Peak Performance

Steve Magness, Brad Stulberg

Peak Performance



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A few common principles drive performance, regardless of the field or the task at hand. Whether someone is trying to qualify for the Olympics, break ground in mathematical theory, or craft an artistic masterpiece, many of the practices that lead to great success are the same. In Peak Performance, Brad Stulberg, former McKinsey and Company consultant, and journalist specializing in health and the performance science, teams up with Steve Magness, a performance scientist and coach to Olympic athletes, to demystify these practices and demonstrate how everyone can achieve their best.

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Analysis and key concepts


We live in a society that condemns us all to excel in absolutely everything we do, and makes us feel as though we are always being scrutinised


To achieve your goals without damaging your psycho-physical health, you must learn to appreciate the importance of rest


Some ideas for downtime: have a nap, go for a walk or meditate


Meditation helps us to feel more relaxed AND makes us more productive


Spend quality time on your goals by getting rid of your biggest distraction: your smartphone


To achieve your goals, you need to establish a routine that helps you maintain a healthy, balanced mind


Finding your why: understanding why you do something can get you through the tough times




Take-home message

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Many useful tips to:

  • Work towards your goals without being bogged down by stress.
  • Learn to stay calm in the various stressful situations that might normally get us riled up.
  • Help you realise that being successful doesn’t have to cost you your inner peace.

Steve Magness is an expert on performance and personal growth whose books have sold more than half a million copies. His first book, The Science of Running was published in 2014. Magness’ area of expertise is sport: he has been a consultant for professional sports teams, and has written articles for magazines such as Runner's World and Sports Illustrated. He currently lives in Houston, Texas with his wife Hillary.

Brad Stulberg writes about health and the science of human performance. He is a columnist with Outside Magazine and New York Magazine, and has also written for Forbes, NPR, The Los Angeles Times, Runner's World, and The Huffington Post. He is widely known for his ability to merge the latest science with compelling personal stories, offering readers practical insights that they can apply to their own lives. Previously, Stulberg worked as a consultant for McKinsey and Company, where he counselled some of the world's top executives on a broad range of issues. He is an avid athlete and outdoor enthusiast and lives in Northern California with his wife, Caitlin, and their two cats.

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