Pedal power at 84 Scott senior still cycling long distancesPublished Aug 16, 2013 at 2:42 pm (Updated Aug 16, 2013 at 2:42 pm)
Edward Jew, Jr.
For a fit cyclist, covering 150 road miles on two wheels in two days is a fabulous feat. However, when the biker is 84 years old, as Dr. Edward W. Jew is, then that’s an awesome accomplishment, right?
“Recognition for a performed activity because of one’s age is subject for discussion,” Jew said, “but it is what it is.”
Cycling is what works for Jew during the warm weather months. So is golf. During the winter, downhill skiing on both the eastern and western slopes is his passion.
Regardless of his age, Jew is always doing something. Activity keeps him young and healthy
For many years, the retired general surgeon has engaged in planned weekly schedules of strength conditioning with a trainer, aerobic exercise sessions, yoga and even international ballroom dancing. “Hence, my present health and overall physical condition are quite satisfactory,” said Jew, who said, who has resided in Upper St. Clair and Scott Township for 43 years.
Indeed, for while more than 1,200 participated, not many octogenarians finished the MS150 Escape to the Lake event nor participated in the National Senior Games.
This summer, Jew completed his 11th bicycle tour from Pittsburgh to the Lake Erie shore in Conneaut, Ohio. The event is a fund raiser for Multiple Sclerosis. Riders, who collect donations for the society, cover 82 miles the first day, cycling from the northern suburbs of Pittsburgh to Allegheny College. Day two is 68 miles from Meadville to Conneaut.
In 1998, Jew finished his first MS150. He rode with the Life Force Fitness Center. After he saw how well the society produced the event to raise support for research, Jew decided to continue participating in the event, but as an individual.
“There was, and continues to be, the satisfaction that the pledging itself becomes magnified by the personal accomplishment that comes through preparing as well as completing the ride,” he explained.
From 1999 through 2007, Jew completed the MS150. In 2007, he also represented Pennsylvania at the National Senior Games held in Louisville, Kentucky. He raced in the 75-to-80-year-old age group
However, that year, his knees finally gave out. Because of degenerative cartilage chances in those joints, he took time off for surgery. “I could not efficiently pedal and balance a bicycle,” he explained. After the bilateral total knee replacements and grueling rehabilitation, Jew resumed his normal physical activities aside from running.
“The arthroplasties,” said Jew of the medical procedure, “has been a wonderful matter.” Because of the success of the surgery, Jew decided to register for this year’s MS150. And, he may ride again in 2014.
“As an octogenarian, it is not prudent to plan very far in advance,” he said.
Conditions, definitely, impact his decision.
“If it’s not raining, the temperature is not in the 90’s and no additional degenerative afflictions beset me or my wife, then I will consider it.”
Jew is considering riding in Pedal Pittsburgh. He is registered for the event set for Sunday, Aug. 25.
Jew has been married to his wife, Rosemarie, for 60 years. The couple has two children, Adrienne J. Lesnett of Canfield, Ohion and Dr. Edward W.Jew,III of Pittsburgh. He has four grandchildren: Allison Bouchard, Renee Lesnett, Edward Jew,IV and Darby Jew.
A University of Pittsburgh Medical School graduate, Jew served as a medical officer in the United States Navy from 1955-57 and completed his surgical training at Presbyterian University Hospital from 1957-1962 before going into private practice. He retired in 1996.
Pedal Pittsburgh celebrates 20 years this Sunday, Aug. 25.
The event features three courses designed for cyclists. Beginners and families can choice to ride 5 to 12-plus miles. There is also a 25-mile ride as well as a metric century (62 miles).
Riders will have fully marked courses that show off some of the City’s best bicycle friendly roads, scenic views and of course bike lanes. Full service rest stops along each of the routes will provide riders with snacks. Commemorative 20th anniversary T-Shirt will be provided to registered riders.
Visit www.pedalpgh.org to sign-up.