At the time Nicola Adams first dreamed of being an Olympic boxing champion, the women’s event did not even have its own national championships, let alone a place in the Games. A year earlier, at the age of 12, she had started boxing against boys, at which point she realised she was made of some “different stuff”.

In the latest episode of the LifeTimes podcast series, she explains how she overcame the odds, prejudice, homophobia and sexism to make the implausible a reality, winning gold at London 2012 before defending the title four years later at Rio de Janeiro.

Make sure you subscribe so that you never miss an episode, including shows with Paul Pogba, Fran Kirby, Eddie Jones and Colin Jackson. This episode is hosted by Matthew Syed and produced by Lucy Lavery, it is a Times Sport production, to discover more of our award winning journalism visit

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