The Key to Effective Training: Find Your Accountability Factor

Are you looking for a new fitness routine, but you just don't know where to start? Carrie Tollefson, Fitness Director for our partners at Moms on the Run, shares three essential components of effective training and reminds us that there is one main factor to consider: accountability. This post is a part of our ongoing Health & Fitness Series, where our hope is that you feel encouraged and equipped to value and prioritize nutrition, self-care, fitness and a healthy body image through these personal stories from experts in the fitness industry.


The Key to Effective Training: Find Your Accountability Factor | Twin Cities Moms Blog

I grew up running. I trained for many years to become an elite runner — in high school, then college, and ultimately at the Olympics. I have been at the top of many race podiums. But, I’m also just like you: a busy mom of three who sometimes needs the energy just to get out the door. Today, as I tied my shoes, zipped my jacket, and donned my hat and gloves for my morning run, I realized there was something missing: my excitement. I had that let’s-just-get-this-done feeling. Do you ever feel the same? My favorite runs are when I’m running with friends because, for me, the biggest motivator is the accountability factor.  

When it comes to fitness, who or what is your accountability factor? In my experience, I have found there are three essential components to training and accountability: partners, teams, and coaches. They are my friends, my life coaches, my confidants. Do you have people like that in your life? Regardless of your fitness level or routine, looking for a program with these three components will help your motivation stick. As Fitness Director for Moms on the Run, I love that we have the training, resources, and classes to get you started. But the reason our athletes return year after year is the accountability factor. Whether you’ve never run before or if you’ve been running for years, there is always someone to help you put one foot in front of the other at Moms on the Run.

The Key to Effective Training: Find Your Accountability Factor | Twin Cities Moms Blog

My accountability factor: Training Partners

Having a training partner has given me so much in my career. It has given me life-long friends, a sense of family when I am away from mine or even in need of a little breather from my own, a person to laugh and to cry with, or just to have a little fun with. My best friends in life have been the women (and men) whom I have trained with and I am so thankful for them. They have helped me achieve goals I never knew were possible, they have helped pick me up when I could barely pick myself up, and they have pushed me to dig deeper and go harder than anyone else in life has pushed me.

The Key to Effective Training: Find Your Accountability Factor | Twin Cities Moms Blog

My accountability factor: Training Groups and Teams

My training group has changed over the years from high school and college teams to my professional team at Team USA Minnesota, and now to my latest team with Moms on the Run. One thing I have witnessed throughout all of my teams is that when everyone has something in common, great things happen. Life can be tough at times but when there is strength in numbers, anything seems possible.

The Key to Effective Training: Find Your Accountability Factor | Twin Cities Moms Blog

My accountability factor: Coaches

The guidance of a coach is one of the most powerful and motivating things I have ever had the chance to encounter. I have truly learned so much from all of my coaches and each one of them will be a part of my family for the rest of my life. Having someone believe in me, invest in me, and care about me is powerful. Those things are exactly what a good family member will do, a good friend will do, and a good coach will do.

The Key to Effective Training: Find Your Accountability Factor | Twin Cities Moms Blog

You can find YOUR accountability factor at Moms on the Run!

All three of these accountability factors — training partners, training groups, and awesome coaches — can be found at Moms on the Run, which is why I joined as Fitness Director. I highly encourage you to step out of your comfort zone and take a look at what a program like Moms on the Run has to offer, even if you have never run before. When you come to a class, you will see runners with smiles on their faces, women excited about life, happy to be healthy and taking a little time for themselves. Once a part of this team, it doesn’t take long to witness the added bond and support system that makes this group effective.

Now is the perfect time to check us out as spring season starts the end of April. You can find a location near you HERE!

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Carrie Tollefson is a Minnesota native, 2004 Olympian, and career runner. As National Fitness Director for Moms on the Run, she oversees all fitness programming for the women-only company. Moms on the Run (MOTR) is a structured fitness program for women (not just moms) of all ages and fitness levels who want to get in shape — and have fun doing so. Moms on the Run’s signature offering is a learn-to-run 5K training led by certified coaches that includes strength training, stretching, and education. The company, which was founded in the Twin Cities area in 2008, now has 46 locations in six states.

{Team photos by Photography by Emily Marie}


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