Belinda spent four days in Italy in the summer – but it wasn’t to lie on a sunbed with a cocktail to hand. She tackled her biggest challenge to date – the 2018 Maratona dles Dolomites – a four-day cycling event in the Italian mountain range that tested her endurance to the limits.
Belinda says: ‘Having tackled two Etape du Tours and two Ironman 70.3, it just didn’t seem enough, so one cold winters day I saw The Maratona advertised as a serious cycling challenge and naturally I pressed the ‘Book it now’ button!’
Originally booked to complete the long course, she was forced to the medium course when she didn’t make the cut-off time – much to her relief.
She explains: ‘As with most big cycling events, many people go off too quickly and as time went on I was able to catch up. I cycled as hard as I could around The Sella Ronda, part of the course that included several major climbs, I didn’t stop – and ate and drank on the bike.’
‘Unfortunately, along with several hundred others, I was beaten by time and were directed onto the medium course with one more major climb instead of two. To be honest, I was relieved as I had very little left in my legs as it was.’
With plenty of highs over 3000m of climbing and the most spectacular scenery she had ever seen – ‘I wish I had stopped a bit more and appreciated where I was.’
Belinda completed the challenge in aid of the charity she holds dear.‘Thank you from the bottom of my heart to everyone who helped me raise money for The Alzheimer’s Society. I raised £700.’