In the early months of 2011, I approached my wife Mandy with an idea – I wanted to leave my nice, cushy corporate job to open a CrossFit gym. Shrugging it off, she told me she’d take me serious when I showed her my “business plan.” What she didn’t expect was for me to have it ready. She was shocked! After looking it over, and some deep discussion between us, she told me to go for it.
Ok, it was on and my wheels were turning – I found a space, had my equipment list, figured out the gym insurance stuff. Now, we just needed a name. We toiled over this piece for a long time because we knew we wanted the name to convey not just what we did (CrossFit), but why we do it. We wanted it to covey what we believe. Nearly all the names we came up with were already taken or simply didn’t fit us. Then as if out of a movie, I woke up out of a dead sleep one night, scribbled something on a notepad I kept on my nightstand, and went back to sleep. When I woke up the next morning, I grabbed it immediately and as Mandy was getting ready for work that morning, I remember asking: “Hey love, what about ‘CrossFit For Glory?’” “Perfect,” she said.
Next we commissioned a dear friend, Whitney, to draw our logo. There is no denying that that original logo, and the one that adorns our wall, is the shape of a cross. Yes, CrossFit For Glory is a Christian owned and operated company. What does that mean? Well, a couple of things really: it means that we lovingly accept any and everyone with open arms. It means that we serve others joyfully, with compassion and integrity. It means that we have a genuine appreciation for where each person starts their journey and how they choose to navigate it. Yes, we are faith based. We believe that faith is the glue that holds it all together. Faith has an understandably religious connotation to it, but it also is an explicit trust in the process and support of a larger purpose. In our case, it is moving forward the movement of increasing the health and wellness of our world. That begins with those who walk through our doors.
And then, it all changed. Mandy told me that summer that we were expecting! How exciting I thought, a new gym AND a new baby!? Mandy was not quite so sure…leaving the comfort (and health insurance) of my job wasn’t to be taken lightly. But we both figured, if not now, then when? Mandy has always been the rock behind me – both supporting me when I needed to be held up and pushing me forward when I needed a kick in the pants!
So in November 2011, I turned in my resignation in pursuit of something bigger – my purpose. The next month, on December 3rd 2011, with a wife who was 7 months pregnant, we opened the doors to CrossFit For Glory.
Head Nutrition Coach
Hi! I’m Stephanie and I’m very excited that you’re here checking out CFG. It feels like a lifetime ago, but I grew up very active in so many things. After 10 years of gymnastics, I moved into dance and cheerleading. Once I entered highschool, I played basketball, volleyball, ran track and cheered competitively. Needless to say, I love athletics! I grew up an Army Brat which is what brought me to the Fish Hawk area in 2003. I was in the first graduating class at Newsome High school, which was an unforgettable experience…Go Wolves! I attended Florida State University, where I earned my degree in Early Childhood Education.
This led to a 9 year teaching career, where I taught 3 years of 2nd grade and headed back to Newsome for 6 years of Health and Physical Education. All the while, I coached team sports as a volleyball and flag football coach.
I joined Coaching For Glory in December of 2013 and it completely changed my life. I became a CF-L1 trainer, facilitated effective strength and conditioning programs, competed in CF locally and then weightlifting at the local and state level. I met my husband here and we have always felt supported by this community. In 2018 I was able to leave my teaching job and work full time at CFG so I could also be a stay at home mom to our daughter. That has been the biggest blessing!
I am passionate about nutrition and helping nurture the whole person because I feel that everyone deserves to live their best days. You don’t have to do this alone. Our coaches and community are here to help!
Crossfit level 2 trainer
Healthy steps nutrition coach
Usaw l1- sports and performance coach
Bachelors in early childhood ed, masters in educational leadership
K-12 physical education certification
K-12 health education certification
9 years of coaching youth sports grades 6-12
Athlete for tampa bay inferno women’s tackle football team for 2 seasons
Areas of Expertise:
Hey everyone! I’m Marc Z, the Head Coach here at Coaching For Glory. I graduated from the University of South Florida in May of 2019 with a Bachelor’s Degree in Exercise Science.
My story is a bit different in that I never played any competitive sports growing up. It wasn’t until the summer of 2012 when a friend of mine convinced me to start a membership at the local 24-hour gym. I stayed consistent at that gym until I started at Coaching For Glory. My mom had been a member of Coaching For Glory for a few months before October of 2013 when she finally convinced me to try a class out. The old location was in a warehouse that didn’t have any a/c, and I remember feeling extremely challenged by the workout I did…and I loved it – I loved getting my butt kicked! I was immediately hooked. I officially began at CFG in December of 2013. After graduating high school in 2015, I went to the University of Central Florida for a year before deciding to transfer back home to USF while I pursued coaching at CFG. I began coaching in October of 2016, three years after I had first walked into CFG. Over the last few years, I’ve received multiple fitness certifications, including a CrossFit Level 1 Certificate and completing the XPS course (EXOS performance specialist).
Above all, coaching has allowed me to build & improve relationships with people who I can confidently call my best friends & family. I’ve truly found a passion in teaching and helping others reach goals they had previously thought were impossible. MY goals as your coach are to help you realize your potential and help you develop habits that will lead to (and nurture) long-term, sustainable progress that will keep you fit for life.
Functional Fitness movement: Squat Snatch
Food: Spaghetti w/ meatballs & Italian sausage
Activity outside of the gym: Going to the movies
CrossFit Level 1 Trainer (not sure if we’re dumping this)
XPS (EXOS Performance Specialist)
Two-Brain Coaching First- & Second-Degree Coach
Bachelors in Exercise Science
Areas of Expertise:
Strength & Conditioning
Group Fitness Training
Crossfit level 1 trainer
Areas of expertise/ interests:
Gymnastics (11 years)
Cheerleading (3 years)
Kids fitness (elementary-middle school)
Helping/ motivating others
My interest in sports and fitness began very early and continued through high school, where I played basketball. I received my degree from the College of Charleston and after spending many years traveling employed by Delta Airlines, and as a military spouse, I discovered Crossfit in 2009. I had always been active, and fitness played an important role in my everyday life, but crossfit gave me the intensity in my workouts, friendly competition, and the camaraderie I missed from playing team sports.
I moved to Tampa in 2010, where my passion for Crossfit and interest in helping others achieve their fitness goals led me to getting my Level 1 crossfit certification. I began coaching soon after and in 2014 joined the Coaching for Glory team. After years of coaching group classes, and continuing my education in fitness, I discovered my true passion was in developing confidence, strength, and fitness in our teen community. Having teen children of my own involved in competitive sports, coaching teens in the group classes and seeing the rewards fitness brought them not only in their sport but in their everyday lives, led me to become more involved in our youth programs. In June of 2019, we began a teen program in addition to our existing kids jv and varsity programs. I have been so excited to see and am rewarded by the growth in the teens as well as the program so far. I am truly grateful that I am able to share my passion for fitness with others, and found a place that gives me the opportunity to learn and grow as an athlete and a coach.
CrossFit Level 2 trainer
USAW Level 1
Crossfit Gymnastics trainer
Areas of expertise/interest
Mark found CrossFit when he walked into CrossFit For Glory in March of 2012 and has never looked back. The passion for fitness developed while serving in the U.S Army during a 25-year career, where the value of General Physical Preparedness for the unknown is a valued asset. He demonstrated his athletic prowess and excelled at endurance sports to include running and cycling winning numerous events in each sport.
Mark is married and has three children who are also a part of the CrossFit For Glory community. He is currently pursuing his Master’s degree in Education. Seeing progress and improvements in the athletes at CFG gives him an incomparable feeling of accomplishment no matter age or current physical condition.
- CrossFit Level 1 Trainer
- USAW L1
- US Army Master Fitness Trainer
- Retired US Army 25-Years
- Current Instructor Joint Special Operations University
- Lifetime of playing sports – baseball, basketball, cycling, running, obstacle courses, etc.
- 1994 U.S. Military Road Cycling Champion
- Ranked 39th in Southeast region age group 50-55 2014 Crossfit Open
- 6th place Master’s 40 and over CrossFit Beat Down on the Pier 2013
- B.S. History, Ashford University
Areas of Expertise/Interest:
Client Success Manager
Hey there! The elevator version of myself is that I am a Miami native, U.S. Navy Veteran that loves my family and am literally the girl next door. Unlike most coaches, I do not have a lifetime invested in sports growing up or even as an adult… unless you count playing outside till the lamp posts came on as a sport. That or JROTC color guard in high school.
Honestly, though… my passion lies in people. The regular folk. Looking to better themselves. I went from absolutely no Weightlifting experience to becoming a 2018 World’s Master competitor in Olympic Weightlifting. I love to push my boundaries as a female and aim to lead the way for my daughter and anyone else willing to put in the work! Don’t let the tatted – strong willed look stop you from coming over and introducing yourself. Let’s be friends!
- United States Navy Veteran – Yeoman
- CrossFit Level 1 Trainer
- USAW Level 1 Sports and Performance
- Ranked 9th – 2018 World Masters Weightlifting Championship 75kg
- Ranked 2nd – 2018 Florida State Championship
Areas of interest:
- Olympic Weightlifting – Masters & Youth USAW
- Power of Optimism
- Photography & Traveling
Sports Performance Coach
Hi folks! My name is Gene, but all my young athletes tend to call me Coach Rich. I play a unique role here at CFG, as I am not a CrossFit coach – I am a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS) and I coach the high school athletes who participate in our Sports Performance Training program. In addition, I am also proud to be the coach for CFG’s barbell club and a personal trainer.
Growing up in Tampa, I loved being active with my friends and playing sports. By high school (Robinson alum) I focused solely on my pitching career, and that turned into a baseball scholarship at Florida Southern College (c/o ’99) and being drafted by the Chicago Cubs in 1996. Despite being a former single-sport athlete, I love watching other sports, and with a M.S. in Applied Exercise Science it has become a hobby of mine to read the latest science on enhancing sports performance. My wife and I stay active and fit through traditional resistance training and weightlifting, and my friends and I (go Blue Barracudas!) are 3-peat champions of Field Day organized by Tampa Bay Club Sport.
Most of my adult life has been spent teaching high school history, but all of that started to change in 2016, when I kickstarted a strength and conditioning program at Tampa Catholic High School. It has been a great experience helping a wide range of athletes achieve their fitness goals, and I decided that coaching and personal training fulltime was something I had a passion for. I am so happy to be coaching at CFG and I hope you feel as welcomed as I have felt since arriving! Also—shameless plug—consider giving barbell club a month or two just to brush up on your weightlifting technique and make those WODs more productive—your joints may thank you later 😊
- Master of Science—Applied Exercise Science (strength & conditioning concentration)
- National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA)—Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS)
- National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM) –
- Performance Enhancement Specialist (PES)
- American Council on Exercise (ACE)
- Certified Personal Trainer (CPT)
- Sports conditioning (specialty certification)
- The Biomechanics Method of Corrective Exercise (specialty certification)
- USAW Level 1 Coach
Areas of Expertise/Interest
- Annual Training Plan/Programs for Sports
Strength and Conditioning Coach for High School Athletes (3 years)
- Olympic Weightlifting
Baseball (4 years high school level, 4 years college level)
Hey everyone! My name is Ed Ho’omalu and I recently moved to the Fishhawk area. My career in sports and fitness started at a young age in swimming, waterpolo and surfing, go figure since I grew in up Hawai’i! I continued my athletic career into college.
I got into CrossFit in about 2008, more on a dare and whim by a friend of mine. This grew into me getting my CrossFit Lvl 1 certification mainly for myself. In late 2009 I started to coach at a CrossFit gym and have been doing it ever since.
Over the past year or so, I have done a lot of work with the Strongfit movement principles and it has changed the way I approach fitness and my workouts, and coach athletes. What I enjoy about coaching is helping people become a better version of themselves one day at a time!
CrossFit Level 1
Areas of expertise
Playing with sandbags (the 100#mostly) and the deadlift.
My name is Abigail! I am a Physical Therapist and Crossfit Coach here at EXOS and CFG. I’ve been involved in fitness throughout my entire life including collegiate tennis, high school soccer, and a passion for all things outdoors. I love being able to incorporate a Physical Therapy background into coaching to help people move better, decrease injury, and have fun exercising.
CFG has allowed me to help everyone with all levels of fitness as well as create a community of positivity and gratification.
Doctor of Physical Therapy
Board-Certified Sports Clinical Specialist
Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist
CrossFit Level 1 Trainer