Warning: amazing sense of accomplishment ahead

What goes up must come down! We are continuing Stage 3 of the Virgin Strive Challenge with some epic cycling in France. The opportunities to push ourselves to the limit just keep coming, with a ride into the High Alps the latest. It was one of the toughest days of the challenge, not because it was especially long but because it was particularly difficult.

We took in the highest road pass in Europe, climbing to 2,860m up the Cime de la Bonette before a dramatic 30km descent. Here we are at the top of the climb, with our heads literally in the clouds.

Most people struggle getting up the mountains, but others suffer the most on the way down. Going at high speeds round winding bends can be really daunting. You can see the type of slopes we were taking on in the photo below. It’s not everybody’s cup of tea.

That was certainly the case for Coralie Smith from Virgin Mobile, one of our brilliant Virgin Family members competing on the Virgin Strive Challenge. When we got to the bottom of the descent she was a bit overwhelmed and burst into tears. Of course, this being Strive, Noah and the team were there to support her. I offered to take more of her descents if she took more of my climbs!

In the heat of the moment, she said it was the worst thing she’s ever done. Everybody who does Strive has a day like that. But it’s absolutely worth it, because of the camaraderie, because of the causes we are supporting, and because of the enormous feeling of achievement you can get from testing yourself. Coralie is back raring to go for the days ahead. As the sign on the road says, ‘Warning: amazing sense of accomplishment ahead.’

Find out more about the challenge and why we’re doing it over on the Virgin Strive Challenge website.

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