How Champions Fall: The Importance of Daily Habits

Competitive sports are constantly evolving. Today's champions will eventually fall, and there are always motivated athletes training hard to become the next world champion. But what separates the winners from the losers? Often, it's their daily habits.

The Slippery Slope of Comfort

Getting too comfortable can be dangerous. If you miss a few practices, lose your momentum, and slip just a bit, you may never get it back. We've seen it time and time again as champions slip and get taken out. Maybe it was just their time to go, but a lot of their success or failure rides on their daily habits.

The Distractions of Fame and Fortune

Money, fame, exposure, appearances, sponsors, fans, and travel are just a few of the many distractions that can throw an athlete off course. If no one is there to guide the ship and keep athletes accountable, it's easy to lose focus. And at a high level of competition, the difference between losing and winning is often just a small margin.

The Importance of Variation in Training

Perhaps your timing slipped, or your quick first step is a fraction slower. Maybe your reaction time is a hair off, or mentally you lost your mojo. It could be that injuries have added up and forced you out of the loop. Whatever the cause, the key to staying on top is to keep pushing yourself, to vary your training, and to never let yourself become too comfortable.

What daily habits do you believe are essential for staying competitive and on top of your game? Leave your response in the comment section below.


  1. Ericsson, K. Anders, et al. "The role of deliberate practice in the acquisition of expert performance." Psychological review 100.3 (1993): 363.
  2. Flegal, Kathryn M., et al. "Prevalence of obesity and trends in the distribution of body mass index among US adults, 1999-2010." Jama 307.5 (2012): 491-497.
  3. Gladwell, Malcolm. Outliers: The story of success. Penguin UK, 2011.