I’m geeking out today! For years and years, I have read the healthy living blog, Carrots N’ Cake, every morning. It is part of my daily routine, like drinking a cup of coffee. Carrots N’ Cake was the first blog I ever really read and a big inspiration for starting The Micro Harvest. So, obviously, I was crazy excited when I got to interview Tina Haupert – the voice behind CNC! She is just as kind and down-to-earth as you would expect and today she is sharing all about how CrossFit changed everything. Read on for some healthy-living inspiration and answers to all your CrossFit questions!
Q: Introduce yourself:
A: Hi! My name is Tina, and I blog at Carrots ‘N’ Cake where I share my love of food, staying fit, and living a healthy life. While I try to pack the most nutrients possible into each meal, I have a number of favorites that are not necessarily “healthy,” but are still delicious and fun to eat. If eaten in moderation, I believe that the “bad” foods can be part of a well-balanced diet.
I’m 33 years old, and I live on the South Shore of Massachusetts with my husband, Mal, and my adorable pug, Murphy, who is a therapy dog. I love fitness and exercise, and I have a Level 1 CrossFit trainer certification as well as a NASM personal trainer certification. My favorite ways to stay in shape are CrossFit, running, and yoga. I also love hiking, baking, and traveling.
Managing and blogging for Carrots ‘N’ Cake is a full-time job for me, but I also juggle a variety of projects, including writing two articles each week for Health.com, acting as a Community Leader for The Laughing Cow and a brand ambassador for Silk, and working with Reebok through Fitfluential. I am also a regular contributor to the Wayfair Idea Lounge blog and JUNK Brands blog.
Q: On Carrots N’ Cake you share a lot about your CrossFit adventures. What first drew you to the sport:
A: I was bored with my workouts! I was running and running, and just felt like I needed to try something new. Mal (my husband) read about CrossFit somewhere and wanted to try it, so I decided to join him.
Q: Describe the CrossFit culture:
A: The opposite of clique-y… friendly! I have probably been to a dozen boxes, and every single one has been welcoming. People always come up to me and introduce themselves, and I know we do the same thing at our box when new people walk through the door.
Q: How has CrossFit changed your body and fitness level:
A: It sounds cheesy, but CrossFit has changed everything. I always thought of myself as a fit person and I did all sorts of fitness stuff – running, body pump, yoga. But CrossFit, it just took my fitness so much farther! You are always challenging yourself and others are always challenging you during the workouts. I’m not just “fit,” but now I am so much stronger!
Q: Has CrossFit affected your body image and self-esteem, and if so how:
A: Definitely. I used to count calories and worried about being a certain weight on the scale and fitting into a certain size of clothing. But CrossFit isn’t about being thin or skinny, it’s about what your body can do! I used to worry about being thin, but now I focus on being strong. It changes how you see your body.
Q: Describe what you typically eat when you need to fuel an intense workout:
A: If it is more of an endurance workout, I will have a snack 1-2 hours beforehand. Typically a banana or crackers with peanut butter. Some snack with carbs and protein, and peanut butter is usually always involved! Afterwards, I typically eat dinner. Mal will sometimes have a protein shake after, which is a great way to replenish nutrients and get in calories, but I usually workout in the evenings, so I just have dinner right after.
Q: Do you notice a correlation between the quality of your CrossFit workouts and a more Paleo-esq diet:
A: When I first started doing CrossFit I ate about 75-85% Paleo, but now I am a bit looser with my diet. To me, eating a Paleo-eqs diet was really about not eating junk. I definitely notice that I feel stronger and have better workouts when I am not eating a lot of junk, but I’m not positive how my degree of Paleo affects them! I’m curious about this now… I need to keep track and see.
Q: Favorite CrossFit workout gear:
A: Definitely my Reebok CrossFit Nano 3.0’s… I’m obsessed! I have tried the original Nano’s and other shoes, but I just love the Nano 3.0’s stable bottoms and cushion.
I usually wear a tank top and shorts or capris. I don’t like to have anything hanging on me when I do CrossFit, because it can get twisted when I’m sweating.
Also, I ALWAYS wear a headband! My hair gets crazy and frizzy if I don’t, so a headband keeps the hair off my face and holds everything together.
Q: What goal(s) are you currently working on during your WODs:
A: My CrossFit goals change month-to-month. Right now, I am working on muscle-ups on the rings. I can do them on the bar but I want to be able to do them on rings. Also, I am working on stringing together a lot of the gymnastic movements, like knee-to-elbows, and toes-to-bar. I can do the moves on their own, but I want to be able to do them a number of times, quickly, for a WOD.
Q: How do you balance CrossFit with your other fitness interests, like running:
A: This is such a hot topic right now with my blog readers. To be honest, it’s not easy! I recently did a Hat Trick, which was a 5k, 10k, and half-marathon in the same weekend – so a lot of longer running to train for it. I found that I couldn’t do a long run and CrossFit on the same day, and I couldn’t do them on back-to-back days either. If I did CrossFit the day before my long run, my legs would be so tired. If I did a long run the day before CrossFit I was exhausted, too. So, the funny thing is that I actually felt like I was working out less by training for the distance runs and doing CrossFit at the same time, because I ended up taking a lot more rest days!
Rest days are really important in CrossFit because if you overdo it you won’t have as much strength for the WODs. Now that I don’t have any distance races on my calendar, I am hoping to try for back-to-back workouts with shorter runs and CrossFit. It’s a tough balance!
Q: What type of person should (or shouldn’t) try CrossFit:
A: Everyone can do CrossFit! I have seen so many different types of people. Some people worry that they are not fit enough to do CrossFit, but you’re fit enough! It’s not like the crazy Olympic level CrossFit competitions happening on TV – boxes offer modifications so that every fitness level can participate. Even your grandma can do CrossFit!
Q: What should a beginner know before his or her first WOD:
A: Don’t be scared! It can be intimidating, but just go in knowing that everyone started in the same place. It takes months to understand the moves and workouts, so don’t get discouraged. Also, ask questions! I’ve been doing CrossFit for two years and I still ask questions.
Q: What do you think is the biggest misconception about CrossFit:
A: That you can easily get hurt. Good coaches teach you proper technique! A friend and fellow member at my box once told me “don’t be afraid: it’s not the weight that hurts you, it’s you that hurts you.” He was totally right! Take responsibility for yourself and listen to your body. Be smart about it and speak up if something doesn’t feel right.
Q: Your mantra to power through a tough WOD:
A: “Don’t be a wuss!” Mal says this to me when my self-doubt creeps in. I know I can do it, but sometimes when I am tired I start to doubt myself. So, I just remind myself… “don’t be a wuss!”
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