How much money do you spend on running?

A friend of mine is into cycling, and the amount of money she spends is pretty serious. A half decent bike, setting you back a few hundred quid, and a decent bike, 500-couple of thousand, add on repairs, gear etc, i think running must be the cheapest sport around.

But how much does the average person spend on running though? Well my shoes, which i have several pairs of, and tend to rotate, depending on what the ground is. Running tops, i tend to wear the same ones, and ones i have got from races. So really i dont spend an awful lot, oh, sorry, my Garmin, but until that breaks, it will stay with me.

How about everyone else?


  • mathschickmathschick ✭✭✭

    not much on the running - same as you, shoes which I rotate and only buy when they are on offer, garmin.

    I have started doing triathlon though, and plenty of opportunity to spend loads of moneyimage, all the bike stuff you have mentioned, plus swimming stuff - goggles etc (ok, that is not that much) - have joined a tri club so that I can attend their coached swimming sessions.......

  • TimeaJTimeaJ ✭✭✭

    You can spend as much or as little as you want on running. I consider myself quite serious about running so I am looking for good quality gear designed for this sport which will last. They are not very cheap, however I can get some of the stuff from Amazon or Sportsdirect at a discounted price. I would say I spend about 200 GBP annually which inlcudes a new pair of running shoes, a few pair of running socks, running pants and tops, some songs from iTunes. There are certain items that only require a one off investment such as my iPod Nano that I bought to use Nike + Running app and to enjoy music whilst training, this is not included in the above. 

  • Only about £250 per year on trainers and clothes. Then another £250 or so on race fees. Doesn't sound like a lot but count up fuel costs for travelling to & from events and B&B bills when doing events too far away to drive there & back in a single day, and it adds up to a lot more...


  • I think running is deceptively expensive....

    Take my race today as an example. I had the following:

    Asics 2170's ??90 (to warm up and cool down in)

    Brooks T7 racers ??65 (to race in)

    Ronhill shorts- ??30

    Socks - ??15

    Club vest - ??8

    Garmin 310 - ??349

    Mizuno tights - ??30

    Gore running top - ??40

    Gore soft shell jacket - ??110

    Inov8 rucksack - ??65

    Asics cap - ??12

    Plus entry fee of ??14, petrol to get there, etc....
  • limperlimper ✭✭✭

    A counterpoint to YoungPup's post...

    My marathon two weeks ago -
    Entry £30
    Shoes £5.20 (£100 purchase then used for 500 miles
    Shorts, shirt, socks, undies, hat and fuel belt £100 to purchase - still in use after 2 years therefore unable to accurately cost.
    Garmin 305 - as above. Cost £100, still going strong after 2 years. 
    Petrol to event £10
    Memories - priceless. 

  • AND then travel overseas to say Comrades

    Flight £800
    Hotel £300
    Entry £80
    Kit £250
    Expo Spend £100

    Total £1530

    Pales into insignificance compare to what doing a IM cost me though... 


  • WilkieWilkie ✭✭✭

    I never pay full price for shoes - I've just ordered some 'last season' asics, £49 instead of £75.

    Three or four pairs of those a year, plus a couple of in-the-sale tops from places like Startfitness.  I do buy the brand names but that's because I find that they last - I'm using Nike and Adidas shorts and tops I've have for many years.

    Garmin - £200 three and a half years ago, still going strong.

    I do some French races, but they tend to be as part of a holiday, so the cost isn't related only to running.

    I don't do the silly money 10k and half maras like GNR, etc., but stick mostly to local races.

    I've started cycling lately - that has cost me way more than starting running did!

  • GraemeKGraemeK ✭✭✭

    More than I tell my wife. I've told her that when I die, she mustn't sell my fishing and cycling gear for what I told her I paid for it.


    Running is as cheap or as expensive as you make it, buy this season's gear and it's expensive, buy last year's shoes and shorts and t-shirts in the sale and it's not too bad. I buy a couple of pairs if they are a good price and keep until they are needed. My garmin is nearly four years old and, like Wilkie says, stay clear of expensive races like the GNR. It's certainly not the free sport some make out it is though.

    To the OP, 500 upwards for a decent bike? Try £1500 upwards plus the essential upgraded wheels.....

  • Spend about £250 per year on equipment. Probably do about 10 events per year with an average cost of around £20 per event (including getting there, etc).

    Almost all the events I've done have been small and local, so it keeps the costs down. There's a huge number of events in Hampshire, so I've little reason to travel a long way.

  • I'm with Wilkie - always wearing last year or the year before's colours and 'styles' - as if any sports kit is particularly stylish anyway! I try to spend as little as possible on the basic stuff so I can splash out a bit when I need to - this years extravagant purchase has been a North Face enduro hydration pack.

  • It's turned into a more expensive hobby than I thought it would be, that's for sure! Have been amazed how quickly running shoes wear out. Offset by the savings on beer and vino since I barely drink now I am running image

    Startup costs of shoes, watch, hrm, clothing/ socks do add up a bit. The wife has certainly raised an eyebrow at the £££ spent recently!


  • The nice thing about running is that it can be very inexpensive. Shoes are the only essential and I think you can probably get all you need for £30 - as a conservative estimate.

    That said the potential for spending is quite high. OK, you don't need a £500 - £2,000 bike, but I've certainly spent quite a lot on shoes (to rotate... image) and clothes that I don't really need. And a Garmin, of course... So I guess I probably fit into the £250 or so a year bracket (not including race entry). That's not a huge amount, but it does feel like a lot for stuff that's basically extraneous to the activity.

  • WilkieWilkie ✭✭✭

    If you don't bother with a Garmin, don't enter many races, and buy your shoes wisely, you can run more cheaply than most sports, I would say.


  • I think it is a cheap hobby to maintain, but the initial outlay of getting kitted up with a good pair of trainers and sports bra, good socks and some kit made of wicking fabric is pretty expensive.

    It gets expensive when you add on things like Garmins, race entries, energy gels, compression wear, running club subscription and physio sessions for when you are injured!

  • booktrunkbooktrunk ✭✭✭

    I'm a newbie... So at the expensive Stage.  Started 1st May

    1 x trainers, really need a second pair fedup with them still being damp nearly all the time. £70 Asics 2170

    £40 on some cheap clothes   --- working diet means now to big.

    £70 on vanity clothing that makes me feel good and has rubbish nike logo on.

    £15 on socks finding the right ones for me.

    £290 Garmin 610 - not needed but lots of fun.

    So considering it should have cost me a pair of trainers i've spent £500 on running in two months, and £29 on my Marathon entry. Ho Humm!!



  • Shoes: £0 (barefoot) to about £100 a time of which I have about 10000000 pairs collecting dust from when I was a heel planter and since I've bought 5 & returned 1 pair (that did not live up to things) since I switched for forefoot. 2 pairs of the forefoot shoes were plimsoles (one @ £6/pair and one @ £3/pair) all retired. I guess I'm now down to about £50/year from about £100/week in years gone by!

    Shorts: £1/pair picked up several years ago from Primark.

    Socks: Still using the pile of "triathlon socks" I got for mountain biking about 10 years ago so hard to estimate the real cost. I guess eventually similar to everyone else but I will be looking out for them discounted in plenty of time.

    Tops: Any old t-shirt does the trick for me unless it's likely to be hot or wet. Then I will dig out another old hi-tech top from when I was mountain biking.

    Gadgets: £0 - I don't care too much about how far/fast etc. so I don't use these things now. I don't need music to run, I like looking around. I do have one from when I was biking but it refused to talk to the PC anymore after the PC cheated on it after plugging the car GPS in to update that, (also by Garmin - you'd think the duffers would allow their own products to be happy working together on the same PC but no!).

    Car etc.: £0 - I just run to places I can reach from where I happen to be.

    You see everyone, it is the biking that's expensive as most of the kit will be for running when you get hooked on it.

    Average cost for running now - about £1/week. No, something like double that because I still get RW.

    As you can tell, I mostly look like an old tramp when running but I just don't care!

  • In terms of equipement I have in the past year bought one pair of running shoes and a running vest=£70+

    I terms of races I have spent only £14 on a 10k and the rest were free parkruns.

    My Garmin costs £40 once every 3-5 years or until it breaks. Its an old model that I buy online when I need it.I see no need to upgrade.

    You cannot buy endurance, stamina and speed.

    I think that alot of people who take up cycling running whatever in their 30's 40's have some level of disposible income and feel the need to spend it on their "hobbies" especially the men. Right up to the moment they are beaten by the bloke on the second hand £200 Raleigh bike, or the runner with the his old mickey mouse t-shirt on.

    I really want a tech running shirt with Mickey mouse on itimage





  • Nessie73Nessie73 ✭✭✭

    Not much at all really.  I too get the last season Asics shoes from startfitness, which are usually £45-£55. I replace them every 8+ months or so. I do about 100 miles a month but they last longer than the manufacturers say IMO.    I get cheap running vests / tops- generally more mile from primark, startfitness or karrimor from sportsdirect. I'd never pay more than about 6-8 quid for them.  Or wear old freebie race T shirts.  . I've been wearing and rotating the same Nike tights, capris and shorts for the last four years- they are the only that fit my big arse. But they have plenty of wear left in them.  Socks from Lidl or sports direct at a couple of quid a pair.  Bra from Sainsbury's / M&S for around a tenner.  I don't have a Garmin so I use a free app on my smartphone. Running club is £40 a year.  I do a race every month or two- but generally local ones, often ones that are free/ negligible through the club.

    So I reckon £20 a month all in.  the cost was one of the initial attractions of running to me as a sport.  Pretty cheap for a hobby that gives me so much pleasure image  

  • I have in the past met people who own a certain brand of very expensive italian bike that starts with P and ends in O and I have assumed that they are serious competitors with a view to getting a good finishing time, in the race of their choice.
    To a man ( and its always a man) they have said they will be happy just to finish!
    Man if I could afford £2k plus worth of bike I am doing more than finishing! I want 2 grands worth of pain and pb.

    Seriously though I would if I was them sell the bike buy a decent book on cycling and start again. From scratch.

  • Good question

    The running gear and shoes  I started running in in 1980s is now selling again as 'Retro' from adidas, nike and Puma. image

    'During the war'image

    It doesn't have to be an expensive sport. Last seasons shoes / kit can be bought cheaper.

    Also the breathable running kit is now quite cheap ot buy. A vast improvement on the old cotton T-Shirts and vests.

  • I think it's very true that running doesn't have to be an expensive sport, and I definitely agree that the payback in terms of health, well being, and enjoyment far exceeds the 100s of pounds I've spent on running kit.

    I also think Stephen Forde makes a very good point when he says there are a lot of people (typically middle aged men) who have all the fancy equipment, but probably haven't spent anywhere near enough time training... the cliches "cash rich, time poor" and "all the gear, but no idea" spring to mind...

    So, for beginners coming into this sport, I would say it's one of the most accessible, cheapest sports you can do - all you need is a pair of running shoes, shorts, socks and a tshirt.... However, for the addicts amongst us ( and I include myself here ), I think it can become as expensive as you're willing to make it.

    <* YoungPup exits the thread to continue researching what type of lightweight racer should be his next purchase as part of an assault on his 10mile and 1/2 marathon PB's *>
  • for me it's the start fitness web sit and choose the cheeps thing they have as i don't have a big cash out lay so it tends to be a lot of more miles stuff having said that i never had any problem with the gear I've bought

  • booktrunkbooktrunk ✭✭✭

    There is a Nike outlet store near us.

    So I have their dry fit miler t-shirts at £13, tempo shorts around £12 and a pair of short leggings at £15 which seems reasonble to me, no idea if others think that's ok or outrageous. image

  • Shoes - Ufually around £100 though last year spent a bit more due to getting some racing flats and off-road shoes as well as a new pair of road trainers

    Clothing - probably at least £100.  Usual stuff, shorts, tights, socks, t-shirts.  Don't buy these things every year as I usually expect to get a fair amount of wear out of them, but you'd be surprised how it mounts up.

    Races - £50-£100.  Always enter a local race series which consists of three 5ks and two 10ks as well as the annual 10k and 5k races put on by my local borough council.  Also enter the series of trail races in which my club is involved.  Tend to stick to the inexpensive local races and avoid the more expensive races (you all know the ones I mean).

    So all in all, I'd say about £300.

  • If club colours didn't exist, running would be an exceptionally cheap sport, as I'd only have to buy shoes (£50 a pair) shorts (£5 a pair) and race entries (free t-shirts included). 
    Instead, I have over £100 worth of garish kit that I've been obliged to buy at one timeor another - yeah, thanks UKA!

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