I’m often on the hunt for affordable augmentation to the basics.  The pillars are: eat well, sleep, hydrate, exercise, mobilize and gratitude.  Arguably, if you are doing these things regularly, and have no barriers to these basics, why integrate the hacks? Hopefully, they provide mission critical support and allow one to discover and stack the benefits along with “the basics”.

Most of the weird shit I get into is also about having fun, testing and exploration. For example, the Optio 2+ was $25. A purchase that seemed more reasonable than taping one’s mouth shut. Other hacks can send you climbing the financial ladder and may just be out of reach. I would love to try the chiliPAD, for example. But, with a $500 entry point – it’s just too much. Especially, if cutting out all that alcohol is what’s needed to reduce the late night sweating sessions.

Infrared Sauna

My newest experiment is in fact too new to report any notable ROI other than it feels good and has currently helped me carve out a little “quiet time”. Immediately, it made sense to use my time sanding in front of lights for simultaneous stretching, compound movements, contemplation and/or listening to podcasts.  I like it. It’s nice. However, I can’t comment on if it is helping speed recovery.  Lately, I am less concerned about beating myself up at gym. In theory, the lights should help those tissue fluids get on the move.  So far, I am comfortable with placebo on this one.

Investment: $100 lights, 25$ hardware. Speaker stand: $30. https://sauna.space/pages/articles


This is a daily practice and has been for over 10 years. So, not sure it really fits into hacks with the taxonomy I’ve got going. But, it is so important IMO that it needs to be discussed and implemented.  Blending can get you on the fast lane to feeling good. I blend about 70 ounces per session. Digesting roughly three 16 oz containers per day.  Grab a high-quality blender like a Vitamix and food prep will be a snap. 

Having select bottles of low glycemic carbs allows more granular control of your macro ratios and all that fiber goodness is utilized to support a healthy gut microbiota.  I use a color of the rainbow approach.  Get as much variety as possible. Avocado and turmeric are common adds. This is a whole food and micronutrient symphony.

Rarely, do I add fruit. It’s not taste thing for me. This is utility and fuel. Although, I have seen some artesian and foodie approaches to blending that look amazing.(https://www.bonappetit.com/recipes/healthy/slideshow/green-smoothies-juice-recipes).

If you need get all foodie on your ingredients to motivate you to BLEND then by all means – do it. Blend. Blend. Blend. Everyday. Forever.

Cold Thermogenesis

So cool. Literally. Even saying it, “I practice Cold Thermogenesis” sounds sexy. It’s Stoic. That’s trending. CT may no longer be trending like it was several years ago but this a hack I’ll keep on ice.

What’s the therapeutic dose? Research varies. Most agree that you’ll need to break the 55 degree or lower threshold.

This is one of those practices that provides immediate data feedback for your evidence based journaling needs.  I’m fortunate that the water to my home comes from surface water collection.  In the winter months it’s under 50 degrees at the tap. I stand in this for about 2 minutes at the end of my regular shower routine. I don’t time it so I’m just guessing here. When the discomfort goes away and I’ve got control of my breathing – I hang for a little bit longer just to be sure the stimulus has credibility.  Simultaneously, I visualize gratitude, love and goodness to whomever, whatever comes to mind.

Then, the magic happens. The feeling of accomplishment and rush of goodness. Better than coffee… maybe. I hoot and holler and the house knows the cold shower has commenced.  Everything else becomes a little easier.   In a very practical sense your body wants to maintain that core temperature. Thus, your metabolism ramps up to do so. If you want to burn fat this is just another tool to accomplish that.  Google it. Your H2O not cold enough? Make your own set up. (https://bengreenfieldfitness.com/article/how-to-make-your-own-cold-tub-setup/)  

Survive the cold and you’ll survive the day’s unknown with a little more savvy.


It’s interesting… I realized at some point that I rarely feel compelled to seek out message therapy.  I think that after 5 years of Crossfit my muscle skeletal has changed quite remarkably. It wasn’t an easy road. Especially the first 1-3 years. That remodeling was hard at times. Injuries came and went.  Learning to back off or adjust body mechanics has been part of the equation to thrive and evolve.

Books like “The Supple Leopard” have been tremendously valuable. The foam roller is essential. Rubber bands are a main staple. Voodoo floss, various massage balls and Yoga routines all have their place in the toolkit. Practicing an anti-inflammatory diet is huge. Rest is huge. Breathing. Breathing. Breathing.

It is absolutely essential to have a mobility and tissue manipulation practice. The truth is if I saw a message therapist weekly or monthly I would probably shine even more. But, I don’t need it to survive like I once did. Once upon a time it seemed the only hope to fix those stubborn pain and aches. Glad those day are over, for now…


I’ll admit it. Closing the door and stepping inside a dark, noise free, humid, and confined space was not immediately appealing. My imagination ran wild. Is there something in here with me? Turns out, yes. Your mind. And, it’s endless wandering. Your emotions and there ability take over EVERYTHING.

The float. Consciousness exploration multi tool. Personal narrative reflector machine. Can I relax? Am I relaxed? Did I relax? 90 mins later… Try and stand up! Gravity is real.

You just gave yourself 90 mins of solitude. It’s hard to do that. That’s interesting. Just one of the many revelations of the float.

Inevitably, it’s time to get back on the bike and gravity is back. Empathy, kindness, and joy are now more clearly legible on the control panel. Thank you float.


More to Come…

Must rest now.