At 21, Welshman Gwilym Pugh was a 280 lb insurance salesman, working from home and generally unhappy with his wellbeing. “At that time I was pretty overweight, working 12 hours a day, plagued with injuries which meant I couldn’t train at all,” Pugh told the Daily Mail. “The business was doing okay, but I decided I needed to get my life in order and wanted to get healthy again.” Several years ago, Pugh joined a folk band with his friends and was advised by his barber to grow a beard so he could look the part. Pugh also quit his desk job and subsequently adopted a much healthier lifestyle. “It was the best thing for my health as I stopped sitting for nine to 10 hours a day.”
Needless to say, growing a beard and losing 90 lbs was a pretty considerable transformation … and within five years, Pugh was giving off some major model vibes.
So today has been an absolute whirlwind!! I woke up with a banging hangover after the @vo5 @nmemagazine awards to news the article about my personal journey has pretty much gone viral around the world ? I’m so incredibly grateful to everyone commenting kind words and supporting me, I think it’s easy to criticise people, especially online, but it’s 2018 and we need to start lifting each other up! Literally anything is possible, even if you’re not aware of it yet. . . PS.. huge thank you to @instagram for making my journey possible!! . . . . . . . #beforeandafter #transformation #gingerbeard #weightloss #fatlossjourney #redhead #gingerhair #gingerman #igtransformation @instagram
That’s not an exaggeration, either — Pugh is actually working as a male model now.
Pugh’s modeling career eventually took off when Welsh tailor Nathan Palmer took notice of his Instagram account.