to make the cycling world sit up and take notice.
Now, as she prepares to take that journey again in reverse order, she is feeling confident it is a case of mission accomplished.
Testament to that is a top-six finish in the British National Time Trial Championships in June among a cluster of household names, Olympic and world champ-ions, including Joanna Rowsell, Lizzie Armitstead, Katie Colclough and the Trott sisters, Laura and Emma.
A successful few months racing in Belgium, France, Germany and the Czech Republic for the Breast Cancer Care Cycling Team has further cemented her status. "It's been a good summer," she says. "It's definitely exceeded my expectations on what I planned to do."
Coldwell, 29, will now re-join Holden Cycling, a Melbourne-based women's development team ranked second in Australia, as she builds towards hopefully being selected for the 2014 Commonwealth Games.
A late arrival to cycling at the age of 25, Coldwell from Clydebank, West Dunbartonshire, got her start through the Gold4Glasgow scheme in 2009, an initiative launched by the sportscotland institute of sport in a bid to uncover new talent.
While fellow Gold4Glasgow alumni Jane Barr and Laura Murray have honed their craft in Scotland, Coldwell's day job as a veterinary surgeon took her to Victoria in south-east Australia where she found work in a small practice in Torquay at the gateway to the Great Ocean Road.
She joined Holden Cycling two years ago as a fresh-faced rookie, cutting her teeth in the Australian National Road Series. Initially it proved a steep learning curve. "When I first started I was struggling to stay in the peloton and getting dropped by the bunch all the time," she recalls. "But with more racing and better training I've got stronger all the time."
Her main talent lies in time trialling - dubbed "the race of truth" - which pits woman and bike against the clock. There is no hiding among the peloton or drafting behind team-mates, merely a predetermined stretch of road and the ticking seconds to decide the final placings.
Coldwell reckons her strength in this discipline comes from an ability to be "quite good at hurting myself" and "focus my all on one task".
But, as Glasgow 2014 draws closer, she feared that being based in Australia could be a case of out of sight, out of mind for selectors. The British National Time Trial Champ-ionships in Stewarton, Ayrshire, provided the perfect platform to showcase her abilities.
"No one knew who I was," she says. "I turned up unattached - I didn't have a team - and I'm sure people did think: 'Who is this person?'. There have been some changes at Scottish Cycling this past year and while [former head coach] Graeme Herd knew who I was and had been following my progress in Australia, I'm not sure everyone had."
Afterwards, Coldwell was offered a guest spot with Breast Cancer Care Cycling Team. Having only been granted a two-month sabbatical from her veterinary job in Australia, she made the decision to resign and follow her dream of racing across Europe.
Unlike the men's big-budget pro teams with their air-conditioned, swanky team buses, Coldwell and her team-mates travelled by train and car, essentially backpacking their way from one race to another. "It's not ideal when you are trying to recover after races, but you have to weigh that up against the valuable experience you gain," she says.
Not even her season coming to an abrupt end at the famed Chrono Champenois time-trial in France last month can dampen her enthusiasm. Coldwell is cheerily philosophical as she recounts the painful incident.
"I was flying round the course but then, about 10k in, there was this massive dip in the road," she says. "Because I was in the aero position and completely in the zone, I just didn't see it.
"I don't know exactly what happened but I'm told my hands slipped off the bars as I hit the bump. My back wheel came off the ground and the bike flipped 6ft into the air. I was going 60kph when I crashed.
"I remember lying on the side of the road and couldn't move or talk. I was badly concussed and had wounds all down the left side of my body. It was some really bad road rash, but amazingly no broken bones. Someone phoned an ambulance and I was taken to hospital where I received stitches and had my wounds patched up. I went home to Scotland that same night. My friend drove while I curled up in the car. Right up until the crash happened, I was thinking: 'This is going really well'. I felt confident of a top-10 finish, but we'll never know now. I was so disappointed because I had hoped it was a chance to get some UCI points, but that's bike racing, I guess."
Upon her return to Australia this weekend, she will begin a five-week veterinary placement in Mackay, Queensland, before moving to Melbourne. Her bike racing season begins in less than a week.
"I'm planning to do some track racing to get some speed in my legs," she says. "There are criterium races on in Melbourne pretty much every night so I'll be doing some of those. The 'Bay Crits' Series takes place in January and I'll be hoping to do the Tour of New Zealand in February."
It is a path that is not always easy. By her own admission, Coldwell has had to put other aspects of her life on hold to focus on her cycling career. "It's simply just too hard to juggle it all," she says. "Being an athlete is an incredibly selfish thing and you need to think about yourself first all the time. I don't think I would enjoy a relationship if I was the one taking all the time."
Next summer at the Commonwealth Games, Coldwell will look to target the time trial, but doesn't rule out a key role in the road race. "I don't know what will happen yet with regards to the road," she says. "I would be happy to have either role: as a domestique or main rider. It will all depend on how the Scottish team comes together as we still have nine months to go.
"The time trial will remain the main goal for me and I will be aiming for a medal. As for the road, nothing has been decided yet and anything could happen on the day itself."