Kensington and Chelsea Chronicle

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Physio Fidler to represent GB in triathlon

Athlete’s bid to lose weight helps her put on vest for Championships

A Physio at the Royal Hospital Chelsea is to represent Great Britain in the triathlon – just two years after taking up the sport to lose weight.

Laura Fidler, who works at the hospital’s outpatients clinic, was finding her size 14 clothes too tight and was miserable at the thought of having to buy a new size 16 wardrobe – that was until a colleague suggested she take up running to lose weight.

Having also done a charity cycle from John O’Groats to Land’s End, and always been a good swimmer, the triathlon seemed a natural progression, and Fidler is now about to pull on a GB vest at the World Triathlon Championships in Auckland.

She said: “One of my colleages, John Munroe, is a middle distance running coach, and he said if I lost two pounds I would be in good shape for a runner. I was always quite sporty, but never enjoyed rnning and took it up only to lose weight. However, when I ran my first 10k in 45 minutes, John said it was a good time and encouraged me to keep it going. I hadn’t cycled for a few years, but I was always a strong swimmer.”

Together with Munroe, Fidler formed a new triathlon club called PremierTri, which runs in Battersea Park, swims in Balham and cycles in Richmond Park.

She said: “I gound the though of joining a bluc pretty intimidating, so I wanted to start a club easy for beginners to join, although some of our members take it pretty seriously. Since the Olympics we have had so much interest and new members joining.”

The tournament in Auckland takes place on October 22 over the Olympic distance, where Fidler, as an amateur, will get to run, swim and cycle the same course as the pros. However, her long-term aim is to become an elite athlete herself, and she even beat four of them in last weekend’s London Triathlon, finishing first in her age group and third overall.

She added: “I’m aiming for elite status next year, but I have to be in the top three of the Triathlon Super Series where I’m in the age 25-29 category.

“It was one of my goals to qualify for the World Championships, which i did by finishing in the top three of one of the qualifying races. It is still down to discretion of the selectors but I knew I had raced well and had a good chance.

KENSINGTON AND CHELSEA CHRONICLE 5TH OCTOBER 2012