How I triumphed over bone cancer and reshaped my investing strategy


In May of 2009, when I was 38 years old, I outran 13,000 competitors to win the JP Morgan Corporate Challenge, an annual 5.6-kilometre race in Singapore.

As I broke the finish tape, I felt what many other runners would feel under the circumstances: short-term invincibility.

I had no idea that I had bone cancer…


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andrew hallam

andrew hallam

I'm a freelance finance writer, lucky enough to have been nominated as a finalist for two Canadian National Publishing Awards. I'm also the author of Millionaire Teacher: The Nine Rules of Wealth You Should Have Learned in School, a book explaining how I became a millionaire on a teacher's salary, while still in my 30s. Working to empower people financially, I'm available to motivate and inspire people on basic retirement planning and index investing. I'm happy to comment on your questions, first, please read the Terms of Use.

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4 Responses

  1. Andrey says:

    Fantastic article, Andrew!

    Thank you :)

  2. Joel says:

    Hi Andrew,

    Congratulations on your recovery and good health. You are obviously an extremely tenacious and determined person.

    I read your book and I have followed this blog regularly for more than a year. My investment is entirely in index funds. Up to now, I was under the impression that you made your money from the index strategy you purport. This article suggests otherwise – that your strategy changed as dramatically as your diet during rehabilitation.

    I am a flag waver of index investing, but I think how you made the bulk of your money (pre-book sales) bears some significance. Would you be open to sharing that?

    • Hi Joel,

      Roughly have of my money was indexed and the rest were in the kind of individual stocks I spoke about picking in the final chapter of my book. I would have very similar levels of wealth today if I had fully indexed everything from the beginning instead of building a portfolio comprised of indexes and individual stocks. The biggest bang for my buck came from saving prolifically (some would say obsessively) and from rebalancing my money when the markets tanked or soared.

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