Marginal Gains


Due to competing at a high level in my chosen sport, I am always searching for methods to improve my performance in fitness and exercise.

I like to call these ‘marginal gains’ a phrase that was coined by British cycling’s chief of performance, Dave Brailsford.

This is the baldy genius who has played a huge role in British cyclists winning more gold than the Bank of England has in houses. Creating stars like Bradley Wiggins and Chris Hoy in the process.

Marginal gains have a very simplistic meaning.

Making multiple small and incremental action/changes that all add up and cause a better end result.

Although this is a theory designed for high performance athletes I feel it actually has even better crossover results for the general public.

Athletes tend to already be pretty structured and stringent with their routine as that is their occupation meaning they have less marginal gains to improve on.

People living normal lives with normal jobs and families usually have more areas of their lives where they can make gains from.

Every habit you have, good or bad is the result of many small decisions you make daily.

The beauty about these changes is they should be smaller and not be drastic enough to cause you too many problems or make you feel like they are hard to maintain.

The aim is just to make 10 or more of these.

At this point I know you are wondering what are examples of these marginal gains that you speak of?

These will vary depending on your lifestyle but here are some examples,

Going to sleep one hour earlier.

Instead of drinking Friday and Saturday every week, cut this down to one day a week.

Have one less bar of chocolate a day.

Jog or walk 20-30 minutes 3 times a week.

Only order take way food once a fortnight.

Switch to diluting juice over soda.

The list could go really go on!

The addition of decisions like these plus similar choices can go a long way to help with weight loss and exercise.

Too often we are looking for that huge epiphany moment to stimulate change in our lives.

What we forget is the huge value of making the right decision on a regular basis.

You may not notice and see the results of these small improvements at first but long term they will prove to be very powerful.

Some say even more powerful than sporadic big changes, which I agree with.

Getting 1% better at many aspects of your life can help yield the results you desire.

Keeping adding up that 1% and before you know it that percentage is looking pretty dam high and you have made a huge difference.

What changes could you make to your life?

What 1% improvements are you willing to make in your life?

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