Interview with Mekonen Tefera

9. October 2018

Every weekend without fail, Tefera Mekonen participates in one to two running events in Switzerland. The native Ethiopian discovered running in Switzerland and is racing from success to success.

How did you get into running?

I fled to Switzerland five and a half years ago because I could no longer stay in my country. When I lived in Ethiopia, I worked as a farmer and hardly found any time to train, which is quite different now: running gives me substance and structure and a little bit of money for my family. I am affiliated with TV Länggasse Bern and benefit from Peter Mathys’ training plans and several fast training colleagues.

What does your daily routine look like?

I normally get up at 7:30 and finish my training at 8:00. Then I eat breakfast, take time to recover, and spend the rest of the day with my wife and children. They are 2 years and 9 months old and live apart from me in another refugee camp because my wife and I are not married. 




Can you give us an insight into your training?

During the first four and a half years that I spent here in Switzerland, I only ever rarely participated in competitions and focused a lot on building my foundation. I adapted my training due to financial reasons one year ago: my training is considerably more intensive and every weekend I run in one to two competitions in the hope that I can earn some money. 

In your eyes, what are the most important factors that lead to success?

  • Train hard, win easily!
  • Do mountain runs to get in good shape for flat runs.
  • Practice fast running with specific units to ensure it goes well in the competition.

Do you have a secret tip you would be willing to share with us?

Diversify your everyday training, cover all areas of training, and make sure you are rested when you go to competitions at the weekend.

Foto: ZVG