In the latest in our series of features focusing on the three main aspects of an athlete’s life – work, rest and play – we throw the spotlight on world and Olympic long jump champion Brittney Reese.
The US long jumper is gunning for a hat-trick of long jump titles at the IAAF World Indoor Championships held in Sopot, Poland, in March.
BRITTNEY AT WORK
What is your favourite training session?
Brittney Reese: Yoga. I find it's pretty easy for me. My training partners and I love yoga sessions. It is not super hard for us, so when we have yoga it is a good day.
What is your favourite training venue?
BR: I would like to say every day I train in San Diego (at the Olympic Training Centre). The sun is always out. The great weather makes the weather always seem spring-like, which is perfect conditions to train in.
What is your favourite piece of coaching advice?
BR: Coach (Joe) Walker (Brittney’s ex-coach) told me before my World Indoor title win in Istanbul (in 2012) BFT – Be it, feel it and trust it.
What is your least favourite thing about being an athlete?
BR: The long flights. I don’t like not being able to sleep in my own bed or not being able to eat what I want.
What is your favourite music to listen to when training?
BR: I listen to everything, from gospel to hip hop to R&B.
BRITTNEY AT REST
What is your perfect non-training day?
BR: For me, it is relaxing on the couch, watching some sports on TV and playing video games. I love to play Grand Theft Auto and NBA2K14.
What is your favourite form of stress relief?
BR: I’d have to say yoga. It is a great stress reliever after a hard day’s training. Tuesday is a hard training day and to do yoga on a Wednesday really helps.
What is your favourite movie?
BR: Love & Basketball. I love basketball and I’m a big fan of the actress Sanaa Lathan.
What is your favourite music to chill out to?
BR: I listen to a lot of hip hop.
If you could pick any athlete in the world to relax with, who would it be?
BR: It would have to be JJK (Jackie Joyner-Kersee). She has become my mentor and it would great to spend time with her away from the track
BRITTNEY AT PLAY
We hear you are a big basketball fan. Do you follow a team?
BR: I don’t have a favourite team but I do follow my favourite players. I like to watch LeBron James, Chris Paul and Derrick Rose. I really like LeBron James. He is very confident, very passionate about his sport and loves to improve. I feel that I am similar to LeBron in this way.
What standard did you reach as a basketball player?
BR: I made the all-star team at high school and I made the Hall of Fame at my community college, which is a big accomplishment.
If you could pick one person from athletics who you think would make the best basketball player, who would it be?
BR: I would have to say David Oliver. He has big wide shoulders and would make a great centre. He reminds me of Dwight Howard (the NBA player).
What is your greatest basketball trick?
BR: I used to be able to do the hook. I don’t know whether I could do it now.
Which star basketball player would make the best long jumper?
BR: Derrick Rose. He can jump really high and I feel if you can jump high you can jump long. I’m thinking he could jump around 8.30m.
Steve Landells for the IAAF