My Secret Life: Jessica Ennis, athlete, 25

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The Independent Online

My parents are... very supportive, proud, hard-working and always there for me.

The household I grew up in... I grew up with just one sister and my mum and dad. It was a nice family environment – lots of noise, lots going on, and lots of pets. There was always a lot of cooking.

When I was a child I wanted to... be a chef. My dad's Jamaican, so he always did a lot of homemade Jamaican food, and I picked up on that. But I started to do athletics when I was 10, and so from then that was what I wanted to do.

If I could change one thing about myself... My indecisiveness and impatience.

You wouldn't know it but I'm very good at... driving. Although don't ask my fiancé, he might not agree!

You may not know it but I'm no good at... standing in line – I'm too impatient to queue.

At night I dream of... not a lot – I'm mostly so tired I'm just out in a deep sleep. If I do dream, I get my dream book out the next morning to see what it means. I always wonder how they come to the definitions for each thing, though.

What I see when I look in the mirror... I see areas I want to improve to become a better athlete.

I wish I'd never worn... my black velvet trousers that I wore to school. My mum bought them for me – they were horrible. It must have been when I was about 12; not a good look.

My favourite item of clothing... my Malene Birger dress and my Mulberry handbag. Actually, I've got several: a day-to-day one and a casual one and a clutch!

I drive... a Jaguar XKR.

My house is... very tidy and clean. It's quite cosy, but not too cluttered. I like cleaning, so I clean it a lot! And I've got a dog so I'm always wiping up muddy paw prints.

My favourite building... It's not really a building, but I do have a favourite track – the track in Berlin. It's got a lot of history, and I won my first gold medal at the World Championships there, so it's importantto me.

My secret crush is... My not-so-secret crush is David Beckham.

Movie heaven... Some kind of chick flick: The Bodyguard, Dirty Dancing, or The Notebook – that's such a tearjerker, and they're always good, with lots of popcorn and pick'n'mix.

A book that changed me... I've been reading The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo series. It's not changed me, but it's the last book I enjoyed.

My greatest regret... I don't really have any major regrets – if you do things that don't go your way you can learn from them.

The person who really makes me laugh... is my fiancé, Andy. He's got a good sense of humour – an evil sense of humour sometimes – but he can always make me laugh.

The last time I cried... I was close to tears when I lost my dog recently – she didn't die, I just lost her in the woods! She was gone for three hours and I got upset.

My five-year plan... To be happy, to win lots of gold medals, and have a lovely wedding.

What's the point? Who knows? Just to enjoy it and make the most of opportunities that come your way, and to be happy.

My life in six words... Fun, busy, training, family, Labrador, cooking.

A life in brief

Jessica Ennis was born in 1986. She grew up in Sheffield, and in 2005 she won the heptathlon European Junior Championship. The following year, competing as a senior, she won bronze at the Commonwealth Games. In 2009, Ennis won a gold medal at the IAAF World Championships, and she is the current World and European heptathlon champion. Ennis was awarded an MBE in June, and is an ambassador for Aviva ( She lives in Sheffield with her fiancé