Your GR Academy

Growing Runners Academy provides the perfect online platform for serious young distance runners to learn how to improve their running by becoming more aware, more honest, and better informed.  GR Academy provides the right combination of proven self-assessment tools plus the guidance and support of experienced coaches, near-peer runner/mentors and teammates. That’s the absolute best way to (a) improve the effectiveness of your training, (b) help you develop the right mental & emotional skillset to race fearlessly and more competitively, and most importantly, (c) enjoy all the hard work and dedication needed to achieve your goals.

 Your GRTC Running Club

Growing Runners Track Club Membership provides the practical support (teammates, teachers, special events) that young runners, their parents and high school coaches need in order to put what they learn into practice. So whether you’re training at school, on your own, or with other GRTC club members, simply choose the membership level that fits your needs and you’ll have access to the best tools, training and goal setting advice, plus regular in-person and on-line sessions that complement and support your school team and family schedules, so you can progress towards your racing goals and even explore college opportunities.

 Your GR Community

Distance running success comes from building positive, collaborative and supportive relationships with teammates, competitors, parents and coaches, in addition to to the workouts you do. All Growing Runners Academy and GRTC members are part of a proven successful learning and growing community of young distance runners. Thanks to other club members, our programs, your near-peer mentors (all GRTC grads), and our coaches, we are committed to helping you develop into a better runner, lifelong learner, and a self-reliant and confident young athlete.


Check Out GR’s Intro Courses

Meet Our Course Coaches

Drew Mearns

An accomplished distance runner, attorney and educator, Coach Mearns competed for Yale University and NYAC before coaching at NCAA Div I powerhouse programs Kentucky and Virginia. As an attorney with IMG, Mearns managed the careers of many distance running and Olympic legends, including Alberto Salazar, Sebastian Coe, Bill Rodgers, Mary Decker Slaney, Anne Audain, and many others. For the past 20 years, Coach Mearns has focused on developing serious high school runners (some of the country's very best), the past 7 years through Growing Runners and its affiliate club GRTC ... and those programs have already produced six high school national champions, dozens of HS and club All-Americans, state champions and recordholders. Named USOC's Developmental Coach of the Year 2016, Mearns has coached Paralympic and Para-Athletics World Championship team members, world and American recordholders. GR "grads" have competed for some of the country's finest programs: Virginia (UVA, Virginia Tech, George Mason, William & Mary, CNU, James Madison), University of Oregon, Georgia Tech, Columbia, Villanova, American, Air Force Academy & West Point.

Featured GRTC Graduates

2014 graduate of Lafayette HS in Williamsburg, Virginia, Derek was 800 Indoor NB National Champion, Brooks Invite Champion, USATF Jr. Nationals medalist, multi Virginia state champion in distances ranging from the 300m-800m. In 2015 Derek joined GRTC affiliate District Track Club, where he recently ran 1:47.07 to qualify for USATF World Trials. Derek now studies and runs for Trinidad State in Colorado.

“Coach Mearns, I just wanted to say that being part of the Growing Runners program and training under your system was one of the best choices I ever made. With your help I made many improvements from 200 all the way up to the 5k. It was great to work not just physically but mentally to help achieve my goals. I never would have guessed I’d come this far with my running … my first trips across the country to compete and first times in Track Town, Eugene, Oregon, and now college in Colorado.Thanks for all the opportunities you helped me explore.” 

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