Marathons are not only a method to entertain but a way to make a living.
Amid a marathon upsurge in China, many marathons offer a "medal bonus" which has attracted many African students to take part in order to earn money.
A student from Kenya has even told China News Service that he can earn an average of about USD 3,000 per month, making it an important way to pay bills and to help his families.
Wilfred, a Kenyan student studying in the Ningbo University, studies engineering with full scholarship. However, living costs are still a burden for him.
Conditions began to change after another Kenyan student invited him to a commercial marathon competition.
He now travels between Chinese cities to compete and make money. Sometimes when situations are good, he could earn about $3,000 a month, having extra money to send back home to help his farmer parents and five sisters.
Data from Chinese marathon site, runchina.org.cn, show that in 2016, there are 294 marathon competitions registered in China.
And it's common for the championship in many of these competitions to go to people from Africa.