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

Grokfeast in California

On September 13th I asked Mark’s Daily apple readers to host a Grokfeast (a picnic/party celebrating the Primal lifestyle) and to send me the results. The following is one of 13 amazing submissions, the best of which will win an entire cow courtesy of US Wellness.

This is a submission for the Grokfeast by a meetup group in San Diego, CA called the San Diego Paleo Tribe. This meetup group was formed June 2010 by Clifton Harski (now a MovNat instructor) and has since been led by myself, Dan Forsberg, and Ashley Westment since last fall. A while back my roommate, Nick, and I had a late night brainstorm (or pipe dream so I thought) about making a Primal version of a Spartan Race or Mud Run and calling it something like “Caveman Decathlon” or something of that nature. Well I put it in the back of my mind but Nick ran with it and wanted to put on an event in this meetup group. We all met up at Fiesta Island in San Diego, CA for a “Primal Challenge” on September 24, 2011. People in the tribe were all really excited to do it but given the short notice I gave them all (I posted it the day before) we had a really good turnout regardless. We all congregated in a large sand area at Fiesta Island where we competed against each other in a Primathlon of sorts. There were multiple events and a scoring system to find the best Primathlete for specific events and overall. The events and results were as follows:

Event #1: Bola Toss

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We started the day off with a bola throwing contest made from tennis balls and strings, which was very tough for people to get used to; I personally had thrown the bola into my head on the release a few times during the warm up. The scoring system for the bola toss was based on the amount of time taken to run through the course, hitting targets resulted in a 4 second deduction from the total time taken to run the course. Mountain killerabs Evan won this event.

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Event #2: Sling Throwing

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We then moved onto sling throwing with homemade slings. The objective was to hit targets set up with lacrosse balls; surprisingly no one hit a target except we did get a few of the lacrosse balls into the trash can. Yours truly was the winner as I got the majority of my balls closest to the targets (despite how that last sentence reads, trust me it wasn’t ‘that’ kind of outing; though I suppose Grok wouldn’t have opposed to that sort of reward :-).

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Event #3: Rock Sprint

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A rock sprint was next wherein we had to carry a 75 pound rock as fast as we could for 20 meters. Everyone participated in this event and Cherry Berry was the winner of this event with a time of 8 seconds.

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Event #4: Spear Throwing

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Ashley Westmanwas the winner of the spear throwing contest. She was within 2 feet of most of her targets. She reads a lot of prehistoric fiction (Earth’s Children series) so we all felt she had a bit of an advantage.

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Event #5 Obstacle Race

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Our last Primathlon event for the day was an obstacle race in which we had hurdles and obstacles to run through. Mountain was, again, the winner of this event, his low center of gravity played a role I say.

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Setting up for most of the events ended up being a bit makeshift as we got there and found out what our area looked like (what’s more primal than adapting to the environment you’re given). But overall everyone loved it. Following the event our meetup page was visited with comments such as these:

“Great people and exercise. I had a blast and will definitely be back for more. Thanks!” -Toby G.

“very fun activities; very primal. cant wait for the final version!” -Mountain killerabs Evan

Great event today guys, hope to see everyone at the next meetup! Thanks Nick for bringing out the fun obstacles and “weapons” :)” – Cherry Berry

The Feast

Free range chicken breasts from Sprouts Farmer’s Market with olive oil and sea salt and fresh ground pepper, Paleo Broccoli Salad, Kobe beef & vegetable kabobs, Grain free granola bars (these were ‘lights out’) – brought by Virginia Gilbert she supplied me with the recipe, looks time consuming but sooo worth it.

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Grain-free granola Bars

makes 18 3″x3″ bars

  • 1 1/3 cup coarsely chopped nuts (I used almonds, pepitas, cashews, sunflower seeds and peanuts)
  • 2/3 cup natural peanut butter (or almond butter), unsweetened, unsalted
  • 3 oz dates, chopped roughly
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 3-4 T water
  • 1/2 cup chopped fruit (tart dried cherries and prunes)
  • 2oz unsweetened coconut flakes
  • parchment paper

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Coarsely chop the nuts in a food processor (chop the almonds separately from the rest of the nuts, as they are much harder than the others). Dump the nuts onto a small sheet pan and toast for 10 minutes. Place the coconut and chopped fruit in a mixing bowl and set aside.

While the nuts are toasting, scoop the peanut butter, chopped dates and water into a small sauce pan and heat the mixture on a low burner, stirring as you go. As the peanut butter warms, it may seize up a bit – add a touch more water. You just want the mixture to be warm, not hot, so that you can stir the mixture together.

After the nuts have been toasted for 10 minutes, pour the nuts into the mixing bowl with the fruit and coconut and stir the ingredients together. Pour the peanut butter mixture on top of the nuts, and use a stiff spatula to fold the mixture together until all the ingredients are coated in peanut butter. Line the sheet pan with parchment, then dump the sticky mixture onto the parchment. Use the back of your spatula to press the gooey mixture onto the pan in an even layer about 1/2″ thick – don’t worry if it doesn’t fill the whole sheet pan, mine covered about 80%. Use your hands to finish pressing the mixture into an even layer.

Place the bars into the oven, and bake for 20-25 minutes to set the bars, then chill in the fridge for a couple of hours before cutting. Store the finished bars in a storage container in the fridge, with waxed paper between layers.

136 cal per 3×3″ bar, 90 cal from fat, 9.6g fat, 55mg sodium, 95 mg potassium, 11g carbs, 2g fiber, 4g sugars, 4g protein

The Tribe

In the Group photo the participants’ are, and I’m not making these names up, their CA id’s confirm (from left to right): Virginia Gilbert, Mountain killerabs Evan, Nick McCollum, Cherry Berry, Ashley Westman, Ben Urich, Toby Guillette, Dan Forsberg

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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. Great stuff guys! Awesome integration of PLAY into the feast… er, I mean, HUNT TRAINING.

    Reminds me of the days when an open field, a ball or two, and any number of random objects constituted enough gear to construct endless games and competitions.

    (I’m gonna try the granola bar recipe, thanks!)

    Mark Ellis wrote on October 10th, 2011
  2. Looks like a blast along with an awesome feast! I’d love to do a primathalon out on the beach with primal folks!

    Primal Toad wrote on October 10th, 2011
  3. @Primal Toad We’re actually putting together an official event as a fund raiser to help fight youth obesity. It’s set to take place near the end of next year. The Grokfeast was a pilot event and it was a blast. You can google Caveman Decathlon for more info. Imagine 300+ primal folks competing in the oldest form of the track-style decathlon (and chowing down afterwards of course). Now that’s a Grokfeast!

    Nick McCollum wrote on October 10th, 2011

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