By Hannah Alderfer, BA, CPT, FMSC

If you have ever achieved a goal, big or small, you understand the sense of satisfaction in accomplishing the feat. And the bigger the mountain to climb, the greater the reward. I was once told that it was just as rewarding to sit at work all day long, accomplish absolutely nothing, clock out and go home, collect the same paycheck, and still feel satisfied to do that day in and day out. I have a hard time believing that to be true. Because no matter how difficult it sometimes is to accept the challenge before us, we still desire to fight through the struggle to get the reward. It gives meaning and purpose to that reward: “In the end, it is impossible to have a great life unless it is a meaningful life. And it is very difficult to have a meaningful like without meaningful work” (Jim Collins, Good to Great). So take on the exercise and health challenges you’ve always wanted to overcome – run a 5K, lose those 10 pounds or 100 pounds, hike a national park, do a mini triathlon, race a marathon, bench 225 pounds, climb Mount Everest, kayak, do a century bike race, be able to play on the ground with your grandkids again, or walk the Great Wall of China. In the end it will be worth the effort. And the reward will be so much greater because of the struggle to get there.