Inside Out: Bodybuilding mum reaches World Finals

I didn’t know much about it at first to be honest, but knew early on that I wanted to compete. I don’t think I really understood the enormity of what I was taking on."Jo Perruzza
Date: 26.10.2012     Last updated: 18.03.2014 at 18.12
Category: BBC One
Inside Out, the BBC regional current affairs series, charts the success of a working mother of three from Stockport, Greater Manchester, who has won the British Bodybuilding Championships and a place in the World Finals, having taken up the sport just 18 months ago.

46 year-old Jo Perruzza competed for the first time in 2011 in the Figure class with the British Natural Bodybuilding Federation (BNBF). Just a year and a half later she is British Natural Bodybuilding Federation Masters Figure Champion and has won a place at the World Body Building Finals in Miami in November.

The story of Jo’s meteoric rise in the highly competitive world of body building is told in the BBC’s regional current affairs series Inside Out, which goes out on BBC One (North West only) at 7.30pm on Monday 29 October.

By day, Jo is a manager in a senior position. She trains at the Olympic Gym in Salford where she met her trainer Tania George, who has guided her journey to the very top of the sport.

Says Jo: “I didn’t know much about it at first to be honest, but knew early on that I wanted to compete. I don’t think I really understood the enormity of what I was taking on.”

She admits to being a highly motivated person and says she has always been good at sport, having run half marathons and participated in triathlons in the past. She never thought she would achieve the status of British champion.

Now as Jo prepares for the World Championships in the US in November, she has to stick to a very strict training regime and a diet packed with protein, fat and carbohydrate.

“As I approach competition time, I train three times a week and also do high-intensity training four times a week for 20 minutes. My diet consists of seven meals per day which include turkey, white fish and egg whites, carbohydrates, oats and veg such as sweet potato or butternut squash and fats which can be oily fish and whole eggs and nuts. In order to stick at it I focus on the end result and prepare all meals in advance.

“I make separate meals from those for the family, though we do sit down together at meal times. There are always competing priorities in life, but my family comes first and they are involved in my chosen sport - in fact my daughters help me with my routine and choice in music. They are the most honest judges of them all!”

Inside Out is BBC North West’s regional current affairs programme, and will show Jo’s preparation for the biggest moment of her life as a bodybuilder, when she will step on stage with body building superstars from around the world.

SM