Chris Tull is a writer based out of the Dallas/Fort Worth area. Once upon a time, he was a ‘burgers-and-beer-only’ kind of guy. Chris has since lightened up on the diet and added yoga, weight lifting, and (of course) triathlon training to the mix.
The Frugal Triathlete
Let’s face it, triathloning can be expensive. However, there are many ways for the frugal triathlete to pay for equipment, training, travel, and race entry fees without going broke.
Let’s face it: triathlon can be expensive. However, there are many ways for the frugal triathlete to pay for equipment, training, travel, and race entry fees without going broke. Thus, in the tradition of Dave Letterman, here are the top ten ways for triathletes to pay for the 2005 season.
OK, so you got the Top Ten Hints on paying for Triathlons. But do they really work?
Here’s a Q&A with Joe, a B.T.com subscriber who had some success in getting special treatment through sponsors. While he didn’t make millions he did manage to make the triathlon bill a little lighter.
Q: How much did you spend on triathlons this year - Entry fees, equipment, travel expense etc.
A: I spent roughly $2500 - gym membership $360, MTB $300, Tri Bike $1200, wetsuit $180, entry fees for two tris $120, 4 5K races $50, training clothes $150, running shoes $200
Q: Were you surprised you spent that much?
A. OH YES!
Q. What gave you the idea of getting sponsors?
A. Knowing full well what I spent this year, and what I'm going to need to spend next year (remember, I've already got about 10 tris on my radar!), I decided that I needed to help offset either the cost, stress, or both. Getting sponsored will help alleviate some of these concerns.
Q. What does getting a sponsor mean?
A. My only sponsor right now is my local recreation center. Having them sponsor me means that I can pretty well do my swim training unencumbered by the normal swim lessons and other potential distractions when I'm in the pool, and I'll get a bit of a break when hiring a personal trainer. I also don't have to get special clearance to wear my wetsuit in the pool, and I can get a priority when waiting on a bike or treadmill.
Q. What does a sponsor provide?
A. My sponsor has graciously donated two t-shirts and a hat. The hat will come in handy when running on a cool/cold sunny day. The t-shirts won't be a particular help during a training session, but they'll be great for after on a cool day. Also, I have access to first aid/cpr and lifeguard classes, swim lessons, discounted personal training sessions and some other sundry items.
Q. What are the benefits to the sponsor of sponsoring you?
A. Word of mouth advertising, as well as wearing the shirts and hat provided. My rec center has been affected negatively by the current economy, and I'm helping to bring in new customers, which in turn will allow them to keep up with upkeep, new equipment, etc.
Q. How did you sell them on the idea of sponsorship?
A. Actually, I asked. Plain and simple. The only other athlete they assist is a powerlifter (who won a contest in Russia this past year). This gives them a little more visibility, as I'll participate in triathlons and running races. Because it's a governmental agency, they really can't advertise like a full blown gym (24-hour Fitness, Bally's).
Q. Did you guys sign a contract?
A. No. We did this completely through e-mail, although I did meet the manager after we agreed to this. A gentlemen's agreement, to be sure, but I believe that it will be beneficial to both of us.
Q. How did your sponsor cement the relationship with you?
A. I actually initiated the contact, and sent several emails to follow up. We briefly discussed the situations that both the rec center and I are in, and decided that this was a worthy experiment.
Q. What did you expect from your sponsor?
A. Actually, just the support from them, especially since the pool gets so crowded about 30 minutes after I start my swim training. Knowing that I can keep a lane, or get a lane if needed, is worth a lot in my book.
Q. What did you actually get from your sponsor?
A. Peace of mind: I'm less inclined to bag a workout, knowing that certain people will be watching to see if I come in. The lifeguards are helping to maintain a swim area for me, without having to fight off crowds of people. The discounted strength training will be great this winter! These 'little' things will go a long way to helping me reach my 2005 goals.
Now, if I can just get New Balance, Felt, Quintana Roo, Nike and Desoto on board…
About the Author: Chris Tull is a writer based out of the Dallas/Fort Worth area. Once upon a time, he was a ‘burgers-and-beer-only’ kind of guy. Chris has since lightened up on the diet and added yoga, weight lifting, and (of course) triathlon training to the mix. You can contact him at [email protected] or visit his online journal at http://ctull.blogspot.com.
Click on star to vote