Making the effort….

I am sitting on a bench in the gym locker room.  Leaning over with my forearms resting on my thighs as I gasp, trying to catch my breath.  My heart still feels like it is about to jump out of my chest.  My ear buds are still in my ears, my ipod blasting out  Billy Joel singing “Captain Jack”.  I am just staring at the floor watching sweat drip off my chin into a puddle on the floor between my feet.  My arms and legs have a slight quiver to them as they try to recover… completely spent from my morning workout.  All of a sudden, I start to chuckle to myself.

So this is it?  Are you kidding me?  This quivering, sweating, struggling to breathe, heart pounding pile of humanity is the new and improved me?  Suddenly the old version didn’t seem to be so bad after all.  But the more I thought about it, the more I realized that yes… this is it… I am new and improved.

I have worked for the last 4 months to be able to run again… to try to regain some of my health that I had been squandering.  I am 50 pounds lighter and just finished a 4 mile run in 41:45.  As I pondered my activities of the last 4 months it came back to me… a saying from my college days….  in Greek, the saying is χαλεπὰ τὰ καλά. It is pronounced “Khalepá tà kalá”.  Translated it means… “Naught without labor” or “the good / beautiful things are difficult [to attain]”.

With every day that passes I am finding this to be more and more true in ever aspect of my life.  We work so hard at our lives to make things easy… when in reality, all of the things in this life that are truly worth having require a lot of hard work.  I can’t think of a single instance where this doesn’t apply.  This hard work doesn’t build a level of resentment but rather it causes us to assess whether or not we truly want something.  Are we willing to do the work necessary to have whatever it is we feel we want out of our lives?

Whether it is a job… or school… or weight loss (physical fitness)… or relationships…  if it’s worth having… it’s worth working hard to have.  So, don’t let the hard work deter you, my friends… if it’s worth having or doing, it is worth the effort… just keep pushing forward!

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