Faith + Fitness = Overcomer

At a Glance: Angela Cucola

Age: 56

Occupation or Education: Nationally Certified Personal Trainer (ACSM, AFFA, NETA) and Owner of Personal Best Fitness Studio.

Family: Husband, 3 daughters, 13 grandchildren (14th on the way!)

Current Residence: Fisherville, KY

Years training: 33

Height: 5'7"

Weight: Off-Season: 140, Contest: 127 (lowest) and 134 (highest - won my pro-card at this weight)

Favorite Bodybuilding or Fitness Meal: One whole egg, two egg whites, one teaspoon olive oil, a handful of spinach, ¼ cup oatmeal, and ¼ cup blueberries.

Favorite Supplements: Chocolate UMP, Provosyn, 7-Keto MuscLean, Lean Out, Glutamine Select, GH Factor, Quadracarn, and ZMA 2000.

What would you recommend to someone who has never used Beverly supplements before? UMP, 7-Keto MuscLean, and Lean Out– I refer all my clients to these as my top three.

Music:Contemporary Christian

Most inspiring book: The Bible and Arnold’s Encyclopedia of Modern Bodybuilding

Hobby or interests outside bodybuilding: Spending every minute of free time with my 13 (soon to be 14) grandchildren; teaching summer art camps for children.

Words to live by: (1) The closest thing you will ever find to the fountain of youth is keeping your muscle! (2) Weight training is the poor man’s plastic surgery!

 

As children, we all have dreams and aspirations for our future. However, life doesn't always go according to plan. For me, though, it turned out even better than I expected. I had always envisioned myself as an art teacher after finishing college. But at a young age, I made decisions that took me down a different path. In 1985, I became a teenage mother and got married. By the time I turned twenty-two, I had three beautiful daughters. As a young mother struggling financially, I had to find alternative ways to support my family while being there for my girls.

One day, I saw an advertisement in the local paper in Mt Washington, KY, for a babysitter needed at a Commit to Be Fit exercise group. I got the job, and when they offered to train anyone interested in becoming an aerobics instructor, it felt natural to jump at the chance. At $7 per class, it was a perfect way to stay fit and make some extra money. That’s when my passion for fitness and helping others started to take root.

In 1991, I landed a job at a local YMCA and began working towards acquiring every fitness certification I could get my hands on. I studied step aerobics, kickboxing, personal training, senior adult fitness, kids' fitness classes, water aerobics, and many more. After obtaining 13 national fitness certifications, I was offered a full-time position in 1997 with insurance and benefits. It was a true blessing and allowed me to build my confidence and feel like a successful provider for my family. I continued to work for the Y in different locations, including Kentucky - Bullitt County and Southwest, as well as North Carolina - Harrison Family YMCA, Rocky Mount, NC, for 21 years. Over time, I was promoted to Assistant Wellness Director, then Wellness Director.

In 1998, my personal life was in shambles, but my fitness career was thriving. During this time, I worked hard and trained rigorously to keep my mind off my struggles. A friend suggested I compete in a bodybuilding competition and introduced me to Beverly International products. I was informed that Beverly International is one of the most trusted brands in the industry. It’s the go-to brand for bodybuilding and fitness enthusiasts and professionals. Even after twenty-five years, I continue to use and recommend them to clients today.

Despite having zero experience, I placed second in Women's Open Bodybuilding in my first show. This fueled my passion for bodybuilding, and I went on to compete in many other NPC shows in KY, NC, OH, and VA, where I also tried my hand at the Figure and Bikini categories that suited my physique better.

At 42 years old, during the peak of my competitive career, my first grandchild was born in Kentucky while I was living in North Carolina. I chose to quit my 21-year career with the Y and move back to Kentucky to be closer to my grandchild. I had no job or immediate plans, but I knew I could support myself as a trainer/gym manager.

The following year as a new grandmother ("Mi-Mi"), I earned my pro-card in figure at the 2010 NPA USA Bodybuilding & Figure Championships in Highland Springs, VA.

In 2011, I decided to open my own gym in Lexington, KY, and focus on building my business rather than competing. After 12 successful years, I opened a smaller studio in Fisherville, KY, in 2019, specializing in personal training and group fitness classes like Kettlebell, Tabata, and Boot Camp. This move allowed me to downsize and sell my gym in Lexington, giving me more quality time with my family. My faith and passion for fitness helped me overcome the toughest challenges in my life. Instead of feeling down and turning to drugs or alcohol, I focused on improving my fitness and helping others do the same. This helped me heal mentally, emotionally, and physically. As I learned more about the fitness industry, I realized I tended to take things to the extreme. I was teaching 17 fitness classes a week and running excessively to cope with stress. I had to learn to back off and find a healthier balance. I also realized that undereating and overtraining don’t achieve the desired results. By making nutrition adjustments and adding complex carbohydrates, adequate protein, and fat, I was able to improve my physique and attain my goals.

As a highly active individual, I constantly strive to improve my physical fitness while juggling multiple responsibilities, such as managing my own business, instructing group fitness classes, coaching clients, and teaching physical education at a local Christian school. In addition, I enjoy spending quality time with my 13 grandchildren. I rely on Beverly supplements to provide the necessary energy and support to keep up with my busy lifestyle. I am confident that without them, I would not be able to maintain my current level of productivity. In the future, if I decide to return to the stage as a "grandma,” I know that Beverly supplements will be an integral part of my preparation.

To me, fitness encompasses more than just my outward appearance. It's a critical aspect of my life, serving as my profession, pastime, interest, stress relief, and even a social outlet. It's incredibly gratifying when my grandsons are eager to learn from me and ask their Mimi to initiate them into a strength-training regimen.

Contest Prep Diet – Maximum Fat Burning Healthy Active Grandma (“Mimi”) Diet
Meal 14oz turkey breast, 1 whole egg, 2 egg whites, ½ grapefruit or 4 strawberries½ cup oatmeal or 1 slice Ezekiel bread, 1 whole egg, 2 egg whites, ½ cup berries or ½ grapefruit
Meal 22 scoops UMP and ½ grapefruit or apple8 almonds, 1 piece of fruit, one scoop UMP
Meal 35oz chicken (weighed before cooking),
2 cups salad (lettuce, tomato, carrot, cucumber, green peppers, etc), 1 tablespoon oil and vinegar dressing
1 can tuna or 1 grilled chicken breast or grilled white fish, 2 cups green leafy salad or 1 can green beans, 1 red potato or sweet potato or ½ cup brown rice
Meal 42 scoops UMP and grapefruit or apple2 scoops UMP or Provosyn
Meal 55oz lean meat (chicken breast or turkey breast) or 6oz cod fish, 1 cup
Vegetables
3oz grilled chicken, fish, or lean red meat, 2 cups green leafy vegetables, no carbs at last meal
Meal 6*Monday and Thursday, in place of the 5th meal at the end of the day, ½ cup oatmeal or 2/3 cup of cooked rice, 6 oz sweet potato, 4 oz banana, 1 cup vegetables, 2 tsp butter**can be a small treat – dark chocolate square
Easy UMP Dessert Ideas 
Recipe #1:
1 scoop vanilla UMP with ½ cup Greek yogurt,
2 tablespoons cottage cheese, 2 tablespoons of fat-free cool whip, and ¼ cup blueberries
Recipe #2:
2 scoops chocolate UMP and 1 tablespoon of natural peanut butter or almond butter, add a little bit of water to make a pudding-like consistency

Supplements Schedule

ZMA 2000 - To ensure I get a good night's sleep, I take ZMA 2000 (two) to help me fall and stay asleep at night, especially since I wake up at 4:00 am and am constantly on the go until bedtime. This supplement is essential since I am going through menopause.

7-Keto MuscLean, Lean Out, GH Factor, Quadracarn - Before I teach my early morning group classes (fasted cardio), I take (3) 7-Keto MuscLean, (1) Lean Out, (3) GH Factor, and (3) Quadracarn. The Quadracarn and GH Factor help with recovery and maintaining muscle as I age. I take (2) more Quadracarn before my second meal and (3) GH Factor before bed on an empty stomach. Since I eat my last meal early (around 4/5 pm), this helps me get a good night's rest.

UMP, Provosyn - I rotate between UMP and Provosyn for their great taste and for the protein and iron they provide, which helps keep my energy levels up.

Ultra 40 Beef Liver, Mass Amino Acids - I also take Ultra 40 Liver and (2) Mass Aminos with each meal to fight the effects of muscle loss due to aging.

Glutamine Select - I sip on Glutamine Select during my workouts to help with recovery.

 

Training Schedule

I teach daily classes (noted in parenthesis) in addition to the training below

Day 1 (Monday) Chest, Biceps, Abs
(45-Minute Kettlebell Class)
Standing Cable Flye 3x8-15
Seated Concentration Curls 3x12
Incline Chest Press 3x8-15
Olympic Bar Curls 3x12
Decline Chest Press 3x8-15
Rope Bicep Curls 3x15
Push-Ups 100
Decline Abs 3x20

Day 2 (Tuesday) Legs, Shoulders, Abs
(45-Minute Kickboxing Class)

Day 4 (Thursday) Back, Triceps, Abs
(45-minute Pilates Class)
Wide Grip Pulldown 3x8-20
Rope Pressdown 3x20
High Pull 3x8-15
Rope Triceps Pull Outs 3x15-20
Low Pull 3x8-20
Triceps Dips 3x20
Ab Wheel 3x20

Day 5 (Friday) Legs, Abs
(45-minute Boot Camp Class)
Leg Extension 3x12
Leg Curl 3x12
Cable Kickbacks 3x15-20
Plank 3x1 minute

Day 6 (Saturday)
(60-minute HIIT Training Class)

Day 7 (Sunday) Rest Day
Seated Arnold Press 3x8-20
Walking Kettlebell Lunges 3x60
Lateral Raise 3x12-20
Deadlifts 3x6-12
Reverse Flye 3x12-20
Hip Thrusts 3x10-20
Hanging Abs 3x30

Day 3 (Wednesday)
(45-Minute Tabata Class)

Cardio

I do 45 minutes of cardio, five days per week by teaching classes at my studio (HIIT Training, Kettlebell, Kickboxing, Tabata, etc.)

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