Single mum of three, Belinda Blundell from rural Victoria says she uses the award-winning at-home workout to steal a little sanity. Here is Belinda’s story.

There are endless real-life examples of how impactful LES MILLS On Demand™ can be for participants. All you need to do is scroll to the official Facebook page for LMOD users and you’ll find a daily collection of heartfelt testimonials from among the 133,000+ people within the group! Belinda Blundell is a single mum of three who lives in rural Victoria. Belinda says she uses the award-winning at-home workout to steal a little sanity – just enough to get her through to the end of 2020! Here is Belinda’s story.

Today was a good morning. I’ve just started trying to get some exercise in. I figure I have to do something, otherwise I’ll go mad. With a two-year-old, I can’t really get out of the house to exercise, so I try to slip it in before he wakes up.

I do LES MILLS On Demand™ classes at home because it’s convenient, cost-effective and suits me until I can join a gym and do them in person. The BODYCOMBAT® martial arts workouts go a long way to getting those frustrations out. I jump around my living room and imagine I’m kickboxing 2020 out of existence!

In life, how often does it happen that you turn around and notice your whole world looks entirely different to how you imagined, just a year ago?

That’s probably how a fair chunk of the world is feeling right now. The thing is, if everyone is up against similar stuff, do I still have good cause to feel crap about what this year has thrown at us?

First it was the bushfires. We live in Metung in East Gippsland, Victoria. It’s a beautiful coastal town of about 1,300 people, three or so hours east of Melbourne.

It was two long months of smoke and helicopters and uncertainty, and we had to evacuate twice. I have three children: Willow, 12, Cassidy, 10, and Larkin, 2. They all managed to keep their cool through this time pretty well, but their dad is in the Country Fire Authority, so there were times we all had to stave off rising panic that something bad could happen to him. Around that same time, my husband and I were separating. Emotionally, that felt quite conflicting and draining.  There was uncertainty and sadness about mine and my kids’ futures, and at the same time I had to make sure I was sensitively helping the kids manage their worry for his safety.

Thankfully, our family got though those bushfires and into 2020; sadly others weren’t so lucky.

Then COVID hit. Everyone remembers how crazy those first months were. For me, work also kept weighing on my mind, more than usual due to the impact of the pandemic.

I’m a clinician with Take Two Berry Street and support children and their carers living at a Therapeutic Residential Unit who can’t live at home. We also run a wellbeing program in educational services for 3 to 12-year-olds.

I was having to work from home, which made it difficult to properly meet the needs of my own three kids let alone the children I work with.

Even now, I’m increasingly frustrated as I want more for these kids who deal with so many challenges in their young lives. Yes, it’s good there’s a lot of government assistance to help people cope emotionally with the impacts of COVID on their lives. But these kids, who have experienced developmental trauma which impacts their whole wellbeing, still don’t get anywhere near the resources and support they need.

On the home front, I’ve worked hard to keep things calm for my kids. With remote learning, I had to drop down to half my workload which meant I used most of my leave entitlements, but then again others have it worse.

There have been tears. The kids struggled with the challenges of going between face-to-face learning and remote learning. Dance was put on hold, which was important to my daughters. There have been things they’ve really missed.

The kids and I moved out to a rental closer to town, which was also disruptive. But it’s amazing how proud you can feel of your kids when they tackle the hard stuff head-on.

I can see their resilience. Their ability to find a smile, and it helps me forget about my crazy day at work, because they remind me to see the good things around us.

That’s almost the theme of this year for many: resilience. Finding the sanity and the happiness in the little things. But what other choice do we have?

In a way, I’m holding on to the turning of the year as something that will magically open the door to a new horizon; but maybe that’s a little naive.

Change is constant. There will always be things out of our control. Even now, I can feel our town starting to get anxious again as the weather heats up. The bushfires will be back, and they won’t be beholden to a calendar to decide when or whether to wreak havoc.

So, we get on with it and make plans, in spite of knowing that sometimes life sucks. We just have to make the best of it, and not be too rough on ourselves when, at the time, our best may not feel like much.

My kids and I will soon start building our new home in town. It’s a bit closer to our local primary school and the bus stop.

My eldest starts high school next year so I’m pleased we’ll be getting settled into a new life soon, to help her through that important first year in a new school.

As my fitness improves, so too does my ability to cope and make decisions. Like a ninja, I’ll be kickboxing my way to a better 2021.

Recently named “Best At-Home Workout” by USA Today 10Best in their 2020 Readers’ Choice Awards, LES MILLS On Demand delivers convenient access to the world’s most popular group fitness programs such as BODYPUMP®, BODYCOMBAT®, BODYATTACK® and RPM™. For a limited time, you can enjoy a 30-day free trial. Go to full details and to sign up. Or, if you’re a Club Partner then contact us to discover how LES MILLS On Demand can actually help you attract and retain more members, as well as earn you additional income through the LES MILLS On Demand Affiliate Program. PLUS, as an Affiliate, Clubs can offer their members a free 60-day trial (for a limited time). For full details contact your local Business Partnership Manager in Australia or Southeast Asia.