To anyone taking on any large goal – whether losing significant weight or competing in a race – it can seem like an overwhelming task to get from where you are to where you want to be.
But applying small changes and accumulating optimisations is where you can truly strike your own Olympic gold on your path to your goals.
HOW THE BRITISH CYCLING TEAM WON 10 MEDALS AT THE OLYMPICS
Ask Sir Dave Brailsford who lead the British cycling team to 10 gold medals at the 2008 Beijing Olympics. Prior to this, the Team was so bad that some bike companies even refused to sell to them.
Instead of trying to win new sponsors, Brailsford did things differently. He followed a business strategy called the “aggregation of marginal gains”.
Brailsford set out to improve every aspect of the team’s lives (training, sleep, nutrition and equipment) by 1% at a time. He and his team would focus on a 1% margin for improvement in everything they did and these aggregations would add up.
For example, he started with improving their seats to make them more comfortable. He hired surgeons to teach athletes about proper hand washing to avoid illnesses during competition. The team implemented precise food preparation procedures.
And all these 1% daily improvements lead the Team to win the 2008 Olympics.
AGGREGATING SMALL WINS WORKS
You don’t need a radical new diet. You don’t need a “detox”. You don’t need to start jogging five kilometres every morning. You just need to take one tiny step.
It is so easy to overestimate the importance of one defining moment and underestimate the value of making small improvements on a daily basis.
Too often, we believe that massive success requires massive action. We talk about success (and life in general) as an event. “I lost 20 kilos” or “I have completed my first race” are not stand-alone events. They are rather the sum of all our choices up until that point in time. Aggregating all the small marginal gains makes a difference.
We might not notice our 1 percent improvement right now, but it is far more meaningful, especially in the long run. Losing weight, participating in a competition or achieving any other goal don’t require earth-shattering changes in one day.
GET 37 TIMES BETTER IN ONE YEAR BY IMPROVING 1% EVERY DAY
If you calculate the difference a tiny improvement can make over time, you’ll be amazed. If you can get 1 percent better each day for one year, you’ll end up 37 times better by the time you’re done. Conversely, if you get 1 percent worse each day for one year, you’ll decline nearly down to zero.
If your diet is already solid, you can start by just doing 10 squats. Call it a day. Try for 11 squats – or 10 push-ups the next day. But don’t think about that yet: just move.
Maybe that’s your first small step: just do 10 squats and start tracking your food.
What’s your next 1% improvement in your life?
Maybe that’s booking a free No-Sweat Intro at Andfit and let our coaches know about your fitness journey.
After 365 days, if you improve by 1% each day, you’ll be over 30 TIMES more fit!