Edith Murway-Traina is ringing in her 100th birthday (8 August 2021) as a record holder.
The great-great-grandmother’s strength and passion have helped her earn the Guinness World Records title for the oldest competitive powerlifter (female).
Lifting weights upwards of 40-150 pounds, Edith is smashing the competitive powerlifting circuit, dazzling viewers and judges alike with her graceful lifts.
"We knew she probably was one of the oldest but were shocked (and very proud of her) to be told she holds a world record. Our entire family is honored that our mother is a record holder, and Guinness World Records has given her this honor," - Honey Cottrell, Edith’s daughter
As a former dance teacher at the local recreation center, she’s no stranger to physical movement. Young Edith looked up to Shirley Temple, Ginger Rogers, and Fred Astaire for their dancing abilities.
She enjoyed the experience and shared it with others when she could. In fact, through dance, Edith met her now close friend, Carmen Gutworth.
Carmen invited the patient and fun then 91-year-old Edith to join her at the gym a few years later and she quickly became interested in lifting.
"While I was watching those ladies doing their thing, I thought I just as well should pick up a few bars, and I did."
"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."
Alongside her trainer Bill and Carmen, Edith started picking up trophies with her quick lifts during competitions.
"She bent down and picked it up as if it were her purse," says Carmen. "She will not quit and anything that’s hard, it makes her more determined."
"As a performer and a dancer, applause was always a very important part of my enjoyment. As long as I could get a little bit of applause, I was happier each I time I got more and more applause. Once people found out I was in my nineties and I was doing all of these things, it got to be more noticeable. People got to pay attention more."
"She loves the applause. Any time she lifts a weight, people clap," adds Honey.
The passionate athlete continues to inspire others, so much so that she’s brought in others ranging in a variety of ages to partake in physical activities.
Edith also admits that her wins in the last few years led her to receive so many trophies that at one time, she didn’t have enough space for them in her home!
Having to pause due to the pandemic, she is most excited to be back in the gym and work with her trainer to compete again soon. During her last competition in 2019, Edith was 98 years, 94 days.
"I think in my nineties, I became more aware of the need for people to be recognized for who they are, or what they are, or how they are and it’s the most beautiful thing in the world. I think I survive on that, mostly, myself."
See Edith’s record and many other inspiring records in the upcoming Guinness World Records 2022, available in stores and online later this year.