Wednesday, 24 October 2012

Cutting the cost of taking part (win a £25 voucher!)

Photo from
[competition at the bottom]

There's no doubt that taking part in triathlon can cost quite a bit of money, if you let it.  Things like bicycles aside (you can often get a bargain on last year's models at the end of the season) and although race fees can sometimes be eye-watering, the majority of the cost isn't actually racing itself but the nutrition and sports kit you get through while training.  Good quality sports clothing really is very expensive and you can't get away with a cotton t-shirt and old rugby shorts from 10 years ago if you're going to be doing more than a jog a week as you'll run into problems with being wet while you exercise (cotton is great at absorbing water but it doesn't wick it away from your skin into the air) and then either cold or chafed or both, plus the risk of bacteria growing in particularly sweat-prone bits of the garments.  However, if you are a bit clever and let a couple of companies keep you informed on discounts of up to 70% off swim/bike/run gear and build up a good collection of decent quality kit that will keep you warm, dry, cool and protected  from sun, wind, rain and chafing with good freedom of movement for years without breaking the bank.

One company that has been coming to the fore recently, in cutting the cost for the athlete (Yes, you! You're an athlete if you do regular sporting activity!), is Sport Pursuit.  It's a members only web site - i.e. you need to sign up and create an account with them and they'll send you email notifications of upcoming/opening sales - which has timed sales on top brand sports kit.

"We love buying sports kit.  In fact, we’ve scientifically proven it’s not possible to have too much.  But we got enormously frustrated at how difficult it was to discover great sports products at great prices; not just brands we already knew and loved but also those innovative cutting edge, hot off the pro-circuit, show off to your mates brands that no one else has.  

So, with no other option we decided to go out there and build it for ourselves, our friends and all our members.  "

"Pop-Up Sales from Winning Brands: New sales from top sports and outdoor brands start on SportPursuit every few days and typically last for 7 days. We’ll drop you a quick email to let you know when new sales are starting.
Exclusive Prices: SportPursuit gives you the chance to trial and discover great products and brands at the lowest prices anywhere - guaranteed. Our exclusive members-only site gives brands the confidence to discount, and we achieve the best prices for our members by ordering in bulk at the end of each sale."

This means that when you order, you have to wait until the sale ends before your stuff is shipped.  But it does mean that you get some pretty hefty discounts and you generally don't have to wait too long.

The range of brands is pretty impressive, with pretty much all active sports covered (not sure they have darts-wear ;o)) and there's a countdown on the main page that gives you an idea of when the sale ends...

And it's not just clothing and accessories, but there are nutrition sales as well...

When an item is sold out of the number they're planning to buy, you're not left hanging on the product listing page to click through to a product that's no longer available as they're clearly marked "sold out", which is handy.  And you can filter by gender, size and price which can really help when you have a set limit of what you can/are willing to spend on any given item.

That Polar RS300X with footpod is £55 cheaper than on Wiggle even with a Wiggle 12% Platinum discount!  So if you move quickly, you can get some really really good bargains but even if you don't, you're looking at 40%+ discounts on stuff. 

What I'm finding particularly useful, and it's the reason I first went to Wiggle years ago, is the range of women's gear.  It's great, there's loads of it with decent choice and proper sizing charts so you don't run the risk of being drastically wrong with sizes.

So, all in all they're pretty darned useful to help make life a bit less horribly expensive while enjoying the sports you love!

Now, here's the bit where you can win a £25 voucher with these guys.  All you have to do is three tiny things:-

  1. Sign up with them, using this link here or by clicking on any of the images in this post and signing up through there.
  2. Post a comment on this post, telling me what your most favourite bit of sports-wear is; brand, function, sport and why it's your favourite.
  3. Come back to my blog on Monday 5th November to see if you've won! (I'll be choosing a winning comment on Sunday evening, so closing date for entry is 6pm GMT on 4th November 2012).
So, good luck, get your thinking cap on and let's see who I can make happy with a little extra spending money for their sport habit!


  1. Before I sign up - do they have any maternity gear? I'm *so* after some decent stuff for my pilates class, and perhaps for cycling/hiking too.

  2. I've not seen any and the way they operate I can imagine they've not done so far - they buy job lots of a particular brand to get a good discount to pass on. What may be possible is telling them there's a demand for it and seeing what they say. They're new/small/young enough to listen to consumer demand. I'll mail them and ask.

  3. I got a reply... they've not done any maternity wear to date but the buying team have been told that there is demand out there. Not sure how quickly they move; perhaps not quickly enough for where you're up to, but let's see!

  4. Well, I've signed up - though you're right that there's nothing obviously there for me just at the moment there are certainly some interesting categories of non-clothing items too and even if they don't have any maternity lines in time for me to use there'll always be things to buy afterwards.

    I think my favourite bit of sportswear at the moment is the Regatta tshirt I bought over the summer - it's a lightweight wicking hiking top in a bright colour and with a nice pattern and flattering cut. As a base layer it's ideally cool in summer but good for layering. Long-line too - so no irritating breezy gaps if it rides up!

    I think it's this one:

    Shame they seem to have sold out of the 14 in the colours I like or I'd get some more at that price!

  5. With winter coming the ZOOT WOMENS XOTHERM 300 TIGHT caught my eye.

    I've signed up but not sure I used the right links!

  6. My favourite piece of sports gear are my Salomon XA Series Shorts. They're incredibly good at keeping my thigh muscles warm at the same time as eliminating all chafing and not looking just like cycling shorts when I run (I don't care about man-bulge, but sometimes it's nice not to scare the horses, y'know?). There's also a reasonable-sized pocket on the back for my keys (and parkrun barcode).

  7. I would definitely make use of the maximuscle promotion, if only it didn't end before pay day!! I would also buy this if the promotion didn't end before pay day! RS300X G1 WATCH WITH WEARLINK TRANSMITTER AND G1 GPS SENSOR (BLACK) It would be my fave bit of gear on the site.... in fact, may still buy it if I win the voucher... need a new gps watch!!