Marathoners are the recreational or professional runners who participate in a marathon. The marathon is a long-distance running event usually run as a road race. A marathon officially covers a distance of 42.195 kilometres (26 miles and 385 yards). The marathon is one of the major Olympic events, first included in the modern Olympics in 1896. Marathons are very popular sporting events with more than 500 marathons being held throughout the world each year. Both professional runners and recreational athletes take part in marathons. Professional runners who rank among the top-finishers in major marathons earn good monetary rewards. There are also certain athletes who charge appearance fees for entering high-profile marathons. It is also common for celebrities from other fields like show business to participate in a marathon in order to promote some social cause. To run a marathon, the participants need to be in peak physical and mental conditions as the long-distance race is as much a test of their strength and endurance as it of their determination and resilience. Marathon running is also not without its risks; common risks include injury, fatigue, sprains and dehydration. Browse this section to explore about the life and works of various famous marathoners from all over the world.