Players who have piled on some weight during lockdown and want to get fit again for the fast, new, non-contact rugby may want to sign up to an initiative launched by Old Albanians and raise money for charities which include the RFU Injured Players Foundation.

Having run this just for the club, after scrum half Morgan Thompson suggested it as a way for the first team to get everyone fit and re-engaged, lots of other members wanted to join in and players from seven of the club sides signed up, from the Colts to the men’s and women’s vets.

The original Calorie Challenge was such a success that, led by Director of Rugby James Osborn, the club ran another and rolled it out to other clubs.   

Old Albanian and OA Saints diehards were joined by players from 11 clubs who took up the challenge, including: Burley, Bideford, Bancroft, Driffield, Henley, Silhillians, Guildfordians, Marlow Ladies and the women from Rams Sirens.

They were all raising funds via a joining fee and further donations for the RFU Injured Players Foundation, the charity having helped a club player who fortunately made a good recovery from a potentially serious injury; NHS Charities Together and Show Racism the Red Card.

Now they are running the challenge again - on Saturday 5th September. Open to individuals, teams and clubs, to any age or sport, it will again be supporting the IPF. Given the tough circumstances at present, the donation entry fee is whatever you can give from £2 upwards and everyone would be encouraged to ask friends, family and colleagues to give anything they're able in these unprecedented times.

"We’ve had lots of running, cycling, swimming, triathlons, half marathons and weight sessions," said James. "One girl ran in full cricket gear and a landscape gardener landscaped for 12 hours. Ange Wadham from Old Albanian Saints was top performer in both events. In the July event she did an 11hrs + bike ride covering more than 120 miles. I think she burned off something like seven and a half thousand calories and some less high achievers called for a stewards enquiry.”

Having raised some £1,500, working alongside partners MyMealAway and FlexiionMSP they want to help charities who currently need donations more than ever and do it by “having some fun and raising money for three fantastic causes.”

So why not help them to help others and burn off some calories at the same time.  All are welcome, just visit https:/www.caloriechallenge.org for all the information

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