Marks Daily Apple
Serving up health and fitness insights (daily, of course) with a side of irreverence.
2 May

From Primal Passion to Primal Business: Turning What You Love Into What You Do

It’s Friday, everyone! And that means another Primal Blueprint Real Life Story from a Mark’s Daily Apple reader. Today’s post is from my good friend Bob Montgomery. He is the Chef & Owner of the Not So Fast! Food Truck in San Diego, California and new Primal Blogger – NotSoFastFood.com. Bob has catered numerous PrimalCon events in Oxnard and Lake Tahoe and plans to return this year! Bob presented at the Real Food Con hosted by Underground Wellness in Fall of 2013 and attracted 70,000 visitors online over the course of three days. Bob also just got back from Austin, TX, where his cooking demonstration at Paleo FX extolled the ”Benefits of Cooking with Animal Organs,” particularly Beef Heart.

If you have your own success story and would like to share it with me and the Mark’s Daily Apple community please contact me here. I’ll continue to publish these each Friday as long as they keep coming in. Thank you for reading!

real life stories stories 1 2In, 2006, I was a “normal” 22 year old kid working at the House of Blues in Atlantic City, NJ. I hung out with friends and family, partied, and ate and drank whatever I wanted. I honestly thought I was happy. My 268 lb reflection in the mirror didn’t agree.

Depressed and lethargic, I realized I finally had enough. I reached out to my cousin for advice. He suggested the Low Carb/Atkins Diet approach to losing weight. I adopted the diet rather quickly and within three months of dieting and relatively no exercise I dropped 30 lbs. I looked better, breathed easier and I dropped clothes sizes dramatically. Despite my new appearance something remained absent. I looked better but wasn’t healthier. My underlying health issues still plagued my days. I suffered from extreme bloating, acid reflux, dermatitis, and hematochezia (a condition that causes lower gastrointestinal bleeding). I didn’t know what I was doing wrong, because, I thought I was eating “healthy” foods. Over the next few years, I bounced back and forth between low-carb dieting and traditional eating.

In 2010 I sought medical attention for a severe internal issue. Although I was following a moderate low carb diet and in the gym nearly every day, I felt horrible. After multiple doctors evaluated me multiple times, consensus suggested I undergo major surgery to relieve me of the indescribable pains I had almost every day. I became terrified by the thought of major surgery. Logic determined that since medication, seemed to help the problem, surgery may cure it. Right?

IMG 1704

Shortly after moving to San Diego in 2011, my symptoms mounted and many days found me immobile on my couch. Enough was enough! I started online research and read articles on Leaky Gut, Krohn’s Disease, Autoimmune Diseases and more. After clicking link after link, I stumbled here…Mark’s Daily Apple! I started reading every article from the beginning of time. I learned how soaking and fermenting Soy & Legumes releases phytic acid, saponins, and lectins. I found out about Vibram Five Fingers and they’ve changed my hikes, heavy lifting, and the way I walk every day. I found my very FIRST Primal Recipe, “Better Than Take Out Beef & Broccoli.” I felt more informed and excited every day as I read more and more posts. I couldn’t get enough. I wanted to experience everything I was reading and feel the amazing changes everyone already described after making the big leap! Finally, I read The Primal Blueprint and it changed my life.

Health, Fitness, and Happiness were all in within my grasp and Mark made it seem so simple. Man, was he right! I started cooking at home with delicious, local and organic produce, sustainable and pastured meats & eggs, wild caught seafood and healthy fats and oils. More of my day happened outside as I tried lifting heavier things while soaking up some Vitamin D. Tossing and turning at night disappeared completely, and when I woke up, I felt rested and eager to start my day. All within just three weeks, all of these amazing changes were happening in my life, but that wasn’t it!! All of the issues that had been plaguing me off and on for years were going away! My dermatitis cleared up almost IMMEDIATELY. I wasn’t bloated after every meal. Heartburn and chronic burping were gone! Best of all, the hematochezia, source of my medical fears and looming need for surgery, subsided. My pain was gone, and the inflammation decreased significantly! Everything that The Primal Blueprint made me believe I could change was actually happening! I was convinced if the Primal lifestyle could have such a major impact on my life in such a short amount of time that it could do the same for anyone.

Three months after adopting the new lifestyle, I was absolutely miserable managing a corporate steakhouse chain. I was doing a job that I hated. I had to wear slacks, a button up, polished shoes every day, and maintain strict arbitrary grooming standards. I moved to San Diego to be near the beach, live the good life, and to grow my hair long and not care. It just wasn’t me. What was I supposed to do? I needed a job to pay my bills and the insurance benefits were a HUGE reason I was there. After talking with my former business partner, we both knew that we wanted to do something more. Neither of our jobs filled a need. The Primal Blueprint had changed our lives and we wanted to help do the same for others. We were ready to turn our Primal Passion into a Primal Business.

Our newfound passion for cooking real food had us thinking that we could open a Paleo restaurant. The Paleo & Primal community was growing and although a lot of us cook at home, we all know that cooking every meal, every day gets old. Wouldn’t it be nice to go out and grab some food without having to make a million modifications? We talked with friends, our families, bankers and we realized a brick and mortar restaurant required capital we didn’t have. I knew that a couple of my friends from the House of Blues in Dallas, Texas were running a successful food truck there. After a few conversations, we were certain this whole Paleo Food Truck thing was attainable. It had a far lower overhead and startup than a stand-alone restaurant. It was also MOBILE! We could bring REAL FOOD to people who normally wouldn’t have access to it. Food Trucks were all the rage in New York, Los Angeles & Austin, but the concept had yet to EXPLODE in San Diego!

Originally, we planned on opening the truck in March of 2013. It gave us a year to save money, research food truck startups, and to design a brand and menu. But, time became no obstacle. The drive and passion that I had for this idea far surpassed any idea I had ever believed in before. Nothing mattered to me other than Not So Fast! That was the first thing we came up with by the way, our Name, our Brand, our Everything. It was simple, clean, and made sense…along with a little play on words ☺ I woke up and my first thought was Not So Fast! I went to sleep and new menu ideas appeared in my closed eyes. I was completely infatuated with Not So Fast!. I was on the cusp of starting one of the first Paleo & Primal Food Trucks in the World. Soon enough, I would be able to travel all over this beautiful state, serving my food to people who cared about what they ate, and where it came from. I had one goal in mind when I started this whole Not So Fast! thing – to heal the world one meal at a time. That sounds crazy, but is it? What if I could influence one person to change their lifestyle, that is ONE life that is potentially saved. Real Food heals and everyone deserves to know that.

Every minute of every day became dedicated to working on Not So Fast! I woke up and jumped on the computer. I set up our social media outlets, a website, sent emails and made connections. I read articles on food truck regulations, social media branding, trademarking logos, filing an LLC and devoured business advice. I called the Department of Environmental Health every day for two months. After countless hours in the kitchen, hundreds of cold calls and emails, and the hardest work I’ve ever done in my life, we had our GRAND OPENING on July 24th, 2012! We hit the streets working seven days and 10-14 shifts a week. On the rides in between shifts, I’d be in my email on my iPhone finalizing private events and responding to food truck inquiries. My former business partner would be placing phone orders and picking up produce from local farms. While the work never really stops, it also never stops being incredible because it’s yours. It’s a truly special feeling.

DSC 0288

Running your own business is a daily grind, even if you are lucky enough to have a day or two off, you are ALWAYS on the clock. Downtime is a word of the past. Everything ceases to exist but your business. You’re always on the phone, updating social media, sending emails, reading, writing, cooking, cleaning, thinking of new ideas and thinking of how to grow. It is inevitable. It is the single greatest, and worst phenomenon about being a business owner. You have to give your entire life to your dream if it’s really everything you’ve ever wanted. There were points at my last job that I would be complaining during my fifth or sixth hour of a 10 hour shift. I work 18 hour shifts and although I’m exhausted, I have a smile on my face and I still get giddy with the accomplishments that are made on every shift. When you love what you’re doing and spreading the Good Food Word, it doesn’t get much better.

The last two years have flown by and it seems like just yesterday I was questioning this crazy concept we came up with. I left my job with benefits to start a food truck. A job I had never done before. I didn’t know if we’d be able to book enough gigs to keep us afloat. I didn’t know how to light the grill or fill the water tank. I didn’t know it would be so expensive to get going. Food trucks aren’t as costly as restaurants, but still require a lot of startup funds. It was crazy, but every idea is! It takes even crazier, more passionate people to put those ideas into action!

If you’ve already dedicated yourself to a Paleo or Primal Blueprint lifestyle, then I’m almost positive that you have the will power, self-confidence, and drive to do anything you put your mind and body to. Following your Primal Passion is a lot easier than you would imagine. Start by dropping everything. I’m serious. The key to taking Primal to the next level is to drop everything and, in the clichéd words of a sneaker, JUST DO IT! Thoughts and words produce no movement. If you think you have time, you don’t. Sitting back and not getting the wheels rolling is just giving someone else the opportunity to replicate the idea and taking it public before you. Do you love to cook? Start a blog. Write a cookbook. Start a food truck (Not in California. ☺ ) Are you crazy about fitness? Become a personal trainer or yoga instructor. Start a CrossFit Box. Create nature outings/natural movement retreats in your area. If you think you’re stuck, you’re not. You may have a full time job that eats up 60 hours of your week, but that means you still have 108 hours to dedicate to your PASSION.

Start putting ideas down on paper. If you come up with a great thought, don’t doubt it immediately before giving yourself the chance to really think it through. WRITE EVERYTHING DOWN! Two years later and I’m still utilizing notes and recipe ideas that were in my very first notebook.

After you have brainstormed and written your ideas down, it’s time to research your concept, your competitors, and your target market. Do whatever it takes to get your product, service, website, etc. up and running as soon as possible. If you are planning on getting into a business where there are already established brands in different states, reach out to them for advice. I must have talked to 10-15 different food trucks before we started. The information and suggestions they gave me were priceless and invaluable. Some people may not want to help, but the majority will.

In the beginning of this story, I told everyone I was a whopping 268 lbs. I was unhappy, unhealthy, and unfit. I sit here today at a respectable 180 lbs. All of my previous issues have completely vanished. I am strong, fit, and determined to be in peak physical condition. I run the absolutely awesome Not So Fast! Food Truck in San Diego, CA, the first Paleo & Primal friendly food truck in California. Not to mention, we won “Best Food Truck 2013” from the San Diego A List! I just launched my new Blog, to share my Paleo & Primal Recipes, Kitchen Hacks, Book, & Product Reviews, and Life in general. I am in the process of writing and self publishing my own E-Book.

transformation

I wasn’t truly happy until I connected every aspect of my life to my passion. Although starting your own business requires a lot of work and there are many obstacles to overcome, a sincere goal to make a difference, and genuine passion will provide enough drive and commitment to overcome anything. I am truly living my Primal Passion.

Bob

You want comments? We got comments:

Imagine you’re George Clooney. Take a moment to admire your grooming and wit. Okay, now imagine someone walks up to you and asks, “What’s your name?” You say, “I’m George Clooney.” Or maybe you say, “I’m the Clooninator!” You don’t say “I’m George of George Clooney Sells Movies Blog” and you certainly don’t say, “I’m Clooney Weight Loss Plan”. So while spam is technically meat, it ain’t anywhere near Primal. Please nickname yourself something your friends would call you.

  1. This might be one of the best stories I’ve heard. Congratulations on all your successes!

    c wrote on May 2nd, 2014
    • Agreed. And I love the name of your food truck! You look like a completely different person!

      Benjamin Thomas wrote on May 8th, 2014
  2. Awesome! Drive that truck up to SF from time to time :)

    Dr. Anthony Gustin wrote on May 2nd, 2014
    • Yes! Bob we are in need of a week long gig up here in SF! I saw the second picture and said OMG that is Bob?! And scrolled up to see your before! You finally wrote your story. Awesome dude!

      Em wrote on May 2nd, 2014
  3. This. Is. Awesome!
    Great work man. You can be props of yourself!

    Chris wrote on May 2nd, 2014
  4. Oops… Not props, proud! :)

    Chris wrote on May 2nd, 2014
  5. Wow, wow, wow. The ultimate success story!! Healthy, happy, transformed, new life, new primal business….you ROCK!!! Congratulations and thanks so much for such a fantastic reminder of what we can accomplish :-)

    jill wrote on May 2nd, 2014
  6. That Kalefornia shirt is pretty cool, too!

    Jim Haas wrote on May 2nd, 2014
  7. You have so much passion and energy and it just radiated through your writing…it surely is contagious…Thanks for sharing and thanks for the boost of energy this morning! I took notes.

    Irene wrote on May 2nd, 2014
  8. We need more of you in the US! I’m in New Orleans and trying to do whatever I can to spread the momentum here. We’ve come a long way but have a LONG way to go! CONGRATS!

    NOLA Paleo (new orleans) wrote on May 2nd, 2014
    • Yes! I would love to see a paleo food truck in both New Orleans and Baton Rouge. NOLA is the perfect place for this kind of business.

      Maria wrote on May 2nd, 2014
    • Wow! You get extra props for being able to stay Paleo in New Orleans! Every time the hubs and I go there a poor boy finds it way to my mouth…..and then my butt…;-(

      RenegadeRN wrote on May 2nd, 2014
      • Thanks for all the kind words! I hope some kind of Paleo/Primal outlet makes it’s way to NOLA!

        I am also releasing a recipe for Paleo Crawfish Etoufee this week! :)

        Bob

        Bob Montgomery wrote on May 3rd, 2014
        • I should say Primal Crawfish Etouffee. It’s got a stick of butter in it :)

          Bob Montgomery wrote on May 3rd, 2014
  9. Bob, you look terrific. You’re a great advertisement for the Paleo lifestyle. Best of luck with all your endeavors.

    Shary wrote on May 2nd, 2014
    • Thank you Shary!!! :)

      Bob Montgomery wrote on May 2nd, 2014
      • Way to go Bob! Very inspirational !

        RenegadeRN wrote on May 2nd, 2014
  10. Great insight Bob! So proud to be your friend!

    Cecylia G wrote on May 2nd, 2014
  11. The link to your blog does not work. I wanted to look at some of your recipe.

    Debi wrote on May 2nd, 2014
  12. OMG! Love this story! You are so fortunate to have the attitude you have, congrats to you!! Also, that picture with your friend at the end of the story totally cracked me up!! I may be wrong but….I suspect possibly the red eyes are more than just a camera flash issue – just sayin’ …

    I hope so much that my sons will have figure out how they can use their talents, find something they love to do and love their lives…. before they’re in their late 40s like their mom.

    KariVery wrote on May 2nd, 2014
    • Haha, we were heavily intoxicated on probably some Budweisers or some other cheap beer at the time!

      Bob Montgomery wrote on May 2nd, 2014
  13. Wonderful story! Turning info like MDA into a passion and business!
    Congrats!!!

    Maybe I can start a barefoot consultancy!

    Pastor dave Deppisch wrote on May 2nd, 2014
  14. Bob, great story and thanks for sharing. I am curious about the changes you made between Atkins and Primal. What were the main things that Atkins got wrong that made the difference for you? I too tried Atkins before primal but was not able to sustain it. I like to know other’s experiences.

    Thanks

    JoeBrewer wrote on May 2nd, 2014
    • When I did the Atkins approach, I focused on keeping my carb intake low, but I never focused on real, wholesome foods. All I cared about was keeping my carb count low and sometimes just testing in ketosis. I also allowed myself “cheat days.”

      Bob Montgomery wrote on May 2nd, 2014
  15. Just another reason I need to go to California! Bob- that smile is priceless. That’s what life if all about. Enjoy it. I wish you nothing but success. :)

    Brooke wrote on May 2nd, 2014
    • Thanks Brooke!

      Bob Montgomery wrote on May 2nd, 2014
    • If you value an active outdoor lifestyle California is a great place to be. Short of Hawaii perhaps, but more practical. After this latest winter I don’t know how anyone can manage to thrive in the midwest or east coast.

      You should do it!

      Bayrider wrote on May 2nd, 2014
      • California sounds good right about now- since it snowed here last night! I would love to head south to your food truck, Bob!

        Em wrote on May 3rd, 2014
  16. Man this was the kick in the pants on needed for a few projects I’ve got! Plus your food is really good. I’m from SD and have had the pleasure of having it!

    Luke wrote on May 2nd, 2014
    • Thanks Luke! Introduce yourself next time you stop by for a bite! :)

      Bob Montgomery wrote on May 2nd, 2014
  17. I have been reading (and loving) these success stories for the last two years, but I think this is the first one I have ever commented on. This provided such inspiration for me. Whole foods and primal living have improved my life and health in so many ways, and for years I have been toying with the idea of taking it a little farther. This was exactly what I needed to hear today. Thanks!

    Elizabeth wrote on May 2nd, 2014
    • Thank you very much Elizabeth. It makes me really happy to hear that my story has provided that inspiration for you :)

      Bob Montgomery wrote on May 2nd, 2014
  18. Great job. You really helped to fire me up too!

    Nocona wrote on May 2nd, 2014
  19. Great story Bob…I’ve seen you downtown on occasion, not often enough though. Will you be at Chargers games next fall, they have tons of food trucks, don’t know that I’ve seen you there…they definitely need some decent, healthy food at the Q.

    Good luck! Come downtown more often!!

    Robin wrote on May 2nd, 2014
    • We have not been able to break into the Qualcomm Stadium Food Truck lineup yet. I will keep trying!!

      Bob Montgomery wrote on May 2nd, 2014
  20. I got lots of happy chills reading this. My story is following a similar direction!

    Joe wrote on May 2nd, 2014
  21. Great idea, and I love the witty Not So Fast! brand.

    SEModiste wrote on May 2nd, 2014
  22. Outstanding! Dude, you are firing on all cylinders now! Congrats on getting the total package together and especially on dropping out of the corporate meat grinder. This is what true freedom looks like!

    I signed up for your mailing list and I’m looking forward to trying your recipes, the food truck menu looks awesome, hope you’ll include some of those.

    Bayrider wrote on May 2nd, 2014
    • Thank you so much! I will be dropping some food bombs in the next few months once all the bugs are gone and the site is all settled in :)

      Bob Montgomery wrote on May 2nd, 2014
  23. I could totally see a Not So Fast! food truck franchise… (Can food trucks even be franchised?)

    Paul wrote on May 2nd, 2014
    • They can! The paperwork to do so is pretty costly :/ I’m trying to currently work on some licensing agreement to bring Not So Fast! to other states! Stay tuned! :)

      Bob Montgomery wrote on May 2nd, 2014
    • Agree. If you ever want to expand to Northern Virginia, I’ll be there in a heartbeat

      Heather wrote on May 2nd, 2014
      • Ditto for south Texas!

        RenegadeRN wrote on May 2nd, 2014
  24. You are such a great inspiration Bob! What a fantastic way to share your passion with the world. I loved when you said: “You may have a full time job that eats up 60 hours of your week, but that means you still have 108 hours to dedicate to your PASSION” how incredibly true. I have been working to start my own business but at times find it frustrating that it’s not my full time gig. You bring up a great reminder though that although it’s not full time there is still a lot of time available to work on it! I recently released my first ebook (Eating Whole For The Health Of It -http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00JK5LNY8) and I am looking forward to returning to school in the fall to become certified in holistic nutrition. It’s so exciting to share knowledge of real food to others. Keep spreading the good word!

    Becky wrote on May 2nd, 2014
  25. Bob,

    I’m a fan of Not So Fast and love your cooking! Awesome success story and I’m glad to be a part of this Primal movement!

    Cheers!
    Joe

    Joe wrote on May 2nd, 2014
  26. Rock on, Bob! See you in September! :-)

    Darcie wrote on May 2nd, 2014
  27. Bob I absolutely love your story! I, too, just had a primal awakening if you will and am so excited about the future. Not to mention genuinely happy for the first time in a long time. My new dreams will bring me to San Diego in a year or two and I can’t wait to become a regular at Not So Fast! I took a peek at your website and everything just looks so dang good! Congrats on all you success and keep up the positivity and great work :)

    Ashlys Gone Primal wrote on May 2nd, 2014
  28. This is a very cool story. Congrats on the transformation! A foodtruck! Really inspiring story, thanks for sharing :)

    Michele wrote on May 2nd, 2014
  29. I’m from San Diego, and now I’m on a mission next time I’m down that way. I looked at your menu, and it sounds freaking amazing. I’m also really hungry right now. I wish you guys were in Los Angeles. Congratulations to you on a great physical, mental, and career overhaul!

    Amanda wrote on May 2nd, 2014
    • They come up to Long Beach every once in a while. Just keep an eye on their schedule.

      Dan K wrote on May 5th, 2014
  30. Bob….outstanding, you are a primal inspiration in every sense of that it means to be primal.

    Lainey wrote on May 2nd, 2014
  31. Honestly Bob, I have been reading Friday Success Stories since 2011, and this is absolutely one of my top favorites. Although Primal/Paleo books, services, and products are catching on like wildfire, the market is nowhere near saturated. There is still tons of opportunity for entrepreneurs. Heck “Paleo” was the #1 diet search word in Google for 2013… Congratulations!!! Successful expansion is definitely in your future.

    Paula PaleoParisian wrote on May 2nd, 2014
  32. You guys make a cute couple! Good job on following your passion! Grok on!

    frank wrote on May 2nd, 2014
  33. Such an awesome awesome story!! Very inspiring and put a smile on my face!! I’m very happy for you (and perhaps hopeful for myself, in some ways!)

    Kevin Grokman wrote on May 2nd, 2014
  34. I’m so happy for you, you are an inspiration thanks for sharing!

    Carla wrote on May 2nd, 2014
  35. Just lovin the inspirational angle on this story. So well written, your enthusiasm just jumps off the screen, plus you look great. I have a business idea too, and need to do some study. You have reignited the flame, time to get busy! Thanks Bob

    PS: I would love to see a paleo food truck in Melbourne, Australia! Anyone out there with Bob’s commitment? Please? Anyone? (Not me – I hate cooking!)

    .

    HillyM wrote on May 2nd, 2014
    • A few people have suggested I look into doing something like that as I love cooking… but I’m Canberra based, not very helpful for you. AAAAND I just quit my job as a lawyer to be a Personal Trainer full time, so now might not be the time to add onto that. LOL

      Krissy wrote on May 4th, 2014
  36. Wow! great inspiring life story Bob. Your enthusiasm and energy is infectious. I am not even sure that final pic does your physique justice,from what I saw in tulum. Good luck with your new blog venture.

    Cheers Korree (aka Anthony L)

    Korree wrote on May 2nd, 2014
  37. Hi Bob,
    LOVE your story, and love the pictures of your food even more! I checked out your site and your menu has me seriously drooling! This is the kind of thing I’ve been praying for ever since I came to Primal over two years ago. I rarely go out to eat anymore because of the questionable ingredients used in restaurants, but you’ve given me new hope!
    I’m in North County (Escondido); do you have any plans to be in this neck of the woods anytime soon? Perhaps the Escondido Street Fair in May/October? This town is seriously hurtin’ for some good Primal/Paleo! and my cooking’s only good enough for me.
    Where can you and your truck be found in San Diego most of the time?
    All the best to you and I’m looking forward to trying out your recipes.
    Jen

    Jen K wrote on May 2nd, 2014
    • They are all over SD county. I know they’ve been in Escondido before. Some coworkers and I see them in Carlsbad every other week unless they have a more, um, important gig. :) Bob and his crew are great! Just keep an eye on his schedule page.

      Dan K wrote on May 5th, 2014
  38. Way to go Bob, you are a true inspiring soul, you’ve inspired many on the east coast as well, so thanks for that. It would be nice to see that truck around my neck of the woods. God Bless in all that you do. Keep on doing what you do. You look great, sound great and I know what your eating is great.

    Danielle Mc

    Danielle wrote on May 2nd, 2014
  39. When I met you in Tulum, I assumed you were always so perfectly healthy and outgoing and enthralled with life…. I watched you stroll DOWN a Mayan pyramid like it was flat six foot wide sidewalk…. and then you taught me how to slackline (well, you gave good advice, anyway!)

    I had ZERO idea that you ever had any health or weight issues… or that you were ever less than the utter Champagne high spirited person that you are now. Outgoing, engaged, charming to old ladies….

    I adore MDA’s Friday stories, and yours is now at the top of my ‘reread for inspiration’ list!

    Piper Kirby wrote on May 2nd, 2014
  40. This story could not have come at a better time. I immediately read it after seeing the title, because I have just left my boring day job to pursue a crazy dream of opening a primal-centered fitness center. Well… I have to first be a Personal Trainer! I got a gig with a respectable fitness chain earlier this week, and currently studying to get my personal trainer certification. So yeah… this was inspirational and a sign that I am going in the right direction! I’ve never felt so happy about work until now :)

    Andrey wrote on May 2nd, 2014

Leave a Reply

If you'd like to add an avatar to all of your comments click here!

© 2014 Mark's Daily Apple