Join The 2%

Health and Performance: Simplified, Verified, Amplified.

Hello and welcome to 2% with Michael Easter.

I’m a New York Times Bestselling author, journalist, and professor who wrote the books The Comfort Crisis and Scarcity Brain.

My work explores how we can leverage modern science and evolutionary wisdom to perform better and live healthier and more meaningful lives.

My ideas have been adopted by NASA, MLB teams, NCAA D1 athletic programs, US Special Forces units, Fortune-500 companies, top tier universities, and millions of people worldwide. One of my books is even, I was told by an inmate at Rikers Island, “the most popular book in prison.” Oddly enough, the same book is also a favorite of many church groups.

Why I’m Building The 2%

The short answer

We need a place for people to find intelligent and practical health information—a useful middle-ground between the dumbed-down clickbait from major media outlets and the 17-hour-long podcasts from health influencers.

The longer answer

Well-researched, balanced, nuanced, practical, and exciting health and wellness journalism is needed now more than ever.

Information about health and wellness—from fitness and nutrition to mental health and longevity—is in a strange place.

Health coverage from major media focuses on clickbait about losing X pounds in Y days. Or another flawed study telling us to either rejoice or freak out because some food we eat daily is the fountain of youth or a one-way ticket to death and disease. Few journalists pick up the phone to speak to an expert anymore, much less travel to really get the story and its most helpful information.

Then we have online health influencers. And not just the ones on social media telling us everything is toxic and to please buy their supplement. Some of today’s biggest health voices are MDs and researchers at elite universities.

These people are well-meaning. But many go so far down the rabbit hole they can’t see out of it. They don’t account for critical perspectives from other scientific disciplines and approaches to living that have existed for thousands of years. It’s a lot of 75-step morning routines that will help you “optimize” and “hack” this and that. But life isn’t a laboratory. What looks good in a tightly controlled study rarely works as we think it will in the real world and often just sucks the soul out of living.

We need objective health information that is as broad as it is deep. It must come from groundbreaking new science, yes. But it must also view topics from multiple lenses and leverage wisdom from real conversations with experts and cultures across disciplines. And that information must be human. It must account for tradeoffs and different perspectives and work for real people in the real world—changing them for the better.

Enter The 2%

We cover mental and physical health and performance, nutrition, fitness, mindset, toughness, the value of challenge and adventure, and so much more.

Reclaiming our health starts with 2%. Our name comes from a study that changed my thinking about living well in the modern world.

2: That’s the percentage of people who take the stairs when they also have the option of taking an escalator.

The more I researched, the more I realized the figure applies far beyond the staircase. It turns out that only 2% of people will do the harder thing that has a greater long-term reward if there’s an easier option. This applies to how we exercise, eat, work, create, and spend our time and attention.

But becoming a 2-Percenter, decades of research across fields shows, is the most powerful thing we can do for our performance, health, and wellbeing.

Why Substack?

I’ve spent the last 15 years traveling, reporting, and researching to understand health and performance.

I’ve embedded myself in war zones, remote reaches of the Arctic, outposts in the Bolivian jungle, cutting edge labs around the world, and more. I’ve interviewed experts ranging from Nobelists to the world’s best athletes. I’ve pored over tens of thousands of studies and books.

The goal is and always has been to find the best practical ideas and advice you can leverage to improve your life today and for years to come.

But the problem I’ve always faced is that most of my ideas—sometimes the best ones—are never released. They sit in a big file.

These ideas may not perfectly fit the theme of my books. Or I may not have wanted to publish them in a traditional media outlet, for fear that they’d get oversimplified and rendered wrong and useless to you.

Substack solves this problem.

This publication will allow me to release the most fascinating, powerful, and actionable information and ideas I find. In real time.

How to Join The 2%

I couldn’t dedicate myself to releasing the information I think is most valuable in real time without support. I’m giving up other projects to take on this project, but I’m elated to do so. That’s because I think this project can be the most powerful way to reach and help more people. It will be fun and informative for us all.

So I’ll be offering three versions of this publication: a free, paid, and Founders version. Here’s what each gets you.

Unpaid Subscription to The 2%

A great but limited place to start

  • One of three+ 2% posts a week

  • Access to the last three weeks of free posts.

Paid Subscription to The 2%

Life-enhancing information that saves you far more time and money than its cost

  • Every 2% post and access to the full archive of 2% posts (three posts each week—all the good info, all the time).

  • Audio versions of every 2% post (great for people who like to consume information while driving, rucking, exercising, cooking, cleaning, etc).

  • Answers to your personal questions (killer Q&A posts … AMA).

  • Exclusive access to our HAVE FUN, DON’T DIE series (the most essential information for living better and longer today).

  • Free workouts (I use these to prepare for different adventures and live better).

  • Free, easy, and effective nutrition and health approaches (the no-BS stuff that actually works).

Cost: $6.87/month or $68.70/year

(Again: You’ll save more time and money in the long run than the cost.)

Founding Member of The 2%

For those who are all-in on living well

  • Everything in the “Paid” subscription above

  • Free 2% Dad Hat (the perfect workout hat … $30 value)

  • Free access to any e-books and paid training programs I release (The upcoming rucking book; full HAVE FUN, DON’T DIE training plan; etc … $200+ value)

Cost: $247/year

Welcome to the 2% Community. Now let’s do big things.

Subscribe to 2% with Michael Easter

Health and Performance: Simplified, Verified, Amplified.


Michael Easter 

Author of The Comfort Crisis and Scarcity Brain. Professor. Explorer of words, ideas, places, and edges.