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Sports Challenge competitors clock up 1003 hours

In two weeks 204 participants in the #TrinTogether Lockdown2 Sports Challenge clocked up 1003 hours of exercise – in Cambridge, the Fens, Cyprus, Denmark, Germany New York, Singapore, Australia and New Zealand.

Co-organiser TCSU Male Welfare officer, Roly Peel, said: ‘This is a really excellent achievement. It’s been great to see the whole College community coming together, wherever they were in the world.’

Seven College teams took part across undergraduates, postgraduates, staff, Fellows and alumni. The challenge, which ran from Monday 16 November until midnight on Sunday, was designed to encourage people to exercise, for their mental health and physical wellbeing during the second Lockdown, whether they were working from home, in isolation, in College or back in their home country.

The core activities were running and cycling, but also included yoga, football training, dance and dumbbell workouts, and dog walking. If there was a prize for unusual activities it would go to BA President Steph McGimpsey, who played frisbee as well as enjoying some Irish dancing (in which she has trained professionally.)

Even if the Sports Challenge meant exercising alone for many, participants came together via Strava. There were memorable moments. Like Bar staff member Ilenia Casale’s train trip to London, advertently logged as a 68-mile walk!

Tisal Edirisinghe on his bike

PhD student Tisal Edirisinghe said: ‘Since the first lockdown, I started cycling as a new form of exercise. I regularly cycle now and mix it up with jogs along the bank of the Cam. I love working out because it gives me an excuse to blast out some rock music on my headphones while staying fit and healthy at the same time!’

Isabelle Desisto on Parker’s Piece

Postgraduate student Isabelle Desisto exercised regularly on Parker’s Piece alternating between jogging and bodyweight/strength workouts while alumnus David Nicholson took advantage of the quiet streets around the Emirates Stadium to run with his son. He said: ‘I’ve enjoyed seeing other alumni Strava posts. Some fantastic athletes! Thanks for organising the competition.’

David Nicholson and son Remy

PhD student, Thomas Graff, has been running around Central Park in New York where he has been living during the COVID pandemic. ‘I have very much appreciated the quiet community of fellow runners that I’ve been able to spend time with these past few months – not to mention our Trinity Sports community!’ he said.

Thomas Graff taking a break from running

The winning team was third-year undergraduates who averaged 6.2 hours of exercise each. Here are the results in full: Third Years – 6.4 hours, Staff and Fellows – 6.2 hours, Second Years – 5.8 hours, Alumni – 5.4 hours, Fourth Years – 3.8 hours, First years – 3.4, BAs – 3.4 hours.

In recognition of this #TrinTogether achievement, the College is donating £1000 to charity – the beneficiary to be decided by the Sports Challenge participants.

Vanessa Tang, TCSU Female Welfare officer and co-organiser, said:

It is great that the hard work and sweat of students, staff, Fellows, and alumni have all paid off as they will be matched by a donation to charity by the College!

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