Mimic the Moves

Life Design Action: Find a role model who suits your need then mimic her moves exactly

Requires: Stealth, a watchful eye and ability to coordinate your movements with another

(Role models are the ultimate shiz. As children, our mothers and fathers and other influential adults serve to sculpt our beliefs as to what is possible about the world. These beliefs are what then allow us to push through to greater things or remain limited through playing small. Before Rodger Bannister ran the 4 minute mile, doctors and scientists suggested that such a feat was humanly impossible. They went as far as to say that the human body would not survive the challenge. However, once Bannister smashed the record, people began to hit the four minute mile All Over The Globe. Why? Once Bannister showed it was possible, the human mind believed it was possible and people aimed for the goal and hit it. Bannister was a role model and role models create internal models which can then be manifested.)


Bummer Tummer Fairy Godmother

Myself and Naughty N have tried many things in the quest for fitness.

We have been to Boot Camp, we have been lost on the downs in the fog whilst training for Walk the Wight, we have swiveled clockwise on the spot during a Zumba class whilst everyone else shimmied forward and shouted “rah!”  Last year, after Jols helpfully suggested a Bums n Tums class, we lay side by side on mats whilst dislocating our buttocks in slow, tooth pulling torture, cursing our good friend who was, at that point, sitting at home sipping wine.

And we swore never to go back again.

But swearing isn’t right is it?

After all, we teach our children not to do it.

Except in the case of “fart”.

Sorry to go off the subject, but this is something I’ve been meaning to ask. Were you brought up to think FART was a swear word? When I was little, to  say fart meant a very cold stare, a telling off and a possible grounding.

Yet now, children’s television presenters refer to farts. Pix’s school teacher says “fart”. And, you know, it is very hard to stop your children saying something when their role models are all saying it.

Anyway, swearing aside, Naughty N and I swore not to go back to Bums and Tums (partly due to the fact it was quite humiliated even ADMITTING we’d attended a class with such a dreadful, patronising, mummsy-bumsy sort of name) but then last night we broke the SWORN-THING and returned.

It was still the same torture.

The teacher still had the air of a 55 year old jaded prostitute who has seen too many willies and can no longer feel passion for life, let alone a lover. She sloped around the mats, gazing at us unseeingly as we clenched every muscle, our stomaches and buttocks screaming as only stomaches and buttocks can. Meanwhile, our eyeballs EYEBALLED her begging her to say “and relax.”

But no.

She wouldn’t.

Lying there on my right side, lifting my leg up for the hundredth time, I gritted my teeth. I could see Jaded Prostitute coming closer towards me, eyeing me and Naughty N with her hollow eyes.

Deep breath.

I would not show signs of weakness.

She came closer still.

My leg was shaking at this point … Shaking more than a Jack Russel trying to take a wee in the drifts of an Icelandic midwinter.

Dog n Snow

I could hear Naughty N groaning.

Just focus on the music, I thought. JUST FOCUS!

The jaded prostitute came to stop nearby my mat.

I could feel her standing there, looking across at me.

Clenched my teeth.

Shut my eyelids as …

gently …

as …

I could …

and …

“And THREE!”

As Jaded Prostitute’s voice smashed off the gym walls, bouncing off bottoms and drowning out the groans, my eyes flew open and my ears registered the change in music rhythm. No! Suddenly it went all fast. Bloody fast. Everyone started moving their legs up and down Three Times Faster Than Before.

This was too much.

“Come on Bethan,” I told myself. “You can do this. You can survive this.”

It is quite incredible what the human body and mind can endure during times of duress. I mean, look at Pi from The Life Of Pi. He did jolly well if you ask me. And that guy from Facing The Void. And in that moment of “OH MY GOD, I HAVE BROKEN MY GLUTES AND AM STILL HAVING TO WORK THEM”, something quite beautiful took over.

I think it was the Human Spirit. But also, the ability to Role Model.

I found my eyes drilling into at a woman several mats away. She was very well groomed and looked like a regular Bummer n Tummer who had it all under control. Okay, she was also looking as though she was in agony too, but she was coping.


And that’s all I needed to do too.


Focusing my eyes on her leg and removing my thoughts from the Jaded Prostitute whose eyes were burning a hole in my bottom, I COPIED my Bummer Tummer Role Model for all I was worth.

I copied with every last fiber of my being.

And as I did, something weird happened. It was as though reality shifted and swam before my eyes.

Maybe it was the endorphins kicking in. Maybe it was a near death experience. Perhaps it was the rhythm of the music, or the hypnotic movement of legs going up and down … I don’t know. All I know is that I was no longer just lying on a foam mat in a hall copying a woman move her leg up and down, whilst Jaded Prostitute patrolled the aisles and screamed “THREE, THREE, THREE!”

Somehow, my mind shifted into a euphoric state of Zen. As if in a nightclub. Aged 18. Colour, perspiration, faces, wild eyes, all blurring and moving and …

“And RELAX!”

Bang. I was back. Surrounded by soft thuds as people’s legs flopped to the floor.

My leg stayed stiffly in the air.

I gave it a quick shove.

It went down.

“Ooh, I think we’re finished,” said Naughty N, twisting her head around to look at me.

“Has it? Are we?” I replied, a bit dazed. “That was actually quite easy, don’t you think?”

“It wasn’t too bad,” Naughty N coraked. She got to her feet. She looked wobbly. “Oooh, I can’t walk.”

“Hope you enjoyed that ladies!” yelled Jaded Prostitute, as us Bummers n Tummers herded around the gym cupboard like a group of lame cows, returning our mats, putting away our weights and saying goodbye to our fellow women. I looked for my Bummer Tummer Fairy Godmother role model, but she’d vanished.

Like a fairy godmother from a lovely old story.

Or a ghost …

It was a bit sad really.

She will never know just how much she’d helped me. Simply by demonstrating how to cope with torture, I had now learned to cope with torture! Very useful.

Not that I would have acually gone and TOLD her this, should I have the chance.

However, you never know…

She might read this blog. Just like you are.


Oh – that leads me nicely on to saying that should by any chance you know the teacher of that Bums n Tums class, please don’t tell her that she has the air of a jaded prostitute. I’m sure she’s a lovely person.

(Role models can be found anywhere and everywhere. They can be used for almost anything. As a child I remember that my mum used to be able to eat her dinner at the speed of light. One day I role modelled her eating it, put exactly what she put on her fork and chewed it just as fast. I was thrilled to discover I had eaten my food as fast as she did, just by mimicking her movements! Not that this is something that, as an adult and parent, I am promoting. One should always chew their food and not wolf.

Who were your role models as a child? Who are your role models now? Is there something you’d love to achieve but don’t believe it is possible? If this is the case, research what it is you want to do and find others who have been successful in that field. Look at what they did, how they did it and what mindset they cultivated in order to achieve their goal. Now mimic that mindset. Copy those actions. Step into the smae footprints that your role model made along the way.)    


6 thoughts on “Mimic the Moves

      • That’s very funny that in the midst of bums and tums you could leave your body! Actually for a minute there in the story I thought you were going to say that you farted! I wasn’t sure where this post was going, you see. I always expect the unexpected from you. Missed you too. Now I am off to bed; far far too late for me.

      • Well … I’m not sure if I did leave my body. It was very odd though. I think a fart would have been a much more expected outcome. It is funny that you are going to ebd whilst here it is midday. I haven’t forgotten your journey to Joliffs by the way. Sweet dreams lovely Gallivanta xx

  1. Great advice Bethan and really funny post haha 🙂 Personally I think farts should be talked about freely. I dream of a day when there is no taboo surrounding bodily functions. We all have them! I do think a certain degree of common sense applies to when we speak about them. I don’t think anyone is too fond of a poop conversation at the dinner table. But I don’t think kids should get in trouble for talking about what their bodies do 🙂

    Whenever I’ve needed a push I’ve always looked for examples of those who’ve done what I want to do, works great 🙂

    Thanks for sharing! All the best.


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