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'Tough as nails' weightlifter, 82, fends off home invader with TV tray, shampoo

Willie Murphy said she "whaled" on an intruder after he burst through her front door.
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This intruder picked the wrong 82-year-old to mess with.

On Monday, authorities in Rochester, New York, hailed octogenarian weightlifter Willie Murphy as "tough as nails" after fending off a man who broke into her home last week.

Murphy, the World Natural Powerlifting Federation's lifter of the year in 2014, was getting ready for bed on Thursday when a man less than half her age rang the doorbell, she told NBC affiliate WHEC.

The man said he had been shot, Murphy told the station, so she grabbed her phone to dial 911.

"I'm giving them my address and guess what happens?" Murphy told WHEC. "Boom — he breaks into my house and he's in the living room."

So she reached for a TV tray and started “whaling on his behind,” she said.

The intruder grabbed a table and fell backwards, and Murphy dumped a bottle of shampoo on his face, she told the station.

Murphy had forgotten about the police dispatcher on the other end of the line, but authorities arrived shortly after and took the man to a hospital, the station reported.

Murphy told ESPN last year that her three-day-a-week workout routine at Rochester’s YMCA included bench pressing, dead lifts and strict curls.

"A lot of older people, they're into swimming, yoga, tai chi, various other things,” she told ESPN. “But I guess I'm just unusual because I'm into natural powerlifting."