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Exercise with Purpose: Bar Talk with Eric Bartosz

Exercise with Purpose

Once we build accountability for bringing our fitness pursuits into the spotlight, we are well on the way to ensuring that we achieve what we set out to do. The path we take to get there is up to you.

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See if this sounds familiar; the weather gets warmer, the days are longer and you promise you’ll finally start exercising more. But it keeps not happening, and you need help finding the motivation to include exercise in your weekly schedule. If this is something you can relate to, you have plenty of company, as lack of motivation will be at the top of any list featuring reasons people fall short of exercise goals.

For some good news, there’s an easy solution to help supercharge your motivation, and July is the perfect time to get started. One of the most surefire ways to ensure any task gets accomplished is when there is an element of accountability. At work, we know what tasks need to be completed each week. Often, a manager expects those things to happen by a deadline, and we know that simply skipping those tasks is not a great option. Adding accountability to our fitness pursuits has the same effect with increasing prioritization and significantly increases the likelihood that we will stick to the plan.

Thankfully, there are fantastic options for fitness challenges that benefit charities doing amazing work, allowing us to improve our health, help a charity and provide accountability by publicly stating our goals as a participant in the challenge. Often, this takes the form of fundraising on behalf of the charity and asking friends and family to contribute a dollar amount of their choosing to help the participant reach their financial goal. Rest assured, this isn’t a high-stakes shakedown of all your contacts. Simply sending out a link making people aware of what you are doing with the
caveat that people can donate any amount eliminates any pressure, and even all those $1 or $5 donations can add up.

One suggestion is Mission 22, a national veteran non-profit organization which provides support and resources to veterans and their families. Mission 22 has challenges throughout the year, and one just started up and is going for the month of July. This ’90-Mile Challenge’ is appealing because of its all-inclusive nature. For comparison, in July 2023 the challenge was completing 2,200 push-ups (71 per day) for the month. While that was an awesome month-long goal for those of us who completed it, it did not have wide appeal to those who were not interested in doing thousands of push-ups. For 2024, being able to choose activities makes for a diverse blend and freedom of activity. Visit and join Mission 22’s 90-Mile Challenge in July Facebook group to see how 1,000+ participants have committed to running, walking or biking 90 miles in the month of July and raising additional donations for this non-profit doing such important work.

Aside, or in addition to, participating in charity fitness challenges, another highly effective accountability strategy is joining a local group featuring your favorite exercise activity. There are many clubs and groups catering to all forms of exercise, and if running is your thing, or you would like it to be, and you live in the Eastern PA area, check out the Lehigh Valley Road Runners Club for a multitude of weekly options.

And if you don’t find a club or group that suits you, why not start your own? Whether it’s on Facebook, MeetUp or any other platform, remember the famous line from the movie Field of Dreams, ‘if you build it, they will come.’ This is your chance to create a community that resonates with you and others.

The bottom line is that once we build accountability for bringing our fitness pursuits into the spotlight, we are well on the way to ensuring that we achieve what we set out to do, and the path we take to get there is up to you. Let’s make this summer the best (and healthiest) one ever!

Eric BartoszEric Bartosz is the founder of BAR40 and the author of the internationally acclaimed and bestselling book ‘BAR40: Achieving Personal Excellence.’ He lives in Center Valley with his wife Trish, daughter Riley and pug Piper, is an adjunct MBA professor at DeSales University and serves the community as an Upper Saucon firefighter, a board member of Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Lehigh Valley and a local race organizer. Eric is a 20+ year runner and racer and can often be found logging miles on the Saucon Rail TrailCatch up on Eric’s latest Bar Talk columns here.

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Eric Bartosz

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