Hacking Life is after all, just travel hacking extended over a longer period of time. 


“What’s your best travel hacking story to date (where you scored a free upgrade, used miles or just got a bonus perk) OR Name 2 ways in which you’re going to become a savvy travel hacker in the next 6 months”


This is the weakest part of my traveling game. I see the term “travel hacking” and I think “that’s a way to try to make cutting coupons sound badass”.

Somewhere along the way I've developed an aversion to filing out forms and looking for deals ... I’ve dismissed it as "counting coppers" (Hooray for GOT references!).  I'd much rather be doing... ANYTHING else. Calculating how many air miles I can get if I pay for this with that card, or for that with this one makes me tune out really fast.

I know that it’s an important skill and I suppose I’m in need of a reframe here because I just haven’t been able to get excited about that aspect of travel. 

My secret traveling tool has been to piggy back on the research others have done. That sounds HORRIBLE when said out loud but it’s true! 

I seem to have friends who love doing this type of digging and if we're traveling together I do my best to provide value elsewhere. Praising them for their cleverness, ingenuity and ability to find us a great deal also seems to be appreciated. 

I have no idea where this aversion to deal hunting comes from. I know consciously that I could be traveling more and for less if I just followed a few key steps and yet...

Maybe it's a sense that It's too good to be true that people will give me something for "nothing". If I just fill out this form and get this card and sign up using this code... all of my dreams will come true. 

Likely it's my resistance to being led. I see signing up for these kinds of deals and discounts to be similar to jumping through hoops. I think that there's a deep dark part of me that remembers a past life as a circus tiger or something and those hoops they made me jump through were on fire! 

Regardless, it's this kind of work that I don't like, the small detailed kind of things that really make everything else function.

This is that skill I’ll be working on over the next 6 months... doing things the right way from the start. 

This website was built on the platform it’s been built on because Wordpress seemed too involved at the time and I wanted to launch something right away... honestly, I’ve switched blog formats twice in order to save myself a bit of struggle in the early stages. 

Really, Life Athletics is built on an area that I personally struggle with. I’ve put this all together in an attempt to train myself into this one good habit: practice and preparation. 

Malcolm Gladwell says that the key to becoming great at something is to practice for roughly 10,000 hours. I however have an internal reaction to hearing that that’s more Allen Iverson than I’m comfortable with now that I’m becoming consciously aware of it. 

In my first interview for Life Athletics Stu Turnbull talked about how practice made his success on the court possible. 
Putting in the advanced work made him not only capable of making that shot in those conditions but it made it probable. That's powerful. 

This is not: I think that I’ve seen doing advanced preparation almost like... cheating. As though it was an admission that I wasn’t very good and so I had sneak in extra work to compensate. Not that I don't put in work at the start of things but... I know I could do more.  As I typed that, some faint memory, of being satisfied as a child for understanding what others didn’t at school despite not doing the homework, popped up. 

Even then, however, it was not a sustainable system. I fell behind in school and frustrated my teachers by being the clever kid with potential who didn’t put in the work. 

Is this a stretch as a response to a question about travel hacking? Maybe but since I’m overlaying everything over the more general topic of “life”, I think it works. 

Now, I’m training for two races and an Ultimate Frisbee tournament, building a wordpress site with the help of a friend and focusing on doing things the right way. Hacking Life is after all, just travel hacking extended over a longer period of time.