Incirlik Airman medals in bodybuilding

Staff Sgt. Edwin Lopez, 39th Civil Engineer Squadron security alarm technician, poses with his third-place trophy for the 2006 U.S. Air Forces in Europe Air Forces Bodybuilding show and his first-place medal for the 2006 IMA-Europe Power lifting Tourmanent. Sergeant Lopez works out Monday through Friday to maintain his imposing physique. (Courtesy photo)

Staff Sgt. Edwin Lopez, 39th Civil Engineer Squadron security alarm technician, poses with his third-place trophy for the 2006 U.S. Air Forces in Europe Air Forces Bodybuilding show and his first-place medal for the 2006 IMA-Europe Power lifting Tourmanent. Sergeant Lopez works out Monday through Friday to maintain his imposing physique. (Courtesy photo)

INCIRLIK AIR BASE, Turkey -- For some people working out is just something they do every Monday, Wednesday and Friday during unit PT. For Staff Sgt. Edwin Lopez, 39th Civil Engineer Squadron security alarm technician, working out comes as easy as eating. That "eating" has paid off ... in gold and bronze these past months. Sergeant Lopez competed in the U.S. Air Forces in Europe Armed Forces Bodybuilding show in Darmstadt, Germany, and in the 2006 IMA-Europe Power lifting Tournament in Heidelberg, Germany, in which he placed third and first respectively.

At 5'10, 220, Sergeant Lopez is a pretty intimidating looking individual, but it didn't start out that way.

"I first started getting serious about working out when I was in high school," he said. "I was on the varsity football team for three years. Back then I just worked out with the team and did the drills that the coaches made us do, and I just continued on throughout the years."

Sergeant Lopez entered his first competition at age 19, in Darmstadt, Germany.

"What was cool is that my first show and this past one took place at the exact same location," he said. "One of the guys there competed with me back then as well."

The question on this reporter's mind: what's the diet and workout regimen for a bodybuilding champion?

"I eat pretty clean throughout the day ... my meals consist of some sort of lean meat like chicken or fish, vegetables and rice," he said. "From time to time, I like to eat a whole pizza or have a cheeseburger and fries. I don't annotate anything I eat or have a workout log, but when it comes to training, I'm all business.

"My usual routine is to go to the gym once a day, Monday through Friday, if nothing is conflicting," said Sergeant Lopez. "As soon as I get to the gym, I like to jump on the pull up bar and do hanging knee raises, then hit the decline bench and do crunches. I usually separate my workouts to a body part per day to get the most out of each lift. I try to hit the major muscle groups."

Sergeant Lopez doesn't do it all on his own though.

"Tech. Sgt. Stevie Enlow, 39th Comptroller Squadron, is definitely like a coach to me," said Sergeant Lopez. "He chat's with me about focusing my vision and my mindset while going through this tremendous challenge. At 6'4, 295 pounds, I'm just trying to get where he is at."

Sergeant Enlow isn't the only one who keeps Sergeant Lopez on track. Staff Sgt. Arthur Simpson, 39th CES security alarm technician, also keeps him in line.

"Yeah, I just remind him of his goals and push him to stop slacking off," said Sergeant Simpson.

"He'll tell me things like 'don't look back, look where you're going,'" said Sergeant Lopez. "Or he will say something like 'you need to get back on track and focus on your goals.'"
Goals are something Sergeant Lopez has an abundance of.

"Goals, of course I have goals, whether it be pass the PT test again or not falling out during one of those grueling wing runs - Colonel ("Tip") Stinnette is a fast guy." he said. "I mean beside being rich and famous, I also want to play division one football in college next year. Until then, we have to just wait and see."