Helen Bekele Tola is celebrating after a grueling three-month high-altitude training camp in St. Moritz paid off with a bronze medal at the 2021 Berlin Marathon.
Tola, who clocked up 220km per week during her time in the Swiss Alps, finished with a time of 2:23:05 – almost 90 seconds ahead of fourth-placed Edith Chelimo. She joined fellow Ethiopians Gotytom Gebreslase (2:20:09) and Hiwot Gebrekidan (2:21:23) on the podium before setting her sights on future success.
“My preparation was really good, and I felt good during the race,” she said. “It was my first time running an important marathon with On… (so) it really gave me happiness. I was so happy to finally realize what I’d been training for and to know that work always pays.”
She added: “I’m not sure what’s next, but my manager told me the New York marathon. If everything is good, I’ll go there and represent On again.”