Lamington Classic

  Stephenson Inov-8 Trail Runner Winning the Lamington Classic Lamington Classic For about 15 years I’ve wanted to visit the Lamington World Heritage Listed National Park. It took a  back to back event with 42km Saturday and a 21km Sunday race to give me enough motivation to finally get there. The Lamington Classic has a historic South East Queensland trail running event that has been around since 1970. It is said to be the oldest trail running event in Australia. The Lamington Classic has an amazing history of great runners who have run the 21km distance from Binna Burra to O’Reily’s for over the 30 years. Initally the event ran one way only for example from O’Reilys to Binna Burra… Read More →

Tarawera Ultra The Build Up

Trail-Runner-With-Dog

Tarawera Ultra The Build Up   I have unfinished business at Tarawera Ultra 100km. In 2013 I had to pull out of the event in the most gory circumstance. I was shitting blood from about 30km and after working myself back into the event at about 60-75km I then was pissing blood. It was extremely scary experience for me. I decided to pull out of the 100km event at the 85km check point. No one wants to damage their organs whilst racing or training for a an ultra. It’s just not worth it. I’m a mum, a wife, a daughter, a sister and I have a family to care and provide for. I have to return home safe for them…. Read More →

Hakuba International Trail 2013

Hakuba-International-Trails-2013-Feature-Image

Hakuba International Trail 2013 After the UTMB (Ultra Trail Mount Blanc 2013) withdrawal I was physically, mentally and emotionally broken. I questioned why I was running. I was absolutely exhausted from my 2013 Trail Running season. I missed my family and kids dearly. What hurt more was that I was to have less than two weeks on the ground in Sydney with my family and beautiful girls before I was back on another plane to Tokyo. At the start of 2013 I thought I was totally invincible. At the end of 2013 I had a suspected stress fracture in my Medial Malleolus and a tendonitis in my Tibialis Posterior. I’d made a commitment to Inov8 x Descente Japan to race… Read More →

Interview with Ben Duffus Winner of Surf Coast Century 2013

Ben-Duffus-Ultra-Runner

Ben Duffus is a fresh talent breaking onto the Australian Ultra Running Circuit. He has just won 2 Australian Ultra’s the Surf Coast Century and he was on the winning team at the 96km Kokoda Challenge all this while studying physic’s uni. This 21 year old’s name is one to remember. He was kind enough to spare some of his time to chat with me about his trail running adventures so far.   Shona Stephenson: You have a few memorable wins under your belt – what was the hardest (and why) and do you have a favourite win? Ben Duffus: It’s very difficult to quantify a “hardest win”. I would say that the races I DNFed were the hardest! Having… Read More →

Shona Stephenson UTMB – Ultra-Trail du Mont-Blanc Race Report

Shona Stephenson UTMB

I had an awful lead up to the UTMB (Ultra Trail Du Mount Blanc) Europe’s biggest Trail Ultra 100 mile event of the year. Like most people living in Sydney in winter with children I was sick with a virus. I was also still going through personal hell and bad asthma when I boarded the plane from Sydney to Geneva, stopping over in Singapore to re-fuel and then landing in London. I felt like I’d learned enough from my last trip the European Alps to get a good result at the UTMB (Ultra Trail Du Mount Blanc). I arrived in the gorgeous Chamonix in France. Chamonix was alive and buzzing with trail running athletes everywhere. I just had to take… Read More →

Whitney Dagg: Interview with the winner of the Surf Coast Century

Whitney Dagg Trail Running

Shona: You have a few memorable wins under your belt – what was the hardest (and why) and do you have a favourite win? Whitney Dagg: My recent win at the Surf Coast Century was by far the toughest. Mainly because it was 100km but also because I got a sore IT band at half way and had to run with the pain in the side of my knee for 50km. Pain relief helped but it required mental toughness. I was determined for a good result and thats what I got. Shona: What’s a favourite training session or run (that most advances your fitness or abilities)? Whitney Dagg: I love getting up in the hills above Dunedin, away from the… Read More →

Skyrunning – Ice Trail Tarentaise

Shona-Stephenson-Ice-Trail-Tarentaise

Photo By Ian Corless Two days before Skyrunning Ice Trail Tarentaise 65km I realize I had run out of my preventive asthma medication. I started to freak out. I was sent into absolute panic. It was the end of my European Adventure and I had planed out my spending to the last Euro. I also later found out the Hotel Double Charged my credit card by mistake. The Aussie dollar was plummeting whilst I was on holiday’s. The little Aussie battler had lost 13% Shit! I have 2 kids back in Sydney and a Sydney mortgage to go with it. I run my own business’s if I don’t work I don’t get paid and I have almost been away for… Read More →

Skyrunning – The Mt Blanc Marathon

Shona-Stephenson-Trail-Running-Swiss-Alps

It was a chance of a life time to represent inov8 in the Skyrunning 2013 Series in Mt Blanc Marathon, Europe. Who would have thought that anyone would want an Australian who has never run through snow before to represent them at a Skyrunning 2013 event? The Skyrunning 2013 Series is notorious for being extremely tough and technical events with massive elevation gains and sometime losses. The Skyrunning 2013 Races are located all over the world first starting in Spain Zegama 42km, France Mt Blanc Marathon 42km, USA Pikes Peak 42km, Switzerland Matterhorn Ultra’s 46km, Italy Lissome Extreme Sky Race 23km. There is an Ultra Series including Transvulcania Ultramarathon 83km Spain, Andorra Ronda dels Cims 170km, Ice Trail Tarentaise 65km… Read More →

Mt Solitary Blue Mountains

Mt Solitary Walking Route Blue Mountains Shona Stephenson

Monday June Public Holiday was the perfect time to hit the tracks on my own. My achilles tendon was still a bit iffy after I tore it the day before The North Face 100km. I wanted to run on my own so I did not feel any pressure to keep up with a training partner. I also wanted to use the opportunity to build my own mental strength, gain some confidence in my body again and try a few new things. It was only 3 weeks after tearing it and one week after a 20km Saturday, 20km Sunday Glow Worm Tunnel Ultra Training Australia Camp weekend. It was my last chance I could put in some big kilometers before I… Read More →

North Face 100

North Face 100 Trail Running Shona Stephenson

The North Face 100 2013 Race Report by Shona Stephenson. I’ve had a massive year 50km Aura Australian Ultra Runner Trail Champs VIC Feb 2013, Coastrek 50km NSW March 2013, Tarawera 85km (retired sick at 85km) NZ March 2013, Northburn 100M 160km NZ (my debut 100M) March 2013, UTMF 160km Japan April 2013 my 2nd 100M only a month later, plus 4 Sydney Trail Series speedy 10km and now I was about to run the premier Australian Event of the calendar The North Face 100km May 2013. In a way it is the last BIG Ultra Race in NSW Calendar before we all get a bit of a rest over winter then head to Europe for the Skyrunning Series. It… Read More →

inov-8 Race Elite 180 Thermoshell

Inov-8 Thermoshell 002

I tested the inov-8 180 Thermoshell whilst running and winning my first 100M event in Otago on the South Island of New Zealand, Northburn 100M. Otago is located in the roaring 40’s and is known for it’s gale forced winds and its sub-zero freezing temperatures. In 2012 there over an inch of snow found on runners whilst they ran across the alpine ridge lines at the Summit of Dunstan Mountain at over 1600m. I am from Australia and I was petrified of being cold. I have never encountered snow so I was keen to make sure my body was going to stay at working temperature whilst running through the night for the first time. I made sure that I packed… Read More →