Trav­el­ling life

The Daily Telegraph - Travel - - INTERVIEW - In­ter­view by Sarah Ewing

How of­ten do you travel?

I’m con­stantly shut­tling be­tween my home in Leeds, where I grew up, and San Fran­cisco. I’m based there for box­ing train­ing with the Amer­i­can coach Vir­gil Hunter at his gym in Oak­land, Cal­i­for­nia. He’s train­ing cham­pi­ons in­clud­ing Amir Khan. I’m look­ing to buy an apart­ment in San Fran­cisco soon. When­ever I’m not com­pet­ing, I go back to Leeds for a cou­ple of weeks. I’m just start­ing to get used to the 11-hour flights, an eight-hour time dif­fer­ence and the jet lag.

Any ad­vice on over­com­ing jet lag?

I ad­just my be­hav­iour to the time of my des­ti­na­tion, so when I’m fly­ing back to the US, I try to sleep on the plane when every­body in San Fran­cisco would be sleeping and then wake up ac­cord­ingly.

What do you need for the per­fect hol­i­day?

In the sum­mer, I like to be on a nice beach hav­ing a piña colada cock­tail and do wa­ter sports, such as jet ski­ing or banana boat­ing. In the win­ter, I ab­so­lutely love snow­board­ing. Wher­ever I go, I need some­thing with lots of ac­tiv­i­ties to keep me busy, oth­er­wise I get bored eas­ily.

Your ear­li­est mem­ory of trav­el­ling abroad?

Some of my hap­pi­est mem­o­ries grow­ing up are of go­ing to New York on hol­i­day for six weeks ev­ery sum­mer. We had fam­ily there and I re­ally used to look for­ward to it. I saw all the ma­jor sights such as the Statue of Lib­erty and the Em­pire State Build­ing. My cousins and I would hang out at the lo­cal pizza par­lour and I’d beg my dad to take me to the theme parks. Back home, we’d go on reg­u­lar day trips to theme parks such as Al­ton Tow­ers and Thorpe Park. Ev­ery year I’d hope that I’d grown enough to go on some of the rides for older kids. I still love theme parks.

Most un­usual places you’ve com­peted?

The first was Ningbo, China, in 2008 for the World Am­a­teur Cham­pi­onships. That’s where I won my first world medal – a sil­ver. It’s an in­dus­trial coastal town with one of the busiest ports in the world. I def­i­nitely had cul­ture shock. It was teem­ing with peo­ple – I couldn’t get over how crowded it was.

Back in July 2013, for the Euro­pean Union Am­a­teur Cham­pi­onships, I fought in Keszthely, Hun­gary. It’s a small but beau­ti­ful lake­side re­sort town, steeped in his­tory and sur­rounded by an area known for its wine and spas. It was re­ally, re­ally hot, but oddly rather than the fight be­ing held in a typ­i­cal sports hall or arena, it was in a gi­ant wedding mar­quee. Very ran­dom.

Favourite hol­i­day des­ti­na­tion?

Mi­ami. I first went there in 2010 for a train­ing camp in

Favourite ho­tels?

The Shangri-La at the Shard and the Park Lane Hil­ton, both in London. At the Shangri-La, I love the 360-de­gree views over the cap­i­tal which are es­pe­cially mag­i­cal and beau­ti­ful by night. At the Park Lane, I re­ally love the staff and the bar on the top floor – they do the best cock­tails.

Favourite restau­rant?

There are too many to name, be­cause I do so much eat­ing out. But I es­pe­cially love Mex­i­can food, so I’m lucky that San Fran­cisco has some fan­tas­tic ex­am­ples such as La Ta­que­ria, Colibri and Gra­cias Madre. I love Brazil­ian steak­houses, too. Fogo de Chão is an ex­cel­lent choice.

Worst travel ex­pe­ri­ence?

When I was 24, I was on a girls’ hol­i­day in Por­tu­gal and got bit­ten by a spi­der, which made my leg bal­loon af­ter it got in­fected. I still have a scar from it. These days I seem to be cursed by air­port and flight de­lays, but I use the time to go over work, read through scripts

Favourite city for nightlife?

You can’t beat London. I’m not a big drinker, but af­ter months of pre­par­ing for a com­pe­ti­tion, I love go­ing out to let my hair down and cel­e­brate af­ter­wards.

Ni­cola Adams Boxer and Olympian

Favourite air­line?

I love Vir­gin At­lantic and Bri­tish Air­ways. They of­fer great di­rect flights from the UK to San Fran­cisco.

Your one travel es­sen­tial?

My tablet, which is loaded with books, movies and tele­vi­sion shows.

What do you hate about trav­el­ling?

I’m quite im­pa­tient from the time I get to the air­port to the flight, al­ways look­ing at the clock.

Where next?

Aus­tralia ap­peals. I’m go­ing to ar­range a rumble in a jun­gle out there so I can visit. Be­lieve (Viking, £14.99) by Ni­cola Adams is out now.

Peb­bles Beach, in Carlisle Bay, Bar­ba­dos, at sun­set, above; and Lombard Street, San Fran­cisco, right

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