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Bacon Coffee Is a Reality. No Jokes.

October 11, 2012

Due to my good friends over at French Press Authority, I just learned of a new drink coming to market.  Bacon-flavored coffee.

If you think I’m joking, check it out HERE.

Some things you just can’t make up.  And some things you are just dying to try.

How about you?  Would you drink this new coffee?


Primal Chat is ready for viewing!

March 10, 2010

For many weeks I’ve been contemplating if I want to take the plunge and buy my own site so that I could have more control, more features and more flexibility.  Yesterday I decided – it was time to get wet.

Effectively immediately, you can now view my posts at my new hangout:  Primal Chat.  You’ll find the same great stuff you have always found (at least I hope so) and I think you’ll find some pretty cool new features.  Primal Chat is a test in progress, but I’m already liking what I see.  In an email conversation with THE Mark Sisson, here is what he had to say:  “Great job getting PrimaChat up and running. And great idea on the tagline – “Resolve to Evolve”… nice.”  One day up and running and I already have the “endorsement” from the GrokFather of them all!

The new site has an email newsletter I’m testing, social media links in the sidebar, book recommendations, a clever plug-in that lets you zoom in on pictures, videos and better navigation overall.  I really love the site and think you will, too.  Are you ready to “Resolve to Evolve?”  If so, come check it out.

On a related note, the first #primalchat was held on Twitter tonight.  Holy cow, the amount of people and conversation for 1 1/2 hours was overwhelming.  It was chaos and anarchy all at the same time.  There must be an art to doing these chats via Twitter, but I didn’t get the memo.  Well, there’s always more to learn.

I gained a few more friends in the Primal world and I hope that others new or foreign to living Primal can pick up some common knowledge from our talk.

PrimalChat coming to Twitter – Who’s In?

March 9, 2010

Living Primal.  Eating Paleo.  What does that really mean?

There are so many misconceptions about eating/living/going Primal (or Paleo).  The book, Primal Blueprint, is in the Top 20 in 3 categories under Health, Mind and Body.  That shows definitive interest in the topic.  But, there are many on the Fringe that need to know more about what being Primal is really about.  No, we don’t wear loin cloths nor carry clubs (well, maybe a few).  We’re not a “cult,” as one person mentioned in a recent blog post.  Primal folks are plain old everyday folks – the major difference is that we care about our bodies and have learned that our major food sources are tainted which can cause lifelong health problems.  We eat right now so that our bodies will enjoy a longer life later.

Healthcare costs are on the rise.  We can trust the government to do something about it (uh, yeah….).  But at the core, we must affect change at the grassroots level in the meantime and that means informing people that the way they eat is all wrong.  Our society is killing themselves everyday.  Companies put out ads and products that lead us down the path of poor health, even though they appear to be doing otherwise.  We see attractive middle aged ladies swinging while eating the latest Jello-Mousse product with the caption “Me O-Clock.”  Sure it’s a 60-calorie treat and if consumed by itself could be a nice indulgence every now and then.  But our society doesn’t stop at just one or two, do we?  “Hey, it’s low cal, so I can go for a few extra!”  And we do.

And if that isn’t enough, the sweetened products that say no or low calorie – can be as abusive to our bodies as adding the sugar in.  It’s called insulin response – and in some people, even sweeteners can elicit that response and pull you in to the horrible whirlpool called diabetes.  That’s where the Primal Blueprint and going Primal can help.  It’s all about moderating our insulin folks.  It’s a simple concept but often misunderstood.  And easily so since many of us didn’t get a degree in biology – but when you look into it, its not so tough.

OK, I’m going to get off my soapbox and invite you to tomorrow night’s inaugural PrimalChat on Twitter.  To participate, first log onto Twitter (assuming you have an account – if not, it’s pretty easy to do so).  From there you can use Twitter’s search bar or you can Google for other various Twitter search engines.  As you ask questions or answer, simply add “#primalchat” to the end of your message.  This is  called a hashtag and allows others to search for conversations occurring about primalchat in real-time.  You can reply directly to a person or pose a question – either way as long as you use the hashtag, others can more readily find your comments, even if they don’t normally follow you.  Twitter “chats” or forums like this are a great way to meet others, find new info and gain new friends.

I hope you can join the first #PrimalChat tomorrow night, Wednesday, 3/10/10 at 8 PM CST for the launch. The topic will be “WHY Go Primal?” and is fairly open-ended.  I see it as a chance for anyone to ask questions and seek to get answers from the wide variety of Tweets who are Primal.  You can use the #primalchat hashtag between now and then for any questions or leave them in the comment section below in preparation of the event.

Are you planning to join?  If so, leave a comment!

Check Out That Form!

March 8, 2010

So there I was on Saturday at the gym.  The kids stayed home and I was focused on my planned out exercises.  Too bad I wasn’t focused on my form…

One thing that I learned a long time ago is that the exercise weight really means nothing if you can’t control the weight.  Your attempt will only be half way done because your form will stop you from completing it as you should and you’ll usually end up getting injured.  I got lucky on my squatting.  I was going for a personal best this time around.  I’m really focusing on the deepness of my squat so that I can fully work the thigh/quadricep.  Last time around I felt myself lean forward a bit as I came down.  It’s fairly common to round the back when you squat, so I always pick a point on the wall to look up at.  By looking up, you keep your neck up which helps to keep your back from rounding.  This is highly suggested!  Despite viewing that spot, I felt my back round a bit.  I was able to finish the set, re-focus where my feet should be, pointing slightly out – and then I was able to knock out the rest.

With the bench press, I wasn’t so lucky.  Proper form, as this video shows, has you planting your feet, spacing out your hands on the bar, etc.  I recommend the following:  Practice first with no weight.  As you place your hands on the bar, arch your back so you can squeeze your shoulder blades together.  This makes you “tight” and lifts your chest up so you can recruit those muscles to assist in the lift rather than make it an arm focused move.  With your shoulders squeezed, lift the weight and as you descend the weight, BREATHE IN.  The air in your lungs will tighten you up more and assist in powering the bar up off the chest.  When you lift the bar up, do so as explosively as you can and push the air out forcefully.
I was handling this part just fine but I believe my weak/left side faltered, my right side kicked in to overbalance and I tweaked my right shoulder.  Either way, that bad boy still hurts after 2 days, so I’m resting it one more day before any other shoulder-related exercises are involved.

Lesson for the day:  whether you are performing bodyweight exercises or resistance weight exercises – know how the exercise should be performed first before attempting.  Slight variations can cause your body to incorporate the wrong muscles which can lead to injury.  And injury means you’re stuck at home or on the couch or unable to perform. And that can be frustrating if used to an active lifestyle – trust me!

FINALLY, the most invaluable tip I’ve used again and again – and suggested to my client when I was a personal trainer.  Ready?  When you are performing reps, count down rather than up.  For example: 10-9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1.  The mind embraces those smaller numbers and as you get down there is a more definitive end to that set.  Try it and tell me what you think.

Explanation Time

March 7, 2010

Yesterday I posted an amazing looking (and tasting) recipe from another site.  The recipe was for Nanaimo Bars, a popular treat amongst those of us in North America, according to Wikipedia.

The ingredients were nothing short of evil.  Butter, coconut oil, cocoa powder, nuts – your basic compilation of ingredients that would have Richard Simmons crying to his mom for hours on end.  But here’s the catch:  the world wants you to think that these ingredients are evil.  Borrowing a question from the Matrix – which pill do you want to take – blue or red?  If you choose the blue pill, then you can stop reading at this point and believe what Conventional Wisdom incorrectly tells you in “study after study” – that saturated fat is bad for your heart, cholesterol is hazardous, etc.  If you choose the red pill – then keep reading my friend.  And welcome to a new world.

The nutritional statement you see to the left is taken from my entry into the DailyBurn site so I could see the totals from the Primal Nanaimo Bars.  As you can see, the caloric content and fat are quite high in a world that would have us believe that all fat is bad.  I took the ingredients outlined in the recipe I gave, placed it in a smaller baking pan, and that made 9 bars.  You could obviously change the serving size up for a lesser amount of calories and fat, but I wanted to be fair in my serving size information.  So we end up with 532 calories; 500 of them coming from fat.  I need to explain at the very least here that Primal folks do not eat this kind of recipe everyday but would view this as a luxury or cheat snack.  Most Primal meals consist of high fat, but it is usually accompanied with a protein source as well as a nutritionally dense carbohydrate source coming from a fruit or vegetable.  In every sense this is a Primal dessert and not intended to be defined as anything but that.

With that in mind, can all that fat really be good for you?  Take the red pill, if you haven’t already, and you will discover – the studies on saturated fat are flawed and only show correlation to heart issues.  Correlation only mind you – not cause.  Don’t take my word for it – check out Mark Sisson’s explanation on Saturated Fat for full blown studies and all the scientific jargon you could ever hope for.

Here is where most people get it horribly wrong, so let me stress this point:  Fat is good – and even better in a “Primal” lifestyle or environment.  Eating Primal is all about moderating insulin production.  When we eat grains, cereals, pasta (even whole grains) – they are still carbs at the very least and cause the body to secrete insulin to counteract the increase in blood sugar and gluten from those carbs.  Overactive insulin production in our bodies, prompted by too many carbs in our diet, eventually causes insulin resistance which leads to diabetes (and obesity).  When insulin is released, it allows the carbs to be shuttled into our body’s cells for use as an energy source – this is why athletes and runners often talk about “carbing up” so they can use carbohydrates as a fuel source.  BUT oddly enough, insulin blocks fat from being used as an energy source – and steers those fats into our fat cells.  As they swell – we get the proverbial “love handles” or “saddlebags;”  the basic chub that plagues 2/3 of our nation.

Moderating the insulin reaction by eating healthy carbs from fruits and vegetables, we increase our sensitivity to insulin and stave off diabetes.  Bear in mind – just because you’re Primal and eat veggies or fruits doesn’t mean you can eat as many as you like.  We’re talking about low glycemic creatures that are nutritionally dense but low in sugars.  Those items include but are not limited to cherries, berries, avocados, broccoli, cauliflower, lettuce, applese, kiwis, apricots, etc.

Sorry if I got all scientific and medical on ya there, but let’s circle the wagons back to how this relates to the Nanaimo bars.  Although this recipe has almost 57 grams of fat – the carbohydrate grams only add up to 8 grams.  That means the body will transport this fat into our body cells to be used as energy AS LONG AS WE DON’T INGEST HIGH CARBS AT THE SAME TIME.  If we did that, like add some ice cream, or eat one following a high carb meal – then we’d be in trouble.  The fat in these bars also ends up blunting insulin secretion.  The fat in these bars will also satiate.  That means you should feel pretty full from eating one.  And that’s a good thing because eating too many is putting too many eggs in your nutritional basket.  Your body still needs protein and fiber coming from your plant sources.  Just like too much protein can be toxic, so it is with consuming just fat.  You need nutritional variety for all of the body’s functions – it’s the percentage of the variety that is messed up in Conventional Wisdom.

So, let’s summarize – the Nanaimo Bars are tasty and full of precious, saturated fat.  In a Primal environment, they are an acceptable snack as they lack the high carbs that cause a flood of insulin to run through our bodies.  This and any other dessert recipe are never a substitute for a great Primal meal like a steak, eggs, salmon, bacon or so many other tasty Primal entrees.  Just because you eat Primal doesn’t mean you have to strictly eat high fat, moderate protein and low carb all the time.  As long as you eat that way 80% of the time, you will supply the body with what it needs to maintain or lose weight and enjoy activity worthy of a 20-30 year old.

In conclusion and using the Matrix again to assist, Morpheus had this to say to Neo:  “I’m trying to free your mind, Neo. But I can only show you the door. You’re the one that has to walk through it.”

Are YOU ready?  If questions still linger, please post them in the comments section.  If you’ve walked through that door and have gone Primal, feel free to share how it has changed your life.

Oh Canada! Primal Dessert To Ease that Sweet Tooth

March 6, 2010

On any given night when I get the urge for a sweet hit, I’ll do one of two things.  Strike up the coffee is my first line of attack.  My brain must process coffee’s flavor in close proximity to chocolate or something sweet.  I’ll add whey protein to it normally, so it not only tastes great, it fills me and pushes away the cravings.  If it’s too late for coffee, I’ll also turn to my 85% Dark Cacao chocolate.  Two squares do me about right and I’m able to carry on.

All of that will change with this recipe, I fear.

I did some searching and came across a new site for me, Club Fritch, a fun site put together by a married couple living in Canada.  I don’t know about you, but I thought our friends up north did a GREAT job with the Olympics as well as show us ignorant folk what a BEAUTIFUL country they have.  But I digress…

The only disclaimer I would add add on this recipe is this:  studies have shown that sweeteners like Stevia cause an insulin response, much like sugar consumption.  The sweet flavors hit the tongue and in some folks, it is the same as processed carbs or sugar.  So, what I’m saying is that like most other Primal desserts – enjoy in moderation within the confines of the 80/20 rule.  But the bottom line is this:  ENJOY!  (Or, if you’re like me, I’m already experiencing that insulin response just by reading this recipe and checking out the picture!)

Thanks again to Gillian and Ryan at Club Fritch for sharing this!

Nutty Primal Nanaimo Bars  (Buttercream Version)


  • 1 cup brazil nuts
  • ½ cup coconut oil
  • dash salt
  • 1 tbsp stevia extract
  • ¼ tsp vanilla
  • 2 tbsp cocoa powder

Blitz brazil nuts until a course powder.  Add the rest of the ingredients and blend well.  Spoon onto a greased (with butter or coconut oil) cookie pan (9×9).  Bake for 25 minutes at 350’F.  Cool and chill.

Buttercream Layer

This is not really a custard; but the original Nanaimo bar custard layer isn’t really a custard either.  So go ahead and enjoy!

  • 1 1/8 cup butter, soft
  • ¼ tsp vanilla
  • 1 1/3 tbsp stevia extract (or another sweetener to taste)
  • ¼ cup coconut flour

Whip the butter in a food processor.  Add the remaining ingredients and blend well.  Spoon onto chilled crust layer and return to fridge to chill more.

Hard Chocolate Topping

  • ½ cup coconut oil
  • 3/8 cup cocoa powder
  • ½ tsp vanilla
  • ½ tbsp stevia extract

Melt all ingredients together in a saucepan over low heat.  Cool slightly.  Spoon over well-chilled custard layer.  Chill further!

When the final layer is hard (about 20 minutes); cut into squares and enjoy!  Store in the refrigerator.

The cheesecake alternative is still “Primal” or shall we say 80/20 Primal with the use of cream cheese.

Cheesecake Layer (instead of custard)

  • 3/4 cup butter, soft
  • 1/8 cup almond butter (or another nut butter of your choice)
  • 1/8 cup cream cheese
  • ¼ tsp vanilla
  • 1 1/3 tbsp stevia extract (or another sweetener to taste)

Whip the butter in a food processor.  Add the remaining ingredients and blend well.  Spoon onto chilled crust layer and return to fridge to chill more.

Oh, Canada!  You’ve given me another reason to love you.  Already cold enough in South Dakota, I wouldn’t want to live anywhere any cooler, but if I did…

Primal Tweets on Twitter

March 5, 2010

Twitter never existed 10,000 years ago, which goes without saying. But I’ll bet Grok got his words out in less than 140 characters! A few grunts and his point was understood. Just for fun, I thought I’d list off those who you can also follow on Twitter should you be inclined to go down the Primal road. From this group a #primal workout or #primal recipe are just around the corner. If you tweet a Primal topic, don’t forget the #primal hashtag so others can track your activities. Makes it more fun that way!

If your name is not on this list, please post a comment and I’ll gladly add you to the tribe.

@Food Renegade
@Little MissGrok
@Mark_Sisson (He is the Chief after all!)
@jpickett1968 (That’s me!)

Again, please let me know if you’d like to be added to this list or join the tribe of Primal folk. The more the merrier!