Destinee is a 25 year old professional track and field athlete. She has 5 brothers and 2 sisters who helped her to become the amazing athlete she is today. She started running track in high school, just to have something do do after basketball season was over. She quickly excelled at track and it was no going back from there.
After all that you accomplished, what drives you to continue running?
What drives me is my nephew and nieces. They look up to me and look to me to set an example. So I want to be the best I can be, on and off the track, for them.
How do you motivate yourself on days when you don't feel like running?
I remind myself of my goals and the sacrifices I’ve made throughout the years. I’ve worked too hard to let one off day mess it up.
What's it like to be a part of such a great history of USC sprinters?
USC is a historic university with historic athletes from the past, present, and the future. I am honored to be apart of such a great tradition. It really is a feeling that you can’t describe, but I have a great deal of pride in myself and my Alma mater.
What was one of the biggest hurdles to overcome while balancing track and school at USC?
USC took really good care of us on every end. They gave us the best councilors, tutors, academic advisors, and everything in between. That made the academic side easier. I’d say my biggest hurdle was finding time to rest and recover because I had weights at 6:30 am, then breakfast at 8, class from 8:30 to 1:30, practice from 2 to 4 and more class from 6 to 8. And when I got home, I still had to do stuff like cook, shower, study, and do homework. So finding time to rest was challenging, and the body needs rest.
What has been your most memorable race since college?
My most memorable race since college was the Sprint Medley relay starts Penn Relays. That was where we broke the World Record. It was exhilarating to hear the crowd chanting “USA” and to be competing against other countries. It made me feel like I was running for something much bigger than myself. I was running for my country.
What's been your biggest competitive lesson learned since going pro?
I’ve learned that the amount of races you get as a professional are significantly less than the amount you get in college. By the time I ran my first race professionally, I would’ve ran 20 races already in college. So that means every time I race, I have to give it my all. I can’t afford to have a bad race or pass up on a meet because every race counts.
What does your weight training consist of and which exercise do you feel helps your running the most?
We do a lot of olympic lifts and isolated lifts to strengthen each leg individually. I am a power running so I feel like power cleans help me most because it’s working on my force and speed at the same time.
What's the weirdest or funniest thing that ever happened to you while running?
I guess the funniest thing would be that I passed gas while running, ha! Each step for about 4 steps was me passing gas.
What venue has been your favorite to race at?
Penn Relays has been my favorite place to run at because the crowd is electric! They are so passionate and supportive, it makes for a great environment.
What can you tell us about team Jet?
Team Jet is my mentor Carmelita Jeter’s brand. She has been my mentor since high school and once I finished college, I began to train with her and officially became a part of Team Jet. Team Jet isn’t necessarily a group or team, it’s more so a mindset or a lifestyle. If you’re a part of Team Jet, then you have the same mindset, mentality, and eagerness to win as her. As a part of Team Jet, you give nothing shy of your best every single time because she won’t let you settle for less. It definitely brings the best out of you.
What's it like to represent your country on some of the biggest stages in the sport?
It’s a great sense of pride. Hearing the National Anthem never sounded so sweet as it did when I was running with “USA” across my chest. Getting the chance to represent my country in such large scales has been one of the best feelings I’ve ever felt.
Who would you say is the funniest teammate?
My funniest teammate in college was Dior Hall. She was always doing crazy faces and noises and randomly blurting out crazy stuff. There was never a dull moment when she was around.
Do you like ice baths?
NO! I’m not one who likes things cold in general, so an ice bath is close to torture for me. I much rather prefer a warm Epsom salt bath because I can relax. I tense up the whole 7 to 10 minutes that I’m in the ice bath.
In your free time when you’re not running, what hobby’s do you enjoy?
I enjoy chill stuff like going to the beach, going to the movies, shopping, playing pool and stuff like that.
What's the most important tip you like to give new runners?
Just enjoy it. Do it because you want to, not because you have to. Before every run or every rep or every jog, remember why you got out of bed to do it. Rather it’s because you want to lose weight, or live healthier, or make an Olympic team. Always remember your why and you’ll work much harder.
When it comes to running, what would you say is your biggest strength and weakness?
My biggest strength is my start because I’m powerful and explosive. My biggest weakness is my finish because I don’t have the best endurance but I’m working on it.
Who is someone you look up to in the sport?
I look up to Carmelita Jeter because she wasn’t the fastest coming out of college, but she didn’t let that stop her. She worked her way up to become the fastest woman alive. I admire her never give up attitude and win at all costs mentality.
Who is one of your favorite athletes to train with?
One of my favorite athletes to train with is Deanna Hill because she always pushed herself to be great. She tried to be technically sound while running as well. I’d look at her do runs and try to learn from her and she never hesitated to help or demonstrate concepts that I may have needed more help understanding. She was a team player.
If you could compete in one Field event, which would you choose?
I’m sure I wouldn't be much good at it because I’m on the shorter side, but I’ve always loved high jump. I love how they glide over the bar and how they stand next to the bar and the bar is much taller than they are. It’s a very elegant looking event.
Did you ever imagine you'd be where you are today in the sport?
I can’t say that I did. I never imagined I’d be running track at all, let alone professionally. I thought I’d be playing basketball in the WNBA, but my life took a different turn. I am proud of how far I’ve come, but I did not imagine I’d be here today.
What's next for Destinee Brown?
After track, I want to take up commercial acting and modeling. I know it’s a tough industry, but I’d like to give it a shot.
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