Running Mums Australia is so excited to share this recent interview with super athlete and 2014 Commonwealth Games Bronze medalist Jess Trengove. Jess is an amazing marathon runner and I remember clearly the night we were all watching in awe of her stunning performance this year where she took home the bronze medal in Glasgow. Jess’s dedicated, mature approach to her running and achieving her goals is commendable and her hard work has been rewarded in her running achievements so far. I wanted to find out more about Jess, being a long distance runner myself and she was kind enough to share her journey with us……
When did you start running? My first race was in Reception at school cross-country. I started ‘training’ for running when I moved to Adelaide for boarding school in 2003, aged 16 and then stopped playing other sports to focus on running in 2008 at the age of 21.
When did you know that running would become your career/passion? I discovered my true passion for distance running when I did my first half marathon at the Gold Coast in 2010. It was at this point that I realised I wanted to see how far I could go with running and dreamed of representing Australia at an open championship.
Do your parents run? My parents love sport and stay active with cycling/golf/tennis (Dad) and netball/tennis/walking/gym (Mum). They have never specifically focussed on running but achieved a high standard in other sports.
Who is your greatest running role model? I watched Benita Willis in the 5000m at the 2000 Sydney Olympics. When she came in to the crowd to sign my and my sister’s Olympic tickets, I couldn’t help but admire her and started following Benita’s career. It was a proud moment to line up along side her in the London Olympic marathon 12 years later. Kerryn McCaan was another running athlete for whom I had great respect.
How often do you train and what sort of training do you do? I train 1-2 times per day. Training predominantly involves long slow runs, fartleks, tempo/threshold runs and repetitions/intervals however I also do 2x strength and conditioning gym sessions, 1x boxing session and some form of stretch session each week.
We know that you love marathons, but is this your favourite distance? I believe that I get the most out of myself and running over the marathon distance however I also love half marathons and road races of distances between 10-15km.
What tips could you give to our runners just starting out? Be patient. Progress training slowly, set yourself measurable goals, listen to your body and make sure you enjoy yourself along the way.
Whats your best tip for surviving a marathon? Break it up into smaller sections mentally i.e. focus on the next water station or a specific land mark that you are approaching. During the tough times, take the opportunity to soak up the atmosphere and draw excitement from the crowd – it can be a positive distraction.
Whats your best tip for PBing in a marathon? Include a long run in your weekly training schedule, line up on race day with a fresh body i.e. taper adequately and pace yourself appropriately.
Will you keep running marathons for a long time to come and what is your ultimate running goal? I hope to keep running marathons for many more years. My ultimate running goal is to accomplish the training and preparation that my coach/team feels will set me up to run my best marathon, followed by executing the best marathon race of which I am capable.
What have been the highlights of your career? Running the Olympic A qualifying time in my first marathon in Nagoya (Japan) in 2012, putting on the Australian Olympic uniform and running in the London Olympic Marathon and in 2014, winning bronze in the Commonwealth Games marathon.
Do you have a career outside of running? I work part-time as a physiotherapist and also enjoy public/corporate speaking opportunities.
When you aren’t training hard, what kind of running do you enjoy most and what do you like to do in your spare time? I love getting amongst nature and going for a jog, whether it be in a forest, along the coast, large parks or farmland. In my spare time I like to go out for meals or coffee with friends/family. I also love travel, painting, the beach.
With your brief knowledge about Running Mums Australia, what do you think is the best thing that you see that RMA has done for running women?I love the fact that RMA encourages and empowers women to set themselves goals and experience the many joys of running/being active. In particular I like how it provides tip for women in not just training but areas such as health, nutrition and other ‘Female/Mum’ topics.
What is your best mantra for running? I have a different mantra for different races but in Glasgow I recall saying to myself, ‘Be brave, patient, strong…relax’