LAUGHLIN AIR FORCE BASE, TEXAS -- Since March of this year, a student pilot with the 47th Student Squadron has worked to train her body to peak fitness.
2nd Lt. Colby Chaput's efforts culminated in her competing at the Ms. Fitness bodybuilding competition in San Antonio this past October.
"Since I can remember, I have been a gymnast, but while at the Air Force Academy I blew out my knee," Chaput said. "So this has been my alternate means of competing."
To compete at the Ms. Fitness competition, which required Chaput to perform a series of fitness routines. Chaput had to prepare herself for training and turned to Laughlin's Losano Fitness Center for support.
"The Health and Wellness Center is here to promote healthy living through fitness, nutrition and health education," said Ray Torres, the 47th Medical Operation Squadron health promotion manager. "These are the key categories that I instructed Chaput on."
Chaput talked to the staff to better train herself after determining her body composition.
For six months, Chaput went to the gym five days a week for two hours daily performing five different circuit exercises. Some of her exercises consisted of barbell press on stability ball, bicep curl with lunge, tuck jumps and squat jumps.
"Time permitting, I would add cardio to my workouts," Chaput said. "I never had an easy workout, but I pushed myself every day."
While training for the competition, Chaput also started her initial flight screening training in Pueblo, Colo. There were mornings where she would be in a briefing at 4:10 a.m., go fly a sortie or two, then workout and study for her flights the next day. Her schedule in Colorado changed daily depending on when she had to fly her sorties.
Once she finished her training in Colorado, Chaput was able to get back on a normal student pilot schedule.
"I would be one of the first people in the gym at 5 a.m., so that I could have enough time to work out before having to be in academic classes for undergraduate pilot training the rest of the day," Chaput said.
Her efforts in the gym led her to victory and being awarded Ms. Fitness. Her showing at the event convinced the judges that she should compete at future events.
"They told me that I should compete in the national competition, which I never dreamed of since this was my first competition," Chaput said.
Since the competition, Chaput has decided that she wants to go professional no matter how long it takes.
"I have a new coach who will not stop pushing me until I have become number one," Chaput said. "My dream is to be competitive at the professional level."