It is often said that when men plan, the gods laugh.  Nowhere is this perhaps more true than when it comes to planning for retirement.  While we all acknowledge the risk that finances can play on our retirement plans, the reality is that threats to our retirement plans can come from all areas of our lives.

Years ago I had a client whose retirement plans included climbing all 54 of Colorado's 14,000 foot peaks.  Six months (and about a dozen bagged 14'ers) into his retirement, he developed severe pain and stiffness in his lower legs and ankles.  After several trips to the doctor it was discovered that he had a form of multiple sclerosis that was slowly causing the cartilage in his feet and ankles to break down.  His constant climbing was hastening the process for which there is no cure and usually results in eventual, permanent confinement to a wheelchair.  His dream of climbing all 54 of Colorado's 14'ers was over.

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