Clinton and Lori Beach are husband and wife. They serve on the Fairfax County police force together, but what makes their partnership more unusual was on display at the 2015 World Police and Fire Games: They are both bodybuilders.
Lori flexed and posed her way to a top-five finish in the over-40 figure competition for women on June 27 at George Mason University, while her husband, who organized the bodybuilding competition for the games, cheered her on and judged a men’s event.
The pair are among the roughly 10,000 police officers and firefighters from more than 70 countries participating in the games, which feature Olympic-style events in dozens of sports, from ice hockey to dodge ball.
The games turned tragic Thursday when a cyclist was killed and two others seriously injured in a crash during a race at Prince William Forest Park. The man who died was identified as Carlos Silva, 48, a police inspector from Brazil.
The 10-day competition is expected to draw more than 30,000 people to the region. It started June 26 and runs through Sunday. The games are based in Fairfax County, but venues elsewhere in the region also are hosting events. All are free to the public.
“It provides an exceptional opportunity for public safety officers to come together and share camaraderie and, more importantly, share the experience with the community that is hosting the games,” said Fairfax County police Maj. Rich Perez, who is directing security for the games.
A number of local police and fire agencies are competing, including some from the District, Prince George’s and Montgomery counties in Maryland and Prince William County in Virginia. The Fairfax County Police Department alone has 212 officers competing.
Athletes are staying in a village in Reston, and there was an opening ceremony, complete with a torch, at RFK Stadium in the District.
The nonprofit group that organizes the games estimates they will generate $80 million in revenue for the region.
Clinton and Lori Beach said they follow a punishing regimen of training and dieting to sculpt their bodies for competition. They lift weights, do cardio and eat meals that are high in protein and low in fat.
Clinton said he wakes up at 3 each morning to get in his workouts, while Lori hits the gym in the afternoon or evening. They said it’s not easy to find time between work shifts and caring for their two children. They are certified to compete in professional bodybuilding competitions.
They said the training is particularly tough as the body ages. The metabolism slows, and both have suffered serious injuries on the job and while training. “It’s like no other sport,” Clinton said of bodybuilding. “There’s no offseason.”
He said there were more than 70 athletes competing in bodybuilding in the police and fire games. They came from around the world, including India, New Zealand, Hungary, Germany and Malaysia.
Appropriately enough, Lori and Clinton met in a Gold’s Gym in the mid-’90s. They shared an interest in weightlifting and hit it off. They were both applying for law enforcement jobs when they met and eventually got jobs in Fairfax County. He is a detective in the major crimes unit, and she is a patrol officer based in the Franconia station. They still go to the same gym.
“My kids have been raised at the gym,” Lori joked.