Kirra Balmanno Header


Competing in international ultra-running races and challenging herself on endurance expeditions in mountain ranges all over the world, ACTEN Hero Kirra Balmanno has a deep-rooted passion for moving through the mountains. Finding comfort in the discomfort and continually pushing her limits of self-belief, with a string of international wins to her name, including the Innsbruck Alpine Trailrun Festival K85, Ultra Tour Monte Rosa 120km & the Manaslu Ultra Trail Race and has been selected twice to represent Australia at the World Trail Championships. Sharing her time between work as a veterinarian and the mountains.

Kirra balmanno Acten Athlete
Race Km’s
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Trail runner. Mountain lover. Veterinarian.

She is the co-founder of Type Two Run – a trail running destination company specialising in trail running travel to some of the greatest & wildest locations on Earth.

Kirra also runs in clouds, as an athlete for On.

The line between peak performance and injury can be a fine one. I like to test my limits, which is why rapid recovery and injury prevention is so important to me. What I have found for myself is that the “what” of nutrition is important but equally is the “when”. I plan my meals around my training so I’m getting maximum benefit.

Acten helps me to steer clear of injuries and enables me recover faster so that I can train even harder.

My greatest challenges as an endurance runner haven’t been the glacier and snowfield crossings, fitting 20’000 vertical meters into a week, the daily marathons I’ve run through the Caucasus or crossing some of the highest mountain passes in the world.

It’s been the injuries. The obstacle that keeps me away from my daily trail & training rituals.

Acceptance of injury and taking time out from running has not been an easy process but has no doubt given me a more balanced perspective. It has taught me a lot about patience, pain perception and maintaining a positive mindset.

Challenges are here to teach important lessons and I can be thankful for past injuries for teaching me a lot about my own mind and body.

Metaphorical glaciers: The obstacle is the way


The ability to see the positives and make the most of these unexpected circumstances, delivers some cogent perspective. Like a refreshing reminder to remain grateful, control what we can and surrender to the rest.

The nature of impermanence: 

Acceptance and appreciation for both the ups and downs, ebbs and flows of the route (and life), free from the cravings of sweet single trails and the aversions of the grinding uphills (or vice versa, if you’re so inclined), can liberate the suffering they otherwise impose. In other words – equanimity.


I had previously invested ten days of my life to sitting in silence and finding similar lessons to endurance running through the techniques of Vipassana meditation. Cultivating the practice, in lieu of days on end of long and lonely trails to reach some Zen, has made a significant improvement in my adaptability to the changes that 2020 has delivered.



Peter Fill

Mich Kemeter