Former Banbury Guardian photographer runs lightweight in the London Marathon

Hannah Kemp NNL-180425-115958001
Hannah Kemp NNL-180425-115958001

Former Banbury Guardian photographer Mike Dancer has pulled off an amazing double – losing nearly nine stone and completing the London Marathon.

Mike, 44, who now lives in Wiltshire, is a shadow of his former 20-stone self thanks to cutting out carbohydrates – and running.

Mike Dancer before he lost weight. NNL-180424-213423009

Mike Dancer before he lost weight. NNL-180424-213423009

“I ran the marathon in 5 hours, 29 minutes and 55 seconds,” said Mike, who left the Banbury Guardian’s photographic department in 2006.

Mike’s running habit started soon after he decided to cut out carbs and dairy, introduce portion control and take more exercise.

“There was no defining moment when I decided to lose weight – I never had an issue with it. But I started to cut out the toast and sandwiches and swapped enjoying a pizza watching a movie for going for walks,” he said.

“Within the first month I’d lost one-stone-and-a-half. I still really enjoy my cooking and my food with my wife Anita, but I manage my portions and I’ve cut out snacking.”

Mike Dancer London Marathon. NNL-180424-173846009

Mike Dancer London Marathon. NNL-180424-173846009

Mike’s walks got longer and then he introduced short runs, which got longer and more frequent. From a 20-stone starting point he now weighs a steady 11 stone 7lb.

Mike set out to raise £250 for Cancer Research UK following his wife’s diagnosis with cervical cancer in December 2017 and the deaths of several family members from the disease.

In the event, Anita has undergone surgery and subsequently has been given the all-clear. And Mike’s fund has topped £1,101.

“I didn’t manage to run within my target time because the weather on Sunday was so hot but I’m pleased with how it went. I’m still on my journey into running history... well my running history anyway.”