Another of the Fast10 that our readers will recognise straight away, Jenny Nesbitt is a Welsh runner who features regularly at the front of cross country and road racing in the UK & abroad. 

The Hoka One One athlete has competed for Wales and Great Britain and it will be great to watch how the speedster compete at events like the Highgate Harriers Night of the 10,000m PBs and plenty more races across 2020.


Name: Jenny Nesbitt
Age (Jan 2020): 24 (25 on Jan 24th!)
Hometown: Cardiff
Club: Cardiff AC
Main discipline: XC, Road and Track (5/10k)
Other disciplines:
Full-time athlete/work/studying: Part Time Student, studying Sports Broadcasting at Cardiff Met Uni.

Goals or targets for 2020 : To have consistent training, to work hard and not skip any of the boring stuff. Ideally, I would like to run PBs over all distances – especially 5000m and 10000m on the track, as well as finally nail a half marathon. Highgate is the major goal this year, and if things go well, hopefully I can put myself in the conversation for Europeans.

Past Running highlights : It is hard to narrow down my past running highlights, as I have many for many different reasons. Running my first 10km in 2014 at the Worcester City Run and beating Paula Radcliffe was a special moment, as it was one of my first races back after 2 years out due to serious illness and it showed me that I dont have to be defined by my medical history.

Getting my first GB vest at the Euro Cross in 2015 was another, alongside representing Wales at the Commonwealth Games in 2018, an experience I won’t forget. Winning Inter-counties and representing GB at World Cross in 2019 proved to me that I could have a dodgy couple of weeks leading into a race, and that a bit of belief can go a long way.

Interesting or fun facts : I really want to write a book one day, but I have no idea what on!

I run because… there are so many reasons that I run. I am certainly the type of athlete that will run forever, even when I am not competitive. There is nothing I enjoy more than going out for a run in the morning.

Not only does it set you up well for the day but I think getting fresh air first thing is really good for you too. I am also a super competitive person, and I find running is a great way to use this in a positive way. There is nothing like standing on the start line with butterflies in your stomach, and the knowledge that you are about to endure a world of pain trying getting the most out of yourself.

Photo: Paul Stillman

Training and Food

Favourite training session : Recently, I have been enjoying 10 x 1km off 60s on the road. We use the 2 to 3km of the Cardiff Parkrun and run back and forth on it. I find I can get into a good rhythm, and I’ve learnt that you don’t have to go flat out to have a successful session. Rather I have been able to see improvements from my heart rate for the time recorded.

Least favourite training session : Anything that involves a hill. Recently, 10 x 60s hills have made me feel a bit sick, alongside going out again after a long run in the evening to run 10x10s hills fast. Not something you want to be doing on a Sunday evening!

Favourite pre-race food : Bit weird, but before a race I usually eat rice cakes, with honey, dried fruit and seeds. The night before a race, anything that has pasta or rice with it usually. I like to keep it quite plain, but still make sure I get my protein, carbs and fats.

Favourite post-race food : Pizza, ham and pineapple if we are being specific, usually dipped into ketchup. I have a massive sweet tooth, so some form of cake will usually follow. If I can get my hands on chocolate salted caramel cake, this would most likely be my go to, but I’m not fussy!

Favourite runner or runners : I am constantly inspired by my competitors and training partners, so I would say they are my favourite runners. Nothing motivates me than wanting to be competitive, and I think we all push each other be become better! If I am to pick one other athlete, I’d go with the Ingebrigtsen brothers (I realise that there are 3!). They have shown that you don’t have to be African to make an impact on the World stage, and that is very inspiring!

Brands or organisations that support me : I am very lucky to be supported by Hoka One One, as well as Welsh Athletics, Cardiff Met University and Moyo Sport. This support is so valuable to ensuring that I can do everything possible to reach my goals.

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