Susie Nicholas

Community Activator

Tell us little about yourself?

I am originally from Lancashire but now live in Sutton Coldfield with my husband, Richard, and two children, James (12) and Charlotte (8).
I am a solicitor, specialising in employment law. I am also a trustee of Pregnancy Sickness Support, a national charity that supports women suffering from the pregnancy complication hyperemesis gravidarum.
No pets at the moment although I am pestered by my daughter on a daily basis!

How did you get into Triathlon?

Six years ago, I had knee surgery after more than 20 years of doing hardly any sport. It was a long rehab process and I needed a goal to keep me motivated. As part of my physiotherapy, I started to run a bit, cycle in the gym and swim – so a triathlon seemed like a logical step and I signed up to the supersprint triathlon in Sutton Park in 2015.

It was an immensely proud and emotional moment crossing the finish line – not just the culmination of 18 months of hard work, but also something I never imagined would be possible. The “Mum’s First Triathlon” trophy that my kids gave me still has pride of place on the mantelpiece!

What is it you love about Triathlon?

I like the variety of the three disciplines and the fact that I can fit training around my other commitments.

I have also found it to be a very welcoming and supportive sport. The fact that there are different distances means it’s great for people of different abilities and for people who can’t fit in the hours of training needed to do the longer distance events. It’s perfect for me.

Is there a race you would recommend?

I don’t have a favourite race but I think the GO TRI initiative is a fantastic way of getting people involved in the sport. The events are reasonably priced and accessible, with distances that are achievable for novices. I have done several over the last few years and one of my favourites was a family aquathlon where I took part with my son …even though he beat me!

Have you suffered a mishap or funny situation leading up to or during a race?

Not a funny moment but definitely a memorable one …

A couple of years ago, I won a competition to enter the team relay in the Castle Triathlon series. It was a lot of fun even though we were clearly way behind all the other teams. At the end, we were announced over the tannoy as the last team to finish and the four of us ran down the finishing straight to huge cheers and applause, high-fiving all the other teams as we crossed the finish line.

What is your personal sporting highlight or achievement?

There are a couple that stand out:

The Birmingham Half Marathon in 2016. I have never been a runner (I’m still not) and so it was a major challenge for me.

Last year, I took part in a 3-day challenge in Snowdonia to raise money for charity. We hiked for two very long days (descending Snowdon’s Watkin path in the dark!), camped in freezing temperatures, abseiled and scrambled into an old slate mine, hiked through waterlogged mine tunnels and kayaked. It was an amazing experience but the hardest and at times probably the scariest thing I have ever done.

Do you have a dream or bucket list event?

Since my son was 7, we have attended the Kids’ Fun Triathlon in Whitchurch. There’s always a great atmosphere, it’s a lovely venue and I have always fancied doing the “Ultimate 1/4” event that takes place the day afterwards.

When not training or competing what other hobbies / interests do you have?

When I’m not freezing at the side of a football or hockey pitch I can normally be found running Mum’s taxi service!