BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - There are those who talk about getting in shape, and then there's Maxine Nelson.
At 79-years-young, Maxine spends several days a week in the gym.
"I want to be as independent as I can be with my two conditions," said Maxine.
Just a few short years ago, she was diagnosed with two debilitating diseases: CIDP, a rare condition that affects the roots of nerves, and Parkinson's. The diseases stemmed from her work as a chemist before many regulations were in place.
"Years later, they had materials safety sheets," said Maxine. "They told us all the things we were doing were wrong."
Having lived an athletic life, Maxine refuses to let her diagnoses get in her way.
"She's a fighter," said Maxine's daughter, Sara Wood. "She was actually in the hospital last year for just shy of three months."
Maxine completed physical therapy following her lengthy hospital stay. But, she didn't want to stop there.
"Once we had everything out on the table I thought to myself, "This is going to be a challenge and I'm up for it....I want to do the best I can to help this lady,'" said trainer David Green of Greens Extreme Fitness.
Green and Maxine meet several times a week at Iron Works in Biloxi. The trainer says Maxine's dedication is inspiring.
With every step she takes towards her 80th birthday in September, Maxine hopes to be an example along the way.
"No matter how old you are, you can still do it if you put your mind to it," she said.