Dave ‘Brown Buttabean’ Letele: ‘Exercise really saved my life, because I really hated my life at one point’


“If individuals ask me how I’m feeling, I’m all the time trustworthy,” says Dave Letele. Photograph / Equipped

South Auckland group chief Dave Letele, also referred to as Brown Buttabean, is a life coach, motivational speaker and founding father of The BBM Program. He misplaced greater than 100kg via good diet and train and now dedicates his time to serving to communities scuffling with weight problems, diabetes and coronary heart illness. He’s additionally fronting a marketing campaign to encourage individuals to be a part of the census collector workforce for the Stats NZ 2023 Census.

The very first thing I do as soon as I rise up is get some espresso, and I’m going and prepare. I’m making an attempt to get into the health club at 4.30am. It’s extra for my psychological well being than something.

I really feel at my finest after I’m consuming proper. You recognize, while you’ve bought the stability all in line, which is kind of onerous to get. If you’re consuming proper and also you’ve bought your loved ones time, that’s after I’m at my finest.

The work that we do is kind of bodily. We run all these free boot camps, and we assist lots of people with our meals financial institution, and so I’m actually fairly busy all through the day. With any free time I get, I attempt to be with my household, getting out and bike driving and stuff like that. It’s spending time collectively, and in addition conserving us match.

To maintain mentally and emotionally wholesome, coaching is my me time. I don’t drink, I don’t exit. Me going to the pub is definitely me coaching with my mates. And that’s what helps to maintain my psychological well being proper. Train actually saved my life, as a result of I actually hated my life at one level, and it was train that stored my thoughts off every thing. I wasn’t enthusiastic about how crap my life was after I was exercising. In order that’s actually how I take care of myself mentally, and in addition having good buddies that I can speak about it with. I’m not afraid to speak about the best way I’m feeling. If individuals ask me how I’m feeling, I’m all the time trustworthy. We all the time give that generic reply “all good” or “not unhealthy”, however actually you may not be.

"Exercise really saved my life...I wasn’t thinking about how crap my life was when I was exercising," says Dave Letele. Photo / Supplied
“Train actually saved my life…I wasn’t enthusiastic about how crap my life was after I was exercising,” says Dave Letele. Photograph / Equipped

We all the time speak about having a powerful “why”, , a goal. After I began my journey, my “why” was I actually wished my youngsters again, and I’ve bought my youngsters again now. And now my “why” is being an instance for my individuals, for my household and my youngsters and my spouse. To point out anybody struggling that it’s attainable. That’s my deep down “why” and goal. However generally, it doesn’t need to be so deep and significant. It may be identical to the considered having an actual good cup of espresso. Deep down in case your “why” is robust sufficient, you possibly can actually overcome something.

One of the best recommendation I’ve been given is rarely hand over. It’s so easy, but it surely’s so true. Life sucks generally. However you simply need to be keen to maintain getting up, and never keep down. I’m not afraid of failure, greatness is born from it. I’ve accomplished Dancing with the Stars; I used to be positively not good at that, and I felt like I didn’t belong there. And I had a critic working via my head saying, “what the heck are you doing this for?” However what bought me out of that was remembering what I used to be doing it for. I used to be doing it to boost consciousness for our work. I used to be doing it for our individuals. And to indicate others what’s attainable.

The factor that I’ve realised as I’ve bought older is that every one your youngsters need, what your youngsters want, is your time. And also you being the very best model of your self. We’re so pushed to offer them materials issues once they actually don’t matter. It’s not till I used to be older that I actually realised that.

To encourage myself, I’m my very own greatest fan. All of us have an overactive inside critic. So, I attempt to be an overactive “greatest fan”. And I’m telling myself, “You bought this, come on, you bought this”. Generally you’ll see my lips transferring, as a result of I’m simply speaking to myself. For those who can’t love your self and speak about it, then you possibly can’t anticipate anybody else to.

When the going will get powerful, I simply speak to myself, like “you’ve been right here earlier than”. It’s cliche, but it surely gained’t final. I all the time say to individuals, “don’t be afraid to battle. You possibly can overcome it; the powerful occasions gained’t final.” After I do speeches, all I do is speak about how crap my life was, and the way I managed to show it round. Nobody can replicate your story, so, for those who embrace your battle, you possibly can actually make one thing from it.

Dave with his wife, Koreen and sons (oldest to youngest) William, Tavita, Fabian and Brook. "All your kids want, what your kids need, is your time," says Dave Letele. Photo / Supplied
Dave together with his spouse, Koreen and sons (oldest to youngest) William, Tavita, Fabian and Brook. “All of your youngsters need, what your youngsters want, is your time,” says Dave Letele. Photograph / Equipped

What makes me happiest is taking a look at my youngsters and seeing them smile and having enjoyable.

My greatest life hack is studying to delegate. And saying no. As a result of I all the time say sure to every thing. I’ve discovered to not do stuff on the weekends. I say no much more in order that I can spend time on the weekends with my household. That’s one factor that I’ve discovered: not feeling unhealthy to say no and placing myself and my household first.

As informed to Maxene London. This interview has been edited for readability.


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