WOW: Persistence Hunt

You have 50 minutes to:

Move/Run/Walk 2.5 Miles Unencumbered
Move/Run/Walk 2.5 Miles With Object 1/5 Bodyweight


Warmup: One minute Grok Squat.

Whoa, whoa, whoa – 50 minutes of cardio, Sisson? Isn’t that dangerously close to “Chronic”? And besides, I thought our ancestors weren’t long distance runners… what gives?

Maintaining a 10-minute mile pace for 50 minutes performed every now and again doesn’t qualify as Chronic Cardio. For one, chronic refers to frequency. Running a half marathon just to see if you can do it isn’t really problematic; training for that half marathon by obsessively running seventy miles a week probably is. This is a challenge, not something to do three times a week.

Mostly, though? This is something to test your mettle and drive you to greater heights. It’s designed to measure how far you’ve come – and how far you can go. Five miles isn’t a huge distance, but when you’re forced to carry a sizable weight for half of those five miles while figuring out how to pace yourself to make the fifty minute limit, things get tricky. This isn’t a pure test of your physical endurance, where you push, push, push until your lungs hurt. It’s also a mental challenge. You have to plan your attack, much like Grok would have done when persistence hunting a prey animal. Do you push yourself for the first leg of the hunt, leaving plenty of time to move 2.5 miles while carrying the weight? Do you sprint, stop, jog, and start, going in fractal spurts, or do you keep a steady pace?

The choice is yours. Just make sure you make it in fifty minutes.

A few things to remember:

  • Vary your carry. Carry the object (sandbag, rock, weighted backpack/vest, plate, dumbbell, etc.) on your right shoulder, then switch to the left. Sling it across your back. Hold it at your chest. Carry it at your side, hanging.
  • Stick to an outdoor setting if possible. Randomness is good, because every step is a new situation to surmount and adapt to. So, trails, hills, or even just grass.
  • The track works well, too. While it won’t provide the fractal randomness of a natural setting, a flat track will make it easier to monitor your progress and measure the distance traveled.


If you feel up to it, do the hunt in 45 minutes. If 50 is beyond your capabilities set your own challenging goal and give this WOW a try.

What are WOWs?

  • Workouts of the Week (WOWs) are an optional component of Primal Blueprint Fitness that add a fractal and often fun and playful quality to the basic PBF protocol.
  • In most cases WOWs should only be completed by those that have mastered Level 4 of each Lift Heavy Things Essential Movement. Also, it?s recommended that WOWs replace one or both Lift Heavy Things workouts or the Sprint workout (depending on the WOW) each week instead of being done in addition to the Lift Heavy Things and Sprint workouts.
  • Learn more about WOWs and Primal Blueprint Fitness by getting the free eBook. And access all Workouts of the Week in the WOW Archive.

About the Author

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.

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