Paul Rivera placed second in the 55-59 year-old age division for Arkansas and ranked 43rd in North America and 54th Worldwide for the 2021 CrossFit Open. His accomplishment is a far cry from his former self when he started CrossFit at 270 lbs and needing to take multiple medications to manage chronic disease states.
His life transformation started in 2013 by walking into Rock City CrossFit and began working out five times per week and drastically changed his diet. These changes led him to lose 60 lbs, ditching the medications, becoming a competitive athlete, and even inspired him to become a CrossFit Level 1 Coach and USAW weightlifting coach.
Paul said his doctor told him, "One patient in hundred would make these type of lifestyle changes and maintain it for more than a year." Paul has been steadily improving for eight years now.
Paul recently competed in the Legends Masters Comp held in Arizona, where he befriended several of the top CrossFit athletes in his division and staying in touch to keep each other motivated.
Paul ensured he would remain competitive with his peers by enrolling in nutrition coaching a year ago at Rock City. Since then, he has improved his body fat percentage by 9% while keeping stamina and performance while decreasing his overall body fat to 17%.
Paul's next step is the Age-Group Online Qualifier that will take place over Mother's Day weekend.