Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Race fees

Over the past two or three years I have consistently run about 10 races each year.  For me it seems like that is the perfect amount to keep me busy with training and also add in a few fun 5k races.

In 2010 I only ran a fall half marathon along with the Boilermaker 15k and a bunch of small 5k races.

In 2011 I ran a spring half marathon, didn't race during the summer since it was too hot (and I had had bad experience with racing in the heat previously), and then ran a fall 15k race.  Additionally I ran a few 5ks and also a 10k race.

In 2012 I ran a spring half marathon and then a spring marathon.  I didn't race much over the summer except for the Boilermaker 15k.  In the fall I ran a half marathon followed by three 5k races.

My city has a pretty good variety of races so the majority of the time I race very close to home.  The farthest I have ever traveled for a race is the Boilermaker 15k which is within 3 hours of my house. I enjoy sleeping in my own bed the night before a race and going through my normal routine on race morning.

Besides having races close to home, I really enjoy running races that don't cost too much.  I haven't run a big half marathon or full marathon yet and I have hard they are great, but for right now I prefer to stay close to home.  Running the same races every year can get boring but so far there have been enough options close to my home to keep my training fun and exciting.

Last year even with the marathon I kept my race fees fairly low.  In total I spent about $315 dollars on races.  When signing up one race at a time, it doesn't seem like much but the costs do add up.  I am really a saver at heart so its hard for me to spend a lot of money.  In fact, one of my ten races was free last year because it was for my college reunion.

Race fees in 2012
Spring half marathon = 50 dollars
Spring marathon = 70 dollars
Fall half marathon = 60 dollars

For my marathon, I signed up on Decemebr 31st, 2011 even though I didn't know if I would be able to run the marathon since I was still making my comeback from my strained psoas and knee pain.  The only reason I signed up so early was to avoid the fee increase of 5 dollars.

That's the most I have paid for races.  My marathon was the most expensive so far.  I think it would be really hard for me to spend over 100 dollars on a race.  I have a hard enough time spending that on shoes.

Thankfully, most of my 5k races are pretty cheap, ranging from 15 to 25 dollars. Running most of my races locally is also a really nice way to give back to community.  I try to run races that has the money go back to support businesses, charities and running clubs in the area.

How much are you willing to spend in races??


abbi said...

It's hard for me to spend a lot on races too. I prefer smaller, closer to home races as well. I've run one big city marathon but otherwise, most everything has been within easy driving distance. I spent $200 on a race entry last year though, that was hard to handle and I won't be repeating!

Amy said...

I am the same - I don't like to spend too much on race fees. When I saw a half marathon that I have run before had upped their fees to over $100, I quickly decided to opt out this year. Unfortunately, my community is small and doesn't host many races. There are a couple in the next community (90 minutes away), but I have been lucky in that I've been able to find races in bigger cities when I've had to go away for work. I have run 2 half marathons that way. The only time I paid myself to travel was for my marathon in Victoria. The BF and I turned it into a weekend away because it was on a long weekend.

Amber said...

Wow that's a good deal on all those races!

I am about to drop $200 next week to register for the Chicago marathon this year sooo... But for me that is really more about the EXPERIENCE than just running any old race. I would NOT drop that much on a race close to home.

Jen Feeny said...

The most I ever spent on a race was $130 for the Chicago Marathon back in 2009. I would do it all over again in a heatbeat because it was such an amazing experience but since then I stick to $100 or less for any race. Well, unless I get a BQ someday, then I will gladly shell out whatever Boston is making me. :)

Anonymous said...

I don't mind spending around $100 for a full marathon because I know I'm going to be getting a lot of course support. I spend $150 on the Chicago Marathon last year because I thought getting to run the route would be worth the extra money. I haven't run a 5K in over a year because I can't bring myself to drop $20 or $30 on a short race with no medal when I could take the money I'd spend on 2 or 3 5K races and register for a half marathon.

Detroit Runner(Jeff) said...

I was very fortunate last year. I ran 15 races and only paid for six. I won several and I did race reviews as a race ambassador for others. The most I paid for a race was $90 for a full and I usually pay $40-60 for a half but have paid up to $70 for a half.

Johann said...

I've spent lots of money on races. Road races are still OK but some trail races over here in South Africa are very expensive. I have spent thousands of SA Rands on races and travelling and accommodation. I don't mind as long as I get value for maoney, which I always do.

Lisa from Lisa's Yarns said...

I'm usually pretty cheap when it comes to races. That is why I don't run many of them as I can't justify spending that much money on race fees. I usually do 2-4 races a year, one of which is a marathon which ends up being more expensive. My Chicago marathon race entry will be expensive ($175) but it's one of those races on my bucket list so I don't mind paying so much!

Karen said...

I spent about $100 on both the full marathons I signed up for. And this doesn't include the travel, food, and lodging expenses to do each. The ones in my hometown are super hard and super boring. (One of each!) So it was worth it to me to spend more to travel to other races.

For half marathons, I might spend $80-90 if it was one I really wanted to do. Typically they go for about $60-70 here, depending on how early you sign up and how big the race is. I've done a $40 half before, and wouldn't do it again. It was less expensive and i know why- it wasn't as well organized, not as many water stops, etc. I would rather pay more and have a better race. But YMMV. Sounds like you've found a good happy medium between paying a more modest race entry fee and being satisfied with the races and race management.

Anonymous said...

$100 is definitely my limit. I don't like racing commercialized races like the Rock'n'Roll. I prefer racing small, local races, where your money also goes towards a good cause. Then it doesn't bother me to spend $70-80 for a half or full marathon.

Glenn Jones said...

Wow. The L.A. Marathon this year is $175. San Diego Rock n' Roll Half Marathon is $140. Consider yourself blessed....