Home Running Nike North Carolina Asheville Camp
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UNITE. INSPIRE. RUN.

Unmatched summer training and top quality coaching define the Smoky Mountain Running Camp. Immerse yourself in running, new friends and fun evening activities for a week or two or three! 

Constantly seeking 'artistic perfection,' we are dedicated to annually refining the camp activity schedule and curriculum. Camper improvement- by teaching, instructing and coaching is our primary emphasis.

Highlights Include
  • Top notch high school and college coaching.
  • Comprehensive running camp experience: featuring daily runs in the National Forest, informative breakout sessions and talks given by nationally recognized guest speakers.
  • Advanced Placement (AP) Cross Country Class is offered during all camp sessions for those elite runners who desire college level instruction about the Art & Science of Running.
  • Superior facilities: beautiful campus surroundings, state-of-the-art track facility and new Wellness Center.
  • Coaches are encouraged to accompany their cross country teams and attend the Coaches Workshop covering the latest in training and racing techniques. The workshop runs concurrently with the youth camp session.
  • Middle school running program with specific youth curriculum. The High School Program offers a different curriculum from the Middle School Program.
  • Round trip bus transportation is available from Atlanta, Peachtree City, Johns Creek, GA
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Camp Coaches

  • Ad Headshot

    Camp Director Alan Drosky

    Alan Drosky continues his long association with SMRC and 2018 will mark his sixth year as Camp Director. In 1982, he attended as a camper, and in subsequent years has served in a variety of roles at camp, from junior counselor to staff coach and guest speaker, to camp administrator and co-director. Drosky also has been the head coach of the men's and women's cross country teams for 23 years at Georgia Tech, and has been the head coach for women’s track & field for 19 years.

    View Alan 's Bio
  • Coach Gower

    Co-Director Travis Gower

    Coach Gower started coaching in Georgia in 2002 after graduating from the University of Georgia.  Until 2008, Coach Gower led the McEachern High School cross country and track & field programs that included a number of great teams and individuals.  During Coach Gower’s time at McEachern, his teams earned two state titles in track & field as well as numerous podium finishes and a total of ten region titles for cross country and track.  Individually he coached numerous athletes to county, region, and state titles as well as a couple of All-Americans and a Footlocker Cross Country two-time finalist.  In 2008, Coach Gower took the job at Walton High School and continues to have success there.  At Walton, Coach Gower lead teams to two state cross country championships as well as the school’s first state title in track & field.  Coach Gower has had numerous athletes achieve all-state, all-metro, and all-county teams in both cross country and track as well as sending athletes to run at colleges from NAIA schools to Division I powerhouses.

    View Travis Gower's Bio
  • Roy

    Founder, Director Emeritus Roy Benson, Founder, Director Emeritus

    Roy T. Benson, MPE, C.F.I., is an exercise scientist and distance running coach. He earned a Master's Degree in PE with an emphasis in exercise physiology from the University of Florida.  

    View Roy Benson's Bio
  • Coach Jason Cage

    Jason coached one year at Saint Thomas Aquinas in Louisiana as the cross country assistant coach and won the 2002 Cross Country State Championship. Coach Cage has also been coaching for seven years at Westlake High School as the head girls cross country & track coach in Atlanta, GA. 

    View Jason Cage's Bio
  • Smrc Coach Andy Carr

    Coach Andy Carr

    Andy Carr is currently the Community Cross Country & Track distance coach at Milton High School in Milton, GA. (2004-present).  Milton has won multiple county titles and was crowned Boys state cross country champions in 2017 & has had multiple top-4 finishes at GA State meet for both the girl’s & boy’s programs while under Coach Carr’s tutelage.  He was named 2008 Fulton County Boy's cross country Coach of the Year & 2017 Georgia High School Boys cross country Coach of the Year by USTFCCCA. 

    View Andy Carr's Bio
  • Coach Frank Faykes

    Frank Faykes is a retired Air Force Major General, having served 31 years in various positions at Air Force bases and the Pentagon. He's also spent 31 years as an accomplished distance runner, and has completed 20 marathons (PR 2:38), several Ultra-Marathons and numerous road races (5K PR 15:39).

    View Frank Faykes's Bio
  • Coach Bill Hackney, Director of Middle School Program

    Coach Hackney is the director of the SMRC Middle School Program.  He is currently the distance coach at Kell High School and was the director and head coach of the Walton Youth Track program in Marietta, GA. 

    View Bill Hackney, Director of Middle School Program's Bio
  • Smrc Coach Chris Mayer

    Coach Chris Mayer

    Coach Mayer is the boys and girls cross country and track and field coach at The Lovett School in Atlanta, Ga. He is a graduate of Dacula High School in Gwinnett County, Ga. and Berry College in Rome, Ga. Chris was coached in high school by Andy Christie and in college by Paul Deaton, both of whom he attributes a lot of his coaching success to. Chris has been a staff coach at SMRC since 2014 and first came to camp for the Coaching Clinic in 2013. He has been a featured speaker twice.

    View Chris's Bio
  • Smrc Coach Becky Megesi

    Coach Becky Megesi, Camp Administrator

    One of the top middle distance runners in Tech history, Becky Megesi enters her 15th year as an assistant for the Yellow Jackets cross country and track & field teams.  Coach Megesi primarily works with the distance runners, as well as the cross country teams for both the men and women programs. Additionally, she handles many administrative functions as well as being in charge of recruiting the women's distance events.

    View Becky Megesi, Camp Administrator's Bio
  • Coach Eric Nelson

    Eric Nelson has been coaching since 1993 at Pensacola Catholic HS, and became head coach in 1998, coaching both boys and girls XC and track and field teams.  Accolades include Pensacola News Journal XC Coach of the Year, four times, as well as many district and regional team titles.

    View Eric Nelson's Bio
  • Smrc Coach Dunn Neugebauer

    Coach Dunn Neugebauer

    Dunn Neugebauer has been a part of SMRC since 2004; he is currently the co-head cross country coach and assistant track coach at Holy Innocents', where he has been for the last 11 years. His boys' cross country team has made six straight trips to state; the girls five. This past fall, his girls were second in Georgia in Class A - Private.

    View Dunn Neugebauer's Bio
  • Coach Jesse Norman

    Coach Norman has been coaching cross country at the collegiate level for eight years (two years at Western Carolina University & five years at UNC Asheville).

    View Jesse Norman's Bio
  • Coach Tom Orehowsky

    Tom Orehowsky coached at Manatee High cross country beginning in 1976, Manatee/Sarasota Co. Coach Orehowsky was Coach of the Year - 5xBoys, 4xGirls, four SMRC campers who were Florida State 1600 Champions, two were XC runner-ups, FHSAA Track & Field official, RRCA Southeast Region Volunteer of Year 2004, RRCA National Volunteer of the Year 2008 - Rod Steele Award Winner.

    View Tom Orehowsky's Bio
  • Staff Tara Peterson, ATC

    Tara Peterson is currently working as a professor in the Athletic Training Program at Western Carolina University. She moved into the position after working for three and a half years as the assistant athletic trainer at the University of New England in Biddeford, Maine.

    View Tara Peterson, ATC's Bio
  • Coach Joe Robinson

    Coach Robinson has over 20 years experience coaching distance runners; individuals, youth and high school where he continues to be successful at the county, region and state level.

    View Joe Robinson's Bio
  • Coach Kellie Ruse

    lKellie Ruse coached XC/track at Marist High School for 13 years. During that time, Coach Ruse had been honored by ATC for XC Coach 10 times for state championship teams/athletes.

    View Kellie Ruse's Bio
  • Coach Mandy Ryan

    Coach Ryan has been an assistant cross country coach at Walton since 2009.  She is also the varsity head coach of the Lady Raiders lacrosse team since 2003. 

    View Mandy Ryan's Bio
  • Coach Jason Scott

    Jason Scott has coached XC and track at Harrison High School for 17 years.  During his tenure at Harrison, he has coached numerous regional teams and individual region champions and led the Hoyas to the 2000 & 2001 AAAAA girls state cross country championships and state runner-ups in 2005 and 2011.

    View Jason Scott's Bio
  • Smrc Coach Kent Simmons

    Coach Kent Simmons

    Simmons has coached XC for the past 23 years at Harrison High School. He served as assistant coach for eight years having coached one individual cross country state champion and two team state championships.   He is now in his 15th year as co-head coach, having coached one individual XC state champion and numerous top 10 finishers.

    View Kent Simmons's Bio
  • Smrc Coach Kati Smallwood

    Coach Kati Smallwood

    Kati Smallwood began her cross country coaching career in 1993 at Harlem High school in the Augusta, she then transferred to Lakeside (Evans) in 1994 where she coached XC and Track.  In fall of 1996 Greenbrier High School opened and she has been the track and cross country coach there ever since. 

    View Kati Smallwood's Bio
  • Coach Bart Smith

    Bart Smith has coached at Sheridan for five years and previously coached for three years at Lancaster High School in Ohio.  Coach Smith has led five athletes to All-Ohio status. 

    View Bart Smith's Bio
  • Coach Jimmy Sorrells

    Coach Sorrells has been the only cross country coach at Flowery Branch High School in Flowery Branch, Georgia since the school opened in 2002. In 2008, Coach Sorrells took over the track program.

    View Jimmy Sorrells's Bio
  • Smrc Coach Claude Spinks

    Coach Claud Spinks

    Over the last 15 years Coach Claud Spinks has served Eagle’s Landing High School as Athletic Director, Head Cross Country Coach and Head Track Coach. During that time his teams have won 26 region championships and he has coached dozens of individual champions. Over 100 of these athletes have gone on to compete at the collegiate level.

  • Smrc Coach Tillery

    Coach Clayton Tillery

    Clayton Tillery coached the 1997-2001 seasons at Escambia High School, Pensacola Florida, 2001-2007 South Forsyth HS, Cumming GA. and 2007-present at West Forsyth HS in Cumming, GA.  Coach Tillery has coached multiple individual State Champions in Florida and Georgia in Track and XC and has had many teams finish on the podium at the GHSA State XC Championships. Coach Tillery has had numerous athletes achieve all-state, all-metro, and all-county teams in XC as well as sending athletes to run at colleges from NAIA schools to Division I.

    View Clayton Tillery's Bio
  • Headshot 2 Tom Williams Resize

    Camp Director Tom Williams

    Tom Williams returned as the head coach for the women's cross country team at the University of North Georgia in 2014, two years after the first season back on the map for the cross country program.

    View Tom Williams's Bio
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Camp Details

Celebrating our 45th year!

The Smoky Mountain Running Camp puts great emphasis on teaching runners the wisdom of the hard/easy training philosophy developed by the late, great U of Oregon Coach and Nike Co-Founder Bill Bowerman. To implement the Bowerman philosophy, we use Coach Roy Benson's Effort Based Training Program to allow the whole camp to run the same appropriate effort while allowing each group to train at their individualized paces based on their current fitness, over-all ability, and general goals. The instruction is serious, the training is right for this time of the summer, and there will be opportunities to make new friends from all over the Southeast, the USA, and maybe even with someone from Europe, South American, or Asia. We welcome your presence.  

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Previous Guest Speakers:

Carl Leivers, former coach at Emory University.  Leivers currently writes for several running magazines (such at Runner’s World) and privately coaches in the Atlanta area. Alex Gibby; Three time Olympic qualifier Kathy Newberry;  Bill Kenley, author of High School Runner (Freshman); Former American record-holder and NCAA Champion Coach Chris Solinsky (University of Florida); Georgia Tech Director of Nutrition Leah Thomas; Ole Miss Assistant Distance Coach Ryan Vanhoy.

Past Camper Highlights:

PREVIOUS OUTSTANDING SPEAKERS AT CAMP:

Amy Yoder Begley: Begley is an American middle and long distance runner and a US Olympian in the 10,000 meter event at the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing.

Hazel Clark:  Clark is an American middle-distance runner who specializes in the 800 meters middle distance race. Clark was a member of the U.S. Olympic team in 2000, 2004 and 2008. She has won six national titles and two USA Olympic trials during her career.

Mike Curcio:  Curcio is in his 20th year as the head men’s and women’s xc coach and track and field distance coach at Appalachian State University.
Lance Harden: Assistant xc and t & f coach at Emory University.

Issac Presson:  Presson completed his college track career for North Carolina in June. He was an All-American (13th place) in the 5,000-meter run at his final NCAA outdoor meet in Eugene, Ore.  Presson ran his second sub-4:00 in August, 2014.

Leah Thomas: Thomas serves as Georgia Tech’s sports dietitian and Director of the Total Person Program.

Vanderbilt University Head T & F/ XC Coach Steve Keith:  Coach Keith's women's x-c team was 2011 SEC champions and placed 6th at the NCAA's.

Oklahoma State Coach Dave Smith:  Coach Smith coached German Fernandez who won the 2009 NCAA title in the 1,500 meters and was the Big 12 individual cross country champion. 

Matt McCue: Author of An Honorable Run, McCue, an un-recruited University of Colorado runner, was a walk-on athlete who willed himself to become part of a championship team led by the legendary Coach Mark Wetmore from 2001-2005.

McCue ran in the middle of a herd that was led by future Olympians and American Record holders, Jorge Torres and Dathan Ritzenhein. Only one person believed he’d succeed, the underdog himself.    

His story takes a lonely trail and makes it full with insight and humility.  McCue speaks for boys and girls chasing their dreams on the prairies, in small towns and on our forgotten urban streets. He gives voice to the contender who wakes at 5 a.m. when the wind is knocking on a sub-freezing door. 

Vista Beasley:  Vista is a camp alumna and former all-time favorite Smoky Mountain Camp Recreation Director and now PhD candidate in Sports Psychology at FSU.  Vista is an Emory University graduate, a former Captain in the U.S. Air Force and former agent for the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency.

Sam Martinez:  Sam is a champion master runner, business owner and a private coach in Macon, Georgia.  Coach Martinez has been advising Grace Tinkey, a SMRC five year camper and a four time Footlocker finalist.

John L. Parker:  John was University of Florida record holder in the mile, SEC mile champion,  USTAFF national steeplechase champion and the author of "Once A Runner," the greatest novel ever written about distance running.

Our Advanced Placement (AP) Cross Country Class:

The AP Class is offered during all camp sessions for those elite runners who desire college level instruction about the Art & Science of Running. Sign-up details will be available at registration. No advanced sign-up is required. 

Middle School Program:

We have modified our high school program and created a separate curriculum and activity schedule that will be offered concurrently with the high school schedule. We feel extremely confident that this will provide a satisfying experience for these younger runners.

This is an instructional camp and not a week of "normal" training. The middle school runners will be running twice a day, but it will be instructional based running. Think of a playing lesson with a golf pro. The intent is not necessarily to shoot your best round but to gain insight and knowledge on how to be your best over time.

Pre-Existing Conditions:

The Smoky Mountain Running Camp offers an extremely challenging athletic training program. Running on wild forest trails offers pitfalls, challenges and wild life. Please DO NOT come to camp if you have any pre-existing injuries, are not completely healthy and ready to run a minimum of 20-25 miles during camp.

We discourage campers with bee sting allergies from attending our program. If you choose to attend, you must carry an epinephrine pen at all times and understand that on some of our trails, if anything goes wrong, we cannot get you to medical help within the half hour. Please study the waiver carefully.

Coaches Workshops: 

Coaches are encouraged to accompany their cross country teams and attend the Coaches Workshop covering the latest in training and racing techniques. The workshop runs concurrently with the youth camp session.  

**Our operations on National Forest System Lands are authorized under Special Use Permit by the Pisgah National Forest

Camp Check-in & Check-out Details:

  • Check-in: 1:00-3:00pm.  First level of Ridges Parking Deck.  Attached to South and West Ridge Dorms.
  • Check-out: 12:00-1:00pm.  Campers check out on dorm floor with staff.  Luggage is stored and on first level of Ridges Parking Deck.

Ages:

  • High School Program: 14 and up, coed, all skills levels.  
  • Middle School Program:  Entering 6th grade and up, coed, all skill levels.

Dorms:  

Runners stay in South Ridge, West Ridge or Governors Hall, all air conditioned. Campers stay 2 to a room, shared bathroom with one other double room.

Key and Proxy Cards: 

Please bring 2 checks to camp, payable to USSC.  One for $100 (key card) and the second for $25 (meal card).  Checks will not be cashed unless the camper loses the card.  At the end of camp, the checks will be returned upon the return of each card.  

Stay-Over Session Option:

If you are attending two weeks of camp the cost for the weekend stay‐over is $150 for housing and meals. Campers eat in the dining hall for all meals except for Saturday dinner. Campers, with a signed permission slip, travel to the local mall, watch a movie and have dinner. Campers are supervised & transported in school vans to and from the mall. We recommend bringing $40 extra spending money for movie, meals and entertainment.

Extra Activities:  

There is a camp dance each week, plus nightly skits, games, talent show, scavenger hunt, and sand volleyball.

Travel:

Airport:

Asheville North Carolina Airport  (20 minutes from campus).  Airport pick-ups will be available for $20 each way. 

  • Preferred Flight Arrival: 10:00 – 11:00 am Sunday
  • Preferred Flight Departure: 2:00 – 3:00 pm Friday

Bus Information:

Buses are available from:

Marist School, Atlanta.  All 3 sessions.  Cost is $100 round trip.  

Oak Grove Elementary School, Peachtree City.  July 8-13 session.  Cost is $110 round trip.

Northview High School, Johns Creek, GA.  July 15-20 session.  Cost is $110 round trip.
The buses sell out, sign up early, don't miss the bus!  Call to reserve your seat.  Campers wishing to travel one way will be placed on a "wait list." Priority is given to round trip riders.  For more details and to make reservations please call US Sports (800-645-3226). 

Sample SMRC Daily Presentations and Recreation:

Sample Monday

Morning Speaker

How is your form?

Smoky Mountain Running Camp Director, Alan Drosky, describes how core strength and flexibility will improve your bio-mechanics.  Georgia Tech Coach Becky Megesi showed varying exercises for hip flexor, psoas,  gluts, adductors, and overall core stability.

Today campers have the opportunity to attend the following afternoon breakout sessions:
1.   Recovery for Exercise    
2.   Stretching for Success   
3.   The Little Things in Running  
4.   Speed: True Speed Development for Distance Athletes 
5.   The Psychological side of Running” 

Evening Recreation activities
Fleet Feet operates a retail store during our camp sessions.  Buy the latest and greatest in Nike gear at camp!
As always the scavenger hunt was a BIG success with a few guest appearances by a lost raccoon.  Prepare with your friends/teammates: the  SMRC Talent Show is always of highlight.  We end the week with a camp dance on Thursday nights, complete with a DJ.  Pictures are posted on the SMRC Facebook page and team results will be announced at the awards presentation on Thursday evening with the winners receiving great NIKE prizes.

Sample Tuesday

Morning Guest Speaker
After a great introduction, SMRC was treated to a question and answer session presented by Nike with Lisa Koll.  Koll is a 4 time Big 12, 10,000 outdoor Champion.  As a senior at Iowa State, Koll was the first athlete since 1996 to win both the 5000 and 10,000 in the NCAA championships. Koll is the American collegiate record holder in the 10,000 in 31:18. After graduation from college, Koll continues to run professionally under  Coach Jerry Schmacher of the  Oregon Track Club Elite/Portland where she currently has Pr’s of 14:55 in the 5000 and 31:18 for the 10,000. 

Afternoon Breakout sessions:
1.  Core Training     
2.  10 Commandments for a Successful Season  
3.  Peaking and Tapering    
4.  Sports Nutrition     
5.  Recruitment and Transitioning to college running 

Evening Activities
Tuesday evening campers have numerous opportunities for FUN!!!  The Recreation Directors had signs, played card games in the Lobby, and had a trivia at the auditorium.  The winners of the trivia night will receive cool Nike products on Thursday night at the awards night.

Sample Daily Schedule

  • 7:00am Breakfast
  • 8:30am Guest speaker in auditorium
  • 9:45am Group run in National Forest
  • 11:45am Lunch in campus cafeteria
  • 12:30pm Free time
  • 1:00pm Trainer available
  • 1:30pm Video analysis by groups
  • 2:45pm Breakout sessions of varying topics
  • 4:00pm Learn-by-doing at campus track in groups
  • 5:00pm Dinner in campus cafeteria
  • 6:00pm Free time
  • 6:15pm Trainer available
  • 7:00pm Recreation activities directed by rec staff
  • 10:00pm Curfew
  • 10:30pm Lights out!

Smoky Mountain Running Camp Feature

Located at the University of North Carolina- Asheville, in the beautiful Smoky Mountains, the camp is one of the oldest in the country.  Campers stay in air conditioned dorms, two bedrooms/one shared bath. 

The Smoky Mountain Running Camp operates on National Forest System Lands and are authorized under Special Use Permit by the Pisgah National Forest.  

The Smoky Mountain Running Camp is open to any and all entrants.

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Camp Reviews

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Overall Average Rating 4.72 / 5 Stars
    • 5/5.
    Curriculum, Effort Based Trainig = Results

    Camp set her up well.  She has knowledge I didn’t have until I was a senior in college.  Thanks to the curriculum based teaching.  She loves seeing her coaches from camp, Michael Dalhauser, and is motivated by them at races.  She also trains smart based on the effort based training she learned at camp.  She will leave a practice and she will tell me, “Dad, I don’t know why those girls always over run the workout!”  Then on Saturday she will go blow them away in races and console them after they are all down and don’t know why they didn’t run good.  She also doesn’t get way down on herself if she doesn’t run well as she knows when she’s training hard and also that some days everything doesn’t come together the way you wish because of external factors.  Now if I can just bottle that and force feed it to the rest of my athletes I’m in business!

    — Parent/ Coach CT, Camper 2017

    • 4/5.
    Terrific

    She loves the enthusiasm and routine of camp. She says the food and dorms are terrific. Most of all, she enjoys being with so many people who are passionate about running.

    — Leigh Anne R., Parent of Camper 2017

    • 5/5.
    Join the family!

    This camp is family. Every minute was enjoyable and it is my favorite place on earth. I will recommend SMRC to anyone.

    — Brennan s., Camper 2017

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    • 5/5.
    Fun and Informational

    Loved the nightly activities, especially the scavenger hunt. The JCITs and JCs were also very open to talking about college running and answering any questions. Overall a very fun and informational camp.

    — Melina E., Camper 2017

    • 5/5.
    Perfect

    The counselors were so amazing, the bus rides, the beautiful runs, making new friends and seeing my old ones, everything was perfect.

    — Julie, Camper 2017

    • 5/5.
    Should definitely come to SMRC

    You should definitely come to SMRC. I have learned so much here and had a blast doing it! If you're afraid you won't be able to keep up with people during the workouts, they split the campers up into a large number of groups so you are only running with people of your fitness level, which is really awesome. I have made so many great memories, have always felt safe on campus, and everyone there is as nice as they could be.

    — Emma L., Smoky Mountain Camper '16

    • 5/5.
    Always a lot of fun

    I would recommend attending Nike SMRC because it is super fun, it helps you learn more about running, and you get to make new friends that share the same interest of running with you. I always look forward to Nike SMRC every year and I am always very disappointed when camp is over. I will hopefully be attending camp for 2 weeks next year as opposed to 1 week. Nike SMRC is a great way to become a better runner, make new friends, and is always a lot of fun

    — Colton W., Smoky Mountain Camper '16

    • 5/5.
    Highlight of summer

    I look forward to SMRC every year. Each year, I get to see my SMRC family at camp and have a blast with them for a whole week. Also, the coaching instruction is great, and the trail runs are the best. Overall, SMRC is the highlight of my summer, and you should definitely consider coming next summer!

    — Joshua L., Smoky Mountain Camper '16

    • 5/5.
    I love camp more than any place in the world!

    I have attended Nike SMRC the past three summers, and I can definitely say I have had some of the best times of my life when I have been at camp.  I love camp more than any place in the world!

    — Katie A., Junior Counselor In Training

    • 5/5.
    Does everything right!

    Honestly this camp does everything right: the runs are interesting and a great difficulty, the camp is tons of fun, with a great community and activities during down time.  If you run cross country or even just run in your free time, and enjoy it, this camp is for you.

    — Danny E., Smoky Mountain Camper '15

    • 5/5.
    Learn how to train

    I felt like Nike Running Camps focused on learning how to train like an elite distance runner. We focused on learning how to pace ourselves and what types of training runs we should be doing this summer to prepare for cross in the fall.

    — Corey H., Smoky Mountain Camper '15

    • 5/5.
    Best week of my life

    I think one of my favorite things about Nike Running Camp is the feeling of being surrounded by runners.  When I was at camp, I had one thing in common with everybody, so even if I didn't know someone that well, I automatically had a connection with them.  The following is something I wrote a few days after camp ended this past year, I thought you'd like to read it.  I tried running today for the first time since camp ended.  To say it was treacherous would be an understatement.  On my first day of camp, I was appalled at the intenseness of our runs, and how incredibly fast we seemed to zip over the track.  On the second day, I swore I was going to have to stop, I was in so much pain, and I had never run so fast for so long before.  But I finished.  I stayed with the group and I completed that first run with my team.  As the week progressed, the pain was still there, but the doubt in my mind, that I wouldn't be able to keep up or that I needed to stop, started to fade.  Every Time that doubt began to creep back in my mind, I bundled up the pain coursing through my body, and I imagined everybody I was running with doing the same.  I imagined us hurling that pain into the ground.  It felt incredible.  That's what makes running beautiful to me.  The reassurance that everybody surrounding me is feeling just as much pain, and we're all fighting against it together in one battle.  I think that's the hardest part about transitioning from camp, to running alone.  I got so used to fighting this continuous battle with these people, who undoubtedly became my family.  When that family was taken away from me, I didn't know how to handle the pain, and it got the best of me.  It wasn't just the physical pain that made me start crying so much I had to stop in the middle of my run today, it was the painful truth that these indescribable bonds I had formed in a few days were taken away from me.  But as soon as I stopped, I thought about everything I've learned this past week.  Whether I was making friendships with people from around the country, or throwing my head back and repeating group 10's battle cry in the pacing contest, everything at camp was done whole heartedly.  That's when I knew I couldn't stop in the middle of this run, for the sake of everything I had learned, I had to push through.  And I did.  I guess I just wanted to say thank you, for the best week of my life.

    — Jay H., Smoky Mountain Camper '15

    • 5/5.
    Great leaders

    I loved my running leader. The JCITs especially served as effective leaders because they communicated with the athletes well. They were closer to our age so they could relate to the tough week of training and had fun alongside us.

    — Valerie B., Smoky Mountain Camper '15

    • 5/5.
    Love the breakout sessions

    Out of the three years I have been at camp, I enjoyed this year’s breakout sessions the most. I especially enjoyed the breakout sessions hosted by Nike representatives as they were very informative and directed at the runners. I also enjoyed the breakouts that required activity, such as core.

    — Michael W., Smoky Mountain Camper '15

    • 5/5.
    Interesting speakers

    The auditorium speakers really taught me a lot that I have since applied to running and other aspects of my life.  The talk on Flow was particularly impactful.

    — Rose P., Smoky Mountain Camper '15

    • 5/5.
    Perfect combination of challenge and comfort

    Nike Smoky Mountain Running Camp is ALWAYS my favorite week of my entire summer. There is no better place to run, bond with my team, and learn about all things running. Some of the best memories I have shared with my cross country team happened at camp. This camp provides a great challenging experience that completely prepares any camper for their upcoming cross country season. It provides the perfect combination of challenge and comfort. I've personally never gone to any camps as a child and I could not be more grateful that I've had the opportunity to have the "camp" experience with Nike. I am constantly reminded of my love for running every time I think about camp. My summers spent at Nike are a high school memory I will remember and cherish forever. 

    — Christina P., Smoky Mountain Camper '14

    • 5/5.
    Overall improvement, overall fun!

    The camp teaches runners how to improve in many different areas, such as biomechanics, training, diet, and injury prevention.  I really enjoyed the overall experience. The classes were educational and the speakers inspiring. The runs we're pretty challenging and I loved the locations, the beautiful trails and creeks.  It had a good combination of learning and recreation.  I am coming back!  

    — Mary P., Smoky Mountain Camper '14

    • 5/5.
    Fantastic experience!

    The SMRC is a fantastic experience.  The trails are beautiful and you learn a lot.  Also, this camp provided inspiration for me to become a better runner.  Being with a huge group of other dedicated runners made me feel like I was in the right place. I loved it.  Camp made running fun and brought me to  the next level with great instruction.  I can’t wait to start my XC season!  

    — Caleb S., Smoky Mountain Camper '14

    • 5/5.
    Dedicated son!

    My son returned home with new enthusiasm and understanding of running. He now sees that putting in the miles will help him and that running can lead to opportunities beyond high school.  You balanced the running aspect with the educational aspect. You give him information that he can use to train and develop as a runner. Many don’t get that in their high school setting. He also got to run in a beautiful part of our country!

    — Tammy L., Parent of Smoky Mountain Camper '14

    • 5/5.
    Inspiration!

    The Smoky Mtn. Running Camp is a fantastic experience.  The trails are beautiful and you learn a lot.  Also, this camp provided inspiration for me to become a better runner.  Being with a huge group of other dedicated runners made me feel like I was in the right place. I loved it.  

    — Summer H., Smoky Mountain Camper '13

    • 5/5.
    Motivating and fun!

    The SMRC motivated and inspired me to get better, as well as help me to enjoy the entire experience of running!!  They also have fun activities planned to keep our minds on having fun and not taking ourselves so seriously when we run. I need help on mental relaxation when I race and to remember that running is fun so I can do better in racing.  I even met two girls from Canada my age who roomed  with us and now we are all good friends! I am coming back for the next three years, until I can't anymore, can't wait!  

    — Scott R., Smoky Mountain Camper '13

    • 5/5.
    Coming back!!

    SMRC was a great experience.  The trail running was challenging, but lots of fun. The staff was great and taught me a lot about form and pacing.  They are amazing at teaching people how to become a better runner, they know how to have fun and make camp enjoyable, but also are serious about running. I loved all the activities at night and all the breakouts and morning lectures! I can't wait to go back next year.

    — Kenny S., Smoky Mountain Camper '13

    • 5/5.
    All around great experience!

    I was put in the perfect group and I felt the runs were challenging yet I was capable of doing them.  The paths we ran on were amazing.  I liked the breakout sessions a lot.  Also I liked that the staff were young and you could relate to them. They also made you laugh, which was good.  Buzzard Bait is a great way to end the camp too!  The Smoky Mtn Running Camp  is just an all around great running camp that is a great experience.

    — Louis N., Smoky Mountain Camper '13

    • 5/5.
    Best week of the summer!

    The SM Camp was the best week of the summer! It was amazing to meet other kids and counselors who have the same passion for running as I do. You do an excellent job of fostering a feeling of home and togetherness with other athletes. I learned a great number of things about running and will for sure return next year.

    — Julia L., Smoky Mountain Camper '12

    • 5/5.
    Camp is a Must

    This was our daughter's first experience at any camp as a rising senior and she loved Smoky Mountain Running Camp. The coaches were open and friendly and easy to talk to. She loved the instruction, lessons and video analysis which gave her a visual of how she can improve. Being with new students/runners of other schools allowed for new friendships which have continued after being home. Overall a wonderful, safe, friendly environment for personal growth both athletically and emotionally.

    — Anthony M., Parent of a Smoky Mountain Camper '12

    • 5/5.
    Great Time!

    I would really recommend this camp for any dedicated runner! My daughter has enjoyed her time at camp for all the years she has been coming.  She has given tips that she learned from camp to all of her coaches.  She has had excellent seasons of XC and track after camp each year. I could not ask for a better camp to send my daughter to. Thank you Nike for putting your name on a great camp and to all of the staff that have been invovled for these past two years. We are aleady looking forward to next year.

    — Angel S., Parent of a Smoky Mountain Camper '12

    • 5/5.
    Very impressed

    My son had a fantastic time!  He learned about everything from nutrition to strategy to pacing.  In addition he had a great time and made lots of friends he is looking forward to seeing at races this year. I was VERY impressed with communications from the camp before, during and after.  Everyone was friendly, proactive, and positive.  My son's bus had a flat on the way home and the camp called me several times to keep me updated and not worried. A great job by all. We will be back.

    — Weston J., Parent of a Smoky Mountain Camper '12

    • 5/5.
    Inspirational camp

    I would like to recommend Nike Smoky Mountain Running Camp to anyone who runs on a high school XC  team. There is a place for everyone in the camp to run. Even people who think that they might be "too slow," they have a false accusation because they will find runners equivalent to their speed. Although Nike SMRC is only about a week long, they provide you with the information you need to succeed for the entire season and even information beneficial for you to keep with you as you continue running. It is a very inspirational camp, as far as success goes. My teammates and I even travel all of the way from Illinois to come down to the camp. If you are reading this, I recommend coming to camp!

    — Angela S., Smoky Mountain Camper '11

    • 5/5.
    Met many new lifelong friends

    I came to this camp not knowing anybody and unsure of how good this camp was actually going to be. By the first day I had met many new lifelong friends. The coaching staff was excellent and so were the workouts. Overall this camp was amazing and I am most definitely going to be returning again next year and will bring along some teammates.

    — Tom S., Smoky Mountain Camper '11

    • 5/5.
    Encouraging environment

    At first, I was a little intimidated as a beginning runner, but my coach and peers helped me adjust and my confidence grew day by day. SMRC provides a great encouraging environment for runners at every level. Whether you are a beginner or seasoned senior, SMRC is fun, educational, and inspirational.

    — Payton M., Smoky Mountain Camper '11

    • 5/5.
    Look forward to next summer

    My granddaughter had an amazing experience! She runs 5ks locally but has not had any type of track training -she loves to run and does well - the running camp, coaching & overall experience of being with others who share her passion, took her to a new level of self awareness! Thank you!  We look forward to next summer!

    — Mort J., Grandparent of Smoky Mountain Camper '10

    • 5/5.
    Beautiful trails

    Nike Smoky Running Camp is my favorite place on earth! Not only is it extremely fun, it is a great learning experience where you're surrounded by knowledgeable and many talented runners. It is an awesome experience to spend a whole week in the beautiful trails of North Carolina. The activities that happen at camp are also very fun and the friendship made is everlasting.

    — Linda M., Smoky Mountain Camper '10

    • 5/5.
    Amazing for runners of all abilities

    Nike Smoky Mountain Running Camp is an amazing camp for runners of all abilities! This running camp teaches you so much and gets you really pumped for the cross country season. With awesome speakers and great breakout sessions, you learn so much about the sport in just a week! At Smoky Mt Running Camp, you can meet new friends, have a blast with the activities, and really grow as a runner! This camp leaves you at the end of the week wishing you could stay longer! It's an awesome experience and I strongly recommend it to all runners! If you don't go to Nike Running Camp, you're definitely missing out!

    — D.J. F., Smoky Mountain Camper '09

    • 5/5.
    Awesome coaches and new friends

    Nike Running Camp was AMAZING! It was without a doubt the best running experience I have ever had. I've never been so excited to get up at 7am to go for a run and be able to enjoy it with awesome coaches and new friends! I'm already so excited for next year.

    — Quinton M., Smoky Mountain Camper '09

    • 5/5.
    More connection between speakers

    I much preferred staying in Mills hall as opposed to Founders due to its location and room layout. I also thought that the morning speakers in the summer of 2015 to be more interesting due to the common theme (prefontaine and the birth of Nike) that was followed throughout the whole week. I would have liked to see more connection between all of the speakers during the week

    — Phillip W., Smoky Mountain Camper '16

    • 5/5.
    Ideal place to spend your summer

    Dear future camper, Smoky Mountain Running Camp is the ideal place to spend a couple of your summer weeks. Getting to train with people on the same level and the amazing staff is great and will help you become a better runner. The camp has helped me the past two years get to where I want to be in my running. The staff makes it feel like its one big happy family and I definitely recommend the camp. 

    — Ashley S., Smoky Mountain Camper '09

    • 5/5.
    Wish it could have lasted longer

    Dear prospective camper, My Smoky Mountain Running Camp experience was amazing! This year was my first year attending, but I felt like family amongst the friendly and enthusiastic staff and campers. I went with another teammate, yet I was able to make friends from all over the East Coast that I still talk to afterwards. I got to run on beautiful trails (and Buzzard's Bait) that challenged me without straining me too early in my training. My favorite parts of camp involved the food...and the afternoon/evening activities like the talent show, scavenger hunt, battle of sexes, pacing contest, and the dance. I also learned a lot about the sport of running and took away valuable lessons about recovery, goals, racing, mental strength, hill training, diet, and much more through breakout sessions. Overall, Smoky Mountain Running Camp was one of my best summer experiences and I wish the week could have lasted much longer. I definitely recommend this camp to any runner as I am sure you will love it, whether coming solo or with a team. I hope you chose SMRC! 

    — Bonnie C., Smoky Mountain Camper '08

    • 5/5.
    Can't wait for next year

    It's an awesome place to not only learn more about running but to meet new people. I was hesitant and nervous but now can't wait to see my season improve this year. Can't wait for next year. 

    — Wendy W., Smoky Mountain Camper '08

    • 5/5.
    Couldn't have been more excited

    As a parent, it was great to be able to follow the pictures on facebook. We always knew Colin could work hard but he still had that bit of hesitation. With the right push from his xc coach (also a Nike staff member) & his counselors at camp, he realized not only that he could do it but that others wanted it too! He even texted me 1/2 way through to thank me for sending him down. Between that and the fact that he was extremely proud of himself on that last run up buzzard bait - as parents we couldn't have been more excited for him. Without hesitation, he will be back (possibly with his brother in tow)! 

    — Justin H., Parent of a Smoky Mountain Camper '08

    • 5/5.
    Well balanced

    SMRC is a great camp for runners of all ages. It allows everyone to come together, to learn and train at different levels. This camp is unique, because it has a balanced amount of training, learning, and relaxation. I would recommend this camp to all runners of all ages and skills, as I had an excellent experience myself. 

    — Josh P., Smoky Mountain Camper '07

    • 5/5.
    Mentally tough

    This camp has taught me not only how to improve my running skill to an elite level, but they also taught me a lot on how to be mentally tough and a more aggressive competitor, while also learning what my leaps and bounds are as far as pacing. I learned a lot about the other things that Nike Running Camp values such as nutrition, how to get yourself on the map and lots of other things. Just the week after SMRC, I also PR'd in the 5K with a a 17:26, which is a PR by almost 50 seconds. I would recommend this camp to almost everyone who runs, even my friends back up from the New England Region.

    — A.J. S., Smoky Mountain Camper '07

    • 5/5.
    Expanded my running capabilities

    I came into Smoky Mountain Running Camp as an average runner and a very shy person. Throughout the week I got to know my group mates and really expanded my running capabilities. Although I am the same runner as I was before, I left SMRC with a passion for running and motivation to take all of my runs seriously. SMRC taught me to believe in myself, to not fear success, and be confident in what I am able to accomplish. 

    — Ashley S., Smoky Mountain Camper '07

    • 5/5.
    Best week of your life

    If you want to have the best week of your life then come to the Nike Smoky Mountain Running Camp where they provide great coaching, great training and great trails in Asheville, North Carolina. When you leave you will have new friends, and a different look in the running culture. The only thing you will regret is not signing up for three weeks of camp. 

    — Ryan W., Smoky Mountain Camper '07

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Nike Smoky Mountain Running Camp

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Alan Drosky, Camp Director
One University Heights
Asheville, North Carolina 28801

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Camp Dates & Prices

Programs: Cross Country
Age Group: 14 - 18
Gender: Co-Ed
Overnight $780.00
Availability: Open

* Please note, times may vary on the first and last day of camp.
Programs: Cross Country
Age Group: 11 - 14
Gender: Co-Ed
Overnight $780.00
Availability: Open

* Please note, times may vary on the first and last day of camp.
Programs: Cross Country
Age Group: 14 - 18
Gender: Co-Ed
Overnight $780.00
Availability: Open

* Please note, times may vary on the first and last day of camp.
Programs: Cross Country
Age Group: 14 - 18
Gender: Co-Ed
Overnight $780.00
Availability: Open

* Please note, times may vary on the first and last day of camp.
For additional camp information and dates call us at 1-800-645-3226 we would be happy to help you.
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