Lewis Hamilton has revealed he has lost almost a stone in weight after contracting coronavirus at the end of last month.
The seven-time Formula One world champion tested positive for the virus on November 30 before self-isolating for a 10-day period.
But he has admitted he is still battling the after-effects of the virus, more than three weeks on from his initial diagnosis.
“I’ve lost 6kg over the past two months,” Hamilton wrote on his Instagram story. “Four of which I lost when I got Covid.
“I’ve lost so much muscle. Starting from a low point in strength now, not fun but I’m determined to get my strength back and to be 100 per cent again. No pain, no gain.”
Hamilton, 35, uploaded his post from the gym where he is working to build himself back up to fitness.
It was only little over a week ago that the Mercedes driver battled back to health to take part in the final Grand Prix of the season in Abu Dhabi.
Hamilton had initially returned three negative tests following his victory in the Bahrain Grand Prix on November 29, before eventually recording a positive one after complaining of mild symptoms.
The Stevenage-born driver had been in Dubai with friends and family prior to travelling to Bahrain, and was informed someone in that party had also tested positive.
At one stage it looked as though he might miss the season finale, having already been forced to sit out the Sakhir Grand Prix on December 6, though by that stage he had already wrapped up his seventh world title.
Speaking after the race in Abu Dhabi on December 13 – in which he finished third on the podium – Hamilton admitted he was “destroyed” and “happy to be alive”.
He has since been crowned the BBC’s Sports Personality of the Year for the second time for his achievements this year, but joined the ceremony via video link from home to accept his award.
Hamilton now has three months to prepare for the new F1 season, and is set to end all speculation over his future by signing a lucrative new contract with Mercedes worth a reported £40million a year.