Want to make every workout better? Use the Spare Change Principle.

I ran 1,000 miles last year.

How?

The short answer is I ran a lot.

The longer answer is I learned the “Spare Change Principle.”

I know what you’re thinking, “Did you carry pockets full of coins to throw at neighborhood dogs who broke through their meager electric fences because their desire to bite you was so overwhelming?”

That’s a good guess and my wife does still make fun of me for bringing a Masai Rungu with me on a long run for protection from packs of hyenas native to the Atlanta suburbs. You might know the Rungu as the wooden throwing club common to parts of Kenya. Obviously.

No, the Spare Change Principle was my willingness to do an extra .2 miles at the end of my runs.

If I was planning to run 3 miles, I ran 3.2. If I was supposed to run 5, I ran 5.2. If I was scheduled for 6, I ran 6.2.

I always had a little more in me and although it didn’t seem like much, it added up over the year.

I ran roughly 300 times last year. That .2 spare change turned into an extra 60 miles.

The principle worked so well that I started to in incorporate it into other parts of my life.

I don’t write for three hours. I write for 3.5 hours. I don’t send 5 thank you notes to 5 clients. I send 6 thank you notes to 6 clients. I don’t read 20 pages of a book, I read 24.

I spare change as many areas of my life as I can because it works.

Save a little more, write a little more, sell a little more, run a little more.

It turns out that over time, a little bit more is always a whole lot.

Jon

P.S. I love sharing life lessons like this. Don’t miss the next one I email to my friends. Sign up here.

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