The Primal Blueprint 21-Day Challenge is over. It’s back to regularly scheduled programming, which means no more contests, prizes, call-outs, or blatantly inspirational posts meant to motivate you to greatness (instead, I’ll resume surreptitiously encouraging you to greatness). I’m going to miss it, but 21 days is about the limit for this type of thing. A challenge wears out its welcome eventually.
The best part of the Challenge is releasing contests, then sitting back and watching the content roll in. Your creativity keeps me going. Your enthusiasm sustains me. And your recipe videos make me salivate.
From poke salad that took me back to Da Poke Shack on the Big Island (go there, folks—best poke on the island), to a knife-wielding cat concocting beef coconut chowder, to burgers with sweet potato buns, I was digging all the kitchen creations this year. Great recipes, great food, and great production value on the videos.
Your Grokposes were awesome. The winner, Kevin Q., clearly deserved it, what with his depiction of yours truly as some interstellar guardian against the sugar menace. Karen T. was elegant and ethereal, Paleofam featured a delightfully indifferent baby, magicaxe has probably speared a deer before, Justin H. made me want to watch The Big Lebowski again, and Sheena featured two dogs in incognito.
I’m jealous of some of your kitchens, and mine is no slouch. You guys all clearly know what you’re doing in the grocery store. I’d love to have dinner with you, or at least raid your pantries.
And then we had the the perennial favorite “You might be Primal if…” contest, whose entrants never fail to make me chuckle, chortle, snigger, or—very rarely—titter.
Writing posts for the Challenge is another favorite because I always learn something new.
Now the hard work begins. Now you have to muster more internal motivation without so much external coming in daily from the blog (although please share your journeys with one another on the forum—which is now functional and will undergo one more upgrade to take care of the last residual hiccups). It’s your turn to keep the party rolling, maintain your results, and avoid lapsing back into your old bad habits.
The community is still here. The tools remain (inside you). The content created these past few weeks still stands. You’ve done it for 21 days. You can do it for 210. You’ve taught yourself to fish.
The prizes have changed. You won’t be winning any cows, Primal Kitchen care packages, or gift certificates, but you can get something even better:
The ability to decide your fate.
You can feel better. You can eat well every night. You can achieve that fitness goal. You can keep that pantry cleared of junk food, map out the month’s meals ahead of time, eat lunch outside instead of hunched over your computer, read books instead of Twitter feeds before bed, sprint up that hill outside your front door once a week (it’s right there), wake up a little early to make the farmer’s market. Nothing physically stops you from maintaining your victory. You have the knowledge to do it, and a great set of resources if you run into issues. You understand why these interventions are so beneficial on an intellectual level. You even tasted success throughout the challenge, so you feel the benefits, too.
That’s way more valuable than any salad dressing. Except maybe ranch.
Thanks for reading, for joining in the Challenge, and being a part of this community. Grok on, everyone!
Mark Sisson is the founder of Mark’s Daily Apple, godfather to the Primal food and lifestyle movement, and the New York Times bestselling author of The Keto Reset Diet. His latest book is Keto for Life, where he discusses how he combines the keto diet with a Primal lifestyle for optimal health and longevity. Mark is the author of numerous other books as well, including The Primal Blueprint, which was credited with turbocharging the growth of the primal/paleo movement back in 2009. After spending three decades researching and educating folks on why food is the key component to achieving and maintaining optimal wellness, Mark launched Primal Kitchen, a real-food company that creates Primal/paleo, keto, and Whole30-friendly kitchen staples.