Winter Woes: How I Motivate Myself to Exercise

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.


Check out the wintery scene that I woke up to in our backyard this morning:

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I’m just not a fan.

And I like snow even less when it comes to motivating myself to leave the house to exercise.

The last thing I wanted to do this morning was venture out into the snow and freezing cold. I mean, bundling up, cleaning the snow off of my car, scraping the windows, and dealing with the messy roads requires a lot of effort just to get myself to CrossFit! I honestly thought about skipping it and staying in my nice, warm bed, but, instead, I psyched myself up by doing these three things:

  • I immediately put on my workout clothes. I knew if I thought about going to CrossFit too much, I’d change my mind and stay home. So, I counted to three and then forced myself out of bed and immediately walked to my closet to put on my workout gear. Sometimes, simply getting dressed for a workout is half the battle for me.
  • I reminded myself how I feel after a workout. Then, I reminded myself how I feel when I skip a workout. I’m not going to lie, it’s usually the later that ultimately motivates me. I hate the “I’m a lazy bum” feeling that I get when I blow off a workout for no good reason.
  • I put the hooded sweatshirt that I planned to wear to CrossFit in the dryer for 5 minutes. When I was about to leave the house, I put on my toasty, right-out-the-dryer sweatshirt to keep me warm as I walked from the house to the car and waited for it to warm up. I swear, it makes things so much more bearable!

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Before I went to CrossFit, I ate breakfast, which was “Oatmeal” Minus the Oats with a big scoop of peanut butter. I also drank an iced coffee with soy milk.

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Today’s CrossFit workout left my quads screaming for mercy! Holy moly! The combination of Dead Lifts + Burpees was so challenging. My legs got a killer workout today, so I’m definitely going to be sore tomorrow.


60 Medicine Ball Slams



Dead Lifts (185, 105)



60 Medicine Ball Slams

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After CrossFit, Mal and I cleaned the house from top to bottom and then I did a few organization projects, which included making use of a few goodies that my friends at Real Simple sent me. 

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One of the items that I received was a 3-Piece Trunk Organizer, which is intended to store supplies, groceries, and other goods in the trunk or back seat of your car, but, as soon as I opened it, I discovered a new purpose for it.

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Purse storage!

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The organizer is fairly large with four compartments to separate and hold up my purses so I can clearly see and access them. My purses have been stored on the floor of my closet in a big, messy pile for as long as I can remember, so this organizer is the perfect solution. Real Simple rules. Thanks for the goodies, Kristen!


While I cleaned and organized, I snacked on a hard-boiled egg and a handful of almonds. I also drank a Peanut Butter Wonderful iced coffee from Marylou’s.



A little while later, I threw together a quick lunch: canned tuna mixed with avocado, chopped celery, shredded carrot, and truffle salt on a slice of Paleo Bread. Holy yum! It tasted wicked good!

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I’m spending the afternoon catching up with work and then Mal and I are going on a date! Yay! I love date night!



  1. Peanut butter wonderful iced coffee?! (also, I love that you’re a winter iced coffee drinker too, even with today’s pseudo-blizzard). Is that something you invented, or is this a real thing? I’m going to have to find my closest Marylou’s…

  2. It really is so much harder to workout when it’s cold and snowy. I do like to remind myself that I’ll be so glad once I get there. And I so agree that putting on my workout clothes helps. Sometimes I honestly tell myself that all I have to do is put on the workout clothes, but that doesn’t mean I actually have to go workout. I do that each step of the way until I’m on the treadmill jogging.

  3. Tuna + avocado sounds awesome! Never tried the combo before but I saw that avocados are on sale this week and I may just have to try it 🙂

    P.S. It’s 4PM and I still haven’t made it to the gym and blaming it on the snow… Guess I should get a move on!

  4. Way to get out there and head to Crossfit. Sometimes I enjoy working out more in crap weather because it means the gym will likely be empty, so I don’t have to wait around or hear a bunch of grunting men 😉

  5. The “I don’t want to be a bum” is what motivates me, as well. And if it’s just lack of motivation, I tell myself that I should the time well by working out because there WILL be instances when I just don’t have enough time to get to do it, so I should use my “skip days” then.

  6. I LOVE the dryer idea! Definitely going to try that out next time.

    Also loving the boots! Where’d you get them?

  7. I don’t have snow where I’m at, but it is freezing where I’m at. It makes it really hard to be motivated to workout. I did do a spin class this morning, and I’m glad I did it first thing. I’m not sure I would have wanted to go out any later!

  8. I love that you carry iced coffees through the winter 🙂 And I remember when I was in Boston, motivating myself to just get out the door for a workout was the hardest part!

  9. I’m not a fan of winter but I was excited to workout this morning. I tried my first Barre class and loved it!

    I always heat up my running clothes right before I go out in the cold. It takes the chill off just a little bit.

  10. all of your tips to get out the door are definitely good ones! i always lay out my workout clothes the night before so when the alarm goes off at 5:15am all i have to do is literally roll out of bed and put on the clothes that are right there.

    i wish there was a marylou’s here on the west coast! peanut butter wonderful iced coffee sounds AMAZING.

    have a fun date night!

  11. Hi Tina,
    Just wondering, you mentioned you aren’t doing the cross fit
    diet of no grains, but lately I have seen a lot of your “non oats” and
    now paleo bread….did you decide to cut back on grains after all?
    I feel like the latest trend is avoid grains , gluten, etc,but I eat
    oat bran regularly and hear it’s great for your heart,and I wonder if Paleo is that good for the heart(the veggies sure, but the meat,bacon,etc?)
    Anyways,all very confusing,but would love to know what eating plan youa re following these days.(may I ask is Mal doing Paleo?)
    Thanks 🙂

    1. Neither of us are doing the Paleo diet since we are still eating grains, dairy, beans, and drinking beer. I think whole grains are great for you, and there are still plenty of them in my diet. I’m just trying to clean up my diet by eating more fruits, veggies, lean protein, and healthy fats, which was inspired by Paleo.

  12. Hi. I love your blog. I just found out I am allergic to wheat and oats so I am interested in the Paleo bread. Do you make your own or where can I buy it?

    Love those boots…where did you get them?

      1. @Tina:

        FYI, I clicked for the recipe because I was curious, but it actually just took me to another poster where you had written about it, not the actual recipe. Same thing when I clicked the link in that post. Had to click through a couple of times to get to the recipe. You may want to change the link above to make things more user friendly.

  13. The Paleo bread sounds great. Is it hard to find coconut flour?

    Great tips for exercising in the winter. I hate to even miss a day and just put on my warmest down jacket and 2 layers and know that I will feel better in the long run if I get to the gym. I live at the top of 5 steep hills in Seattle and made myself climb up and down the icy hills during our snow storm this week to exercise because I hate how I feel when I miss it.

  14. I love the dryer trick!! My washer/dryer just so happens to be in my bathroom so I throw my clothes and towel in there while I’m in the shower. I also have motivation problems for showering in the winter : )

  15. I made your paleo bread today and I was very impressed with how it turned out! I ended up increasing the recipe since my pan was bigger so it made a lot and am planning to freeze some. Hopefully it holds up okay in the freezer because I plan to make this bread a lot in the future! Maybe throw in some walnuts, raisins & cinnamon for a quick on the go breakfast full of fiber and protein!

  16. The very first week I started crossfit I slept in 1 morning. Since then, I haven’t skipped because all day I was annoyed at myself for skipping. That has kept me going every weekday since then.

  17. I’m a new York gal but I ADORE marylou’s! Whenever we’re remotely near one passing through RI or MA I make us stop. It is pure love. My boyfriend even ordered me marylou’s coffee for valentines day last year and now he complains he’s constantly getting their emails haha. Moral of the story is : I’m so jealous of your proximity to the amazing little place!

  18. I love your boots and bag – coolest pic of the day! Wow, I’ve never done that crossfit workout, but it sounds intense. Last (and first time) I’ve done wall balls in a while was last week, and that was just 30-20-10-5 with kettlebell swings and something else I most likely chose to block out! haha

  19. I hate the snow too – SO glad that we’ve had a really mild winter down here in NC, although I can’t help but think it’s going to be a doozy just coming later than normal…

    Also, holy mother of protein today! Remember that nutritionist told you you weren’t eating enough protein? Looks like you’ve improved! And also that I have a superhuman memory.

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