What to Expect When Starting CrossFit

When picking a CrossFit gym, everyone has a laundry list of things they’d like to see their box equipped with. Naturally, I’ve been approached with questions about what Cigar City CrossFit will offer.

Mostly I address the big issues and concerns. How much is a membership, what are your hours, is there open gym, are there showers, etc. Our sexy ass website addresses the majority of those questions, but I’m still happy to answer questions as they come my way.

Once I’ve addressed the simple questions, athletes start peeling back the onion. You get questions that might seem less detrimental, but nonetheless address issues that can decide if someone will go the distance with the community. These questions cant always be answered via a splash page, instagram post, or facebook update. I’ll take some time during this post to address some of those questions, and help shed light on what prospective athletes can expect from our gym.


If you ask any CrossFit gym what makes them special, they’ll always say coaching. It’s usually true. The caliber of coaching you’ll receive at most CrossFit gyms is above and beyond what you’ll receive at any other gym. But I’m going to tell you WHY our coaching is so special.

Our coaches are required to attend our in house fundamentals program. They’re also required to learn a standard operating procedure that governs conduct, structure, and the execution of classes. We designed a coaches manual for all new employees in an effort to deliver a consistently positive athlete experience.We'll continue to refine our methods to ensure you get that experience every visit.  

Our coaches have all been thoroughly vetted, interviewed, and are regularly counseled in order to help them professionally develop. We offer competitive wages, and we invest in the continued education of our coaches as often as possible. Finally, all our coaches have their CrossFit Level I certification, at a minimum.

If you want a class where you hit a 400 meter run route, do some shoulder pass throughs, a few lunges, and then hit the workout, you’re coming to the wrong gym. Expect varied warm-ups, explicit instruction, and hands on coaching for every class.


Community is another hot word CrossFit gyms use when describing what separates them from the pack. Once again, it’s true. Most CrossFit gyms have a unique community that is unlike any other you’ll find in mainstream gyms. It’s even been described as “cultish,” or “tribal,” admittedly apt descriptions.

                                                                         Some similarities, but I'd submit we're coming from different places

Our community will be no exception. We have strong ties with the University of Tampa and the veteran Community. You can expect to see both represented heavily in the gym. We’re also working hard to partner with local businesses in the surrounding area, to include our sister CrossFit gyms that have been out there spreading the good word for a hot minute. 

                                                                             The University of Tampa, the alma mater of both co-founders

We plan to host quarterly seminars on nutrition, fitness, and lifestyle. We will have have quarterly fiestas for our founding members, and we’ll also host a happy hour on the first Friday of every month, GRATIS. And that’s just for starters, folks. Trust me when I tell you, there’s going to be a lot more going on than just the Workout of the Day at Cigar City CrossFit.


We make no claims to have magic programming, nor do we circulate copies of Rich Fronning’s diary. At Cigar City CrossFit we believe in the basics. We have a fundamentals program to on ramp our new members and help intermediate athletes refine the skills they already have. The same fundamentals program will ease you into the community, help you make new friends, teach you the lingo, and give you pointers on gear and other tricks of the trade.

Our programming will be simple, yet elegant. The evening gown of programming. Everything we do will be infinitely scalable, and there will never be a workout that an athlete “can’t do.” Each week you can expect high intensity workouts, heavy lifting at least one day out of the week, mobility, and skill work. Our shit is like Novocain, just give it little bit to work. You’ll be shocked with the results.


At Cigar City CrossFit, we have standards. The fundamentals program will introduce athletes to expectations in terms of safety, execution of movements (good form), and gym etiquette. If you want to take a bar bell and drop it from the overhead position 30 times in a row, then you should seek life elsewhere. Coaches will rigorously enforce these standards. Don’t take it personally, it’s their job. Not to mention it’s that good ass coaching you’re paying a premium for.

We have a set of “House Rules” at Cigar City CrossFit. We collaborated with coaches, veteran CrossFit Athletes, and other gym owners to create comprehensive set of rules that create a bedrock ethic for the gym. Athletes are encouraged to learn the rules and police each other up along the way. The house rules are a living edict; expect them to change as the community grows.


Our space is gigantic. We purposefully sought out a facility with room to grow. Mike and I have plans to add ancillary services to the gym to enhance the community, and bring outside partners and businesses into the fold. Rest assured that we’ll continue to add value to our athletes as time grows. The path to righteousness is at Cigar City CrossFit, bring that ass down and sign up!

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