Nicola's life changed dramatically, when at the tender age of 16, her arm got trapped in a car door, causing life-changing injury to the tendons and nerves.
Ten years on and her arm and hand have never recovered properly and she's had to endure over 20 painful operations, leaving her arm weak and in constant pain.
Nicola was very active when she was younger, which has made it all the more challenging to find herself feeling so unfit in her mid-twenties. Despite being a highly motivated person, she found herself unable to take part in sports and was reluctant to try exercise for fear of not coming up to her own expectations
Having just had her latest hand surgery, Nicola felt it was a good opportunity to re-think her lifestyle and kick-start a healthier regime. So she decided to join Fusion's Robinson Pools & Fitness centre in Bedford, where she started building her confidence through regular swims in the pool and workouts in the gym.
Although Nicola's disability had a big impact on her ability to interact in the same way as others in the gym, the caring staff at Robinson never judged Nicola for her lack of fitness, nor did anyone put pressure on her to work harder or faster than she was capable of. Instead, she felt instantly at home, and was given all the encouragement she needed to keep going at her own speed and in her own way.
After only a month's hard work at both the Robinson Pools & Fitness and another Fusion-managed gym in London, where she works and studies, Nicola feels more positive, more self-aware and now has the confidence and determination to push herself all the way to achieve better physical fitness. She's now fitter and is more in better shape than she's been in years. Nicola also sleeps better, which means less waking up in the middle of the night.
Nicola says having had such a positive experience on her road to fitness, she can see the enormous physical and psychological benefits and would actively encourage others to give exercise a try. Now, she's looking forward to the future and has even given herself what would have previously been an impossible goal - to complete her first ever half marathon in 2018.