We All Have a Battle!

I love the fall in Sioux Falls. Not only is the weather gorgeous, but for many of us it is the start of school, football season and the Sioux Falls Marathon and Half Marathon. Each year I run in the race, I am in awe of the number of individuals who worked so hard throughout the summer to get ready for the race.

I am by no means an avid runner, but training for the race always provides a sense of accomplishment. It gives me a goal to work for but more importantly it gets me out and moving. Exercise is difficult for many of us because with our busy lives and schedules or even health issues, it is always easier to put it off and not do it. That’s why having a goal is so important. Setting goals for exercise makes the work and time involved more meaningful. For many individuals, once they get into the groove, their general sense of well-being and health improves significantly.

The weather this year was wonderful. There were many amazing runners to watch. They looked so smooth and effortless. Even at miles 10 or 20, they continue to run as if they just started. However, what was more meaningful were the runners who didn’t have the same form or effortless motion. The race was never about being the fastest. It was about beating down the voices inside that told us we shouldn’t do it — we shouldn’t try.

Every year, more and more individuals make a commitment to improve their sense of health. Whether it’s walking around the block, running for a mile or training for the race, facing our fear of failure is never easy. Whether you didn’t run as fast as you would have hoped or weren’t able to finish because of an injury, you didn’t fail! You made a commitment to try and push yourself. That’s the battle — and guess what — you won! One of my favorite quotes is by Theodore Roosevelt, who said, “It is hard to fail, but it’s worse never to have tried to succeed.”

Exercise looks very different to all of us. The important thing to remember is that we are not competing against others; we are competing with ourselves! God bless and keep pushing yourself to be that one step better than you were yesterday.

By Dr. Preston Renshaw

Chief Medical Officer at Avera Health Plans

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