When I look back at my mindset when I was a teenager, I really didn’t push myself towards success.

Success is something that you should strive for every day.When I was playing football, I didn’t take that extra step to make myself great. I basically got by on my ability. I wouldn’t listen to my coaches when they were trying to get the absolute best out of me. I knew in my mind that I was a pretty good football player. I didn’t need that extra push to make me great. I did well my senior year in high school and was an all-conference cornerback, but I wasn’t all-state. Why wasn’t I all-state?

Because I didn’t go the extra mile.

I didn’t get fired up and wanted to prove to the world that I was the greatest. The same thing can be said when I went to college. Could I have gotten better grades in college? Of course. I was a B student in college, but I was an A student in high school. What changed? When I went to college, I didn’t put the extra effort into staying an A student. There was always something else to do besides focusing on my studies. In both instances, I was not willing to pay the price for success.

It wasn’t until my late 20s that I started to push myself both physically and emotionally. Was it maturity? Wisdom? I’m not quite sure. One goal that I had in my mind was that I was going to push myself physically and reach 210 pounds of hard-earned muscle. I knew that starting at 170 pounds and being only 5′9″ would make that goal a little difficult. However, I was so consumed with accomplishing this goal that it was all I could think about during the day. I couldn’t wait to get to the gym and move some serious weight. I sweated, pushed myself, and ate more food than I ever had in my life.

It took me four years to accomplish this goal.

I even had a major setback when I developed a peptic ulcer about two years into the goal. But I never wavered. I remember being at the gym, stepping onto the scale, and seeing 210 come up on the display. I did it. I busted my a** and reached my goal.

Now that I am in my 40s, physical goals have turned into professional goals. I no longer weigh 210 pounds. As a matter of fact, I weighed myself yesterday and came in at a whopping 175 pounds. I am happy with that.

My new focus is my business.

When my wife and I moved to Fort Collins, I had in my mind that my business would become the #1 personal training business in Northern Colorado. And I am moving more towards that accomplishment every day. Do I have setbacks? Absolutely. Do I get lazy sometimes? Absolutely.

But when I get lazy, I sense that 17-year-old former football player coming back into the fold and it pisses me off.

I start getting emotional and realized that I cannot get by on natural-born ability anymore. If this goal is to become reality, I must push back against procrastination, I must push back against the easy way out and work hard and get it done.

What have you done in your life where you decided to take the easy way out? What do you do when you have a setback and decide to sit on the sidelines instead of getting back in and fighting back? When you are exercising, do you sometimes tell yourself, “I can do this next week?” Then next week comes and you decide to wait until the next week?

Or what if you have stopped exercising altogether???

Has there ever come a point in your life where something seemed too difficult for you to take on and you decided to just avoid it?

Are you willing to pay the price for success?

My favorite quote of all time is this:

“Destiny is not a matter of chance, it is a matter of choice; it is not a thing to be waited for, it is a thing to be achieved.”  -William Jennings Bryan

As the cliche goes, hindsight is 20-20. But why not make today 20-20?

When it comes to success in achieving your goals, hard work and perseverance are the tools you need to make your goals become reality.