Since 2009 the number of active and inactive triathletes has grown to 3.5 million: a 10% average annual growth. According to Lindsey Ormond, Business Development Manager at Arla Foods Ingredients, 5 countries account for 65% of total athlethes. The rates of growth vary considerably, albeit many countries are experiencing double digit growth. Some more established tri markets face competition from mud & obstacle (MOB) and other event formats (N. America).
Allan Steen Hansen, a triathlete from Denmark explained at the 6th Sports & Performance Nutrition 2016, that the typical hobby triathlete trains for 6-10h/week, the elite one 10-15h/week, and the real professionals: 20-30h/week. The daily intake when training hard is +8.000 calories (3 x typical male my age/size), with a massive training load +1.000h/year (800 km swim, 3.000 km run, 15.000 km bike). The massive time consumption for training makes life an ongoing puzzle, trying to balance work/training/family/friends etc. The high training load, short time between training sessions, complex logistics etc make is necessary to do the recovery on the go.
The keywords for a professional are:
1) make my life easier
2) help me recover faster
3) allow me to train harder
It is all about improving athletic performance and health benefits.