Headshot of Jonny Browlee, British professional duathlete and triathlete

What’s it like being in the presence of a world class athlete?

Headshot of Jonny Browlee, British professional duathlete and triathlete

Over 100 boys and several staff found out when Jonny Brownlee joined in one of our online lessons on Tuesday 2nd Feb.   Having come to our school with his brother for Sport Relief once before, he returned to give us an interview in which he shared his most memorable moments.

Jonny comes across as one of the most humble people you can ever meet. At school he never dreamed he would become a  world champion but having watched his brother Alistair almost win at the Olympics, he decided maybe he could give it a go as well.

Jonny shared how his teachers had a positive influence on him and he is still in touch with some of them today. Having watched his brother Alistair make the tough decision to drop out of studying medicine at Cambridge University after one term due to  it being impossible to keep up with his training, Jonny chose to go to Leeds University nearby so he could continue training with his local club. At school he did 4 A levels as well as training for international events. He gained 3 grade A’s and one grade B.

Jonny shared with us about being helped over the finishing line to come second in the 2016 World Triathlon Series by his brother, Alistair, who abandoned his own chance at winning in a stunning display of brotherly love. He was unconscious as Alistair pushed him over the finishing line to take second place and wasn’t aware of what had happened until he woke up in hospital and saw 1000’s of messages on social media.

Jonny shared how he keeps motivated, some of his secrets being to have a good team of people around him and always having a short term and long term goal. We learned that he burns up  6000 calories a day, runs 60km a week, sleeps in an altitude tent and loves Yorkshire tea!  Just being in his presence for a short time inspired us and made us want to be better people.

Comments from boys and staff:

  •  “We learned about keeping fit and training and even did a workout routine.” 
  • “He has become my role model for motivation.”
  • “He is an example of how hard work pays off.” 
  •  “He was fantastic, very informative and we’re very grateful for the insight!”
  • ” I can’t believe how humble he was. Such a nice guy.”
  • “It’s made me want to get back into running. I kinda gave up a while ago.”
  • “If he can get 3 A’s and a B  at A level as well as train for triathlon at top level, maybe I should be aiming higher in my own studies.”
  • “I can’t believe I got to talk to him. It made my day and my Mum’s too.”