Rasen area has Britain’s second fittest farmer!

A deer stockman competed in Britain’s Fittest Farmer over the weekend - and he is ready to take it on again next year!
William Arden, second leftWilliam Arden, second left
William Arden, second left

William Arden, 25, says he has been actively involved in the farming industry since the age of 15 and has more recently branched out into deer farming.

But, according to William, his true passion is fitness.

Britain’s Fittest Farmer is a competition run by Farmers Weekly as a fun way of sparking a vital discussion about the physical and mental health of the nation’s farmers.

William Arden.William Arden.
William Arden.

The competition was held at Farm Fitness, an outdoor gym run by farmer’s son Tom Kemp in Essex.

William took on 19 contestants in a variety of punishing physical tasks. The challenges included cross-country sprinting, lugging straw bales, blasts on assault bikes, throwing heavy sandbags over walls, lifting up to 100kg above their heads and deadlifting as 
much as 120kg as many times as they could manage.

William, who came second, said: “This was the first time that I have competed.

“I was feeling fairly nervous ahead of the competition, my aim going into it was to make it to the final and 
then just try my best when I was there. I was very happy with a second place as it was super tough on the day!

“The day itself was great – everyone there was friendly and supportive and I’ve made some new friends!”

William says he has always been interested in farming, adding: “I’ve always lived on a farm, Dad is a farmer and he took over from his father.

“We’re primarily an arable farm but more recently branched out into deer, which are based at Walesby. During lockdown I was the stockman for the deer for about six months.

Farming has always been around me so I’ve been paying attention as I grew up but my true passion is fitness and I would like to set up something similar to 
Farm Fitness one day.”

William also spoke about the mental health implications that farming brings.

He added: “Britain’s Fittest Farmer is half physical and half mental wellbeing.

“I think it’s very important. Everyone struggles at some point to some extent – farmers in particular.

“The job can be lonely and isn’t always the easiest to find someone to talk to about issues, so it’s important to start the conversation.”

On whether William wants to take part next year, he said: “Definitely – and hopefully I’ll manage one better!”

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