MEET THE TEAM

As the first CrossFit Affiliate to the Seminole Heights Community, the CrossFit Big Guava Team is expanding their passions within it through Health & Fitness. Our Trainers actively pursue further education and experiences to provide the highest quality of coaching to our members. Every Trainer at CFBG has earned their CrossFit L-1 Trainer Certificate in addition to accumulating over 11 years collectively of Coaching CrossFit classes.


Whether you have never lifted a barbell or you are a seasoned CrossFitter,

we are confident in our abilities to help you with your fitness goals! 

 
 

DARREN DEROCHEMONT - "D"

Co-Owner & Head Coach

CrossFit Level 1 Trainer Certificate Course

NASM Certified

Collegiate Football Kicker, Tulane University

Darren was first introduced to CrossFit by his brother in 2012, "We did backyard workouts with friends for a while. We had 1 barbell with 25lb bumper plates and had no idea what we were doing, but all that mattered was that we were having fun and getting fit!" In 2014 Darren found a CrossFit box to call home where he quickly improved in the Sport of Fitness and absorbed enough knowledge and experience to then become the Head Coach and inspire others to reach their fitness goals. Darren is well known among his peers for his impressive strength, so it comes as no surprise that he was the Florida Grid League's Strength Specialist on the Tampa Bay Brigade team in 2017 when they won 1st Place! Darren has also qualified for Nationals in Olympic Weightlifting in addition to qualifying for Wodapalooza in the Elite Team Division.  In December of 2018, Darren and 3 others have built CrossFit Big Guava from the ground up in his very own neighborhood, Seminole Heights!


Darren was born and raised in Tampa, FL alongside two older brothers who were all heavily involved in competitive sports since they were children. Darren's years of training paid off when he earned an athletic scholarship to Tulane University for football. 

“Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you've imagined.”

FAVORITE WODS/LIFTS:

Lady: Diane
Hero: DT
Lift: Clean
Loves: Handstand Push Ups

TOMAS PESSENDA - "MAS"

Co-Owner & Head Coach

CrossFit Level 2 Trainer Certificate Course

Dmitry Klokov Seminar Participant

Jon North Seminar Participant

Collegiate Soccer Player

Tomas was first introduced to CrossFit in April of 2012 by a cruel yet life-changing friend. “We did a very modified version of a Hero WOD called Pheezy in the old “globo gym.” My initial thoughts were: What just happened? Did I die? Why doesn’t my body work? It was the worst yet best exercise feeling and I was immediately hooked!” After doing CrossFit style workouts on his own, Tomas joined an affiliate in January of 2013. “The community, competitiveness and overall fun atmosphere is something that just isn’t found in other gym settings.” In March of 2014, he received his Level 1 training certificate. “The best part about coaching is being able to help others and seeing their excitement when a new skill clicks or they set a Personal Record. So, let’s get in the gym and get fitter together!” In December of 2018, Tomas and 3 others have built CrossFit Big Guava from the ground up in his very own neighborhood, Seminole Heights!


Tomas was born in New York and has been in Florida since 2000. He is a graduate of The Florida State University

with a bachelor’s degree in Marketing and Business Management.

“Love Your Life or Change It”


FAVORITE WODS/LIFTS:

Lady: Barbara or Annie
Hero: The Chief
Lift: Snatch
Loves: Muscle-Ups

KATE BRINKLEY - "SQUIRREL"

Co-Owner & Coach

CrossFit Level 1 Trainer Certificate Course

Kate was first introduced to CrossFit in August of 2012. She joined on a whim because the box offered
an additional class on Sunday for tough mudder training, which was on her bucket list to complete that
year (crossed off her list later that year). She quickly fell in love with the Sport of Fitness and never
turned back. “CrossFit just never gets boring. I am constantly learning something new or pushing myself
to the next level.” She enjoys competing with friends whenever possible. “Competing with my friends
and community is what it is all about! Supporting each other and reaching our fitness goals together.”
In December of 2018, she received her CrossFit Level-1 Training Certificate. She is looking forward to helping
people unlock their potential and maximize their fitness and health. In December of 2018, Kate and 3 others have built CrossFit Big Guava from the ground up in her very own neighborhood, Seminole Heights!


Kate was born in St. Petersburg, Florida. She is a graduate from the University of South Florida with a
bachelor’s degree in Interdisciplinary Social Science.

“Don’t downgrade your dream just to fit your reality. Upgrade your conviction to match your destiny.”


FAVORITE WODS/LIFTS:
Lady: Cindy and Diane
Hero: Kalsu
Lift: Cluster

KRISTIN LEBLANC - "KL"

Co-Owner & Coach

CrossFit Level 1 Trainer Certificate Course

AHS Heartsaver CPR AED Course

Kristin was first introduced to CrossFit in 2013 when a friend used the word burpee to describe a movement in a workout. "I didn't even know what a burpee was so my friend demonstrated it and I was immediately intrigued!" At that time, Kristin was running 4-8 miles a day but wasn't quite getting what she was looking for. "I Googled CrossFit gyms in Tampa and was scheduled for an Intro Class that week. It was intimidating to show up alone but the CrossFit Community was so welcoming that I instantly felt at home." Over the last 5 years in the Sport of Fitness, Kristin has significantly improved in so many aspects of her life. "I am much more healthy, positive, motivated, and confident than I was when I first started. CrossFit is not just about looking physically fit (though this is a perk!), but its about building new relationships with both others and yourself, and proving you're capable of more than you think." Kristin is determined to prove others that CrossFit will positively impact your life both mentally and physically, and that Health & Fitness should be top priority in self-care. In December of 2018, Kristin and 3 others have built CrossFit Big Guava from the ground up in her very own neighborhood, Seminole Heights!

Kristin was born and raised in Gardner, Massachusetts and is the youngest of 4.

She earned her Bachelor's of Fine Arts degree at IADT Tampa in 2010 with a major in Interior Design. 

"Do something today that your future self will thank you for."

FAVORITE WODS/LIFTS:

Lady: Jackie

Hero: Nate

Lift: Clean & Jerk

Loves: Butterfly Chest-to-Bars

ZANE WILLARD

Coach

CrossFit Level 1 Trainer Certificate Course

AHS First Aid and CPR/AED Certified

Zane was first introduced to CrossFit through random friends on social media. After years of not getting the desired results he wanted through traditional gym going, he decided on a whim that CrossFit, must be the answer. In August of 2017 he googled “CrossFit Gyms Near Me”, and sent the local gym an email and showed up for the intro class the next day, it’s been almost two years and he hasn’t turned back yet. At first it was just a workout regimen, but then the desire to get better, faster, stronger took over and he consumed himself with CrossFit. “What was meant to be something to do four or five days a week for an hour, has ultimately turned into my livelihood. I am a better version of myself everyday because of the community I have surrounded myself with and the desire I’ve built to keep chasing my goals.”

Zane came into health and fitness after being an obese 12 year old with high blood pressure and having to force himself to make lifestyle changes in order to avoid being on heart medication as a preteen. It’s been almost a decade later and this journey has gone from simply riding on a stationary bike in his basement as a preteen to now lifting barbells and gymnastics in his early twenties.

Zane is a native of Kernersville, North Carolina and the middle child of three. He moved to Tampa, Florida in 2017 to attend The University of Tampa where he earned a Bachelors in Economics and Communications, and is pursuing a Masters in Professional Communications.

"In life, you gotta play the cards you're dealt, cause foldin' aint an option."


FAVORITE WODS/LIFTS:

Lady: Grace 
Hero: The Chief 
Lift: Clean 
Loves: Rowing

LINH NGUYEN

Coach

CrossFit Level 1 Trainer Certificate Course

Linh was first introduced to CrossFit in 2017 while living in Atlanta. A friend convinced him to sign up for an on-ramp special after he injured his fingers rock climbing. Skeptical, he intended to only try CrossFit out for one month then go back to the global gym. It only took one month and being introduced to the CrossFit Open before Linh was drinking the kool-aid. “CrossFit gives me a chance to build friendships with people I normally wouldn’t meet. All while supporting each other as we strive to achieve our fitness goals. CrossFit is Community…”


Linh was born in Vietnam & raised in Ft. Walton Beach, FL, in the Florida Panhandle. He earned his bachelor's degree in Graphic Design & Advertising from the University of West Florida. 


“If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking.” Steve Jobs


FAVORITE WODS/LIFTS:

Lady: Linda

Hero: Murph

Lift: Snatch

Loves: Muscle-ups

SARAH STICKNEY

CFBG Ambassador 

Sarah first stepped foot in a CrossFit gym in 2014 after being repeatedly invited by her husband and brother. After years of an on-again off-again relationship with fitness she jumped into her first free intro class and never looked back. She fell in love with the workouts, the hype and the people. “I had a rough start with fitness. I was over-weight since childhood and a CrossFit gym was really the last place I thought I would find myself. I wouldn’t even go to class if Jerry couldn’t make it that day. Eventually these strangers turned into some of my best friends and exercise became a pleasure instead of a chore.” Since then Sarah has made step-by-step improvements in her fitness, skills and overall well-being that have trickled down to huge changes. 


Sarah was born in Portsmouth, Virginia but has been living in Florida since 2003. She and her husband, Jerry, have been Seminole Heights neighbors since 2014. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Biomedical Sciences from

The University of South Florida and currently works as a

Certified Ophthalmic Assistant and Surgical Assistant for an ophthalmologist. 


“Stick to the basics and when you feel you’ve mastered them it’s time to start all over again. Begin anew- again, with the basics- this time, paying closer attention.”


FAVORITE WODS/LIFTS: 

Lady: Nancy

Hero: Holleyman

Lift: Squat Clean

Loves: Distance Running

 
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813-775-4110

4708 N Nebraska Ave, Suite B, Tampa FL 33603

(Enter gym through bay door from E Curtis)

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