WOW: The Auroch Stalk

5 Minute Crawl

Variations on this WOW are encouraged. See the “How-to” and “Variations” sections below.


Warmup: None required

Time to complete: 5 minutes

No, this is not a recipe post, and I didn’t misspell “stock.”

Time wasn’t always of the essence in the Paleolithic. Sometimes, one had to exercise caution and proceed unseen and unheard. Take the hunt, for example. Crashing through the brush with a high-speed Grok crawl sprint is a terrible way to sneak up on prey. Stalking an animal with hypersensitive ears and nose precludes raw (human quality) speed and surprise from being effective. If Grok wanted to get in range to make the kill, he had to crawl slowly.

This week, you’re going to be performing a painfully slow and drawn-out five-minute crawl. Crawl-sprinting is tough enough, but at least it’s over quickly; going as slowly and quietly as you can takes serious strength and stamina, and it never seems to end! Good luck.

Get into the pushup position and be sure to form a plank with your body. Keeping your hips low (letting them drift up makes the crawl easier), crawl. Pull yourself along the ground with zombie-like conviction and deliberation. If you must, rest (bonus points for resting in the plank position), but know that the rest period doesn’t count towards your five minutes. A good way to ensure you’re going slowly enough is to make sure momentum plays no role in your movements. Each foot forward should be its own individual movement, if that makes sense. It helps to pause in between.

Remember to keep it fun and be creative with your crawling motion. You may be surprised by how many different ways you can move along the ground on your hands and feet.


Perform the crawl in a natural setting full of obstacles. If there’s a tree in your path, climb up it and then back down. Crawl slowly over boulders or through creeks. Crawl uphill, up stairs, and down stairs. You can also do the actual crawling with some different mechanics: crawl with an upper-body focus, where you’re pulling yourself across the ground without help from your legs; crawl with a lower-body focus, where you’re pushing with your legs and using your arms simply to support your body.

To decrease the difficulty:

  • Go a little faster. Using momentum will make it easier.
  • Crawl on your knees, instead of your feet. Just keep that plank position.
  • Raise your hips a bit and stick your butt in the air.

To increase the difficulty:

  • Throw on a weight vest.
  • Go even slower.
  • Crawl on your elbows in the full plank position.
  • Break your crawling with sets of 5 or 10 pushups.
  • In one workout do multiple sets of the Auroch Stalk. For example, do 5 minutes as prescribed above, take a 60 second break, then do a 4 minute Aurach Stalk, break, 3 minutes, etc., until you’ve done a total of 15 minutes of crawling. 5, 3, and 1 minute intervals for a total of 9 minutes of crawling is another option.

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 WOWsreplace 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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