Meet Your Running Coach

Shona racing the Mont Blanc Marathon in France

Hi I’m Shona Stephenson – Adventure seeking, running coach, sports nutritionist, personal trainer and elite ultra trail athlete and a mum teenagers.

I love adventure and through my trail running I have had the amazing opportunity to travel the world as an elite sponsored athlete. My best achievements is being the Australian Ultra Runners Association Champion in 2013, 1st Place Northbourne 100Mile NZ, 2nd Ultra Trail Mt Fuji Japan, 9th Place Mont Blanc Marathon France, 10th Place Ultra Trail Mont Blanc France, 3x 3rd Ultra Trail Australia, x2 6th Place Tarawera Ultra NZ, 1st Place Overall Oxfam TW Sydney, 3x 1st Place Blackall 100.

I did not start at the top, I just wanted to run a “fun run” after having my kids before I turned 30, making sure I kept the baby weight off, as with my fist child I lost 18kgs in a year, just like most 28 year olds who’ve just had kids. My first race was in 2007 pushing my 7 month old baby in a pram at the City2Surf. I then raced the Sydney 1/2 marathon after 8 weeks training in 1:46 min having to walk up the hills at the end. If you asked me if I could run a marathon back then I would have said no way! My knees hurt so much after my 1st 1/2 marathon in 2008 I could barely walk for 3 days.

I knew I had to get stronger and thought trail running would be the best option for me. The Great Nosh was my first trail run, the photos on the website made it look like a garden stroll. Wrong. I went out so hard I was stuffed after 5 km and I wanted to catch a taxi out of the 15km event after running across the Roseville Bridge. There was no way out I had to run to the finish line as there was no way for my dad to get in contact with me because it was an end to end event. The last 400m I walked it in totally stuffed, covered in mud and broken. My dad then asked me at the finish line if I was ever going to to The Great Nosh again. I said “No way. That’s way too hard!” The next year I sat out of it, in 2010 I came 2nd and in 2011 I won it. Two weeks earlier I ran my first solo 100km Ultra Trail Australia. I placed 6th with a time of 12:50 at Ultra Traill Australia too after rehabing two broken feet in 2010. This 6th place was probably the event that showed me that I could mix it with the big guns as only Australian the Julie Quinn, won it breaking the record. I was racing amongst the Europeans and Americans and holding my own, and at that point I was just a mum. Little did I know then that I was about to start up of a fantastic trail running and coaching career.

I love the atmosphere of an event and seeing what time I could do on the day. It took me about 3 years to race my 1st 100km team event Oxfam TW Sydney. In 2010, the first year I ran it I finished it with two broken feet, I was then on crutches for 3 months, cross training in the gym, deep water running, cycling, rowing, stair machine and cross trainer.

I’ve had all the injuries in the world, achilles tendonitis, hamstring tears, sprain ankles, stress fractures in both my feet at once, shoulder impingements, this list goes on. Every injury has taught me how to improve my technique and become a more balance athlete as I worked closely with physiotherapist over my long trail running career. Injuries are also an indication of potentially something is missing in your nutrition or you might also be over training. Each injury has taught me something about my body and helped me then to become a better running coach for you.

I’m a strong believer in cross training if you are injured and I’ve managed to have very little “down” time for an injury, even when I had stress fractures in both my feet in 2010. This injury probably changed my running technique to become lighter on my feet, with a faster cadence to limit the impact on my body. I love a road bike for hill training and encourage my running clients to ride, swim, row and dedicate a day stretching in a yoga class.

I turned my passion for amazing events, stunning trails and massive climbs and descents into a race and founded the Brisbane Trail Ultra in 2018. The inaugual event run for the first time in 2019 with over 530 entrants.

I’ve always followed my passions and lived out my dreams and hopefully I can help you live your dreams too.


ONe On One Coaching

My focus in our sessions together is your technique. I’m an x-gymnast if we did not do our routine correctly we increased the risk of injury. It is the same with our strength and conditioning training and your running technique.

Training Camps

I host 3 training camps in the Year. February, March and a June camp. We will be focusing on the Brisbane Trail Ultra, and training on that course. The Brisbane Trail Ultra is the toughest course in Queensland and is one of highest ranking point event in Australia. This year it is the AURA 100km Championships for 2020.

private Running Groups

Get your family or friends, running group and organise a private group training session. Training in a group is a fun way to stay motivated together. You can set a goal event and work together training for that one long term goal.

Online Coaching, mentoring

I write individually designed programs for my athletes on either excel or on “Training Peaks”. I add in strength and conditioning training on my programs as well as bike, rowing, swimming etc. I check in on you on either Training Peaks or STRAVA and make sure you are meeting your targets with your training program. You can also message me directly, email or phone me. We can book in a regular SKYPE, ZOOM or What’s App meeting too.



2009 – Present

  • 2019 4th Place Blackall 100km
  • 2017 6th Place Blackall 100km AURA 100km National Championships
  • 2017 1st Place Brisbane Trail Marathon
  • 2017 1st Place Darkness to Daylight
  • 2017 1st Female Mt Mee Marathon
  • 2017 1st Female Mt Glorious 1/2 Marathon
  • 2016 1st Female Blackall 100
  • 2016 3rd Female Coastal High 50km
  • 2016 2nd Female Brisbane Trail Marathon
  • 2015 1st Female Blackall 100
  • 2015 3rd Female Ultra Trail Australia
  • 2015 6th Female Tarawera Ultra
  • 2014 1st Female and setting the 5 year record of 10:59:59 Blackall 100
  • 2014 1st Female Lamington Classic 42.2/21.1 record holder
  • 2014 8th Ranked on the Ultra Trail World Tour
  • 2014 10th Female Ultra Trail Mont Blanc France
  • 2014 1st mixed team 3rd overall Kokoda Challenge GC
  • 2014 2nd Place Oxfam TW Brisbane, 2nd overall.
  • 2014 6th Place Ultra Trail Mount Fuji Japan
  • 2014 9th Female Ultra Trail Australia (Sick and only racing for Ultra Trail World Tour Points, walked the last 20km. Important finish)
  • 2014 6th Female Tarawera 100km
  • 2014 2nd Female Spartan Sprint
  • 2013 1st Female Hakuba International Trails Japan
  • 2013 9th Female Mont Blanc Marathon France
  • 2013 3rd Female Ultra Trail Australia
  • 2013 2nd Female Ultra Trail Mount Fiji (UTMF) Japan
  • 2013 1st Female Northbourne 100 Mile New Record
  • 2013 1st Female AURA Championships 60km Marnoondah Dam VIC
  • 2012 1st Place Great Ocean Walk New Record VIC
  • 2012 1st Place Surf Coast Century VIC
  • 2012 1st place Coastal Classic New record NSW
  • 2012 1st Place Sydney Trail Running Series
  • 2012 1st OVERALL Oxfam TW Sydney new record
  • 2012 3rd Female Glow Worm Tunnel Marathon
  • 2012 3rd Female Ultra Trail Australia
  • 2012 1st Place Coastrek 50km Sydney
  • 2012 1st Place Sydney Trail Running Series
  • 2011 1st Female 2nd Overall Great North Walk 100km New Record
  • 2011 1st Place Coastal Classic 30km new record
  • 2011 2nd Female Fitzroy Falls Marathon
  • 2011 6th Female Ultra Trail Australia
  • 2009 1st Female Deep Space Mountain Marathon (my 1st marathon)


2009 – Present

  • 2021 Race Director Cairns Port Douglas Trail Ultra
  • 2021 Brisbane Trail Ultra becomes the AURA Long Course National Trail Running Championship
  • 2021 Brisbane Trail Ultra Joins Spartan Trail World Championship
  • 2020 Race Ambassador Ultra Trail New Caledonia
  • 2020 Race Ambassador Kokoda Trail PNG
  • 2019 ABC Radio Guest Speaker
  • 2019 The Westin Brisbane International Runners Day guest speaker.
  • 2019, 2020, 2021 Race Director Brisbane Trail Ultra
  • 2018 Founded Brisbane Trail Ultra
  • 2018 Binna Burra Yoga Retreat Guest Speaker.
  • 2015 Blackall 100 Panel Speaker
  • 2015 Bootcamp Instructor, Motivate 2 Train.
  • 2014 Tarawera Ultra Panel Speaker
  • 2014 Ultra Trail Australia Panel Speaker
  • 2013 Tarawera Ultra Panel Speaker
  • 2013 Founding Ultra Trail Australia Training camps and online coaching
  • 2011 Sports Nutritionist Certificate
  • 2010 Punchfit Instructor
  • 2009- Present Senior First Aid certificate
  • 2009 Fitness Australia Member
  • 2009 Completed Cert 1V Master Personal Trainer Certificate

Let’s start your next adventure.