When you speak to Alanna the first thing you’ll be struck by is her enthusiasm for all things cycling.
Actually, that’s the second thing. First you’ll try to place her quirky accent. A side effect of living in the United Kingdom for eight years, she sounds somewhat similar to Kylie Minogue, but looks way better in lycra.
The 28 year old Sydney sider started cycling as a way of getting to work but she soon got bitten by the cycling bug and joined a bike users group (BUG) in Sydney, “commuting just came about because I thought ‘well I can do it so I will do it,’” she said.
“It just reflects how diverse cycling is and how pretty much every one can participate in it" - Alanna
Unlike some of the men Alanna rides with on the weekends it wasn’t the thrill of finishes on top of the podium that had her on her bike at six in the morning, it was the community she found while riding and the diversity of cycling.
BUG rides offered Alanna entry level “baby rides” to get her toes wet and weren’t quite as intimidating as your usual bunches.
That’s one of the reasons you might spot her at one of the many charity rides hosted in the Sydney region; she just completed the Sydney to Wollongong and was in the top 20 women to finish.
“It’s amazing how you can get 10,000 riders and every single person has a different bike,” Alanna said of the charity rides.
“It just reflects how diverse cycling is and how pretty much every one can participate in it,” she said.
This diversity is reflected in Alanna’s choice of bikes: she owns a road bike, a mountain bike, a commuting bike, and just in case that wasn’t enough, a penny-farthing.
"I'm a rookie. If I can do it, anyone can do it" - Alanna
So how does a women who does everything choose one thing to work towards? That we can’t tell you. But Alanna has set the Tour of New Zealand, an event that runs from the top to the bottom of the North Island in March 2015 as her new big goal for 2015. As if that wasn't enough she's also got her sights set on Amy's Gran Fondo later in the year. That, and conquering a tiny hill near where she lives on her mountain bike.
It’s a big goal for a woman who has never raced before.
“I don’t do racing. That’s the one thing I don’t do. I’ve never done a race. I cycle with all the guys that race but I’ve never done it myself. I’m literally not even a member of a club!” she laughed.
I guess that’s where we come in. To help her figure out all the finer details as she works towards her 2015 #mygoalrox.
Good luck Alanna!