T100 World Tour

“I used to get nervous when cameras were around” – Gwen Jorgensen on balancing triathlon and social media

Gwen Jorgensen shares her thoughts on the prevalence of social media in professional sports.

Staff Reporter
Last updated -
T100 Triathlon World Tour
Redefining triathlon

As a professional triathlete in the 21st century, your brand and social media presence is often as important as your race results when it comes to securing sponsorship deals and support.

In order to make a living, the majority of top athletes have to spend a considerable amount of time and effort creating content to provide value for their sponsors.

With over 180,000 Instagram followers and 55,000 subscribers on YouTube, Gwen Jorgensen is one of triathlon’s most followed athletes. However, the Olympic gold medallist admitted that managing her online presence hasn’t always come naturally.

“Social media has changed so much, and so have I”

Speaking with TRI247 about the changes she has observed in social media trends within the professional triathlon community since her return to the sport, Jorgensen said that during the past season she had at times let the online pressure get to her.

Gwen Jorgensen reflective World Triathlon Cup Vina del Mer 2023
[Photo credit: World Triathlon / Wagner Araujo]

“Social media has changed so much, and so have I. Some of my early triathlon races were not great because I felt pressure from the media or needing to do posts or say certain things.

“I used to get nervous when cameras were around. When I started running, my husband, Patrick, convinced me to start a YouTube channel. I was very hesitant as I did not, and do not, enjoy the spotlight. It is part of the job, but not the part I love.”

Fortunately, the American has a great team around her including her husband Patrick Lemieux, which has allowed her to have a little more separation from the content side of professional triathlon.

“When we started the YouTube channel thankfully Patrick hired someone very easy to work with who made it easy for me. I didn’t have to do anything extra and could just go about my business. To this day we use people who are easy to work with – Talbot Cox, Kenny Withrow, and others.”


“Having social media makes it easy to help”

Whilst Jorgensen may not particularly enjoy her media responsibilities, she admits that it does have some upsides, with the ability to connect with fans and share her journey to inspire other people a big bonus.

World Triathlon Cup Karlovy Vary 2023 Gwen Jorgensen finish
Photo Credit: Ben Lumley / World Triathlon

“In a way, it’s gotten easier as an athlete because now we produce our own media. I used to have to travel to places to do photo shoots and other commitments but now we are able to create media from the comforts of home without travel.

“For social media I try to be authentic and communicate with fans and followers. To be honest, last year was one of my worst years at reading and responding to comments. This was mostly due to lack of sleep with a newborn.

“This year I have been better at reading and responding like I have previously. I think it’s amazing that we are able to communicate with fans as it’s a great way to inspire and share my journey where some people could hopefully learn.

“One part of my mission statement is to help others and having social media makes it easy to help. Sometimes all it takes is one sentence to help someone and that’s pretty darn cool.

“Social media is also what allows me to earn money. Sponsors don’t come easily but when they do come around I try my best to create a mutually beneficial partnership with companies that I believe and trust in.”

Tomos Land
Written by
Tomos Land
Tomos Land is a triathlon & running journalist whose expertise lies in the professional world of short course & long distance triathlon, though he also boasts an extensive knowledge of ultra-running.
Discover more
TRI-FIT Geo Coral women's tri suit
TRI-FIT GEO Women’s Tri Suit Review – How does it fare in our quest for the ultimate long course kit?
TRI-FIT women's sleeveless tri suit
5 race day mistakes that are sabotaging your triathlon times (and how to fix them)
Kate Auld riding on an indoor trainer
Rouvy vs Zwift: our indoor cyclists put them to the test
Professional triathletes on the bike course at Challenge Almere-Amsterdam
Fastest triathlon courses: Best IRONMAN, long course and middle distance races for a sure-fire personal best
Patagonman swim start
6 tips for taking on an Xtreme triathlon from a PATAGONMAN champion
latest News
Chelsea Sodaro takes the tape at the 2024 IRONMAN New Zealand.
Former IRONMAN World Champion delighted after bouncing back to first full distance win since Kona
World Triathlon Cup Miyazaki 2023 Gwen Jorgensen
Olympic gold medalist praises Boulder training environment ahead of WTCS season opener
Chelsea Sodaro PTO Asian Open 2023 run [Photo credit: PTO / Darren Wheeler]
IRONMAN New Zealand results: Steve McKenna and Chelsea Sodaro take the tape in Taupo
Third placed finisher Braden Currie sits on podium at St George photo credit IRONMAN
Former champion makes shock last minute withdrawal from IRONMAN New Zealand
Lucy-Charles Barclay and Daniela Ryf - IRONMAN World Championship 2023 Press Conference
Triathlon legend Daniela Ryf announces SHOCK retirement and reveals calendar for final season
Story to tell?
Share interesting & inspirational stories with our news team
The SBRX Group

Proudly elevating endurance sports through content, products & services

Share to...