Name: Kaeli Rivera
Contest Weight: 113 lbs
Regular Weight: 120 lbs
Hometown: Maple Valley, WA
"I've played sports and been active my whole life, but after I graduated high school and went to UW, I no longer belonged to a team. I would still go for runs or go down to the gym, but one day my boyfriend got me to start lifting weights with him. I didn't really take it seriously though until my cousin asked if I wanted to come watch her compete in figure at the Emerald Cup... the only problem was, I was only 20 years old and the only way I could get in to watch her (since it was at a casino) was to compete too! I haven't looked back since! I joined Tanji Johnson's Save Fitness team and started training and eating like a competitor and soon enough, I was on stage myself and ended up placing first in my class in my first show. And from that point on, I knew I was hooked.
I am currently training for the Emerald Cup again this year and I absolutely love my diet and training programs. I have a lot of variety in my diet which makes it that much easier to stick to and I never feel like I'm being deprived of any food groups. Right now I'm eating a lot of lean proteins and protein shakes with some clean carbs in the morning and after my workouts. I'm not a huge fan of veggies so I'm pretty happy that I don't have a TON of those right now too ;). I also just started a training program that was created by Mike Davies (I also use him for my diet plans) and so far they've been kicking my bootay... literally! It involves a lot more plyometric work than what I was doing on my own so I can definitely tell that I'm getting a good workout in because I always finish drenched in sweat! I love his workouts because you work hard while your training but you don't have to spend hours upon hours in the gym to feel like you're making progress. I love efficient workouts.
I'd like to give a special shout out to my coach and team Tanji Johnson's Save Fitness for teaching me pretty much everything I know now, my parents for being so supportive even though sometimes they have no idea what's going on, my boyfriend for being one of my biggest cheerleaders and always keeping me on track, Mike Davies for his amazing diets and training programs, and all of my friends (and roommates) who get to deal with me while I'm training and still love me just the same!
I'm getting so excited for my next show (Emerald Cup 2012) and can't wait to see what the future holds after that. I'd love to earn my Pro Card some day and become an IFBB Bikini Pro, so we'll see where this journey takes me!" :)
Editor's NoteLet me start out by saying this - Kaeli is hot! And there's nothing wrong with saying that. She's hot because she's beautiful; she's hot because she's on the rise; she's hot because she's got the great team; she's hot because she's going to do battle at the Emerald Cup, keep the fire burning, and go pro. I said the same thing about Narmin Assria from the very first contest photos I saw. Some girls don't stayin the in the Amateur ranks for long, others do (no knock on their phsyique, more on their strategy than anything else).
I think it's very realistic to aim high, but you can't start the year out saying you'll win at Nationals or the USA's - I mean, you could, but it's so much more plausible to give it your all and take a regional title, that's highly respected (as is the Emerald Cup). Winning your class here - or even better, taking the show, will give you the kind of hype that money just can't buy. You win at the EC's, the Junior USA's or the Junior Nationals, and you have real momentum going into the Pro Qualifier - momentum that's undeniable. It slso shows the regional circuit a great level of respect. To prep a whole year to win their title, goes a long way in terms of PR.
I also love the fact that Kaeli joined up with Mike Davies and Save Fitness. Physique sports are misleading in a way. To the novice, it would seem it's all about the person - the individual. It would seem the individual lifts the weight, eats the food, and builds the muscle - without need for a team, but therein lies the danger.
If you want to be a top ranked amateur or a pro athlete, you can't do it alone. Anything's possible, sure, but don't bank on it. You may think this is a sport of 1, but you don't see too many of those U.S. Army (Army of 1 commericals on tv anymore do you?).
There's nothing wrong with individuality. In fact, strive to be differnt, go get a pencil and paper and draw a picture - hang it on your fridge (there! you're an individual). But if you want to win big shows and be the best, you need train with the best and you to take advice from the best. Kaeli is keen to this, and this is why I know, she'll succeed.
She'll put in the hard work and her God-given genetics will certainly play a huge role, but she'll also sacrifice and pay her way to ensure she gets access to the very best the industry has to offer - Save Fitness & the guidance of Mike Davies.