How Australian Survivor's Lydia Lassila copes with being away from her kids

'I leave little notes for them!'

For Lydia Lassila, one of the hardest things about competing on Australian Survivor has been being apart from her young sons, Kai and Alek.

She says that in her career as a world champion aerial skier, she had to learn to keep her life "quite compartmentalised".

"My family is here and then the athlete is here… that's the only way I can cope with change of the hats," she explains to TV WEEK.

Knowing that she would miss Kai's seventh birthday while filming Australian Survivor, Lydia, 36, had to plan ahead.

"I've obviously organised all presents and everything," she says. "The au pair leaves clues to presents around the house."

Lydia also wrote seven notes for each son to be read while she was away.

"I've made an effort to connect with them, so every Saturday they'll open a letter," she explains. "It's tough."

Lydia with her husband Lauri and kids Alek (left) and Kai.

The Winter Olympics gold medallist was encouraged to go on the show by her husband, Lauri.

"I first said no to doing the show because all the attention during and after the Olympics was on me," Lydia, 36, explains.

"I thought, 'Enough is enough.' I just wanted to be home with my kids.

"But I discussed it with Lauri and he said I had to give it a go, because I love the show."

The athlete has been a hit with fans of the series, proving her worth in challenges and appearing to be an agreeable tribe mate.

Going in to the game, Lydia revealed she was "ready" to tackle even the most difficult challenges.

"I know what I'm capable of," Lydia says. "And if it's tough, then I know I can dig deep and get through it."

Lydia has wowed Australian Survivor viewers during the challenges.

Australian Survivor continues tonight, at 7:30pm, on Network Ten.

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