YMCA member still fit at 93 years old
Ed Lawson lifts free weights as part of his workout regimen. He also walks four miles during his twice-weekly workouts.
Shaking Ed Lawson’s hand would surprise anyone of any age.
The Bowling Green city councilman has the grip of a 25-year-old but it belongs to his 93-year-old body.
Lawson’s nonagenarian strength and lucid mind are not flukes. They comes from years of properly taking care of himself and two workouts a week at his beloved Twin Pike Family YMCA in Louisiana.
Lawson drives himself to his beloved Y, where he walks for 60 minutes at a precise 4 mph around the gym. He also uses a couple of the weight machines and dumbbells to maintain his lifetime weight of 140 to 145 pounds.
He started working out at the YMCA in Hannibal about 12 years ago, tagging along with his now-deceased wife, Charlene, and her friends who utilized the swimming pool.
“Charlene was very interested in water aerobics,” Lawson said. “When she couldn’t go up there anymore, I decided to come here,” to the Louisiana facility.
“I did it to keep in shape because I was involved in so many things.”
The involvement included stints on the Pike County Memorial Hospital and NECAC boards, the Pike County Tourism Commission, the Pike County Historical Society and the Champ Clark Honeyshuck Restoration board.
Lawson is currently serving in his second term on the Bowling Green City Council and is an 18-year member of the Rotary Club. He also belongs to the First Christian Church of Bowling Green.
“At my age if I don’t do this I won’t be in good health,” Lawson said about his workouts. “It’s very important.”
Lawson still prepares his own meals and watches what he eats closely.
“I eat lots of fruits and vegetables,” Lawson said. “I never go into a restaurant and order steak.
“I order salad, vegetables and the meat of the day, pork or beef. I don’t care for chicken. I also drink lots of green tea.”
Lawson doesn’t drink alcohol and never has.
“I didn’t like the taste,” he said. “At the end of World War II, I stopped smoking. The sooner you stop, the better.”
Lawson also has a couple of personal habits to maintain his limber frame.
“I never sit down to put on my shoes and socks,” he said. “It makes you bend over.”
He also reads in a wooden rocking chair. “I try not to use upholstered chairs or those that recline.”
For those over 60, Lawson has some simple advice.
“They should regularly exercise and that includes walking,” he said. “You can do that any day here at the Y.
“They are very friendly here and give you help. The people who don’t exercise could really benefit from coming here.”
Lawson is living proof of his words.