Former NP resident in running for ‘Next Fitness Star’

Former NP resident in running for ‘Next Fitness Star’

NORTH PROVIDENCE – Former town resident Angela Gargano, 27, is one of five finalists to be a “Next Fitness Star in “Women’s Health Magazine.”

Gargano, now of Cranston, appears on the cover of the June 27 issue with four other women. The field of finalists has been narrowed from thousands of submissions.

Gargano was selected “for her tenacity, passion, empowering personal story, and incredible workouts,” according to a release. She had to present a video as part of her application.

The fitness aficionado said she’ll never forget being made fun of in elementary school for her “big man arms.” She would even wear long sleeves in 90-degree heat to conceal them. Those arms are now one of her favorite body parts because of how strong they are.

A veteran competitor on American Ninja Warrior, Angela leads boot camp-style workouts utilizing springboards, bars, and boxes. She believes that there are opportunities to embrace fitness everywhere one looks, from monkey bars to park benches, and all people have to do is look for them.

Gargano is a Rhode Island College graduate who lived in North Providence during her college years. She told The Breeze she’s “kind of freaking out” over her selection as a finalist. A client sent her an application last October and kept asking her if she’d filled it out. She finally did and doesn’t regret it. Since finding out she’s in the top five, Gargano said a whole new world of opportunity has opened up to her.

Gargano said her ultimate goal is to open her own gym. Her own desire to be fit started with gymnastics, but she’s grown to really love staying in shape through all kinds of activities, including martial arts, Ninja Warrior workouts, and fitness competitions. The former Miss Fitness America winner said it was a “devastating” ACL injury that helped her realize that fitness is about being “super strong everywhere” and not just focusing on certain aspects of being fit.

The greatest lesson to learn from her experience is that anyone can go for their dreams and achieve them, said Gargano, and that’s the message she’s sending as she travels around telling her story.

Gargano said she’s feels happiest when she’s helping someone else realize how far they can go in getting fit. She was inspired by one of her older clients coming to the realization that she could do a pull-up.

Gargano said she continues to push herself to try new things, qualifying in multiple regional and national Ninja Warrior competitons. She also took first place in her age group in the Spartan Races.

One’s whole perspective on life changes when they make fitness fun and a lifestyle, said Gargano. Instead of watching TV or going to a bar, she’s always looking for a friend to go do something active, as fitness has become more of a hobby and less of a drudgery. She said she always has energy.

“Now I’m living life a little more passionately,” she said.

Fans are encouraged to visit www.whnextfitnessstar.com to watch videos of each finalist and vote for their favorite. After the votes are tallied, the magazine’s panel of expert and celebrity judges will decide who should be crowned the 2017 Next Fitness Star.

Angela Gargano is pictured second from right on the June cover.