Mawson, C.O.S., ed. (1870–1938). Roget’s International Thesaurus. 1922.

Class V. Words Releasing to the Voluntary Powers
Division (I) Individual Volition
Section III. Voluntary Action
1. Simple Voluntary Action

686. Exertion.

   NOUN:EXERTION, effort, strain, tug, pull, stress, throw, stretch, struggle, spell, spurt or spirt; stroke -, stitch- of work.
  “a long pull, a strong pull, and a pull all together”; dead lift; heft [dial.]; wear and tear; ado; toil and trouble; uphill -, hard -, warm- work; harvest time.
  EXERCISE, exercitation, practice, play, gymnastics, field sports; breather [colloq.], racing, running, jumping, riding &c.
  LABOR, work, toil, travail [rare], manual labor, sweat of one’s brow, swink [obs.], operoseness, drudgery, slavery, fag [colloq., Eng.], faggery, fagging, hammering; limœ labor [L.]; operosity [obs.], operoseness.
  trouble, pains, duty; resolution [See Resolution]; energy (physical) [See Energy].
  WORKER, plodder, laborer, drudge, fagger, fag [Eng. schools], slave; man of action [See Activity]; agent [See Agent]; Samson, Hercules.
   VERB:EXERT ONESELF; exert -, tax- one’s energies; use exertion.
  LABOR, work, toil, moil, sweat, fag, swink [archaic], toil and moil, drudge, slave, drag a lengthened chain, wade through, strive, strain; make -, stretch- a long arm; pull, tug, ply; ply -, tug at- the oar; do the work; take the laboring oar.
  bestir oneself (be active) [See Activity]; take trouble, trouble oneself.
  WORK HARD; rough it; put forth -one’s strength, – a strong arm; fall to work, bend the bow; buckle to, set one’s shoulder to the wheel (resolution) [See Resolution]; work like a -horse, – cart horse, – dog, – galley slave, – coal heaver, – Briton; labor -, work- day and night; redouble one’s efforts; do double duty; work double -hours, – tides; sit up, burn the candle at both ends, burn the midnight oil; stick to (persevere) [See Resolution]; work -, fight- one’s way; lay about one, hammer at.
  DO ONE’S BEST, do one’s level best, do one’s utmost; take pains; do the best one can, do all one can, do all in one’s power, do as much as in one lies, do what lies in one’s power; use one’s -best, – utmost- endeavor; try one’s- -best, – utmost; play one’s best card; put one’s -best, – right- leg foremost; put one’s best foot foremost; have one’s whole soul in his work, put all one’s strength into, strain every nerve; spare no -efforts, -pains; go all lengths; go through fire and water (resolution) [See Resolution]; move heaven and earth, leave no stone unturned.
   ADJECTIVE:laboring &c. v.
  LABORIOUS, hefty [colloq., U. S.], operose, elaborate; strained; toilsome, troublesome, wearisome, burdensome; uphill; herculean, gymnastic, palæstric or palestric, athletic.
  HARDWORKING, painstaking, strenuous, energetic, never idle.
  hard at work, on the stretch, on the move, on the jump, on the dead jump, on the run.
   ADVERB:LABORIOUSLY &c. adj.; lustily; pugnis et calcibus [L.]; with might and main, with all one’s might, with a strong hand, with sledge hammer, with much ado; to the best of one’s abilities, totis viribus [L.], vi et armis [L.], manibus pedibusque [L.], tooth and nail, unguibus et rostro [L.], hammer and tongs, heart and soul; through thick and thin (perseverance) [See Resolution].
  by the sweat of one’s brow, suo Marte [L.].
  1. Aide-toi, le ciel t’aidera.
  2. And still be doing, never done.—Butler
  3. Buen principio la mitad es hecha.
  4. Cosa ben fatta è fatta due volte.
  5. It is better to wear out than to rust out.—Bp. Horne
  6. Labor omnia vincit.—Vergil
  7. Labor, wide as the earth, has its summit in Heaven.—Carlyle
  8. Le travail du corps délivre des peines de l’esprit.
  9. Manu forti.
  10. Ora et labora.
  11. I wish to preach … the doctrine of the strenuous life.—Roosevelt
  12. Sorrow of soul in toil, that brings delight.—Masefield