From bicep curls to aileron rolls, Vance IP pursues diverse passions

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Cameron A. Schultz
  • 71st Flying Training Wing Public Affairs

VANCE AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. -- Vance Air Force Base is home to a diverse group of Airmen that all have passions - both in and out of uniform.

Capt. Kayla Vohs’ passion is bodybuilding.

She competed at the Organization of Competitive Bodybuilders' Thunder City Showdown in Edmond, Oklahoma, Aug. 1, and took away the gold. 

Vohs, a T-6A Texan II instructor pilot with the 33rd Flying Training Squadron here at Vance, had three first-place competitive bodybuilding victories under her belt prior to the Thunder City Showdown.

Her passion for bodybuilding is relatively new.

“About two years ago I was looking for a personal trainer and my friend Kat Kannburg suggested I train for and enter a bodybuilding competition,” said Vohs. “My initial thought was heck no, but eventually, I decided to try.”

Vohs chose to body build naturally - without supplements - due to the Department of Defense’s policy on performance enhancing drugs. The natural bodybuilding training style encouraged Vohs to rigorously maintain a healthy lifestyle during the 14 weeks of preparation prior to each competition.

According to Vohs, the preparation consists of dieting and exercising. For the first seven weeks she trains five days a week. Each day consists mostly of heavy lifts and 30 minutes of cardio.

For the second half of the 14 week preparation, she trains six days a week and adds about 15 minutes of cardio to her training schedule.

In the last week before competition she trains every day with light weights and 15 additional minutes of cardio.

“It’s hard to train so long, but my main motivation is the competitions themselves because I'm achieving a goal and they are a lot of fun," said Vohs.

Vohs enjoys balancing bodybuilding with being an instructor pilot here in the Air Force. She sees the importance in finding balance in life and embracing diversity and passions.

“I think people should be able to find their identity in multiple places, not in just the military or their job,” said Vohs. “A lot of times I feel out of touch with my femininity in the Air Force, but bodybuilding serves as an avenue for me to embrace my feminine side. I love that I get to compete in a bikini, with my eyelashes waving in the wind and the next day I get to strap into a jet in my flightsuit.

“At the end of the day, your goal shouldn’t be just winning competitions, but staying healthy and having fun,” said Vohs.