If We Were Riding’ is a weekly triathlon-ish newsletter written by Kelly O’Mara and produced by Live Feisty MediaSubscribe to get it in your inbox every Wednesday morning. You can also read past issues. This episode is from Feb. 20, 2019.

__________

I can’t really run right now. I jacked up my hip — official medical diagnosis. The only upside to riding more is I got a new bike that actually fits me. The downside is I haven’t really been able to ride it with all our massive flood storms. The upside is instead of running, I swam a 200y PR (and then I did it again) on Saturday. The downside is I spent most of the weekend after that either pissed off or wanting to cry. Yay triathlon!

In that vein, here’s a photo from one of the times I last ran, one of those times when you’re supposed to just enjoy the little things around you and appreciate a small sunset and a path along the river.

Who made the money?

It wasn’t until I was listening to the Ironwomen podcast on one of my endless drives recently that I realized I had missed the 2018 prize money round-up.

While we’ve talked prize money before, Thorsten did a deep (deep) dive into the 2018 prize money: who won the most, where they won it, how many races handed out $$. And if you really want to get into the weeds, you can.

The big takeaways I took away from Thorsten’s analysis:

1. There is less prize money. Ironman particularly has dropped $500,000 in prize money over the last two years, while not decreasing the number of events. Although Challenge has up’d what it’s handing out (especially in its bonus pool), there are also fewer non-Challenge, non-Ironman races with money, in my estimation.

2. There’s a big gap between the very top of the list and everyone else. #1 was Daniela with $201,000. #10 was Anne Haug with $92,500. That’s a huge drop-off just within the top ten, when by Thorsten’s own count there were 764 athletes in total. Also. Do you know who you don’t see in the top 10 or 20? Plenty of names you’d recognize: Sarah True, Mirinda Carfrae, Tim O’Donnell, Javi Gomez. The money you think is there, it isn’t there.

3. Here are some general trends that seem to be true across years: The top money comes from winning Kona; the next biggest earners tend to be ITU. And it tends to be pretty equal gender-wise, with a lot of the biggest biggest earners being women, but that falling off a bit as you go down the list.

I didn’t need Thorsten’s list, though, to tell me what I already knew or suspected. It’s getting tough out there, even for people who you think it’s not tough for. I’ve had this conversation a few times recently. Maybe it’s because being a struggling pro has always been a caricature, it’s never been easy, maybe that’s why most fans don’t seem to realize it’s gotten harder, the money’s really disappeared — especially on the sponsor side. (Not, like, for me. I mean for The Big Names, the celebrities of the sport.) So, anyway, throw them a bone, support the companies supporting the sport, be fans. And don’t be surprised when a lot of The Big Names move on in the next year or two.

No health insurance for you

Not to be a *super big downer,* but. In case you didn’t know, most pro athletes don’t have health insurance provided for them either. I didn’t know that people didn’t know this, but after a runner collapsed at the Millrose Games and was hospitalized, the question of his huge medical bills became very public. Reebok said they would contribute $50,000 to his costs, which left a lot of people wondering why he didn’t have health insurance with Reebok in the first place.

Because that’s not how being a contract employee works. At least it’s not how it works in America’s super-not-broken system. Obviously, we largely have an employer-based health insurance system and if you don’t have an employer, then it can be a little tough to buy insurance. (Which, side note: Health insurance is not health care, but whatever.) And pro athletes — those not on teams — aren’t employees; they’re contract. Yes, pro athletes can buy plans on the insurance marketplace, more so now. They can also often buy very basic plans through governing bodies (like USA Triathlon). Sometimes sponsors will offer health insurance as a perk. And, yes, sometimes the insurance for an event will cover an injury that happens at the event — like if you get hit by a car. But there’s a reason I’ve contributed to so many GoFundMe’s to pay for friends and family’s medical expenses. It’s because in an increasingly contract-based employment market (ie. the gig economy), an employer-backed healthcare system no longer makes sense. And pro athletes are just more susceptible to this because their job places them in high-injury risk situations. </rant>

A few numbers

Another report I dug into a little earlier this week: The annual running race trends state of the sport.

This one is from RunSignUp, so it’s obviously biased towards the data they have available — ie. races that use RunSignUp for registration. But still, their numbers seem to mesh with other numbers: Race registrations have flattened out or gone up slightly for events year-over-year. Which is good, because they were going down. Longer distances are still struggling to attract, especially repeat customers. Turnover is high and so are registration prices.

All this means: If you want to stand out, then you have to stand out. There needs to be a value to your event. I know triathlon always looks to running as what we hope to be, but maybe we could learn from running’s mistakes too instead of just following along behind them a few years down the road.

_______

  • USA Triathlon announced a number of its regional championships, if you’re looking for races.
  • The Russians dominated at the Winter Triathlon World Championships, which sorta just makes sense.
  • If you’re into running — watching, not doing — the USA Indoor Nationalsis this weekend. Which can be…eh? But the starting list actually looks decent and it’ll be on NBC Sports Saturday and Sunday evening.
  • In races that definitely will not be eh: Super League returns this weekend in Singapore. Not sure what the watching situation is now, but I usually just watch it on the Youtubes with the streaming.
  • Kilian Jornet skied a 24-hour vertical record (78,274 feet), which is a weird thing to do, but he’s a weird guy.
  • The international body that governs track (IAAF) will be in court this week defending its ‘if your body naturally produces higher amounts of testosterone, then you have to take a shot to lower it’ rule. If you’re new to this whole debate about who gets to decide who’s a woman, well, sorry.
  • I read Kate Grace’s essay on race weight last week before we talked about the concept on the podcast. But if you haven’t read it, do.
  • Mountain biking has never helped me get over anything, but it helped one woman recover from her fiance’s death and it turned into another’s path of resistance.
  • Kaepernick won.
  • It’s not the confidence gap holding women back. (see also: Talent is distributed equally, opportunity is not.)
  • Why do Scandinavians have the highest VO2 maxes?
  • You can use this map to find out what town your town will be most similar too climate-wise in 60 years — you know, after climate change wrecks havoc.
  • One’s vagina should be steamed in the upright position.” And others things the wellness industry is trying to tell you didn’t know you needed to know.
  • ____________

    Comments & thoughts

    Some thoughts, emails, messages and notes from listeners and readers this week. Plus, for the people who texted me for the 30% of code on Nuun: it’s “ironwomen.”

    We really hit a nerve on the topic of body image, with quite a few thoughts from listeners. Staci says, “We haven’t even scratched the surface. When I told my *friends I wanted to do tri, their first reaction: do you have the body type for that? Ummmm…what?” Um, what?? is the correct answer. There is no right body type.

    And we also got *more* voicemails than ever on the topic of make-up, so listen in for a few on Friday’s podcast.

    Plus. “Thanks for continuing to do great work on your newsletter and podcast!” – Kristin

99 Responses

  1. gamefly free trial

    Hello there, I do believe your web site could possibly be having browser compatibility
    issues. Whenever I look at your website in Safari, it looks fine
    however when opening in IE, it’s got some overlapping issues.

    I just wanted to provide you with a quick heads up!
    Aside from that, excellent website!

    Reply
  2. gamefly free trial

    Attractive section of content. I just stumbled upon your weblog and in accession capital to assert that I acquire
    actually enjoyed account your blog posts. Anyway I’ll be subscribing to your feeds and even I achievement you access consistently fast.

    Reply
  3. gamefly free trial

    Howdy would you mind stating which blog platform you’re working with?
    I’m going to start my own blog soon but I’m having a tough time making a decision between BlogEngine/Wordpress/B2evolution and Drupal.

    The reason I ask is because your layout seems different then most blogs and I’m looking for something completely unique.
    P.S Apologies for getting off-topic but I had to ask!

    Reply
  4. gamefly free trial

    Have you ever thought about publishing an e-book or guest
    authoring on other sites? I have a blog based on the same
    topics you discuss and would really like to have you share some stories/information. I know
    my viewers would appreciate your work. If you are even remotely interested,
    feel free to shoot me an e mail.

    Reply
  5. gamefly free trial

    Hi! I’ve been reading your website for a long time now
    and finally got the bravery to go ahead and give you a
    shout out from Huffman Texas! Just wanted to say keep
    up the excellent work!

    Reply
  6. gamefly free trial

    Asking questions are actually good thing if you are
    not understanding something totally, except this paragraph
    provides good understanding even.

    Reply
  7. gamefly free trial

    I got this website from my friend who told me concerning this web site and at the moment this
    time I am browsing this website and reading very informative articles at this place.

    Reply
  8. gamefly free trial

    Howdy would you mind sharing which blog platform you’re using?
    I’m looking to start my own blog soon but I’m having a difficult time making a
    decision between BlogEngine/Wordpress/B2evolution and
    Drupal. The reason I ask is because your layout seems different then most blogs and I’m looking
    for something completely unique. P.S Sorry
    for being off-topic but I had to ask!

    Reply
  9. gamefly free trial

    An intriguing discussion is worth comment. I
    think that you should publish more about this issue, it
    may not be a taboo matter but usually folks don’t talk about these issues.
    To the next! Cheers!!

    Reply
  10. gamefly free trial

    Superb blog! Do you have any recommendations for aspiring writers?
    I’m planning to start my own website soon but I’m a little lost on everything.

    Would you advise starting with a free platform like
    Wordpress or go for a paid option? There are so many choices out there that I’m totally confused ..
    Any ideas? Bless you!

    Reply
  11. gamefly free trial

    That is very fascinating, You’re a very professional blogger.

    I have joined your rss feed and look ahead to seeking extra of your excellent post.
    Additionally, I’ve shared your web site in my social
    networks

    Reply
  12. gamefly free trial

    My coder is trying to persuade me to move to .net from PHP.
    I have always disliked the idea because of the expenses.
    But he’s tryiong none the less. I’ve been using WordPress on numerous websites for about a year and
    am anxious about switching to another platform. I have heard fantastic
    things about blogengine.net. Is there a way I can transfer all my wordpress
    posts into it? Any kind of help would be really appreciated!

    Reply
  13. gamefly free trial

    Nice post. I used to be checking constantly this blog and
    I am impressed! Extremely useful information specially the remaining part
    🙂 I maintain such info a lot. I was seeking this particular information for a long time.
    Thank you and good luck.

    Reply
  14. here are the findings

    I simply want to say I am just beginner to blogging and site-building and absolutely savored this website. Likely I’m likely to bookmark your website . You absolutely have terrific posts. Thank you for sharing with us your website page.

    Reply
  15. Bonuses

    I just want to mention I am new to weblog and honestly enjoyed this web-site. Very likely I’m want to bookmark your website . You amazingly come with wonderful stories. Cheers for sharing with us your webpage.

    Reply
  16. quest bars cheap

    Amazing blog! Do you have any tips for aspiring writers?
    I’m hoping to start my own website soon but I’m a little
    lost on everything. Would you propose starting with a free platform like WordPress or
    go for a paid option? There are so many choices out
    there that I’m totally overwhelmed .. Any tips? Thanks!

    Reply
  17. quest bars cheap

    Do you have a spam problem on this site; I also am a
    blogger, and I was curious about your situation; many of us have created some nice procedures and we are looking
    to trade solutions with other folks, please shoot me an email if interested.

    Reply
  18. Janella Debenedictis

    Hey there! I know this is kinda off topic but I was wondering if you knew where I could get a captcha plugin for my comment form? I’m using the same blog platform as yours and I’m having difficulty finding one? Thanks a lot!

    Reply
  19. John Deere Repair Manuals

    I am curious to find out what blog platform you happen to be using? I’m experiencing some minor security problems with my latest site and I’d like to find something more safe. Do you have any recommendations?

    Reply
  20. how to get help in windows 10

    Thanks for any other fantastic article. Where else could anyone get that kind of info in such an ideal
    manner of writing? I have a presentation subsequent week,
    and I’m at the search for such information.

    Reply
  21. Kamagra oral jelly i Sverige

    Wow! This can be one particular of the most helpful blogs We ave ever arrive across on this subject. Basically Magnificent. I am also a specialist in this topic therefore I can understand your effort.

    Reply
  22. read more

    Very nice post and right to the point. I am not sure if this is actually the best place to ask but do you folks have any ideea where to get some professional writers? Thanks

    Reply
  23. Ilana Stenberg

    Can I just say such a relief to get one who in fact knows what theyre dealing with online. You actually know how to bring a difficulty to light and make it crucial. More and more people really need to check this out and can see this side of the story. I cant believe youre no more well-known simply because you definitely have the gift.

    Reply
  24. His Secret Obsession

    I’а†ve read a few just right stuff here. Definitely price bookmarking for revisiting. I wonder how much effort you place to make such a great informative website.

    Reply
  25. ariana grande

    Wow, superb blog structure! How lengthy have you ever been running a blog for? you make blogging look easy. The total glance of your website is great, let alone the content material!

    Reply
  26. Asuncion Bogumil

    My wife and i have been absolutely excited Emmanuel could round up his homework out of the ideas he grabbed from your very own site. It is now and again perplexing to simply happen to be giving away tactics which usually other people might have been making money from. Therefore we recognize we have got the blog owner to thank for that. The entire illustrations you have made, the simple blog menu, the relationships you will give support to engender – it’s got all fantastic, and it’s really letting our son in addition to our family imagine that this topic is entertaining, and that’s incredibly vital. Thank you for the whole thing!

    Reply
  27. Lizzette Petrillo

    My brother suggested I might like this blog. He was entirely right. This post actually made my day. You can not imagine just how much time I had spent for this info! Thanks!

    Reply
  28. Ahmed Drawy

    Top post Genachowski’s less than artful weaving of net neutrality and consumer privacy | Law and Politics of Broadband you’ve surely influenced all of us FYI have you read Middle East amazing headlines! Enjoy your day ! Flash Website Design

    Reply
  29. fakultet

    This website really has all the information and facts I needed about this subject and didn at know who to ask.

    Reply
  30. Kareem Leadbeater

    Another issue is that video games are normally serious as the name indicated with the main focus on understanding rather than entertainment. Although, there is an entertainment aspect to keep children engaged, each and every game is normally designed to focus on a specific group of skills or curriculum, such as math concepts or research. Thanks for your article.

    Reply
  31. Google

    Google

    Usually posts some incredibly intriguing stuff like this. If you are new to this site.

    Reply
  32. Edna

    With havin so much content do you ever run into any problems of plagorism or copyright infringement?

    Reply
  33. Johnny Boehmke

    Good blog! I really love how it is simple on my eyes and the data are well written. I am wondering how I might be notified whenever a new post has been made. I’ve subscribed to your feed which must do the trick! Have a nice day!

    Reply
  34. iHerb SA coupon

    Wow, incredible blog structure! How long have you been running a blog for? you make running a blog glance easy. The total look of your web site is magnificent, let alone the content material!

    Reply
  35. next

    Greetings here, just got alert to your blog through Bing, and have found that it’s seriously entertaining. I’ll be grateful should you decide maintain this post.

    Reply
  36. قمبل دات کام

    قمبل دات کام

    […]very handful of websites that happen to become comprehensive beneath, from our point of view are undoubtedly very well worth checking out[…]

    Reply
  37. Erna Edgar

    That is a very good standpoint, yet seriously isn’t create any sence by any means preaching about which mather. Every means with thanks as well as pondered make an effort to promote your current publish in to delicius nevertheless it looks like it’s problems with all your blogs are you able to make sure you recheck the item. many thanks once more.

    Reply
  38. best home furnishings

    Your style is really unique compared to other people I have read stuff from. Many thanks for posting when you have the opportunity, Guess I will just bookmark this page.

    Reply
  39. best home furnishings

    Wow, awesome blog layout! How long have you been blogging for? you made blogging look easy. The overall look of your web site is magnificent, let alone the content!

    Reply
  40. pocket pussy

    pocket pussy

    […]that will be the finish of this post. Here you’ll uncover some web-sites that we believe you will appreciate, just click the links over[…]

    Reply
  41. address

    It’s mostly impossible to encounter well-updated individuals on this area, unfortunately you come across as like you know those things you’re indicating! Bless You

    Reply
  42. sex toys gay

    sex toys gay

    […]Wonderful story, reckoned we could combine several unrelated data, nonetheless seriously really worth taking a appear, whoa did one study about Mid East has got a lot more problerms too […]

    Reply
  43. doc johnson

    doc johnson

    […]Wonderful story, reckoned we could combine several unrelated data, nonetheless definitely really worth taking a search, whoa did one learn about Mid East has got more problerms at the same time […]

    Reply
  44. plenty of fish dating site

    Oh my goodness! Impressive article dude! Thanks, However I am having issues with your RSS.

    I don’t understand why I cannot subscribe to it. Is there anyone else having identical RSS problems?
    Anyone who knows the answer will you kindly respond?
    Thanx!!

    Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.