Weekend Camping Trip: Keeping it Primal

Weekend Camping Trip: Keeping it Primal

Not too long ago I encouraged you to get back outside with your family. Hopefully you were able to find some ways that you could enjoy the outdoors before it gets too cold and before we all get too wrapped up in the mad dash of the holidays. If you’re still trying to figure out ways to get the family together, might I suggest you plan a weekend camping trip? Something you can easily do after work Friday with a little planning.

There are campgrounds everywhere, all you need to do is find one close to you that sounds fun. This is something you can do with just your spouse or even if you have a bunch of kids. The kids will be sure to love it and it’s a great time to get the whole family together. It also offers the a unique time where everyone’s faces aren’t plastered to the bright screen of a phone, tablet, laptop or TV. That idea, in and of itself, may freak you out. But don’t let it. Below I’ve listed a few ideas for what you should pack, what a meal plan may look like and what to do. All you have to worry about is where you want to go camping.


What to Bring

Camping Gear
This depends widely on where in the country (or outside) you may be camping. Now, you don’t have to buy everything you see at your local camping store but some basics that you don’t want to forget are:

Food

  • Salt & Pepper
  • 1 Pack of Aidells Chicken & Apple Sausages sliced into 1/4”
  • 3 Bell Peppers chopped (I use red, orange & yellow)
  • 1 Onion chopped
  • 1 Garlic clove diced
  • 2T Coconut Oil
  • Mixed Greens
  • Oil & Vinegar
  • Cans of tuna/sardines/chicken
  • Bag of Paleonola
  • Burgers
  • Cheese
  • Organic Baby Carrots
  • Homemade Ranch
  • Eggs
  • Bacon
  • Butter
  • Popcorn Kernals
  • Coffee

Clothes
Just keep them comfy. Maybe even go barefoot if you can take it. It’s a rare chance you can go a whole weekend without having to wear shoes at all. If you can’t bare (pun intended) the thought of that, then just stick to sandals or something like that. You don’t need $400 hiking boots. Humans have spent a long time “camping” without needing giant rubber heels attached to their God given arches and heels.

Board games/deck of cards
Forget the solar phone chargers and extra battery packs. Just make sure you have a headlamp or a bright enough fire to play some card games or a board game or two.


What to Eat

All of these meals can be cooked in your 12” Cast Iron. I suggest you do all your cutting Thursday night before the weekend. No one wants to do the cutting on some janky table at the campsite.

Friday Night
Dinner: Chicken & Apple Sausage Stir Fry
If everything is precut, this meal comes together really quick. Perfect for getting to the campground, getting the tent up and then right into dinner.

Campfire Snack: Popcorn
Popcorn isn’t paleo. But it’s a nice once in awhile snack. Especially when you cook it yourself with butter and salt. All you have to do is melt 2T of butter in a skillet, throw in 1/4 cup of popcorn kernels and cook over fire or flame with lid, shaking continuously, until you hear the kernels start to pop. Take off the lid when the kernel popping slows down. Then top off with salt and enjoy.

Saturday
Breakfast: Eggs & Bacon
Cook the bacon. Toss out some of the fat while leaving a thin layer in the skillet. Then scramble the eggs in the remaining fat.

Lunch: Salad & Sardines/Tuna/Chicken
Toss salad in bowls with oil and vinegar and top with protein and Paleonola. Or eat the protein of your choice straight from the can.

Dinner: Burgers & Carrots with Ranch
Melt some butter in the skillet and cook burgers until desired doneness. Top with cheese if you do cheese. Serve with carrots and ranch.

Campfire Snack: More Popcorn
This is too good to just have it one night. Cook up another batch of this and you won’t even be thinking of s’mores.

Sunday Morning
Breakfast: Eggs & Bacon
Same as Saturday.

Lunch: Chipotle
No one wants to have to have to prepare a lunch on your last day of camping so just pick something up from Chipotle or some other Primal option lunch spot on the way home.


What to Do

Once again this depends widely on where you’re planning on camping. But think outside the box a little bit, and by box I’m referring to your home. Take advantage of being outdoors. Maybe even ditch the tent and just sleep outside. Just do something that you don’t normally do, here are some ideas:

Beach
If you happen to be camping near a beach then this one is pretty obvious. But I point it out so that you don’t think just camping by the beach is enough. You need to go to the beach. Put a suit on and go body surf, dig some holes, eat a sand crab, do some sprints. Anything really – just go to the beach.

Hiking
This one is pretty obvious too but not everyone likes hiking (wink wink my wife). But you should really use this opportunity that you’re living outside for a couple days to explore and see what the trails around you have to offer. Remember too, don’t try to pull the excuse that you don’t have your hiking shoes. God gave you hiking shoes when you were born. If they’re good enough for the Tarahumara, then they’re good enough for you.

Skateboarding/Biking
Most state funded camping places have some paved road throughout the grounds. If they do, take advantage of the no TV and laptop and go cruise around on a skateboard. If there are no paved roads you can always use a bike to go cruise around.

Nothing
Don’t always think you have to be doing something when you’re camping. Use your time away for the weekend to do nothing. We need to relax and kick back every so often, and this is your perfect time to do so. Take a nap throughout the day. Stare off into the distance. Watch ants crawl around. Just try to do absolutely nothing.

Look for bugs
Ya know, bugs may be the future of food. How about you go checkout some of the local offerings? I’m not sure if it’s kosher to eat bugs just crawling around, but hey depending on where you’re camping they may have a better diet than the chicken pumped full of antibiotics and soy.

Rock climb
Rock climbing didn’t start in an indoor gym. It started with actual rocks. Try to see if you can find some rocks to go climb on. Doesn’t matter how big or small, just look for something to climb on. Remember to always bring a buddy so they can catch you if you fall.

Play Games
You brought all those board games and cards. Bust ‘em out and play as much as you can. Busy schedules at home don’t always lend time to play a couple rounds of Catan.

Hopefully this post urged you a little bit to even contemplate planning a family camping trip. Now your trip, if you choose to do one, may look completely different than what I have outlined above, but this was just to spark ideas. So take some ideas I’ve listed above, or make your own, but most importantly – get outside.

7 Lessons Learned: Eating Primal during your lunch hour

7 Lessons Learned: Eating Primal during your lunch hour

Do you have a hard time staying consistent with eating Primal during you lunch hour? Consistency is the key word here. So often my buddies or coworkers talk about how they’ve gone primal but so often fall off of it because grabbing a burger is that much easier (and sometimes tastier) than a salad. Bleh.

Eat Simple Salads

There’s nothing wrong with eating a big salad every day. The key that I’ve learned is to keep the salad simple. Buying a big box of salad and throwing it together with seeds or nuts every morning before work is what works best. Don’t wear yourself out with trying to do some new extravagant salad every single day. Every once in awhile is ok, but we are shooting for consistency.

Use a dressing that’s nutritious and delicious

This probably should be the first tip because it seems to be the one that that trips up all of us. Salads are so boring if they don’t have a good dressing. But the problem is, all salad dressings in the stores are made with soybean oil or canola oil. Not nutritious. Not to mention they are filled with copious amounts of sugar or high fructose corn syrup. The key here is that you need a dressing that will fill you up, i.e. good fats, i.e. olive oil. Now, you can go the route of making your own dressing every week. Nothing wrong with that. If you’re not into that however I suggest you check out Tessemaes salad dressings. They will make your daily salads nutritious and delicious. You no longer will have to compromise on nutrition or taste. If you want to keep it even simpler: Extra Virgin Olive Oil and Balsamic Vinegar goes a long way.

Find an easy protein you love

I would go insane if I ate skinless chicken breasts every day. One thing I’ve learned is that having an easy protein option at lunch is key to succeeding at staying consistent with going Primal during your lunch hour. An easy protein for me are cans of tuna, salmon or sardines. These are quick sources of protein, they taste good, they’re very nutritious and they are relatively cheap too. At first sardines sounded so gross to me to eat straight out of the can, but after I tried it a few times I got hooked. You may need to step out of your comfort zone on this one to find an easy protein source you love. But remember the goal is consistency.

Think leftovers

Cook extra food for dinner throughout the week. That way you have an abundance of leftovers to take to work the next day. This especially comes in handy when you’re tired of salads and tired of an easy protein source you love.

Find a park near your work to eat outside

Ever think it’s weird that we (people with desk jobs) drive from one box to another box inside a box just to stare at a box? The reality is we spend too much time inside boxes. Get outside the box during your lunch hour. Sit in the sun. Synthesize some Vitamin D. Eat your salad. Maybe grab a couple buddies to play frisbee or try to see who can climb a tree the fastest. Whatever you do during your lunch hour, make sure you get away from your desk and get your skin in the sun.

Don’t freak out when your coworkers want to go to a restaurant/fast food place

This one is where people put an end to going Primal. Claiming it’s to hard to stay Primal throughout the week at work. But check this out, you have two options when you commit to eating out with your coworkers. Take it as a day where you eat whatever you want or do your best to eat Primal. If you eat one off meal you’re not going to be unhealthy, just as one healthy meal doesn’t make you healthy. If you choose to still stay Primal, that can be an option too. What does that look like exactly? Depending on the restaurant you go to most places have fancy salads, just stay away from the dressings and ask for (olive) oil and vinegar. Or get a lettuce wrapped burger and honey sriracha brussels sprouts.

Don’t let perfection get in the way of good

You may not eat Primal all day everyday. Don’t let that stress you out. Shoot for perfect but just know along the way, throughout the week, things might get complicated. Just accept it and move along and pick it up the next meal or the next day. The very fact that you’re thinking about eating Primal and moving more puts you miles ahead of the rest of the population.