Leanne Manas on adjusting to her lockdown routine: 'I'm really missing my family, especially my mom and dad'

Leanne Manas. (Photo: Gallo Images)
Leanne Manas. (Photo: Gallo Images)

As a news anchor Leanne Manas speaks to decision-makers and gets regular updates on current affairs, so the lockdown extension due to the coronavirus pandemic was something she saw coming.

Although she's glad to be in isolation with her husband, Marc, and her two children, Alexandro (10) and Gabriella (8), getting used to the new normal has been a bit of a rollercoaster ride. 

"There are good days and bad days. I'm really missing my family, especially my mom and dad," Leanne tells YOU. "I'm also missing just getting together with friends, having a drink, and a good laugh. However, the time I'm having with my husband and children has been amazing.

"I feel like we're getting to know each other in so many different ways, and it's incredible."

Before the lockdown, Leanne used to train at least four or five times a week. Kickboxing, running, and tennis was how she stayed active.

"I actually didn't realise just how active I was until we locked down and it all stopped! Suddenly with the added responsibility of working and teaching, self-care went out the window – and I allowed it to happen," she says.

In a recent Facebook post, Leanne spoke about the challenges she faced trying to maintain her healthy habits during the first few weeks of lockdown.

She tells us she's now getting back on track but wishes the president would increase the exercise hours.

"I'm now trying my hardest to get back into a routine and train at least three or four times a week for my sanity and health.

"I'm just hoping that the president at least opens up the exercise hours for us and allows South Africans out for an afternoon session – it will make such a difference for our mental health!"

Leanne says her friends encouraged her to join kickboxing classes via Zoom and supported her in doing a 7km walk-run.

"This is the most important thing! Sometimes you don't recognise in yourself that you may be going through a low time and are slipping into that rut. However, people who know and love you may see that and point it out to you. Don't ignore them, listen to them, and allow the advice into your life.

"I'm amazed at how many people have replied, 'I'm not fine' when I've reached out to ask them the simple question, 'how are you doing?' during this lockdown. That opens up a conversation and helps them in ways you'll never comprehend..."

So now that she's back on track with her healthy lifestyle, how does a day in Leanne Manas' life look during lockdown as she juggles work, motherhood, and being a wife.

"I wake up at 4am, crawl out of bed, get dressed and make coffee, read up on what's made news overnight and through the morning. I then hit the road and make my way to work, do makeup and hair, get on set and go live at 6am.

"We finish at 9am and I literally rush out of the building and into my car and go home and relieve my husband who has the kids. I take my clothes off and jump into a shower. I then put on my teacher's cap and proceed to teach my kids Grade 5 and Grade 2 work, running between the two of them nonstop until it ends at 2pm.

"I then do Zoom meetings that I've scheduled and start arranging dinner. I take my kids outside for some sunlight and play tennis or jump on the trampoline with them. By the time the sun sets, I'm a complete disaster and fall into bed... and off goes the alarm again at 4am!"

With all these responsibilities, balance is important to Leanne so she doesn't forget to take some time off for herself.

"I do try and have downtime. I'll try squeeze in an afternoon nap if I'm able to," Leanne says.

"But weekends are my time to sleep in or wake up early and go for a morning run before the 9am curfew.

"I've realised that's my sanity. I fight with myself wanting to just go back to sleep, but when I finally do get up and go, I feel like a million bucks!"

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