Panel of Experts

Suggestions, Tips & Advice from 18 Extraordinary Women

Amanda Basham

I’m a professional trail runner, coach and new mom living and training in Boulder, CO with my partner, Justin Grunewald. We recently had our 1st daughter, Rylan Grunewald, and are loving parenthood. I run for Rabbit and Altra, competing in ultra distances up to 100 miles. I love playing in the mountains and am hoping to race the CCC 100k in France this year.

Amanda Roe

Amanda is a naturopathic doctor based in Gisborne, New Zealand. Her work jam is women’s endocrine regulation, particularly as it pertains to trail-running & endurance medicine. She loves to teach groups of women who want to understand their bodies and optimize their function. Amanda believes in the healing power of nature and thus gives every patient a “Nature Rx” as part of a comprehensive treatment plan.

Ayako Sawanobori

Ayako is a Tokyo native, raised in L.A., educated in Boston, and now living in San Francisco managing a non-profit youth development program.  She also serves as a volunteer coach for Girls on the Run and an Advisory Board member of Back on My Feet.  She started her athletic career as a competitive gymnast, switched to track & field as a sprinter through college, and now enjoys running slow marathons.  She is an avid outdoor adventurer and has traveled around the world seeking tall mountains and wild trails.  She is passionate about equity work that uplifts women and BIPOC.

Courtney Dauwalter

Ultra runner living and training in Colorado. Intrigued by the really long distances and what our bodies and brains are capable of. Loves candy and sunshine.

Erica Williams

Erica Williams is a trail and ultrarunner living in Lexington, KY. She boasts two 100-hundred mile ultramarathons and a 50-mile race among her finishes, which also include over a dozen 50Ks and marathons, respectively. Always in pursuit of even crazier adventures, she is currently training for the 2021 Tahoe 200 Mile Endurance Race and plans to attempt the Triple Crown of 200s in 2022. 

Gina Lucrezi

Gina is the founder of Trail Sisters (, a women’s organization and community focused on growing participation and opportunity for women and those who identify as, in the outdoors. Gina is a board member and Training Director for Chaffee County Search and Rescue (North), Board member for the Hardrock 100 Endurance Run and Women’s Subcommittee Chair, and a member for the city of Buena Vista’s Trail Advisory Board. When not working, Gina can be found exploring in the Sawatch Mountains with her husband Justin (#1 Trail Mister) and two Airedales: Ezra and Spruce.

Heather Anderson

Heather “Anish” Anderson is a National Geographic Adventurer of the Year, three-time Triple Crown thru-hiker, and professional speaker whose mission is to inspire others to “Dream Big, Be Courageous.” She is also the author of two hiking memoirs Thirst: 2600 Miles to Home and Mud, Rocks, Blazes: Letting Go on the Appalachian Trail. Find her on Instagram @AnishHikes or her website

Hillary Allen

Hillary Allen is a trail runner and running coach living in Boulder, Colorado. She is a scientist with a masters degree in Neuroscience and Physiology, and also is an author of the book Out and Back published April 6th, 2021. She prefers steep terrain on the trails and is currently training for an everesting project on her local trails in Boulder, CO to celebrate the launch of her book.

Jackie McCloud

I’m an environmental resource manager by day, a knitter by night, and a trail runner whenever I can get it in.  I co-lead our local Trail Sisters Santa Cruz, CA community so we can get more womxn onto trails and build confidence.  I’m an avid potato chip eater and chocolate milk drinker.

Junko Kazukawa

Ultra and trail runner living in Denver CO, Japanese born, 57 years old, and still running!!! 2x breast cancer survivor. Junko works as a personal trainer, running coach (UESCA certified), and Colorado Athletic Club tabor run club coordinator. Junko runs for the Altra Red team, is a Nuun ambassador, and is a part of the Berkeley Park Running Company team. She has finished 18 one hundred ultra races, is a Grandslam of ultra running finisher, 2x Leadwoman, 3x Silver queen, and 50+ marathons finisher. Junko loves outdoor activities, exploring the Colorado mountains, and has summited Mt Rainer, Kilimanjaro, and Mont Blanc.

Katie Grossman

Katie Grossman is a freelance advertising and outdoors writer based in Wrightwood, CA. She’s expanded her repertoire to include Mountain Ultra Trail runner, wife, backcountry skier, and mama of 2 little trail sisters – in that chronological order.

Krissy Moehl

Coach, Race Director of the Chuckanut 50k, Brand Ambassador and author of Running Your First Ultra. Racing trails and ultras for over two decades (over 100 races) including wins at UTMB, Wasatch, Vermont, Addo, Hardrock, HURT, UTMF, Cascade Crest and Mt. Masochist. But most notable is that Krissy Moehl is best known as the human companion of PD, the iconic trail running dog of the Pacific Northwest.

Kriste Peoples

Kriste Peoples is a women’s trail running coach, hike leader, and writer who thrives in Denver. She’s a meditation teacher, too, who loves sitting at the intersection of workouts and wonder in nature. She can often be found outside, as well as on insta @kristepeoples and

Kristi Confortin

Hello, my name is Kristi! I am a wildlife biologist mainly focused on researching bats. I have been running since I can remember but it wasn’t until I moved to North Carolina in 2018 that I started trail running. This is where I learn about Trail Sisters and it CHANGED my life. I am very passionate about inspiring other womxn to get on the trails. When I am not running, you can find me in the kitchen, reading a good book or exploring my new state of Alabama.

Kuwanna Dyer-Pietras

Kuwanna is a life-long runner and a field geologist with a love of running adventures and field work. She has completed several marathons and is now exploring ultra distances. She is originally from Nevada and would love to see more BIPOC women running the trails. When she is not running, you will find her teaching geology courses, researching ancient river and lake deposits, all while trying to keep up with two daughters and a patient husband. She is a connoisseur of gluten-free beer and granola.

Mindy Smith

Mindy enjoys serving her community as a TS Leader of the Asheville/western NC chapter, running in the Blue Ridge Mountains, walking her dogs (one she wheels in a wagon!), camping, hiking, backpacking and doing basically anything in nature. She’s also a huge fan of cooking and not following recipes, ha! Stoked to be a voice, from the ‘back of the pack’, on this column and help other womxn find their way!

Silke Koester

Silke lives in Boulder, Colorado where she co-founded the Rocky Mountain Runners. She has started more than 60 ultras over the past 13 years and finished every single one. All of her experiences have been shaped entirely by the power of community. Running with inspiring, positive and extraordinarily strong and fun people is the greatest joy and privilege as an athlete. When not running or chasing her toddler around the trails, Silke works full time for an educational non-profit organization that aims to improve school readiness for our next generation of learners through early childhood language development.

Sophie Speidel

Sophie Speidel has been running ultras since 2002. She has finished over 100 ultras, including Western States 100, Massanutten 100, and Old Dominion 100 as well as the Hellgate 100k eleven times and the R2R2R of the Grand Canyon. Sophie and her husband Rusty have three adult children, ages 28, 26 and 24 who grew up watching their mom transition from road marathons and triathlons to running trail ultras — and they turned out just fine! Sophie works full-time as a school counselor, and in her free time she and Rusty are often found running and hiking with their 3-year-old Australian Shepherds, Cooper and Blue, on the trails near their home in Charlottesville, Virginia.