If you have health and fitness goals, then you’ll love this week’s Mojo Maker with BUF Girl Cathy Morton. Cathy is the owner of BUF Girls in Manly, plus the newly launched location of Balmoral, which is a fun, social and supportive women’s only fitness group. Cathy is a big believer in making fitness fun, engaging and exciting – as well as something that fits in with people’s lifestyles.
In this week’s mojo maker, Cathy shares her personal journey of how she lost her mojo to a highly pressured and demanding job, and what she did to get it back. She also gives her top tips to exercising regularly, what to do it you are in an exercise rut, and how to keep the momentum going on your New Year health and fitness resolutions. She also reveals how and why you should change up your exercise routine if you are 40+.
What does the word mojo mean to you?
When everything is in flow and you have energy and enthusiasm to knock everyone’s socks off!
Tell us about a time that you lost your mojo and what you did to get it back.
For the last couple of years in my previous job as a TV News Producer I had definitely lost my mojo. I wasn’t interested in what I was doing anymore and nothing inspired me, so I felt very flat. It affected my relationship as I wasn’t happy and I didn’t have much confidence in social situations. At times I’d pick myself up and find my energy again but then after a while I’d always drop back into the same funk.
I knew that something had to change if I wanted to get my mojo back. I needed to stay in my job for a while because of visas, so I focused on learning a new skill. I studied yoga, became a teacher and ran community classes at work and for my friends. Having something else to focus on reinvigorated me and I remembered what it felt like to be passionate about something. Eventually I left my job to teach more yoga and later did my personal training course, and here I am!
What does a typical morning look like for you?
My alarm goes off at 5am and I get up and boil the kettle while I jump in the shower. I always make hot water with lemon, ginger and turmeric as it sets me up really well for the day and also drink at least 500mls of water before I leave. I take the remaining hot water mixture with me in a thermos and drink it between clients.
Before I head out at 5.30am I have a quick review of who’s signed into class, check the workouts for the morning, and scan my email to see if there’s anything I need to know before class. I typically teach for about 2-4 hours in the morning then go to a café and have breakfast – something protein and veggie related normally. It’s a bit indulgent but I love having a bit of me time and getting across work without the distractions I’d get at home. I love the connection I have with the teams who work in the cafes too, it always puts a smile on my face. I then start checking in with my emails and looking at what work I need to do on the business that day.
What self-care activity do you regularly make time for and why?
The thing I always make time for is exercise. Whether it’s going to the gym, working out outside or going for a walk, this is my time of the day to stick some headphones in and just focus on me. I love exercising with a friend but because of my schedule now I tend to exercise solo, so it’s my time to have a mental break from the computer and the to-do list, and do something that I know is having a positive effect. It also gives me energy for the rest of the day.
Depending on what mood I’m in depends on the workout I do, that’s another thing I love about it, there are so many options, you can really pick something to suit your mood and your time frame!
What’s your advice for someone who has fallen off the exercise wagon?
Exercise is hugely important for mojo – both in terms of keeping it flowing and finding it again if you’ve lost it. Lack of exercise can tend to create a vicious cycle with your mojo. If you haven’t exercised in a while you can feel a bit flat but it’s hard to get started again because you’ve lost your mojo!
If this sounds like you, you have to try and push through that and just start moving to get those endorphins flowing again. It doesn’t matter what it is – something as simple and fun as going for a walk with a friend can help get things started.
You can also try getting out of a fitness rut with the 10×10 plan. The basic concept is that you do a ten-minute home workout every single day, for a total of ten days. By the end of the ten days you will have set a new habit that gives you a perky little mood boost every day. You’ll also start to feel stronger, begin to enjoy the space you’ve created in your schedule just for you and hopefully get hooked on those feel-good endorphins that come from breaking a sweat.
Everyone tends to have their exercise mojo reinvigorated at New Year – but how can we keep it flowing all year round!
It’s best to avoid falling off the wagon in the first place. So how do we do that? Think about a marathon rather than a sprint. It’s totally unsustainable to cut out everything ‘bad’ on the nutrition front and train every day all year round so set yourself some realistic goals and then focus on staying consistent with them – think of the 80:20 rule!
Do something you love! At BUF Girls – this is our number one belief about exercise – do things that make your heart sing. You can run, walk, do yoga, join a gym, play football with your kids, go stand up paddling, or take up surfing. You could also try a girls only group fitness group such as BUF, which brings fun and support to your workout. Prefer to work out at home? Check out www.bufgirls.com/programs. Success comes from combining what you love to do with what you are good at. Time is precious so use it wisely!
Keep yourself accountable – Keep a journal, write your goals down and keep them visible. Instead of “This year I’m going to exercise more” change that to “ For the month of February I’m going to train at 6am Monday, Wednesday and Friday”. It’s much more specific and you’re more likely to stick with it because it’s more tangible.
Set yourself a challenge. It’s way more motivating focusing on achieving small, positive, daily goals (like working out every morning, or choosing to drink greens before caffeine) than worrying about chasing big numbers on the scales; which ends up getting you focused on everything you don’t have, rather than all the great stuff you’re doing! So grab a brand-new notebook and keep a fitness diary (like a food diary). Or sign up for a race or mini challenge to give you something to work towards!
If your goals seem a little hard to tackle on your own, rope in one of your friends. It’s much more fun, motivating and rewarding if you can go on the journey with someone else. It’s also really hard to stay in bed when someone is expecting you…
You’d be surprised how many incredible people you’re surrounded by who can help you achieve your goals. Whether it’s a trainer, your parents, a colleague, partner or friend, don’t be shy to ask for their help. With the right people supporting you, you really are unstoppable and you’ll be less likely to fall off that wagon!
Reward every bit of progress, no matter how small. It doesn’t need to be a big reward, and it shouldn’t be something that’s taking you away from your goal (e.g. doing a run doesn’t mean you should reward yourself with a block of chocolate!). For example, if you said “no” to the chocolate cake at work, a little internal ‘high-five’ is great because it starts to associate the behaviour you want with positive feelings. This is so much better than associating pain with your little win, e.g. moaning about how you’re missing out. The more strongly you can connect a positive association with the behaviour you want, the more likely you’ll do it next time.
As you get older it becomes harder to keep the weight off. How should women adapt their exercise regimes when they reach their 40s?
- The key to any exercise regime is consistency so number 1 is always finding a routine that works for you and then sticking to it! Just bear in mind that you need to find a routine that works for you now, not what used to work for you in your 20s or 30s!
- The older you are, the more weight training you need to maintain your muscle quality, bone density and inevitably, your body shape.
- Do more yoga to boost flexibility in the spine and hips and to maintain good posture too.
- Remember recovery can take longer than what you might have been used to when you were younger so make sure you plan rest days into your routine too.
- Get creative! It’s easy to fall into a workout rut or just do the same things you’ve always done without thinking about whether they’re right for you now. A new activity, whether it’s a dance class or bike ride can reignite your mojo – and of course combining it with a workout buddy means you’re getting some added vitamin G time – ie time with your girlfriend 😉
- Don’t forget about nutrition too – that will play a huge part in how you feel. Focus on portion sizes and eating clean consistently! Good nutrition doesn’t have to be complicated, it just needs to be followed at least 80% of the time!
Tell us about your fantastic women-only fitness business BUF.
BUF stands for Beautiful, Unstoppable and Fearless which is exactly how you’ll feel when you walk away from a BUF workout or event. So many fitness offerings are intimidating to women so our focus at BUF Girls is all about creating a community both online and at our group classes, just for women, which makes them feel accepted and connected to each other. We want to reframe women’s fitness experience so they really want to work out, rather than just feeling as if it were something they ‘should’ do.
Being a BUF Girl isn’t about competition, body image or comparison. It’s not about being the fittest, the skinniest or the hottest. 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, fearless, powerful, unstoppable… and if we want to change the way the world sees us girls, we need to be the change we want to see. Head over to http://bufgirls.com/ to find a class near you.
Tell us about your newest location, Balmoral.
We’re so excited to be at Balmoral, we’ve got a great spot next to the Rotunda looking out to the harbour and we’ve got 17 classes on the timetable ranging from HIIT to strength to cardio to boxing to Ass & Abs to our signature classes. We also have Mums classes with Babysitters at Balmoral Monday – Friday 9.30-10.15am so the mums can have some proper time to themselves!
Lastly, I hear you have an exciting offer for our Mummy Mojo tribe?
Yes, I have an offer exclusively for the Mummy Mojo tribe: 10% off any of our online programs (www.bufgirls.com/programs) using the code FEELBUF or $40 ($10 per week) off your first 4 weeks of unlimited training with BUF Manly at their outdoor group training sessions.*
*New BUF Girls only