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Why Retirement is Like the Olympics

Has it ever crossed your mind that retirement is like the Olympics? Here is why it crossed my mind.

For roughly 17 days every four years, athletes from around the world are actively engaged in an event. It’s an event  that’s considered as the crème de la crème of the sporting world. The Olympics is the most important event for athletes and their supporters, and it’s the pinnacle of success which is defined by winning a medal. I’ve never aspired to be an Olympic champion, but I aspire to make it to retirement and have enough funds to live on during that period.

I know that you’re probably wondering if I’m crazy. After all, who in their right mind would compare the Olympics to retirement? It’s like comparing chalk and cheese. But is the comparison really that far-fetched? Think about it. Many of the personal finance blogs stress the importance of planning and preparing for your retirement. Retirement is the “Olympics” that the majority of employed persons aim to reach.

Planning and Preparing

The preparations include steadfast planning and saving through a variety of methods. Registered retirement savings plans, 401Ks, employer pension plans and other types of pension plans can be likened to weeks and years of training, healthy diets of proteins, carbohydrates, fats and vitamins. You do as much as you can to get ready for the big event.


The level of discipline is very high for the Olympics and athletes do all they can to make it to that point. What is the likelihood of an athlete who consistently fails to perform well making the Olympics? Practically slim or zero. Comparatively, what are the chances of someone who did not prepare at all for retirement, enjoying that time without having to worry about how they will survive financially? Practically slim or zero.

The Golden Goal

Retirement signals a right of passage and it’s another stage in life. It marks the end of your working life and the beginning of another life. Wouldn’t you want it to be comfortable? Similarly, athletes work hard and remain disciplined so that they can reach the Olympics to gain a medal for themselves and their country. Wouldn’t that be the crowing glory of an athletic career?

It’s not difficult to prepare for your retirement. Sure, it might seem far away, but the earlier you start, the better prepared you will be.