Triathlete.com: Hey Jonathan. How has your winter training been coming along? Can you give us an idea of the sorts of workouts you are doing and what sort of shape you’re in?
Jonathan Brownlee: Hi, yes, I have had a great winter’s training. I’ve been very consistent in training and ran my best ever cross-country season, which culminated in me coming fifth at the British Inter-Counties Championships.
Triathlete.com: What’s it been like training now that Alistair has had to take a bit of a break?
JB: I think immediately, it is nice to have a small break from each other, but it certainly makes things harder the longer he is gone. It’s been great having each other, to help you get out of the door when you are feeling tired. We help to push each other a lot harder in training as well.
Triathlete.com: I saw a photo of a taxi with you and Alistair pictured on it on Twitter a few weeks ago—what are you thoughts on the increased attention both you and your brother are receiving as the Games approach? How have you been handling this newfound attention?
JB: It’s nice to be recognized for all the hard work you put in, but it isn’t why either of us do the sport. We have to give time back to our sponsors who look after us both so well, but we would always prefer to be training than receiving attention from the media. To be honest, we don’t get a great deal of attention back at home in Leeds, anyway. Everyone who lives near us is really supportive and always encourages us when we are out training, but it is very rare we get recognized when we are eating out or shopping.
Triathlete.com: Are you looking forward to racing on home soil, especially since you’re one of the primary medal favorites?
JB: I’m really looking forward to the Olympics now. It feels a lot closer now that we are edging towards the summer and my first race of the year (San Diego). If the reception is anything like the one we got in Hyde Park last year it will be fantastic.
Triathlete.com: How is your degree in history coming along? Will you have it finished before the Games?
JB: I have good and bad days with my degree, but on the whole it is going great. I have nearly finished my 12,000-word dissertation, which is the last piece I have to hand in, so it will easily be wrapped up before the Olympics.
Triathlete.com: Have you let yourself dream of the possibility of winning gold?
JB: Of course, it makes the training all seem much more worthwhile! It’s great to really feel like I have a chance of contesting the gold. I know I have trained well this winter and as long as I have my best race on the day, I know I will be happy with the result. Gold would be an amazing outcome though.
Triathlete.com: And, finally, have you paid Alistair rent yet?
JB: Ha, yes. Didn’t I always!?