Rethinking Health and Fitness with the BUF Girls

BUF Girls Leiden Magazine

 

This year, the first day of spring signaled the beginning of the Eden series of health and wellness masterclasses at the Canberra Centre. First up on our journey to improved wellbeing was a masterclass and group workout with the BUF Girls by Libby Babet, a gang of women who aim to help every woman live her best life. We had the pleasure of spending time with three of the five BUF Girls — Libby, Cass and Sian.

Libby is a very busy lady, you may recognise her as a trainer on the Biggest Loser Transformed, as the resident personal trainer for Women’s Fitness Magazine or of course from the BUF (Beautiful, Unstoppable, Fearless) Girls. She began by explaining: ‘I’m not here to tell you how many calories to eat, what type of work out to do because it’s different for everyone.’

This message was music to my ears and a surreptitious Google landed me the following information from the BUF website.

Being a BUF Girl isn’t about competition, body image or comparison. It’s about friendship and community. It’s about healthy bodies AND healthy minds. It’s about inspiring, supporting and celebrating each other as the beautiful women we all are, in our own unique ways. It’s about forgetting about working out to chase a shallow ideal of beauty, and training because of how it makes us feel – happy, healthy, balanced, alert, calm, centred, strong, powerful, beautiful, unstoppable, fearless… it’s about training for the love of it.

In a world where we value youth and beauty and where diets exist for weight loss rather than long-term nourishment, the BUF outlook is a breath of fresh air.
Libby’s journey into the health industry began out of necessity. After working as a journalist and pushing it way too hard, she developed a number of alarming symptoms including migraines, shakes and a flattering heart. ‘I let this go on for almost a year until one day I decided to donate blood’, Libby told us.

 

 

‘Before they take your blood, they take your blood pressure and the lady taking mine freaked out. She went to get her manager who came in and tested me again on another machine. It turned out my blood pressure was 280/150 (normal blood pressure sits around 120/70).’

‘I went to hospital and found I had chronic hypotension; my organs were swelling to cope with all the pressure. Long story short, after lots of tests, they couldn’t find out what was wrong with me. I was put on medication for my blood pressure, which had a huge effect on me. My fertility was gone, my liver was under stress, I had outbreaks of acne.’

‘I researched everything I could about nutrition and health to get my lifestyle back on track. I thought I ate reasonably well and was fairly healthy but I soon discovered I hadn’t actually understood what good health was or how to get it. When you go through a tough time you really come to understand what you value in life and through this time I realised I valued three things: beautiful connections, an unstoppable body and a fearless mindset.’ And so BUF Girls was born.

 

Here a few tips from Libby for figuring out what your values are and how you

  • You can change your life by changing your life culture. But how do you figure out what life culture you want to create?
    • Start by identifying what you truly value
    • Think of your time like money and invest it in the things that are of value to you
  • Once you know what’s important to you, create your vision of how your life would be if you lived in accordance with your values.
    • To create your vision, define your why. How is the world helped by you
  • Adjust your mindset by replacing ‘should’ with ‘want’. Also add a ‘because’:
    g. I want to get up and go to the gym because I want my body to be healthy.

 

 

Here are a few trips for getting on top of your nutrition:

  • Eat mindfully, not out of habit
  • Start with the most important meal of the day
  • Think of nutrition as information
  • Eat the rainbow
  • Eat food, not food-like products
  • Swap, don’t stop
  • Don’t drink empty calories
  • Check the nutrition panel
  • Uppers and downers
  • Reset your taste buds for ten days

 

Want to know more? We got a copy of Totally Buf a six-week guide to becoming beautiful, unstoppable and fearless, and it’s jam packed with easy recipes and lots of tips. ‘We kind of shot ourselves in the foot with our program and book’ Libby laughed. ‘You do this program once and that’s it! You have learned important lessons that you can incorporate into the rest of your life.’

 

bufgirls.com

 

Emma Batchelor

Emma Batchelor

As well as a near obsessive interest in fashion, Emma is a former scientist, occasional contemporary dancer, avid reader and self-confessed cat lady (she has three). Emma lived in Leiden in the Netherlands as a baby and Leiden ought to have been her middle name had her mother thought of it at the time and not chosen Louise instead.

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