February 2017 Athlete of the Month - Ivy Rivera

Published February 1, 2017

My name is Ivy Rivera and I'm 32-years-old. I'm a Certified Dog Groomer and Hygienist, Lead Vocalist for Caliber (local Top 40, Classic Funk Dance band), Bartender, Professional Remote Viewer, Illustrator/Artist and have no kiddos.
Interests include working out as much as possible, singing in any capacity :), working with animals (training, grooming, rescues), scuba diving, traveling, art/sketching, cooking (when there's time!).

I was introduced to fitness at a young age--Jane Fonda was my jam at about 8 years old! I worked out a lot at home with aerobics, running, swimming. I worked out my abs every day. But nothing that produced results as quickly as Crossfit.
I joined OCF in summer of 2012. When I first met Brian Prusinski, who had been working out with OCF for a year already, he asked me if I had ever tried Crossfit and if I knew what it was. I had not, even though I had always been a workout junkie. He offered to pay for a month for me to try it out and the rest is history! 

In the first three months, I became addicted! Those months were the hardest as my body had never experienced that level of intense workout-my first couple workouts I was crawling up the stairs at home! Although I started to see results right away--beginning with my strength. I had had rotator cuff surgery in my early 20's and was told I would have arthritis and wouldn't be able to workout like I used to. I also had occasional issues with my lower back--pulling it from time to time where I would be laid up in bed for a few days. Within those first 3 months, I began to realize that my back pain was non-existent and my shoulder was getting stronger with more mobility. I knew if I continued this new, amazing workout regimen- the stronger I became, the less of a chance I would have of getting hurt, work would be easier, and pain of past injuries would become very little. I had no idea, but would soon learn, how much more I would love about Crossfit--  the increase of stamina, the awesome friends I've made and people I've met, and the inspiring coaches and athletes- past and present- that did and continue to help me strive to be and do things I never thought possible. 

I'm most proud of my lifts--they are almost all more than 100 lbs. I'm a short person, so I never thought I could lift what I do now! My favorite part of working out now is how my body has become accustomed to my rigorous regimen and I find I don't get as sore anymore.  I can go more than 2 days a week like before. I also like that no matter what level you are there is always a new challenge, always something to learn. There doesn't seem to be a limit to what you can accomplish and you find that the only thing that stands in your way, is yourself, which can apply to many other things.

I like the way OCF lays out the workouts and the way the coaches take their time to give you the attention you need or ask for. I feel I have benefited and have had quicker results with the guidelines OCF follows. Within the 4 1/2 years of being with Crossfit, I have visited a couple other Crossfit gyms to find their structure, levels and layout was very loose or not well constructed. 

One of my short term goals is to bring my remaining couple lifts to more than 100 lbs. I am also signed up to take my L1 Certification course in March, which has been a goal for quite some time. 

My long term goals are to compete and continue competing as long as I am able. I would love to be coined one of the fittest 70-year-olds in the world someday! I don't plan to stop Crossfit anytime soon and feel like I'm just starting to scratch the surface of what I'm capable of. I would like to continue my education of Crossfit certifications so I have the option to teach or properly answer questions, looking for key elements of what a person could do to help them better their technique and skill.

To those just starting Crossfit, get ready because you are in for a one-of-a-kind journey. Even if you join only to lose weight or for a down-time hobby, there's no question that you will learn many things and you may find you become one of the most competitive of the group. It's all in how it becomes part of your life. To me, CrossFit isn't just about looking good or how much you can lift (even though these are wonderful benefits!), it's about how one takes every visit to the gym-- facing the challenge of those workouts at whatever level you are.  It's important to promise yourself to do the best you can and be better each time. These are skills you can then apply to your everyday life challenges. With CrossFit you are surrounding yourself with like-minded, positive people who can become wonderful friends and/or inspiring individuals who will support you, drive you, and never let you doubt yourself. Yes there will be pain, yes you will be sore, yes there will be times you don't want to go--those are the days it's most rewarding. 

Push harder. Work faster. Reach higher. Be stronger. Keep moving. Live sore.... and if anything else do not quit.

BE Crossfit. 

LIFTS – past/ current/ goals:

deadlift      80/150/200+
back squat  85/135/200+
snatch         45/65/100+
clean and jerk  65/95/150+
front squat   80/115/200+
press     60/105/150+

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