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ON TRACK Ford has kept a promise he made to God: “I’ll stay in shape, God. That’s the best I can do.” He’s since completed more than 250 races, ranging from 5Ks to marathons. Two were Ironman triathlons.


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1,200 to 1,500 daily ab crunches Walking on a treadmill or riding a stationary bike for one hour a day On weekends, racing has been


replaced with outdoor work in Okeene, which has a population of about 1,200. With a few other volunteers, Ford


sweeps the main streets, prunes the town’s 88 trees, and does other outdoor maintenance. The whole town knows him and


is amazed by his physical condition. By example, Ford has inspired many people to get more physically active and take better care of themselves, but that isn’t his only goal.


HISTORY AND HONOR “I want to wear my uniform and look sharp every Veteran’s Day,” he says. It isn’t a vanity issue but a dedication to share his wartime experience in a positive way. “I want people to know how honorably men served.”


How to Stay in Shape A


long with regular exercise, one of Ford’s


most important habits is not eating anything after dinner and going to bed a bit hungry. “I wake up feeling like a gazelle,” he says. To curb after-dinner hunger, he chews


66 NEWSMAX MAXLIFE | MAY 2018


one or two sticks of sugarless gum around 9 p.m.


What He Eats The food regimen is strict but eff ective. Breakfast: Cereal. Lunch: The biggest meal


Ford’s Advice for Daily Life:


Be disciplined about your personal habits. You don’t have to be ridiculously rigid but have conviction about what’s right for you to do, with your diet, sleep, and physical activity. Be active. Do something every day, whether it’s gardening, outdoor chores, walking, or other forms of exercise, and push yourself a bit past your comfort zone, as that’s how you make progress. Be around positive people who do positive things. Be glad you’re alive and make the most of it. Be good to your family and help those in need in your community.


Helicopter pilots volunteered for


the task and faced tough challenges and extreme danger, he points out. “I served with the most honorable,


bravest, toughest American soldiers that you can imagine.” And he’s become an ambassador


for those men and their stories. Every year, he organizes Veteran’s


Day activities in Okeene and gives a talk to third-grade students. The tradition started nearly 30 years ago when a teacher invited him into the classroom and the event was a success. When the Oklahoma History


Center in Oklahoma City, about 90 miles from Okeene, decided to create a new Vietnam exhibit, Ford was invited to help. He found a Huey helicopter and got it hung in the center, on permanent display. Later this year, he is being


portrayed by a high school student in a historical re-enactment of the war. When he fi rst heard about it, Ford said, “He’d better be a skinny kid.”


of the day. Cottage cheese with fruit; several types of vegetables, such as snap peas, broccoli, and others; sunflower seeds; pistachios, cashews, and almonds; a hard-boiled egg; and tuna, chicken, or turkey. For dessert: low-fat peanut butter on crackers.


Dinner: A smaller version of lunch, without dessert. Snacks: A teacup-sized


portion of pretzels or animal crackers, only mid-morning and mid-afternoon. Beverages: Lots of water,


one 8.4-ounce can of red bull per day, and 1–2 glasses of red wine on the weekend.


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