October 13, 2021
Less than 1% of the world's population has completed a 26.2-mile marathon run. Even fewer have completed an IRONMAN-distance triathlon, which adds a 2.4-mile swim and 112-mile bike ride on top of the run.
And only one person has run 101 of these triathlons in 101 consecutive days. Meet James "The Iron Cowboy" Lawrence.
In addition to his latest "Conquer 100" challenge, James has earned 2 world records for running the most IRONMAN triathlons completed in one year (30 and 50, respectively). And he knows exactly what it takes to achieve his most audacious goals.
Two weeks ago, a clean-shaven, well-rested James sat down with us at Playbook 2021. There, he shared his playbook for achieving the impossible. (Spoiler: his strategies work in business, life, and anywhere else you set goals).
Here's what we took away from the conversation:
OUT OF STOCK
The global supply chain just can't catch a break. First, COVID forced factories to shut down for months. Then, the Evergiven got stuck in the Suez Canal. And now, China's energy crisis is wreaking new havoc.
Because of this, 60+ major Chinese manufacturers are either shutting down or curtailing production because they can’t power their plants. Meaning, some products (including many holiday essentials) will be in short supply this season.
👉 See the full list. (Don't worry - toilet paper isn't on the list this year. 😉)
A BIG BILL
Outdoor dining helped many restaurants weather the pandemic last winter.
Restaurant owners worldwide set up impromptu sidewalk seating. Many of which featured space heaters, tailgating tents, and cheap patio furniture. And with people cooped up, it was a hit among diners - even in near-freezing temperatures.
But these haphazard arrangements left staff members scrambling to change propane tanks (sometimes 10+ times a night), customers complaining they were cold, and structures destroyed by nearby traffic.
At the time, these related headaches seemed worth it. For areas with indoor dining restrictions, this kept doors open and tables filled. For areas with indoor dining, this nearly doubled seating capacity in turbulent times.
Since then, many cities have lifted indoor dining restrictions for proof of vaccination and continued contact tracing. But 80% of diners said they now favor permanent outdoor eating options, even with winter on the way. But this widespread approval comes with high expectations.
"Just because you're outside doesn't mean you need to be sitting in a plastic chair," one New York-based diner told the WSJ.
Because of this, many restaurants are doubling down on their outdoor dining experience with:
Outdoor dining options that cost a few hundred dollars to throw together last year cost several thousand to upgrade. And with many independent restaurants already operating on a thin margin, it might not be worth eating the investment.
Even if a restaurant owner can afford the bill, it's still a risk given supply chain shortages, staffing struggles, and the delta variant in full swing. Not to mention outdoor dining permits that are difficult to get, depending on your location.
Luckily, affording these added costs is no longer a "make or break" business decision. For most eateries, upgrading their outdoor experience will offer an added luxury for patrons rather than be a necessity to get people in the door.