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Finding Your Motivation: Overcoming Demotivation and Challenges in Canicross

An overview of Episode 9 of the Active Dog Podcast summarised by Chat GPT


Today, we have a special guest, Toria from Wonky Dog Therapy, who will share her story about how an unexpected incident affected her motivation in the world of Canicross.


In this episode, we dive into Toria’s journey of overcoming the challenges and demotivation caused by a significant ankle injury. Despite her injury not being directly related to Canicross, it had a profound impact on her ability to engage in the sport she loved. We explore the physical and mental obstacles she faced while trying to regain her motivation and how she eventually found a way to get back into Canicross.

Toria’s Story

Toria, a Canicross enthusiast for nine years, shared her story of the life-changing moment when she missed a step and broke her ankle, rendering her unable to participate in Canicross for months. She underwent surgery, endured a long period of immobility, and faced the daunting prospect of returning to the sport she loved.

Physical Challenges following injury:

Toria’s injury brought about various physical challenges. Her biggest fear was whether her ankle would withstand the rigors of Canicross, and she was concerned about potential pain and further injuries. Initially, she could only walk short distances, which was a far cry from her usual 10-mile runs with her dogs. She felt frustrated and constantly compared herself to her pre-injury fitness levels.

Mental Challenges following injury:

Toria’s mental state also took a hit as she struggled with feelings of inadequacy and disappointment, comparing her current abilities to her past accomplishments. She discussed the mental hurdles that can hinder motivation and how important it is to be patient and compassionate with oneself.

Strategies to Regain Motivation:

  1. Setting Realistic Goals: Toria emphasized the importance of setting achievable goals. Instead of fixating on her previous abilities, she focused on smaller milestones and found satisfaction in achieving them.
  2. Accountability: She recognized the value of accountability, which encouraged her to participate in group activities and structured programs.
  3. Group Motivation: Toria joined a Couch to 5K group, which provided her with companionship and motivation. The shared experiences and progress with others inspired her to continue.
  4. Discussing Challenges: She encouraged open discussions about challenges and motivations, emphasizing that speaking with others who understand Canicross was particularly helpful.

Additional Tips:

Toria advised those seeking to regain motivation to be open to new challenges and different approaches. Sometimes a change in perspective or trying something new can help reignite motivation. Additionally, practicing self-compassion and understanding that motivation can take various forms due to life’s ups and downs is essential.


Motivation can waver for a variety of reasons, from injuries to environmental factors. It’s important to address the root causes and be patient with ourselves. By setting achievable goals, seeking accountability, discussing challenges, and remaining open to new approaches, we can rediscover our motivation and continue to enjoy the sport we love.

young woman running with two dogs across a green field, canicrossing

Toria canicross running with two of her dogs prior to her ankle injury

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