Nom Nom Paleo

Ancestral Health Symposium: Day 2 (& Paleo Eats)

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I was excited to hang out at the Symposium for the final day of talks and networking so we grabbed our cameras, MacBooks, iPhones, iPads, cooler, and mugs of coffee and set off for UCLA early in the morning.

As soon as we got to the Ackerman Grand Ballroom, I spotted Diana Hsieh of Modern Paleo sitting at the other end of the aisle.

She was a prolific participant in the Twitter peanut gallery all weekend, and her tweets (along with those of Jimmy Moore, Melissa McEwen, and Diane Sanfilippo) kept me entertained all day — even if I started to drag a little after sitting through so many lectures. I did perk up for Mat Lalonde's O-chem-heavy lecture on the importance of boning up on the science behind Paleo lest you look like a dummy. He's definitely one of my Paleo nerd crushes.

At the lunch break, Fitbomb and I went outside to chow on the grub that we brought in our handy-dandy cooler.

My brother-in-law’s smoked turkey is so good — he needs to sell it so other people can die happy. It would be a public service!

After lunch, we checked out Melissa McEwen's fascinating talk on how everyone's individual colonic microbiomes make us unique snowflakes. She's one smart, snarky cookie wrapped up in the darling guise of a pint-sized hipster Lucille Ball.

Next, we attended what turned out to be my favorite talk of the day. Cutie-pie Denise Minger taught a packed room (filled with Paleo heavyweights like Robb Wolf and the Drs. Eades) how to win an argument with a vegetarian. Her talk was funny, informative, and spot-on. (Also great: Robb Wolf’s advice to not waste our collective breath arguing with vegans in the first place.)

Another talk I enjoyed was given by Richard Nikoley who talked about his extensive experience with self-experimentation. It inspired me to not freak out when we run out of shampoo, and to try things out for myself instead of just parroting the Paleo party line.

During the breaks, we mingled with some our favorite folks and got (at least one of) them to show off her best Blue Steel pose…

…while the rest of us displayed our fierce Rollergirl faces.

Clearly, Melicious has it down pat and the rest of us look like a bunch of amateurs. We were much better at playing it straight:

At the end of the day, while Fitbomb pranced around in the grass outside with the MovNat folks, I attended the talk by Sarah Fragoso and Chrissy Gower about raising a Paleo family. Both women gave terrific advice on how to deal with sabotaging grandparents and other Paleo land mines. 

When ASH11 was finally over, we grabbed some quick and casual grub at O! Burger with Bill, Hayley, Diane, Caitlin, Brad, and Michelle.

I ordered a Super Bowl (grilled veggies topped with two grass fed patties) topped with extra guacamole, fried egg, and mushrooms.

My meal was definitely Paleo-friendly, but taste-wise, I’m afraid it was only meh. Plus, it was pretty expensive for what you got (e.g. $1 for a thimble-sized portion of guacamole???). However, just like our last two dinners in L.A. (at Animal and at Jar with some of our favorite cavepersons), the company was wonderful, which made dinner a blast.

Although I fed my brain really well these past two days, the BEST part of the symposium was connecting with folks that I’d obsessively cyberstalked admired from afar on the Interwebs. None of them disappointed in person. 

On another note, THANK YOU to all the readers who came up to me to tell me they read my ramblings on this site. I was humbled, perplexed, and secretly delighted to meet people who actually read my crap! I was running on fumes on Day 1 so I sincerely apologize if I acted like a spaced-out zombie. (Eating brains and not sleeping will do that to you.)

I can’t wait until next year (or sooner) when we can get together again!

Ancestral Health Symposium: Day 1 (& Paleo Eats)

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Even though brain-fed zombies are supposed to have infinite stamina, I was definitely waning by the end of today. Hmmmmm…grains + sugars + gluten + 3 hours of sleep might’ve had something to do with the draining of my Paleo super powers.

Screw it.

Nothing a huge-ass mug of black coffee can’t fix, right? I vowed to get through a 12-hour day of lectures, late dinner, and routine blogging even if it killed me. Trust me, the irony of this weekend is not lost on me.

Enough kvetching — what did I eat today?

Before leaving for the symposium, I packed a small Igloo cooler with a package of Applegate Farms organic roast beef, an assortment of PaleoKits, a couple of hard-boiled eggs, and a bunch of crudites…

 …that Fitbomb and I split at lunchtime out in the sunshine.

Although I was slowly killing myself by sitting on my ass for many hours on end, I learned a ton of fantastic information from Paleo luminaries. Plus, it was super fun watching Gary Taubes bait Stephan Guyenet.

I wanted see a rumble in the jungle! (It didn’t happen.)

Don’t get all excited — I’m not gonna do any summaries about the talks. I’m all about the Paleo eats and will leave the heavy lifting to the Paleo smarties out in the blogosphere. All I can tell you is that all the lectures have reinforced my fervent belief that eating Paleo is the ONLY way to go.

It was wonderful meeting and sharing ideas with like-minded cavepeople. I was super excited to hang with Robb Wolf(!)…

Sarah Fragoso and Chrissy Gower

…and a bunch of awesome Paleo bloggers like Bill and Hayley

…Julie (and the offscreen Charles) of Paleo Comfort Foods

…Melissa and Dallas of Whole9

Dr. B G (don’t we look like sisters?)…

…Cain from Paleo Magazine

…and a mess o’ other awesome peeps.

I was far and away the most excited to chat with Drs. Michael and Mary Dan Eades.

Not only have they been spreading the gospel about the amazing healing powers of meat FOR YEARS, this super couple also invented my hands-down favorite home kitchen appliance ever: the SousVide Supreme. I’m so not exaggerating. The water oven is life changing, especially to someone (like me) who’s too busy/lazy to slave away for hours in the kitchen, but is a hardcore foodie nonetheless.

I was floating on air after my short tete a tete with Dr. Mary Dan. 

She even shared with me her sous vide cooking tips! Her preferred method for sous viding salmon: 118F for 20 minutes.

Sitting through eleven lectures was tiring but I stayed awake by reading and sharing snarky tweets from my seat.

Our night ended with an incredibly fun, fun night filled with meat and lively conversation with lovable peeps at Jar restaurant

Sleep is definitely overrated.

Paleo Eats: 8/4/11

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I’m gonna be straight with you guys: this weekend my blogging will be intermittent and sparse since I’m gonna be fully immersed in the whole Ancestral Health Symposium experience. A girl’s gotta sleep, you know.

This morning, Fitbomb and I piled our luggage and coolers into our trusty Prius and we drove straight from Palo Alto to Los Angeles with no stops. We weren’t even tempted by the In-N-Out in Kettleman City because I’d packed a ton of Paleo snacks in our cooler.

When we arrived at our hotel, I emptied out the mini bar and restocked it with our remaining perishable foods.

Since sitting in a car for six hours was so damn exhausting, especially when you’re the passenger, I took a quick nap before meating (pun intended) Dallas, Melissa, Melicious, and Dave (Melicious’s hubby) for dinner at Animal Restaurant

Can’t wait for the Paleo Nerdfest to begin tomorrow morning!

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Video: Paleo Roadtrip Eats

Wanna see what I packed for our road trip to The Ancestral Health Symposium? Click on the link above to watch me stammer my way through my first video!

(Can’t see the video? Try this link.)

Here are the links I reference in the video:

The chow I packed:

Please leave a comment listing your favorite packable Paleo foods or suggestions for future video topics.

p.s. Zip it. I already know my voice is squeaky.

p.s.s. If you want to buy an “It’s Not That Hard” shirt, click here.

Paleo Eats: 8/3/11

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Yippee! It’s my last night of work! I’m thismuch closer to heading down to the Ancestral Health Symposium in L.A.!

Because I drank a large thermos of Philz Coffee with heavy cream at the beginning of my shift (ooh, baby, it’s been too long!), I wasn’t hungry at work and didn’t feel like eating my packed meals.

On my way home, I drove to Whole Foods to stock up on Paleo goodies for our car ride down to AHS. I was gloating to myself that I was able to fast at work (heavy cream notwithstanding), but then my hunger snuck up on me, hitting me like a ton of bricks. I suddenly wanted to gnaw my arm off. Let me tell you, it took nerves of steel just to make it to the cash register before devouring everything in my shopping cart.

When I finally got home, I quickly inhaled some leftover crispy cheater duck confit, sautéed spinach, and roasted spiced mushrooms.

I was beyond famished, so I also slammed down a couple of tablespoons of coconut butter and half a bar of dark chocolate. Clearly, intermittent fasting doesn’t agree with me. (I think it hates me, actually.)

Once I stuffed my belly, I played with my small fries before taking a short nap on my “flip day.” I woke up in the early afternoon, bid my in-laws adieu, and went into full-time mommy mode.

For dinner, I was too beat to make anything so I reheated a container of leftovers: Asian cauliflower fried rice and sous vide flank steak.

Before going to bed, I assembled our Paleo eats for our road trip and wrapped little gifts for the boys. To assuage our guilt for leaving them at my parents for a few days, Fitbomb and I are giving Big-O and Lil-O tiny gifts to open every night we’re gone. That way, when they rip open their last present they’ll know we’ll be home the next day. 

Time to hit the sack!