#TwoPointSixChallenge 260 mile challenge

2.6 Challengers run and cycle 260 miles in 26 hours.

In April, Bath brothers Toby and Seb Symington ran and cycled 260 miles in 26 hours to raise funds for Ripple Effect.

In total, they each undertook two marathons of running and three marathons of cycling, to stave off the lockdown ‘boredom’.

The pair have been long term supporters of Ripple Effect for years, running the Bath Half Marathon this year with their mum Hennie for her 60th birthday, but this weekend they have taken their fundraising to the next level.

Raising more than £2,000 in just over a month, the two of them have raised enough to help train 33 families in rural Africa to build a tip tap, take advantage of rainwater harvesting and build a clean latrine. These measures will help vulnerable families to protect themselves from coronavirus and other diseases, whilst improving their quality of life.

“I saw an email from Ripple Effect come through on Friday afternoon asking for people to come up with ideas for the #TwoPointSixChallenge. I went into my brother Sebastian's room and asked him if he fancied doing 260 miles of running and cycling across 26 hours. I believe his answer was 'sure'. And so, after stocking up on a few cereal bars, we set off at 5pm on Saturday, and the next 26 hours were: run, cycle, eat, repeat (unfortunately without the addition of sleep). We collapsed on the lawn at around 6.30pm on Sunday, exhausted but proud to have raised over £1,600 for Ripple Effect. Having done a few charity events for Ripple Effect in the past, we both know what amazing work the organisation does and are delighted to have been able to contribute in any way possible.”

Toby Bath

Meanwhile, their campaign has gained traction online and was even mentioned by @BBCsports on twitter, whilst garnering dozens of supportive messages from family and friends. Listen to their entertaining interview on Premier Christian radio.

The 2.6 Challenge was started by organisers of the London Marathon, which was due to take place this weekend on Sunday 26th April, to ‘save the UK’s charities’. Due to hundreds of fundraising events being cancelled, they have created a “lockdown-friendly event” which is easy for anyone to join in and make a difference, especially for smaller local charities.

Last year, the London Marathon brought in £66.4 million for thousands of charities across the UK, while The 2.6 Challenge has so far raised over £6 million in one day, and there is still plenty of time to get involved. Every small “event” can add up to something worthwhile.

If you’re feeling inspired by Toby and Seb, you’ve still got time to start your own 2.6 Challenge for Ripple Effect to help support the most vulnerable people in rural Africa and ensure that Coronavirus has nowhere else to go.

“The 2.6 Challenge can be anything that works for you,” says Nick Rusling, Co-Chair of the Mass Participation Sports Organisers group (MSO) and CEO of Human Race. “You can run or walk 2.6 miles, 2.6km or for 26 minutes. You could do the same in your home or garden, go up and down the stairs 26 times, juggle for 2.6 minutes, do a 26 minute exercise class or get 26 people on a video call and do a 26 minute workout – anything you like. We want people to get active, have fun and raise money to help save the UK’s charities by giving money or raising funds for the charity close to your heart.”