcamp. Just remember one thing, greats sacrifices brings great rewards . Peace out!