Helen Jenkins pt 1: ‘Rushing back isn’t the plan’

We catch up Helen Jenkins to talk about her road to recovery…


The new Asics promo looks stunning.


It’s cool, isn’t it?! We filmed it last year and I still hadn’t seen the finished version until recently. It was all filmed really close to home (around Bridgend) and all the crew who came down were like, ‘It’s amazing down here – I can’t believe you live here!’ It’s not always that nice, but when the weather’s good…

You must be proud to show off those locations.

I am because it’s not like I just train there, it’s where I live for most of the year.

The theme of the video is ‘Journey of Improvement’. Having spent the last six months recovering from injury, is that something that resonated with you?

Definitely. It’s so relevant to me as well. I think the journey of improvement is so relevant to all athletes actually. I had the Achilles injury in 2006/07 and spent last year dealing with the knee injury so it’s all about improvement and not letting it get you down.

The last time 220 spoke to you was in August after the Olympics, where you said you wouldn’t be racing for the rest of the year. What have you been doing since?

A lot of rehab, trying to figure out what the actual injury was as it was quite complex with biomechanical issues going on caused with the scoliosis in my spine. I’ve had that for years so I’ve always had to work with it but, with a few other things going, it all just overloaded it. It has taken time but it’s finally getting there.

Were there setbacks along the way?

Yeah, there are always setbacks! I’m taking things slowly as the focus the next few years is the Commonwealth Games and the Rio Olympics. So to rush back this year isn’t my plan. I'll hopefully race this year but I’ll definitely miss the start of the season.

So the ITU Series opener in Auckland’s too soon then?

I won’t be ready by then. It needs to go at its own pace as the next few years are so important to me so I want to get it right for those years. There’s no rough date in mind for my race comeback. There’s no pressure on the recovery time. But it’s improving week-by-week and that’s a positive.

Is the rush you had to get ready for the Olympics at the back of your mind?

It wasn’t a rush really – I got injured two months before and just had to hang in there! Any other year and I would’ve just stopped to get things sorted.


We'll be running part two tomorrow. Helen Jenkins is an ambassador for sports performance brand ASICS. To view the new ‘Journey of Improvement’ video, visit; http://www.youtube.com/asicsvideo?x=eu-en_sports_357_4