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82-year-old powerlifter serves as an inspiration to others

Elaine Waugh discovered weightlifting at age 60.
Posted at 9:06 PM, Aug 03, 2023

We all know staying active and in shape is important at any age, but one woman’s story on how she keeps fit is nothing short of inspirational.

Elaine Waugh discovered powerlifting at age 60 and fell in love with it. Over 20 years later, at age 82, she’s still going strong.

“I think this is something that’s kept me going," Waugh said. “It’s good for my body, good for my mind so I just keep doing it.”

Elaine got into powerlifting by accepting a challenge from her personal trainer. While apprehensive at first, she grew to love it.

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Today, you can find Elaine at her local YMCA in Bennington, Nebraska, where she’s been teaching others how it’s done since it opened last year.

“People tell us how much she inspires them to continue to do this and see that they can do this for a long time,” said Macy Dewisplerare, Executive Director of Westview YMCA.

"Not only are they calling her grandma now, but she’s teaching them how to perform lifts, the rules, and the safety techniques on the wellness floor," said YMCA staff member Shelby Bottolfsen.

Much like powerlifting, Waugh has also grown to love her job helping others.

“You’re never too old,” Waugh said. “I’m helping younger people do something I love to do and hopefully they will love it also.”

Waugh said she still competes in powerlifting and is preparing for a competition in Iowa later this year.

This story was originally published by Ron Johnson at Scripps News Omaha.