I get more gratification out of getting some obese person who had a heart attack running around and enjoying life within a year. I get more gratification from that than putting a person in the Olympic Games. The Olympic athlete probably doesn't appreciate what you've done, but the other guy does. I think it's really rewarding.
I have a saying 'train, don't strain.' The Americans have the saying 'no pain, no gain' and that's why they have no distance running champions. They get down to the track with a stopwatch and flog their guts out thinking that it'll make them a champion, but they'll never make a champion that way.