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  • Sports cars and sex with your secretary ain’t got a thing on a triathlon
  • Sports cars and sex with your secretary ain’t got a thing on a triathlon
    Kenneth Younger III, Creative Commons (2013) ©

Ironman: a healthier kind of crisis for middle-aged men

For the Gen Xers and Boomers who are hitting the inevitable dip in happiness that comes with middle age, sports cars and sex with secretaries simply aren’t cutting it. Instead, the middle-aged middle-classes are taking up triathlons, and it’s seen Ironman flourish into a $650 million brand.

Location Global

The mid-life crisis is a well-trodden media trope. From Lester Burnham in American Beauty to Californication’s Hank Moody, it inflicts middle-aged men with an often self-destructive desire to swig too much booze, sleep with all the wrong people and buy fancy sports cars.

But in recent years, that stereotype has grown increasingly outdated, as longer life spans and changing aspirations have altered what signifies status to the middle-aged middle-classes. Particularly prominent amid this shift is the idea of taking on a challenge and proving yourself as a fit forty-something. The triathlon business in particular is booming among Gen Xers ...



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