Essex 100 year old gets Mr Motivator wish granted

On the surface Essex care home resident Marion Watson may look like an elderly woman.

But in reality, she's a fitness loving centenarian, who's still flexible enough to get both legs above her head.

Marion following Mr Motivator's every move. Credit: Tony Lee

So, what better surprise for a woman who's 100 years young than her own personal workout with the king of fitness himself, TV personality, 'Mr Motivator'.

Best known for his breakfast friendly workouts and loud lycra, Derrick Evans aka Mr Motivator made his name on ITV's former Good Morning Television (GMTV).

And when asked by project Friends and Neighbours (FaNs) Network Essex, what she would wish for, Marion, who lives at Down Hall Residential Home in Bradwell-on-Sea, said a session with the man himself.

  • Mr Motivator putting Marion and her fellow residents at Down Hall care home through their paces:

The group, which is run by charity, 'My Home Life Essex Community Association', then set about making it happen.

Using contacts in the local community they got Mr Motivator onboard, and on Friday (31st July) Marion's wish came true.

Surprised to see Derrick on a computer screen in one of the homes communal areas, Marion and a few of her willing fellow residents were treated to a live workout by video link.

Marion and her fellow residents working out with Mr Motivator at Down Hall care home in Bradwell-on-Sea. Credit: Tony Lee

Including moves such as 'bang the drum' and 'play the guitar', Mr Motivator was impressed with the level of Marion's fitness.

Encouraging them with his usual enthusiasm the workout was done whilst sitting in a chair and with Derrick reminding his participants to correct their posture and 'squeeze an imaginary orange' in between their shoulder blades.

  • Derrick Evans, aka 'Mr Motivator' says exercise is critical, no matter what your age:

Marion was really pleased with her surprise, saying sitting down too much was the worst thing she ever did.

Her only complaint was it wasn't long enough!

  • Marion thanks Mr Motivator and FaNs for organising her surprise:

The funniest exchange between the pair, was at the end of the session, when Derrick complimented Marion on her fitness.

One of the nurses replied, saying, "She is very fit, normally she gets both legs up above her head!"

Marion confirmed it as true, adding if she did do that though, she'd, 'slide off the chair!'

To which Derrick replied, "Happens to all of us darling!"

Derrick had to do the workout over video link becuase of Covid-19 restrictions.

He has agreed to come and visit Marion and put her and the Down Hall residents through their paces in person when it's safer to do so.

FaNs Network Essex is run by charity My Home Life Essex Community Association. It works to improve the lives of care home residents in Essex by connecting them to people in their surrounding communities.

Marion's wish was granted as part of the Network's initiative the 'Wishing Washing Line'. The washing line is a list of wishes the Network gathers in Essex care homes. It then puts the wishes out to the local community and tries to find someone to grant them.

Before Covid-19 these included big things like being a zookeeper for the day. Since the pandemic wishes have been scaled back to simpler things like bunches of flowers and football shirts. But I think everyone can agree, Mr Motivator, although done via video link, was quite special!