I wanted to be the first woman in East Germany
to throw a shot put 23 meters. I wanted to go much further…«
At the age of 14, Heidi is sent to a special school for young athletes (KJS). It is there that she begins her career as a professional athlete in the East German sports system. She progresses quickly and then joins the SC Dynamo Berlin sports club, which trains at the Sportforum in Berlin. Heidi is under close observation and is expected to bring home medals for the East German state.
Heidi’s coach gives her “blue pills” in addition to the vitamins she takes regularly – her first doping substances. She doesn’t know what they’re called; the pills are not in their original package. Heidi’s coach says they will help her perform well.
Heidi Krieger wins gold in women’s shot put at the European Athletics Championships in Stuttgart. She put her winning shot 21.10 meters.
The Berlin Wall falls, the Cold War comes to an end, and Heidi is still a high-performance athlete. However, two years later, at the age of 26, she ends her career because the doping substances have taken a toll on her body.
Heidi experiences a turning point in her life. A friend and co-worker explains the inner turmoil that she’s been facing. He gives it a name: transsexuality.
Heidi Krieger is now Andreas Krieger – a process that has taken three years. The decision to live as a man saves his life.
In 2000, those responsible for systematic doping in communist East Germany are put on trial. Andreas attends the trial and realizes for the first time that he had been inadvertently subjected to doping for many years.
Andreas marries a woman whom he had met at the doping trial two years earlier: “I feel like I won the jackpot. I am so blessed.”
For the state, the collective was more valuable
than the individual.
And party goals were often more important
than personal fulfillment.
Making progress in training was not something to be celebrated.
It was expected –
and deliberately planned.