A ‘self-absorbed’ fitness blogger has apologised for breaching Melbourne’s lockdown and posting it online after being ‘inundated with threats and abuse’.
Beck Lomas, 25, boasted about doing ‘a couple of extra laps’ around the lake on Saturday while waiting for her boyfriend Josh Klein to set up her birthday surprise.
The Melburnian shared her activity online, telling her 166,000 Instagram followers on her story she was going to run for ‘as long as I feel like’ after having already exercised in the morning.
Lomas was aiming to beat Klein in the Fitbit Couples Challenge, where participants try to outdo each other for the ‘most active minutes’ within six days.
Videos and screenshots, which have now been deleted, showed her posing outside in activewear without a face mask.
Lomas was then slammed on social media on Tuesday after leaving her Prahran home for exercise more than once.
She also completed a two-and-a-half hour walk on Monday, despite Melburnains only being allowed to exercise for an hour under Stage 4 restrictions.
‘I kind of feel like going for a really big run … so I think I’m just going to set out and go for as long as I feel like to get my active minutes up,’ the Adidas and YoPro yoghurt ambassador said on Tuesday.
Under the city’s Stage 4 coronavirus restrictions, Melburnians are required to stay within a 5km radius of their homes, and anyone who breaks these directions could issued a $1,652 fine from police.
They are also only allowed to leave their homes for work or study, to get essential supplies, medical or care-giving reasons, or on compassionate grounds.
‘I’d like to express how sorry I am for what I’ve done,’ Lomas wrote in a grovelling public apology, which she posted on Instagram late on Tuesday.
‘I’m not going to make excuses for it or try to spin the situation to make it sound better than it was. I’m a human and I made a mistake.
‘I meant absolutely no harm to anyone however can now see the seriousness of the situation.’
Fitbit reacted swiftly to Lomas’ breach.
‘Regrettably, a participant breached Victorian COVID-19 restrictions by exercising outside of their home for longer than one hour,’ a Fitbit spokesperson told Pedestrian.
‘This was done at their own discretion and was not a directive from Fitbit. As a result, we have cancelled the challenge and terminated our working relationship with the participant.’
In her apology, Lomas said she had been ‘inundated with threats and abuse’ in the days following her ‘mistake’.
‘If you’re feeling anger towards me, please all I ask is that you think twice before commenting or messaging me, I’m being inundated with threats and abuse,’ she said.
‘I know that what I did was wrong and I have learnt from it. I take full responsibility and I will absolutely never do it again.’
Lomas faced criticism including Instagram users calling her ‘privileged’ and ‘shameless’, and telling her ‘people behaving like you are the reason I can’t see my grandmother, friends and family’.
‘As a Melburnian you are breaking the rules and you should not be promoting such behaviour … walk around your home if you want to increase your steps,’ one follower wrote.
Another said: ‘Your privilege and self absorption is showing, the fact they even think it’s OK to publicly admit to such blatant disrespect of the rules shows who you really are.’