Introducing Jess Stenson
Our newest lululemon Ambassador
Whether it’s chasing Olympic gold or after her three-year old son Billy, Jess Stenson is no stranger to being put through her paces. As an elite distance runner, physiotherapist, mum and coach, Jess wears many hats. So how does the newest addition to our Ambassador community find balance? For Jess, pregnancy provided a renewed sense of motivation and appreciation for running.
“In 2018, training had become a grind but for me, motherhood broke that cycle and I’m loving running more than ever now,” she says. “Despite the natural challenges that come with parenthood, I feel like my mental health since becoming a mum has been the best it’s ever been. I feel less pressure as an athlete because I feel complete and fulfilled in other ways.”
Jess’ renewed love for her sport quickly translated to on-track success. In her first marathon post-partum, Jess clocked a new personal best – smashing her previous record by 46 seconds and recording the fourth fastest time ever by an Australian. Fast forward to 2022, Jess won the women’s marathon at the Birmingham Commonwealth Games – her first Commonwealth Games since becoming a mum – and the first marathon son Billy was in the stands to cheer her on for.
Jess attributes her success quite simply to her love of running, balanced approach to training and strong support network. Looking ahead, Jess is excited to be welcoming her second child with husband Dylan later this year, keeping active and representing Australia again at the highest level.
“There used to be a lot of fear and advice against exercising during pregnancy, but there is more and more evidence coming out to show that it’s actually really beneficial,” she says. “I’d love to be an advocate for other mums, and the physio in me loves playing a role in getting that message out there.”
Keen to know more about the newest addition to our Ambassador community? We caught up with Jess to chat through her core values, how she stays motivated and why she’s partnered with lululemon.
lululemon: Running is typically viewed as an individual sport, how do you stay motivated?
Jess: I am very goal-driven and find ticking off my long-term, short-term and daily goals very rewarding. At my first Olympic Games in 2012 I realised the importance of making the process as enjoyable as possible. I achieve this by organising to train with others regularly, fuelling appropriately, ensuring I get enough sleep, maintaining a healthy balance between training commitments and socialising, and listening to my body. Motivation tends to come naturally when I am having fun and am able to keep these aspects of my life in check.
lululemon: What are your favorite lululemon products to train in?
Jess: I love wearing the Energy Bra Long Line for speed work and more intense sessions. The Align HR Short 6", Tracker LR Short 4" and all the ribbed tanks are my go-to's on training days.
lululemon: How do you like to feel when running?
Jess: Ideal, I like to feel smooth, strong and light on my feet. Those moments when running feels effortless and your mind is in the zone make the hard work worthwhile.
lululemon: How do you look after your wellbeing?
Jess: It's definitely something that has evolved over time. Running provides me with an opportunity every day to tune out, be amongst nature and get my thoughts together. It also provides a real sense of satisfaction when you complete a run and easily measures your progress. My wellbeing is definitely supported when I'm feeling healthy and have the ability to move, something I really came to appreciate during pregnancy. I'm a big person, so spending time with family and friends also fills my cup.
lululemon: Which of lululemon's values align with your own core values and why?
Jess: Honesty, courage and connection resonate strongly with my own core values. Stepping out of your comfort zone can naturally feel uncomfortable but it is also where you can learn so much about yourself and life. For me, connection is associated with happiness and purpose. I love spending quality time with the special people in my life but also really enjoy meeting new people and learning their life stories. Honesty is a quality that was instilled in me by my parents at a very young age, and is also a trait I admire in my husband Dylan.
lululemon: What's a goal you're currently working towards?
Jess: Raising healthy, happy and empowering children. Representing Australia again at the highest level and setting personal best times in the 5000m through to the marathon distance. Breaking the South Australian marathon record (currently held by Lisa Ondieki) and inspiring more people to enjoy the many benefits of running and living an active lifestyle.
lululemon: Tell us something about you we don't know..
Jess: I love art - that's my activity where I can just zone out and time just passes without me realising. I love sketching people's pets, in particular.
Grounded in a shared purpose of creating impact in the community, lululemon is proud to welcome Jess Stenson as our newest Ambassador.
Jess joins lululemon AUNZ's growing roster of elite athlete ambassadors, including Australian rules football player Max Gawn , tennis player Daria Saville , triathlete and disability advocate James Parr , and more.
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