Adjusting Fitness Expectations

Mastermind Weekend 1/16

Hey there!

I'm Tina

I’m the owner of Carrots ‘N’ Cake as well as a Certified Nutrition Coach and Functional Diagnostic Nutrition Practitioner (FDN-P). I use macros and functional nutrition to help women find balance within their diets while achieving their body composition goals.


An in-depth, 4-week reverse dieting course for women who feel like their metabolism has slowed down, think they might have hormonal imbalance and can’t lose weight no matter what they do.

After a red-eye flight and only sleeping 3 hours, Mal and I really wanted to skip CrossFit last night, but our food logs for the Paleo Challenge were due, so we bucked up and went to class. We figured we had to go to our box anyway, so why not workout while there?

The first week of the Paleo Challenge started out great for me, but it was much more difficult to stick with it while on vacation. I ate fairly well (lots of eggs, veggies, and sandwiches with lettuce wraps), but I also enjoyed all sorts of fun, non-Paleo foods, including wine, cake, pizza, croissants, pumpkin muffins, and Halloween candy. Obviously, all of those negative points added up, so I got the lowest score possible for the Challenge on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. Point-wise, Mal was in the same boat (the two of us actually had some of the lowest scores for the week at our box), but we’re back on board for Week 2!



Last night’s WOD was “Michael,” which our box first did back in April, so I was excited to see how my time compared. I was actually hoping to beat my previous time, but I knew it might be tough after coming back from a never-ending colitis flare, a whirlwind weekend, and barely sleeping the night before. Even still, I gave it my best effort.


Well, my best effort wasn’t enough to beat my previous time, and I finished more than a minute slower. (I finished in 18:40.) I actually thought I’d be more bummed about my performance, but I didn’t let it get to me. No crying this time! Haha!

After struggling with my health for the past two months, I’ve really adjusted my fitness expectations. I don’t expect myself to exercise 6 days a week anymore, I’m much more realistic about my goals, and I’m all about rest days and sleep lately. And, honestly, I was just happy be back at CrossFit and working out last night. (I swear, I must look like the biggest goofball when I’m there because I walk around and smile the entire time.) “Michael” may have got the best of me last night, but adjusting my expectations has really helped me stay positive and motivated during this transition. I’m not at my previous level of fitness, but I know I’ll get there. It just takes some time, patience, and hard work.


DELICIOUS dinner last night! We had Paleo Pad Thai with coconut aminos. I still think the recipe is amazing without them, but they definitely add a little something to it.


(How funny is that pug face? I wonder what “coconut aminos” sounds like for him to do that ridiculous head tilt? Haha!)

I cooked the spaghetti squash earlier in the day (along with some acorn squash – might as well as long as I have the oven on!), so all I had to do was cook the chicken and veggies and make the sauce when I got home. It came together in no time at all!

IMG_3551 (750x563)

I love, love, love this dish. It’s easily my favorite recipe from Well Fed.

Health News & Views

Not motivated to workout? Are your old playlists boring you to death? Take it up a notch with this high-intensity playlist. It’s guaranteed to make you sweat!


40-Minute ”˜Get Your Sweat On’ Cardio Playlist

Moving Comfort Urban Gym Capri Giveaway

Thanks to everyone who entered the giveaway to win a pair of Urban Gym Capris from Moving Comfort! Here’s your winner:


I’ve loved the moving comfort sports bras for years but their clothes are great too! I’m crazy about both the urban gym capris and the flex hoodie – and I’d bet they’d go great together!

Congrats, Jo! Please email me at with you full name, mailing address, and size to claim your prize.

Practical Paleo Giveaway

Thanks to everyone who entered the giveaway to win a copy of Practical Paleo! Here’s your winner:


I would LUV this book! I am on day 8 of the whole30 and new to Paleo eating and struggling with planning meals that the whole family will enjoy.

Congrats, Jen! Please email me at with you full name and mailing address to claim your prize.

Question of the Day

How does your fitness performance affect your mood? Does adjusting your expectations change this? How have you adjusted your fitness expectations after an injury/illness/pregnancy/time off?



  1. Fitness can totally effect your mood. I feel so pumped when I complete a great workout. And sometimes, it can feel amazing just to go out for a walk. 90% of the time, working out is a mood booster for me. However, sometimes I get frustrated when I’m dealing with a nagging injury, or feel like I’m not gaining any ground in my strength and other workout goals.

  2. I’ve had to cut back after working out hard 6 days a week for months. I just felt … tired. I realized I’m not actually ‘in training’ for anything and it’s okay to work out moderately 4-5 times a week. After all, the reason I take such good care of myself is to be happy and healthy – if I’m not then I need to adjust!

  3. Tearing my ACL sucked, to say the least. After 3 months of physical therapy I do everything I used to except play soccer. I wanted to play intramurals in college but I was so afraid to hurt it again or tear my other ACL. I also know I wouldn’t be as aggressive of a player since I would be so cautious on the field.

  4. LOL ALL of his pug faces are so funny. Sounds like a healthy plan to adjust your expectations. Taking care of yourself is the most important thing!

  5. Basically, getting sweaty will boost my mood for sure. As far as goals, I can certainly be disappointed if I don’t meet certain goals, but I always keep my head up knowing there are plenty of opportunities in the future.
    Great job getting in the workout even though you guys only got 3 hours of sleep!!

  6. I definitely learned to adjust my expectations during marathon training. I learned how different things (strength workouts, lack of sleep, traveling, being injured, etc) affected my runs and so I learned to change my expectations if need be.

  7. My fitness performance usually affects my mood pretty bad. Because I’m just getting started with CrossFit I’m not so much concerned with how much I’m lifting/how fast I’m going because I’m still learning everything, but I know once I get everything down I’m going to be crazy competitive with myself. When I don’t feel like I got in a good enough workout it really phases me, so I usually try harder the next day (which is a good thing I guess). I definitely commend you for getting yourself to the box after a red-eye flight! #dedicated

  8. Life is about balance and making adjustments, and NO one has it down perfectly, so this is a great reminder to us all! Life should be enjoyed & not always about ‘making’ every day perfect or what not. Way to enjoy some ‘fun’ things while on vacay 🙂

    That recipe does look tasty!

  9. I used to do CF all the time. I have to have neck fusion surgery (similar to Peyton Manning) next Thursday and have been advised to not do that type of work out anymore. I am pretty bummed, but I am kind of excited to segue into a new phase of exercise. I have been working on becoming a runner, so hopefully after I heal that will be my exercise of choice!

  10. After a great workout session, I ride that high for the entire day. Unfortunately, after a sub-par one, I’ll feel a little down though I try to tell myself that working out at all is an achievement. Also, I always try to adjust my fitness expectations if I’ve taken an extended period of time off BUT that’s not to say that there isn’t a small nagging voice of disappointment in my head nonetheless. When I got back to running after suffering a painful hip over-use injury, I was humbled but even more determined to increase my fitness.

  11. The Chocolate Chili from Well Fed is AMAZING as are the Moroccan meatballs.

    I bought the aminos this weekend. I must make this!

  12. It is hard to deal with fitness changes. I had to change my expectations after an emergency surgery in 2010. But I think the slow steady pace back is actually going to make me stronger. You’ll get there in your own time and it will be worth it.

  13. I’ve been crossfitting for 10 months now. I love it I’ve had great results from it. I’ve never really been the athletic type – I’ve watched crossfit games and wished I could do something like that. So after I had my son in September and found the time to join I joined. That was Jan 1st – I’ve lost 60 – 65lbs since I had my son. With a lot of help from Crossfit and eating Paleo. I gained 30lbs when I got pregnant – so pregnancy weight and 35lbs more I think is great.

    It helps my mood, my sleep, my happiness all around. I am a much better person at home, work & friendship wise. Its been amazing.

    I’ve had some struggles lately at crossfit within myself. How does one stop comparing themselves to others? When do we start listening to our bodies instead of falling into putting too much weight on the bar because I want to keep up with so and so. I’ve had awful ankle issues lately – I’ve popped it or something. I know I shouldn’t run, but I get there and everyone else is running so I think “Oh screw it I’ll just run”! Putting myself in a not great position the next day. I do this EVERY time. I try to tell myself dont do it dont do it but I do it.

  14. this is a tough one for me personally. i think it’s just that i have very high expectations of myself in all that i do, especially fitness. but, i was working out too much. 6-7 days per week of hard workouts, and i was getting injured a lot and run down. now, i backed it down to 6 workouts per week in 5 days, usually 5 of them are really tough and one is a day at the gym where i go a little easier on myself. it might not seem like a big difference, but it has helped me. i also think i need to give myself a little more credit for all i do, vs. beating myself if i don’t perform to my own crazy standards. that part is really hard for me.

    1. It’s the first time I’ve tried their coconut oil, but I like it a lot. (I bought it on Amazon– WAY cheaper than Whole Foods!) I’ve never tried their coconut flour though. I usually buy the Bob’s Red Mill Brand, which I like.

  15. Where do you find Coconut Aminos? I looked for them the other day (at a Sprouts — like Whole Foods, but smaller.. and way better prices..) and couldn’t find any.

  16. I totally found you by random coincidence, but I’m hooked! Paleo Pad Thai?!?! My favorite Thai dish I thought I’d have to break up with? I’m going to hunt that book down for the recipe! 🙂

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