The 80/20 Rule of Fitness

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Small things make big impact.

The 80/20 rule is a principle that holds true in many areas, and is:

Your 80% most significant results come from 20% of your actions.

The rule is often used in companies to see the 20% of people that make 80% of the difference; this helps determine layoffs if and when they need to happen.

This applies to your life and schedule as well.

Examine your workout activities. Examine your diet. What makes the most impact?

Add more of it.

What makes the least impact?

Reduce it.

Eat less sugar

A small amount of processed sugar can trigger your body to store more fat and crave more sugar.

However, a small amount of something like lemon juice or apple cider vinegar can increase the rate at which you burn the carbs you eat, so you burn more and absorb less into the body as fat.

Each of these shows a small change that can make a big difference – much more easily than the work it can take to radically modify your diet. Keep these changes often as good habits, and you’ll make great progress.

High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) raises your metabolic rate more effectively. This is, over the span of a week, a much more efficient way to burn calories over time.

In the short term, a long cardio session may be gratifying. But, if you want to work smart instead of hard, replace it for a shorter but focused HIIT session.

How to sleep more effectively

You don’t always need more. You just need better.

Sleep cycles occur in roughly 90-minute increments. You’re more likely to wake up tired if you wake during a REM phase, so plan to wake up at the end of a cycle. You’ll feel more refreshed and have more energy in the first hours of the day than if you hit snooze or drank more caffeine.

Naps can be incredibly restorative. If you’re able to nap mid-day (or even right after work), you’re much more likely to experience an energy boost than if you “forced” it through stimulants.

To learn more, here are some neat ways to make sleep more effective.

Cut out what holds you back

To practice cutting out the “filler” in your life, take one activity you spend lots of time in on a consistent basis.

List each major type of actions you do related to that activity, whether it takes 5 minutes or 3 hours.

Side by side, list the impacts each action take.

Reorder the list with the highest impacts on top.

Which actions on the bottom (lowest impact) can you cut out? Even if you are left with “80% impact,” you’ll likely have designed a way for you to achieve more in less time. Over the span of a month, you’ll be able to do more of this activity and multiply the impact you make with your time.

How do you feel?

Most people that practice this activity for the first time have an epiphany. There’s a wonderful realization that you can do much more with much less.

Whether you apply this solely to nutrition and exercise or more broadly to other areas of your life, the 80/20 rule is incredibly powerful.

Our workout plans are designed to take advantage of the 80/20 rule and help you use your body to make the maximum fitness impact as quickly as possible.

If you measure your progress before and after your 8fit plan, share your story! We love to celebrate the success of our users, and look forward to you obtaining extremely high value from this and other lessons.