Monetising Hobbies

That’s me (right) – want your logo on display?

I am looking for ways to monetise my running.  I usually run 5 kilometres a couple of times during the week and a longer 10 mile (16.10K) run at the weekend. This is a heavy time investment. The 5K runs take between 22 and 30 minutes depending on the weather, my energy levels and the incline of the route. Similarly, the 10 mile run takes usually takes around 1 hour and 26 minutes from my Sunday. This may seem like a small slice of the weekend, but I have to make sure I get up extra early and eat a good breakfast and then wait for a couple of hours before I’m ready to start pounding the pavement. On my return, I need a shower, followed by a long recovery period which involves eating again and then sitting still for a few hours. There are other costs too; a decent pair of running shoes costs between £100 and £120, and only last a year. I could pay less, but I like to support smaller, specialist running shops rather than the likes of Sports Direct. I also need shoes that offer strong support due to the weird way I run which increases the price still. Not forgetting too the copious amount of pasta and other carbohydrates I have to consume. Running costs more than you’d think.

All this has led me to the conclusion that I need to find a way to earn some extra cash from my running.

This post is of course, not at all serious. No, I am not looking for anyone to pay me to do the thing I enjoy. Just as I wouldn’t expect to be paid to go climbing, canoeing, golfing, or to watch a film at the cinema. It’s fine to have an interest that you don’t make money from. I never expect to make money from this blog. It is something I do because I enjoy it. It’s a hobby. I won’t go as far as to say I should be paying you to read it, but I do expect to pay a small amount for WordPress hosting, and to put a few hours a week into writing content.

The reason I’m writing this is because I’ve noticed a theme in various podcasts, blogs and YouTube channels that I’ve come across recently that some creators who are doing the thing they love and not as their sole means of income are expressing their dissatisfaction at not being able to monetise what is essentially a hobby. I use the term “hobby” not in a derogatory sense – indeed the fact that many creators are not a full on professionals is what gives some of my favourite podcasts and YouTube channels their charm.

Of course I’m not saying creators shouldn’t try to make money, and some professionals will of course rely on their creative output as their main source of income. For many of us however, maybe a hobby is just fine? We can’t all be The Verge. Just I’m never going to be competing at running with Mo Farah, not everyone will end up as successful as the podcast ATP.

If you enjoy the process of creating, and giving something away to an audience, then maybe that’s payment enough?

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