Not your average solicitor
- Credit: Archant
Rachel Willmott is not your run of the mill solicitor.
As well as working full-time at Rayden Solicitors on Upper Marlborough Road, the 27-year-old is a former seven-time national junior squash champion and a Great Britain triathlete.
Willmott’s squash days are behind her but she’s only at the beginning of her triathlon career having picked up the sport three years ago. That hasn’t stopped her ascending the ranks though, and next week she flies out to Geneva to compete in the ETU Sprint Distance Triathlon European Championships.
After that, she heads out to Chicago in September for the world championships having come eighth in the 25-29 age group last year in Edmonton to earn her place.
“I’d like to come in the top five at the worlds,” said Willmott when asked what her aims are. “Canada was amazing. It was a nerve-racking experience because you normally know a few friends at races, but it was a complete unknown. It was a weird position to be in but it was really good fun.
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“Hopefully I can do a bit better this year.”
She added: “I’ve never done the Europeans before so I’ll be interesting to see what the standard is like. I’m sure it’ll be tough so I just have to do my best.”
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Willmott’s transition from novice to world championship competitor has been rapid. She admitted she was hooked after her first race, despite pretty miserable conditions.
“It was horrendously wet and I kept thinking: ‘why am I doing this at 6am in the morning on a Sunday?’ I remember my first race very well,” she joked.
“It didn’t put me off at all, though. In fact, it spurred me on to do more and train harder. It’s so addictive; once I did one I wanted to do more and it developed from there.”
When it comes to training and juggling work, Willmott, who admitted her strongest discipline is cycling and weakest is running, says getting into a routine and staying dedicated are her keys to success.
“Training is going well, although it’s really busy at work. It’s just a case of getting into a routine and being dedicated enough,” she said.
“I manage to train twice a day. If I go swimming in the morning then I’ll go to the gym or out running straight after work.”
With so much on her plate with work and triathlons, it’s very clear that Willmott is not your average solicitor.