Jenna Compono is just a Long Island girl who got caught up with a bad ex (we’ve all been there!). Little did she know that her ex would be her ticket to MTV’s longest running series: The Real World along with The Challenge. From being on MTV’s season of The Real World Ex-Plosion, to then Rivals III, to Battle of the Exes 2, to Bloodlines, and now The Challenge: Invasion of The Champions, Jenna is becoming a Vet challengers do not want to mess with! Check out our Q&A together to see what Jenna is all about in and out of challenges!
Where did you grow up?
I was born and raised in Long Island New York.
What was your childhood like?
My childhood was great! I am very lucky to have such a huge family that I do absolutely everything with. I am 1 of 6, and have over 50 first cousins. So as you can imagine growing up in my household was very crazy, but a ton of fun.
What were you involved in growing up?
I tried out for sports, but I really wasn’t that athletic. When I was younger I played soccer for a little bit, but I liked the boys on the opposite team we were playing, so I used to help them score in my own goal. As you can imagine, I didn’t stay with soccer. I actually decided I wanted to be a cheerleader and I did that my whole life. I also horseback rode, and competed in a few shows–not too many people know that about me!
What is your favorite childhood memory?
My favorite childhood memory would have to be when my moms side of the family (she is 1 of 7) rented out this huge house upstate for me and all my cousins to stay in (about 30 kids). We went skiing and snowboarding for the weekend. We had the best time there! There was a HUGE staircase where we all went mattress surfing and almost went through the glass door. Also, we had a lot of pranks done to each other to whoever fell asleep first. When we went skiing that weekend I froze at the top of the mountain and was too scared to go down… So my cousin held my hand going down, but I got too scared and jumped on her back and we went flying off the mountain together. She almost broke some bones, but luckily we were both fine!
What Real World season are you from?
I am from Real World Ex-Plosion
What inspired you to go on the show?
I actually never intended to try out. The guy, Jay, who I was dating at the time tried out and made it on to the show. Then we were told they wanted all the exes to come in and live with them, without them knowing. So hey, I got SOMETHING out of that relationship because now I keep getting called back for The Challenge hahaha.
What would you say was the hardest part of the show for you?
I think the hardest part of the show is politicking. People form friends and alliances based on who they room with, or who they know outside of the house. So when it is your rookie year I feel like its almost impossible to form any alliance! Unless you’re hot, then the guys want you to stick around longer so they have something to stare at! hahaha
I see that you are still very close to many of the Real World & The Challenge alum. What would you say was the best friendship the show gave you?
The best friendship I made from this show is by far Nany. I talk to her every single day, and we are just so much alike. She is definitely one of my best friends for life. That girl has been with me through thick and thin and helped me with a lot of life situations. She is genuinely the nicest, most real person out there.
What makes The Challenge series so interesting to join?
In my opinion, I think the most interesting thing about The Challenge is doing crazy stunts that most people will never get to experience in their lifetime. Plus, who gets to travel the world for free, live in a huge mansion, and get paid for it?
What’s the hardest challenge you have ever done on the show?
The hardest challenge I ever had to do on a show was the last challenge before the final on Battle of the Exes 2. We had to slide down 5 ropes over this HUGE building… at night… in the rain! One of the scariest challenges ever. Plus we fell from heights a bunch of times, but this fall felt so long at first I didn’t think my harness was attached–so scary!
Looking back, what advice would you give to yourself now before going on your first Challenge?
Looking back, I would tell myself to take everything people say with a grain of salt. You know these people from a hole in the wall. You don’t know who genuinely has your back or who is trying to get you out of the game. You have to realize everybody is here for the same thing, that big cash prize. So you really can’t take anything personal.
What has been your favorite Challenge season that you’ve been apart of?
I really liked my first season Battle of the Exes 2. I loved being the new girl and I have to say, that was one of the best casts they’ve casted in awhile. A ton of good ol’ vets. I really lucked out with my rookie season, I roomed with a bunch of nice girls, and that’s when I met Nany!
What do you want people to know about you that they don’t get from the shows?
I really am not this big push over who doesn’t speak up. I do when I need to. Not everything that happens is shown, and I can be a little feisty firecracker. Ask anyone back at home! I do have my crazy side..
How do you stay in “challenge” shape?
Oh my gosh. It is IMPOSSIBLE to stay in shape in the challenge house. Usually it’s super hot and humid so no one wants to be working out in that heat. Plus we don’t get to pick our food. The catering company usually brings food that is super salty or just a ton of carbs. I usually gain like 5 or more pounds on the challenge. But as soon as I get home I do a cleanse and get back to my normal routine.
What is your go-to everyday beauty product?
I love BB cream. It is a simple tinted moisturizer with SPF. I don’t really wear too much makeup. Most of the time just the BB cream and mascara.
What is your staple fashion item for any look?
I am from NY, so anything black! hahaha
What is your guilty pleasure?
CANDY!! I have such a big sweet tooth it is so bad sometimes. But hey not 1 cavity! 🙂
What is the best piece of advice you have received?
Hmm… this is a hard one. It’s an old saying: treat others the way you would want to be treated.
What’s a quote you live by everyday?
I live more by a word. And that word is KARMA. It will catch up to you, so I believe that if you are a good person, great karma will come your way!
Make sure to catch Jenna compete on The Challenge: Invasion of the Champions every Tuesday night on MTV!