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About Athletics

One of the most important things about Athletics in general, is that it costs very little, you can set your own targets and there are a number of activities that you can get involved in from straight 5K racing to running marathons and even ultra marathons.  Check our what we can offer:

Road running

Road running is the sport of running on a measured course over an established road (as opposed to track and cross country running). These events normally range from distances of 5 kilometers to longer distances such as half marathons and marathons, and they may involve large numbers of runners or wheelchair entrants. Road running is a part of a group of road events known as "road races".

Road running may offer those involved a range of challenges and interests such as dealing with hills, sharp bends, varied surfaces, inclement weather, and involvement in a large group. Aerobic fitness, or the ability of the body to use oxygen, is important to help complete the long distance.  Anaerobic fitness, the body's ability to respond when there isn't enough oxygen for the muscle, is helpful when encountering hills and providing energy for a sprint at the finish.

Thanet Roadrunners AC has a large number of road runners in it, hence the name of the club and we get involved in the county (Grand Prix) competitions with other clubs in the region.  The Grand Prix events are those that count for the Kent Grand Prix league. We encourage every member to take part in as many of these events as they feel they can, as it all can help in our end of year ranking in the county. 

We put on a number of races each year, but expect that club members will help at a number of these, particularly the Marathon and Half-Marathon. Our Club Captains can help you decide which races to enter.

Cross Country

Thanet Roadrunners AC have a number of runners who love nothing more than some Cross-Country Action. Cross country running is a running event in which runners compete to complete a course over open or rough terrain. The courses used at these events may include grass, mud, woodlands, hills, flat ground and water. We run the Kent Fitness League and Kent League cross country. We also have done the Kent County and Masters championships as well as the Regional and National championships.

The Fitness League is designed for non-elite athletes. Events are held generally on Sundays throughout the winter. All start at 11am. The Fitness League will sometimes have junior races. Each race costs £2, payable on the day to the Captain, or designated other person in the club - look for a club member with a clipboard.

The Kent League is more London-centric with the 'fast-guys' allowed in. Events are held on Saturdays. The Kent League has aged group races of different distances

Our Juniors also take part in Cross Country action throughout the South East, with members having represented Kent in recent years.

We organise our own Cross Country for the Kent Fitness League at Minnis Bay and also hold a Cross-Country Mountain Bike Duathlon in the Winter.


Running that covers a distance farther than a marathon is called ultrarunning; the event is an ultramarathon. Such events can be measured in distance (for example, 100 kilometers) or by time (whoever has run the farthest after 24 hours). Examples include the London to Brighton run which is just over 54 miles (87.085 km) and the Badwater Ultramarathon between Death Valley and Mount Whitney in the United States which is 135 miles.

Multiday running

Beyond the ultramarathon lie the multiday and stage races. These events include current events such as the Self-Transcendence 6 & 10 day and 3100 mile races in New York, Trans-America, Trans-Gaul, Trans-Korea, Trans-Europe race and the cross Germany race - the Deutschlandlauf. In these events runners have to complete as many miles as possible in the given time limit - the go-as-you-please style or have to complete a given distance in a set time such as the daily stages of the trans-country races where cut-offs are enforced.


Road running is unique among athletic events because in many cases first time amateurs are welcome to participate in the same event as members of running clubs and even current world-class champions. Though often race times are recorded manually by race organizers, sometimes road races feature electronic timing.


Race courses are usually held on the streets of major cities and towns but they could be on any road. Most road races are either 5 km (3.1 miles), 10 km (6.2 miles), 20 km (12.4 miles), half-marathon (21.097 km, 13.1 miles), or marathon (42.195 km, 26.2 miles).  Most road race courses have a certificate of course accuracy which confirms that they have been measured with an accuracy of better than 0.1%, i.e. to within 10 m for a 10 km race. It is common for formally certified courses to be intentionally lengthened by one metre per km to ensure that they are not short.


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