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Motivation to train: I feel great and I love it

People and Culture Manager, Human Resources at Runtastic

I’ve always had a complicated relationship with the sport. I’ve been through seasons where I did a lot of sport and periods when I didn’t feel like moving at all. Sometimes all she wanted was to play team sports, but other times she preferred to train alone. Be that as it may, sport has always been a part of my life – both through thick and thin.

In 2017, my motivation to train bottomed out when I tore my anterior cruciate ligament (LAC). In just a few months, I gained weight and reached the worst physical state of my life. And when I had finally started to love my body, I felt anything but fit.

How I got motivated

After a six-month break without training, I started running again in January 2018. It held about two or three kilometers at a pace of 8:00 min/km.

My goal was to do three fitness activities a week, so I started the “Total Transformation” training plan of our adidas Training app. At the time I was at a lower fitness level than I had ever been, so I was content to do two workouts a week. In other words: it took me about 20 weeks to complete the 12-week training plan.

I am very critical of myself, so I used social media to increase my confidence and self-esteem. Every time I shared a running session or a workout on the app, I received support from my friends; every time I went through a bad time, someone managed to lift my spirits and motivate me to continue. Every time I did a workout or went for a group run, the fact that I bumped my hands with my teammates at the end of the session made me proud to have endured until the end and kept me motivated.

“I’m very critical of myself.” Recovering my body

Eight months after starting my new fitness routine, my life changed completely when my husband and I decided to separate. For six months, the work-life balance was a mess, I hardly slept because I preferred to party, plus my diet was… Well… let’s just say it wasn’t my priority. I lost quite a bit of weight quickly (but not in a controlled or consistent way), and my running pace was crazy (when it came to me). But I felt weak, tired and… not as sensual as before.

That’s how I got motivation to go back to training. I immediately noticed how my arms gained firmness, my butt gained volume, my legs strengthened and my waist narrowed. I started doing three to four workouts a week; sometimes, I even went for a run and did strength training the same day. For me, this was (and still is) spectacular. Seeing the results of my efforts is a great reward.

I love how I feel

Despite regaining weight in the following months (when I started eating again or satisfying my cravings for sweets), I felt great. And I still feel that way. I maintain a distant but friendly relationship with my scale and don’t throw my hands to my head when I see small changes in my weight. Normally, when I look in the mirror or look at photos of myself, I like what I see.

I don’t usually be lazy, but I’m often tempted to skip a few days of training. The longer the break, the harder it is for me to get enough motivation to train again. Sometimes, I get frustrated when I run slower than the week before, or when I can’t do as many push-ups as I thought.

“It’s frustrating to lose muscle faster than it takes to gain it; this is what motivates me to keep going.”

I’ve finally reached the point where my body can regain muscle faster after a break and where I miss training after a day or two without it. I love to breathe in the fresh air when I go for a run on the shore of the lake and I love to notice the beads of sweat after a round of burpees (much more than I like the burpees themselves, if I’m honest). I love being able to hold my children in my arms and being able to walk for hours without getting tired. I love feeling fit, healthy and happy with my body. I love feeling like I can handle everything.

Monika is a vital part of Runtastic’s Human Resources team and a powerful ambassador for our company’s values. As a mother of two, she tries to be a role model for her children by teaching them to be happy with what they have and not to be too picky about themselves.


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