Success Plan

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.

Good morning, friends!

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Thankfully, after yesterday’s hurricane, things are pretty quiet here this morning.

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I’m so grateful that Hurricane Irene didn’t cause any major damage to our area. I’m praying for those who are dealing with the tragic aftermath, especially the folks in Vermont. I heard much of the state is in a lot of trouble right now.


I started my morning with a tasty batch of Protein Pancakes with fresh blueberries and maple syrup drizzled on top.

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Two servings of fruit + 28g of protein in one meal. Love it.

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I also enjoyed a glass of iced coffee with vanilla soy milk.


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Last Night’s Dinner

Last night’s lasagna dinner tasted delicious, but it sure wasn’t pretty!

I used a recipe for Broccoli and Three-Cheese Lasagna from Real Simple, which was really easy to make, but I sort of messed up the layering. It still turned out pretty well– I mean, Mal ended up eating three huge pieces, so it couldn’t have been that bad!


Success Plan

According to a study by the American Journal of Public Health, people are more active when they focus on how they’ll fit in exercise””like packing their workout gear the night before””rather than why they should do it.

Scheduling my workouts every Sunday for the upcoming week is key to my success with regard to my fitness goals. Carving out time for all of my workouts helps keep me on track and motivated. (I schedule my workouts on my Google Calendar just like I would any other appointment.) Plus, having a plan of attack gets my mind in the “just do it” mentality, which gets my butt in gear and prevents me from skipping a scheduled workout.

With that said, here’s this week’s workout schedule:

  • Sunday: Off
  • Monday: Body Pump + 2-mile run
  • Tuesday: 75-minute Vinyasa yoga class
  • Wednesday: 3-mile run + CNW
  • Thursday: 2-mile run + elliptical
  • Friday: Cardio Combo
  • Saturday: Long run

Question of the Day

What ultimately motivates you to exercise”” the how or the why?

P.S. If you haven’t heard, Carrots ”˜N’ Cake was named as a finalist for this year’s CBS Boston Most Valuable Blogger award in the Health & Fitness category. I would love for you to vote for CNC. It takes just seconds. No sign up required. Thanks, friends!



  1. Some days are easier than others when it comes to getting motivated to exercise. The number one thing that always works for me is to think about how great I feel after exercising. If I focus on the exercise itself sometimes I get lazy and it is very easy for me to talk myself out of it…unfortunately. But thinking about how great it feels to be sweaty after a good body pump class for example, to take a shower, feel energised and know that I just did something good for myself, this is what keeps me exercising on a daily basis.

  2. For me, it’s usually the how. If i have exciting workouts planned (as in, ones where I’ve got new things to try, new moves, or something entirely different to what I usually do), I’m totally motivated to do them. Focusing on the why doesn’t really do much for my motivation – I know I SHOULD exercise, but it’s so much more helpful to actually have a plan!

  3. That lasagne looks good to me! 🙂

    I have a workout schedule that I keep pretty much the same every week so it’s become a habit which is naturally part of my routine. It’s Monday so I know I have a long run today, on Tuesday I workout with my kettlebell etc.

  4. The post-run endorphins are enough to motivate me! I love the high after a run and just focus on that when the lazy days come around! Setting a tentative workout plan also helps- going in and knowing what to do!

  5. Congratulations on being named a finalist (and I just voted)!

    Scheduling races, especially distance ones that demand careful training, helps me stay on track with my workouts. Also, triathlon training has enabled me to mix-up my running workouts with swim, bike, yoga, and weight routines so that I don’t get bored.

  6. FINALLY! Someone who is grateful that Irene wasn’t much worse. I can’t tell you how many posts I have read about Irene being much ado about nothing and how everyone overreacted. I want to shake those people. BE GRATEFUL it wasn’t your version of Katrina. And some people DID die and some people DID lose their homes. So just because it seemed like no big deal to you doesn’t mean some people were affected. Sheesh. Sorry…this just hit a nerve. It just kills me how some people live in a bubble. I would so much rather be overprepared than underprepared. Better to be safe than sorry.

  7. It was crazy to see how sunny and beautiful it was on Sunday following Irene here in VA. She did some pretty hefty damage to our area, and waking up and wandering around on Sunday, it was so strange to see the sunny skies, but trees down everywhere.

  8. that’s interesting, because i always try to explain that mentality to my parents and boyfriend who struggle sticking to a regular exercise schedule. Personally, I would back out of more workouts if I did not have a schedule that I planned in the beginning of the week. That cheesy broccoli lasagna sounds delicious….with broccoli, cheese, & pasta it’s hard to go wrong!

  9. two things motivate me:
    1. I have chronic kidney disease and exercise literally keeps me alive longer because it lowers blood pressure…kidney disease leads to high blood pressure and vice versa.
    2. every night before I got to sleep I visualize my self running the following morning and how great it feels…it sounds silly, but it works for me.

  10. Right now I committed to 90days of movement and what has motivated me to do it is that I am feeling good afterwards thanks to the endorphins. I also have more energy and I’m getting stronger each day. My struggle is to get to do it, but once I’m in it i get into the groove and I feel so much better. Knowing that my struggle is just getting there makes it manageable since I get to just focus on what I’m getting put from moving my body.

  11. I can definitely see the “how’ being the more motivating factor. If you’re just working out to lose weight, you completely lose the enjoyment of exercising and thus will never truly have inner motivation to do it.

    I exercise because I love it and it makes me feel good to move and be active. Whatever it does to my body (makes me gain weight, gain muscle, lose weight, etc) is just an aside to me 🙂

  12. What ultimately motivates me: feeling good and feeling strong. What helps along the way? Having a race to train for — it really helps me stay focused.

    I made my first lasagna last week and even if the layers are a bit messed up it still tastes good!

  13. Those protein pancakes look yummy – we actually had blueberry pancakes for breakfast yesterday too. Guess it was a blueberry day!

    My biggest motivation for exercise is so that I can eat more yummy food! 🙂 It really is true, but I also feel “off” if I don’t make time for regular workouts, so I guess endorphins are a close second in motivation.

  14. Just voted for ya! Congrats on being a finalist! That’s awesome.

    I plan out my workout schedule in advance, similar to how you do, to ensure that I get my proper cardio and weights workouts in. If I don’t get one of them in, I feel as if it throws my whole “schedule” off, which motivates me to make sure I get them done!

  15. I’m glad you didn’t experience too much damage. I’m in Vermont, but thankfully my area did not get hit TOO badly. I also haven’t ventured outside yet, but later today I am going to check out what the city looks like. I am grateful that we were able to stay safe, and praying for those who weren’t as fortunate.

  16. I voted! You deserve it!

    My workouts are totally ingrained in my week. I know I will work out every Su, Tu, Th, Sat (and my off-Fridays). Period.

  17. Definitely the how for me! At this point in my life, it’s second nature to exercise, just always a juggle on where to fit it in. Once I form a plan of when I can do workouts, they are much more likely to take place.

  18. Meeting running friends is motivating for me!

    If you don’t love having to layer lasagna, I suggest Beth’s Journey lasagna bundles…the best parts of lasagna made a little easier!

  19. Good job on the lasagna.

    Other people at my gym motivate me to get there. I enjoy the community feel and friendships. I feed off their energy and look forward to seeing them each week!

    I also schedule out my workouts, so there’s no excuses!

    Have a wonderful week!

  20. That lasagna sounds fantastic! I tend to get my workouts in more consistently when I have a plan AND a goal. The goal helps me focus and “just do it” but the plan makes sure I’m not lazy. I have no idea if that makes sense. 🙂 Have a great day!

  21. The lasagna looks delicious, but I would love a lightened up version. Someone in the comments under real simple posted the calorie count at 800 per serving, and I’m sure I’d want more than one!

  22. I have to agree on the motivation. I already know the “whys” (hence why I try to make as much time as possible for exercise), but it’s the “hows” that get me to the gym every night. Both are important factors, but you can sit on your couch all night and think about why you should be running/lifting/practicing yoga/etc…unless you actually do it, it’s no good!

  23. I think one of the best reasons to plan out your workouts, is that you don’t waste time thinking about what to do on that particular day. I would rather spend more time actually working out rather than thinking about what to do on any given day.

  24. I try to plan my workouts loosely. I tend to overtrain if I am not careful, so I have to remember that the five-day workout schedules may not be best for me. I have to schedule a sleep-in day here and there or I overdo it!

  25. I think if the husband gives the lasagna his seal of approval it’s probably good!!

    I have a workout routine-strength training MWF. I find it hard to motivate myself to do other exercise. Not sure if it’s the how or the why!

  26. the “how” definitely motivates me to exercise more…living in a city I consider walking my main exercise, but even walking several miles doesn’t negate the 3+ drinks at happy hour, so I still go to my local gym every now and then.

  27. Thanks for sharing your plan. Our plans are very similar as I’m listening to my body and doing shorter runs during the week and a long weekend run. I’ve developed some shin splint pain over the past two weeks and have been trying to take it easy. The Zensah sleeves really helped on today’s Cincinnati hills though so at least I’m finding things to help. Have a great week! 🙂

  28. I was just watching The Today Show and saw Giada was on there! She was saying how she was in Boston and then had to leave and I thought of you!!! Can’t wait to hear about your convo with her 🙂

  29. I guess the “why” motivates me in the long run, but it’s definitely the “how” that keeps me going on a daily basis. Interesting; I had never thought of it like that before!

  30. You are riding the pancake train these days! Lasagna is pretty hard to mess up…even it if doesn’t always look the greatest, it usually tastes pretty yummy. I workout because of how it makes me feel (and look), not necessarily because of how it makes me feel.

  31. Definitely the how. It’s kind of like a puzzle I have to solve when I have a crazy week, but I always make it a non-negotiable. I used to be one of those people who didn’t work out because I was only looking at the why. But now that I “get” that part, I want to do it! It’s just fitting it all in that’s challenging. It’s always worth it, though!

  32. I think it’s just the “how” that motivates me. The scheduling of things makes me excited (nerdiness) and the fact that I can have workouts planned makes me more likely to do them. I am not a spur of the moment kind of gal…especially in the gym! Have a plan…and stick to it!

  33. Tina,

    With all of that protein, I would love to know how long those pancakes keep you full! Pancakes never seem to satiate me for very long.

    I have no problem being motivated to workout because I schedule workouts to correspond with my TV addiction. 🙂 I save all of my guilty pleasure viewing for the gym. I look forward to each and every workout!

  34. For me it’s def the “why.” Without it, I don’t feel like myself, and I also want to be a good example for my kids. I want them to view fitness as fun!

    Glad you made it through Irene. Coastal Brooklyn, (where I live) ended up ok as well.

  35. Just thinking how great exersice makes me feel motivates me to get up and go work ouit. I also find that I work out more whenever I log my workouts ( for instance on Seeing a break-down on how you did last week, last month, last year is very motivating! And you can brag to your friends about your achievements by posting links!

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