Lincolnshire farmer celebrates transformative weight loss

A Lincolnshire farmer says his friends and family were “amazed” after losing five stone by starting a weight-loss program during the first coronavirus lockdown. Charles Anyan, who runs a farm in the village of Springthorpe in West Lindsey, said he was immediately concerned about his weight when the pandemic hit.

The 41-year-old said: “I’ve always been quite a big guy and I was known as a big guy but I’d always been playing rugby and swimming when lockdown came and I couldn’t do those things anymore, I thought quickly , if I didn’t do anything else I would end up being 20 Stone.

“This is not a place I wanted to be because I’m only 5ft 7” and although running was something I never wanted to do, a friend challenged me at the start of lockdown, a 5k for the NHS and keen to be ready I went in search of my trainers.

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“I couldn’t really find my sneakers so I just walked barefoot into my orchard and jogged very slowly for about 40 minutes and I took the first picture of myself after I did that. I then went to Amazon and ordered some sneakers and four days later I put them on and tried the 5k on.”

Although Charles said that his first 5k attempt “absolutely killed him”, he eventually found it easier and began to work his way up to 6k and 8k runs. Finally, in September 2020, he hit a virtual 10,000 and started losing a “significant” amount of weight.

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Charles Anyan after his weight loss.

Two years after his first light jog around his orchard, Charles is now down to 12 stone. Despite his initial reluctance to take up running, he has now completed several endurance races and ran the Manchester marathon in 3 hours 45 minutes earlier this year.

Many of his runs benefit the Farming Community Network charity, which works with people involved in farming to support their mental health, and Charles says around £23,000 was raised through the two campaigns he led. Referring to his advice to others, Charles added: “I would advise people to just put on their sneakers and try because it’s difficult at first, but it’s just a matter of building up and it gets easier and easier.

“My friends and family were actually quite shocked because obviously a lot of them hadn’t seen me during lockdown and I think they could see the difference. Physically I don’t feel very different inside, but mentally I feel so much better and I can feel that every time I look in the mirror.”

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