Costs of being a triathlete; a booming sport — er, lifestyle
- In 2006, there were 16 Ironman-branded races throughout the world; in 2008 there are 34 — many of which sell-out within hours of opening their online registration.
- Costs for completing an Ironman? Entry fees are around $500. Add $3,000 for the typical tri bike, $200 for bike shoes, another few hundred for accessories and cycling gear, $350 for a wetsuit, $150 for running shoes, maybe $750 for coaching services and gym memberships, and another two-grand for airfare to and weeklong lodging in places like Kona, Hawaii or Nice, France.
- Average household income of a triathlete? $177,000. Says one industry insider, “I don’t think [triatheltes] are the people getting laid off. They’re the people laying off.”
- Membership to USA Triathlon, the sport’s governing body, increased by 15 percent in 2008, to 115,000.
- Subscriptions to Triathlete magazine continue to climb, as do their advertising rates. Circulation is now at 70,000, a 10 percent annual increase.
Thirty years ago, who would have thought that a simple race among training buddies in San Diego, CA would morph into a sport lifestyle of the wealthy?