As we age, our bodies tend to get slower, weaker, and more prone to injury. We can stave it off with exercise, or we can go a step further and be like Edith Murway-Traina, who is heaving around major poundage at the age of 100—making her a Guinness World Record holder for being the oldest known competitive female powerlifter in the world.
Murway-Traina, who lives in Tampa, Florida, was urged to begin weight training at the tender age of 91 by friend Carmen Gutwirth. Before long, she was entering competitive powerlifting meets sanctioned by the Raw United Powerlifting Federation. In 2013, she hoisted 45 pounds on the bench press and 110 pounds on the deadlift. She has regularly placed in senior meets ever since, with her best lifts being a 66.8-pound bench and a 149.9-pound deadlift. She currently holds the Florida state record for both lifts [PDF] in the 95- to 99-year old and 165-pound weight division.
Murway-Traina, who was once a dance teacher, told Guinness that Gutworth’s invitation piqued her interest in the sport. “While I was watching those ladies doing their thing, I thought I just as well should pick up a few bars, and I did,” she said. “Going on a regular basis, I found that I was enjoying it, and I was challenging myself to get a little bit better and a little bit better. Before long, I was part of the team.”
Murway-Traina works with trainer Bill Berkley of Strong Life Tampa Bay. After a break owing to the pandemic, she intends to enter more meets in the future.