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In the beginning…

By Nick Nellis

So, as we re-launch the Team TFC website we thought it worth including some member stories and for me to blog my progress recovering from a broken ankle.

So I shall use this first entry to take the opportunity give you a bit of background about me, for those that don’t know me already.

I am a Brit who has been living in Germany for many years now, having moved over here for work. As a kid, I was sporty and active, but never stuck to just one sport. I was someone who liked doing everything, although funnily enough cycling wasn’t really one of the sports I got into. Rugby, swimming, (field) hockey, badminton, skateboarding, snowboarding and so on…

At university, I took up, erm, more “social” activities shall we say, and got rather unfit for many years. It wasn’t until I started working a lot with the military, that I decided to get fit and started running and playing squash. I can remember my first run – I managed about 1/2 mile before getting shin splints and I was so out of breath I had to stop and walked home. I stuck with it though and set myself tough targets,signing up to do the run in a triathlon relay. That then got me into triathlon and back in to swimming, and was the reason I bought my first road bike – a nice entry level aluminium Giant.

I was getting pretty fit again, then moved to Germany with work and started the cycle again of leaving exercise to one side, gaining weight and getting unfit. After a couple of years I’d had enough and got back into triathlon and . I gave up smoking my pack and a half a day and completed an Ironman with a buggered ankle – turns out I have arthritis in my right ankle and was told to stop running – therein my triathlon career ended… but got very much into open water swimming instead.

Cue new job time again… along with starting a family and the familiar sequence was repeated again for many years, getting overweight and unfit. I would be lucky to get out on the bike more than a handful of times a year and barely made it to the pool any more.

Now, we get to the end of 2017 and I had heard about all these fancy new developments with indoor trainers and online cycling, so I decided this would be a much easier way to get fit if I didn’t have to deal with having to go outside! I got an Elite Turbo Muin and set up on Zwift and I was hooked! I started out like most people, doing for free riding and some beginner group rides, then discovered racing and the TFC series. That of course led me to joining the team 😀

Then in February of 2018 my life as I knew it came crashing down around me as I lost my wife, leaving me with our 4 year old son. Part of what helped get me through this part of my life was Zwift and the team, with getting to know everyone, the banter and fun. It certainly helped me to take my mind off things and have something else to concentrate on. And there was a lot of support from others in the team that had gone through similar things in their life.

So with that setting the scene, and also being a fair bit longer than I was expecting, we shall continue with the journey in the next entry…

This Post Has 3 Comments

  1. Mike

    Thanks for sharing and I agree that Zwift is a marvelous link to staying sane in efforts to stay healthy etc. Look forward to reading more.

  2. Guy Vandersmissen

    Very nice intro Nick. Pitty for the sad site of the story. Maybe you can add a proud picture of you and your son in next blog. Anyway, looking forward to hear the rest of it.

  3. Jim Reeves

    Top man Nick, hurry up and get back fit (but don’t rush it), missing my nemesis!!

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