So I just sat down and came up with an estimated budget of roughly $2000 for next year’s triathlon season — about half race entry fees and training fees, and the rest things like new bike shorts, new shoes, nutrition, etc. $2000 sounds like a whole lot, and don’t get me wrong, it’s nothing to sneeze at… except for how it kind of is totally to sneeze at, relative to how much I spent this year.

This is the post I’ve been planning, and dreading, all season. Oh yes – the part where I tally up that list of everything I bought this year. Well, everything I remembered to write down, anyway. Here goes nothing!

Race Entry Fees – Total: $848

South Shore Triathlon: $102
Chicago Triathlon: $188
SheROX Naperville Triathlon: $85
She Bangs Triathlon: $95
Bunny Rock 5k: $44
Ravenswood Run 5k: $42
Proud to Run 5k – $31
C4 Miles: $34 (+ $10 donation)
Fleet Feet New Balance Women’s 10k: $32
Elvis is Alive 5k: $27 (+$10 donation)
Illinois Tour de Donut: $25
Bike the Drive: $54
Hot Chocolate 15k: $69

Next year: Only do South Shore and SheROX sprint tris; do not register separately for Chicago and let T2 handle that. Budgeted for 4 5k-type races at $40 a pop, plus Elvis is Alive. Drop Tour de Donut. Drop She Bangs in the incredibly disgusting Bangs Lake. New budget: $450.

Memberships/Training/Etc – Total: $965
T2EA pre-season Indoor Triathlon: $175
T2EA Chicago Triathlon: $75
CARA 2 year membership: $79
USAT 1 year membership: $39
CES Open Water Swimming 10 week class: $227
Get a Grip Cycles bike fitting (so so so worth it!!): $270
TriMonster post-season CompuTrainer class: $100

Next year: definitely T2 indoor tri and regular season tri. Won’t need a new bike fitting, won’t take the open water class that I never got to go to because the Park District forced a rescheduling that didn’t work for me. Won’t have to renew CARA, will have to renew USAT. Will probably do another post-season class of some kind. New budget: $390.

Clothing – Total: $621
Pearl Izumi tri shorts: $40
3 Adidas tech t-shirts: $20
3 The Finals swimsuits: $60
Aerotech Designs tri shorts and bike shorts: $73
Moving Comfort sports bra: $20 (clearance! wooohoooo!)
Moving Comfort shorts and sports bras: $150
Bike Nashbar bike gloves: $5
Moving Comfort sports bra: $50
Blueseventy Reaction Wetsuit: $120 (super awesome T2 discount, plus Fleet Feet rewards points – got this for less than half price! score!)
Zoot tri top: $30 (woohoo again for clearance!)
Nike singlet: $13
Speedo Vanquisher goggles: $15
Pearl Izumi bike gloves: $25

Next year: Will definitely need bras, but am good on shirts. Will need at least another pair of long compression tights for cold-weather running. Will also need warm wool socks for cold weather. Will probably need two pair of bike shorts, a windbreaker shell of some sort, and estimating 3 swimsuits and one pair of goggles. New budget: $415.

Accessories – Total: $1,440
Polar FT-7 heartrate monitor: $110
Chamois Butt’r: $12
Travel Trac II bike trainer, frame pump for bike, Clean water bottle: $203
Chamois cream and goggles anti-fog spray: $25
Foam roller: $24
Floor tire pump: $28
Cateye wireless bike computer: $60
Bike gel seat cover: $10
Floor tire pump that does not destroy valves: $25
Tifosi Root Beer sunglasses: $40
Sportwash: $10
Shimano SPD pedals, pedal wrench: $73
Shimano SPD-SL/SPD shoe adapter: $25
Bike shoes for spinning bikes: $45
Shimano SPD-SL pedals: $44
Bike multitool: $10
Allen wrench set: $6
Cateye Strada Double Wireless bike computer: $100
Water bottle cage: $10
Pedro’s Toothbrush: $6
Bike chain cleaner/lube: $11
CO2 inflator and cartridges: $32
3-bike rack for car: $160
iPhone armband: $20
Hydration belt and spare bottles: $40
2 pair of Yankz: $14
Clip-on electronic metronome: $14
TriSlide: $12
Bodyglide: $12
Brave Soldier antiseptic, lubricant: $25
SuitJuice: $15
The Stick: $50
Compression socks, compression leg sleeves: $90
Race number belt: $8
“Insurance” pair of Tifosi Root Beer sunglasses: $40
Bike chain cleaner kit: $30

Holy fucking shit. Next year: is there anything left in this category TO buy??? – Will need more lube, probably TriSlide, Bodyglide, and Brave Soldier. Will probably need another bottle or two of goggle anti-fog spray. Might buy a handheld water bottle for running, will probably need to grab a couple bike water bottles. May buy a chip band. At least I’m pretty well set on electronic gadgetry, as long as I don’t fuck up and lose my bike computer a second time (ugh, that SUCKED). New budget: $200.

Books – Total: $100
Triathlon for Ordinary Mortals, The Non-Runner’s Marathon Trainer – $28
Training Weight: $12
Off Season Training: $4

Well now. Obviously I just wasn’t writing these guys down, since I have at least several other books. So I’m just doubling what I put down, as my real amount spent this year. Next year: Will probably be similar. New budget: $100.

Shoes – Total: $300
Brooks Adrenaline GTS 11: $100
Nike Zoom Structure: $100
Vibram Five Fingers Sprint: $100

My current shoes should get me through my half-marathon in January with no problem. After that, I may have to buy three more pair through 2012. New budget: $300.

Nutrition – Total: $100
This one’s just an estimate. But I think it’s a pretty good one.

Will probably be about the same next year, as well. New budget: $100.

All told, I spent — at least — $4400 this year on my triathlon pursuits, not counting my $1500 bike, the gas to drive to suburban races, or the amount of my fundraising minimum I’m going to have to pay out of pocket to T2 if I don’t raise the rest. So my $2000 budget for next year is looking pretty rosy, in comparison. Also, I will have some more Fleet Feet rewards points to use, and my REI dividend should be nice and fat next year, so hopefully those will stretch the budget a little extra.

It could always be worse. I hear the average that people spend to compete in an Ironman is $15,000…