Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About CrossFit

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.

Now that I’m back at CrossFit again, I’ve received a ton of questions from you guys, especially those of you who want to give it a try yourselves. (You should!)

I’ve written all sorts of posts over the years, so I thought it would be helpful to link them up all in one place. I hope you find them helpful! If I missed anything, leave your question in the comment section, and I’ll do my best to answer it!

FYI: The 2014 CrossFit Games started today!!

5 CrossFit Tips for Beginners: Are you thinking about trying CrossFit? If so, here are five tips that will help you get started!

CrossFit Q & A: This post answers questions regarding class structure (is the workout really just 5 minutes long?), how many calories you burn at a typical class, what shoes to wear, how to find a ”˜box’ in your area, how to justify the cost of CrossFit, what to expect at your first class/intro session, and more!

CrossFit Q & A II: This post answers questions regarding being fit enough to try it (YOU ARE!), how often I go to CrossFit, what’s up with the Paleo diet, doing CrossFit at home (check out my CrossFit-inspired workouts on Pinterest for a TON of ideas), and more!

CrossFit Home Gym Essentials: Thinking about building a gym at your home? Here’s a post about what we selected for our home gym.

Gear for CrossFit: Whatcha Need Versus What’s Nice to Have: Here are some of the things I personally use in my CrossFit workouts and whether I think you need them or they’re just nice to have as an accessory.

What to Pack for a CrossFit Competition: Here’s a post all about what I packed for my first CrossFit competition.

My Experience at the CrossFit Level 1 Trainer Course: A summary of my experience at the two-day CrossFit Level 1 Trainer Course and my thoughts about the instruction, workouts, exam, etc.

How My Body Changed Since Starting CrossFit: I wrote this post about a year after doing CrossFit on a regular basis.

What NOT to Wear to a CrossFit ClassStarting Crossfit, like any new fitness regimen, can seem overwhelming if you’re not prepared. Take some of the uncertainty out of your first workout by knowing what to wear””or better yet, what NOT to wear. 

WOD You Say: A post about CrossFit lingo and modifying workouts if you can’t do them as prescribed.

Tips for Kipping Pull-Up Success: Here are a few tips and cues that helped me learn how to do kipping pull-ups.

Discouraged By Lack of Strength: A reader question and my reply. Spoiler: Don’t compare yourself to others!

Even more CrossFit posts for your viewing pleasure!



  1. Awesome list of links – I am a crossfit coward that just needs to try it already! Maybe after my next marathon – that’s what I say all the time! But I think once I got over the initial nerves it would be something I’d really enjoy.

  2. This is a great resource – I have read all of these posts in the past and they are super helpful. You were one of my inspirations for trying CrossFit and now I am totally hooked so thank you!!! (although my wallet doesn’t thank you that much hehe)

  3. So glad you posted that! I just talked about doing crossfit w my cousin yesterday. I hear people get injured all the time, so I was weary about it. I’m a runner and am recently trying to really build muscle strength (super fun!). Great advice, thanks!

  4. PERFECT timing! I started CrossFit mid-May and have loved it from the start but recently have really started seeing some major gains. My box had our “Reindeer Games – Christmas in July” comp last week and while I didn’t end up placing in my age group, I was in the running for most of the week for the scaled division which felt AMAZING! And then this week I’ve done my first unassisted handstand and today my first rope climb. I’m feeling on top of the world and definitely want to get my hands on that whole kipping pull-up…see ya bands! 😉

  5. Ooohh I had forgotten that you had your L1. Do you intend on using it to coach at some point in the future?

    How is Q doing at your box? I always am so amazed by the infants who sleep through barbells being dropped and super loud rap music 🙂

  6. I have to give you credit for being a blogger who has motivated me to want to try CrossFit. I finally got the chance this summer and I’ve only been doing CrossFit for two months, but I have fallen in love with it. Thanks for all the awesome posts you’ve done about it.

  7. Thank you so much for these links, Tina! And by the way I love that photo of you 🙂 You’re definitely a fitness inspiration and reading your posts has really made me consider CrossFit so I’ll definitely do some reading on this. There is a CrossFit gym near my grad school so maybe when I go back in August I’ll have to check it out!

  8. I just wanted to add that anyone thinking about it should give CrossFit a go! I’m overweight and not the fittest person, and CrossFit is the most inclusive, encouraging and fun things I’ve ever been involved in! I’ve gained so much confidence and strength since I started 🙂

  9. I can’t believe I’m saying this, but I’ve never tried an official Crossfit workout. However, I do incorporate a bunch of Crossfit-type moves into my training and the programs I write for my personal training clients. I would love to experience the feel of the community at a CF gym though. Thanks for the info.

  10. LOVE CROSSFIT!!!! So addicting. I started it about 3.5 years ago when my youngest was about 3 months old. I LOVE it! So challenging, fun, and always something new. I’ve met so many people within the Crossfit community too!! Stacy Tovar was at a competition my husband and I did last September. What an awesome athlete! So personable! Looking forward to the Games going on right now! Can’t wait to watch the muscle-up/running WOD.

  11. I’m really glad you wrote this post. I think I mentioned before I’m interested in doing Cross Fit. With my recent injury, I have muscle imbalance going on between my legs. I also have some limitations. My concern with group classes is what type of modifications they provide you. I typically have found group classes to not do well in that regard and then I end up getting not much out of the class. In your experience do they provide modifications?

  12. This is a great Crossfit post, especially for beginners! I started crossfit a couple years ago and it would have been so helpful to have known this from the beginning! Do you have any experience with working through injuries at Crossfit?

    1. Knock on wood, I haven’t had an injuries since I started CrossFit, but coaches will give you modifications for movements you can’t do or feel uncomfortable, so you can WOD with everyone else! 😄

  13. Tina, I love your blog and enjoy reading about your adventures with motherhood and CrossFit.

    I just want to speak out for all of those who just aren’t into CrossFit. I love exercise: I have completed numerous half marathons, love group fitness classes at my gym, Power yoga, and boot camp. I sometimes feel left out and even lazy when CrossFit people discuss how much they love it and become obsessed with it. I tried it and it just wasn’t for me.

    Maybe I am lucky that by my home, we have one of the best boot camp/ performance training facilities. Their workouts are super intense, incorporate everything that CrossFit WODs have and more! I just found the atmosphere more inviting, less gimmicky, and encouraged athleticism much more than I had experienced at CrossFit.

    With all the hype that CrossFit continues to produce, I just want to shout out to your readers who enjoy other forms of exercise or just didn’t find CrossFit worth the hype. Exercise is about finding what works for you… what motivates you… what makes you get up off that couch, even if just for 30 minutes. Don’t feel badly if CrossFit isn’t a match. In fact, there are a whole slew of people that refuse the revolution all together. And that is okay too.

    1. You’re right, not everyone needs to like CrossFit. But, for all the people who think it looks interesting or want to try it for themselves, I figured this post would be helpful to them. There’s no need to feel bad about not liking CF. It’s not for everyone. I’m glad you found something you like to do! 😄

  14. Yo so glad you posted this today! I love crossfit, have been doing it for almost 2 years, competed in local competitions blah blah blah, but lately I’ve just felt burned out and in a mental funk! Reading (and re-reading) your posts reminded me why I crossfit in the first place and how far I’ve come and how much fun it truly is! Thanks and yay the games start today!!

  15. Hi Tina
    Long time reader here!
    I’m going to have to disagree with everyone – I didn’t love this post. I understand you are super busy because of the new baby, but I feel like your posts have become link-dumps of prior posts/random links, and because I’ve been reading a long time, there’s been very little new content on your blog over the past few weeks.
    My personal preference would be for you to post less often, recognizing that your new schedule doesn’t allow for the amount of blogging you used to do, but focus on new content that will keep your readers engaged, rather than re-linking to old articles you’re written in prior years.

    Anyways – I understand you may disagree, and other readers may disagree too, but just wanted to voice my opinion.


    1. Thanks for your feedback, but, apparently, you haven’t been reading CNC very much lately! I rarely do these types of link up posts and practically all of my recent blog posts have been new content.

  16. I tried CF about three months ago for a free session and I loved it. It targeted all your muscles groups, cardio endurance and stamina. It was a sound over all workout and I can see how I would get results.
    My only problem was the fee. Wowza! I do understand why it’s so costly though. Who would want to go to a lousy box that wasn’t well maintained or with bad, inexperience coaches? You pay for what you get.

  17. @eve I actually am so impressed with how much new content Tina is posting! I can’t imagine doing that with a new baby! I mean, she is posting lots of new content when most of us would be on maternity leave! Give the girl some credit! 🙂

    1. @Kristen @ Vitamin K Girl: Hi Kristen! I was in the exact same boat as you about 2 years ago before I started Crossfit. I didn’t have any friends that did crossfit but I kept hearing ALL about it (especially from Tina!) and I wanted to try it SO bad. I finally bit the bullet and walked into the gym without knowing a single person. It was hands down the best decision I ever made and not only did I fall in love with the sport but I made a ton of new friends there! I promise your biggest regret will be waiting too long to try it out! I promise its not as intimidating as it looks and if people aren’t cool check out a new box. Its worth a shot to at least try it!

  18. I’m in my 7th month of crossfit and I’m loving it! My husband and I refer to it as our sport. I read that you have scoliosis and I’m curious if there’s any moves you can’t do because of it? I physically can’t do an overhead squat because of my back. My case isn’t too serious and I don’t normally have any issues and I see a chiropractor for adjustments. He said I shouldn’t do and compressing movements. It’s frustrating because I want to be able to do all the movements, but trying not to let it get me down. Other smaller moves are hard like arch rocks and v-ups. Thank god for all the modifications. I love that about CF!

    1. I don’t avoid any movements, but I spend a lot of time foam rolling, stretching my back, and getting massages to keep things loose. I’m sure my form isn’t perfect, but I do the best I can! 😄

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