By Tony Federico
“A functional look at Paleo or Primal Living: Paleo with a focus on ancestral momentum – moving from theory to practice.”
The crowd assembled at Paleo F(x) ‘12 was not typical for a “fitness” convention. Young and old, big and small, people of all shapes and sizes gathered to hear the leading voices of the Ancestral Health community speak on a variety of topics.
In the sense that Paleo F(x) was centered around the theme of “moving from theory to practice”, one could say that the presenters and panelists represented the “theory” while the people in the audience represented the “practice.” But, who were they? Why did they willingly sacrifice time and treasure to attend? In this series, we will seek to uncover their story, to learn more about the “practice” of Paleo F(x).
Although he came from a football background, Miguel had been bitten by the endurance bug. Logging long distances and even longer hours, he built his fitness regimen around the skills of swimming, biking, and running so that he could compete in triathlons and other endurance events.
It was with the intention of improving his triathlon performance that he took the advice of a friend and looked up the Miami CrossFit affiliate, “I Am Crossfit”.
“After the initial free intro class, I was hooked! It was challenging, explosive, fast, and core engaging. It was exactly what I needed at the exact moment.”
Over the course of his athletic life, Miguel had adopted the conventional wisdom’s recommendations for performance nutrition. Thinking that he needed lots of carbs to fuel his activities, he ate large amounts of pasta, bread, rice, and potatoes. This all changed when he began discussing nutrition with the other CrossFitters, before he knew it, he was quickly unlearning everything he thought he knew.
“After being introduced to Paleo nutrition by CrossFit, I immediately began my journey. At the request of another friend, I began to listen to Sean Croxton’s podcasts, where I learned of people like Mark Sisson (who I completely related to because of his endurance background), Robb Wolf, and Chris Kresser. Everything finally started to make sense so I decided to put it to the test and began to experiment with Paleo.”
Ill suited for moderation, Miguel quickly ditched his ever-present food cooler (and the six meals inside it) and became a “fat burning beast” with tons of energy and a calmer appetite . He didn’t stop there, however. Three months after joining I Am Crossfit he launched The Healthnut on Wheels, a food truck that brought fresh whole foods directly to customers hungry for a healthy alternative. The business received a boost when Miami hosted the Summer Crush CrossFit Games.
“They invited me to come with the food truck and I decided to offer a Paleo menu. Well, it was a huge success and we sold out! Since then, we have had Paleo meals as the #1 item on our menu.”
In attending Paleo F(x), Miguel hoped to bring his understanding of Paleo to the next level. Due to the fact that he advertises “Paleo” meals on his food truck’s menu, he often gets questions from customers and he wanted to find better ways to educate them about the Paleo lifestyle.
“I try not to use the word “diet” too much in explaining Paleo to curious customers. I feel the word “diet” scares people. I believe Paleo is a lifestyle which involves what we eat but also incorporates, how we move, sleep, manage stress, hydrate, stretch, work, play, etc. It really is a way of life. The logo on my food truck and business cards is ‘EATING HEALTHY IS NOT A DIET….IT’S A WAY OF LIFE’!”
Over the course of the two day event, he found that his personal and professional perspective had been strengthened. His is now planning on expanding his Paleo menu options by offering the meals on a daily basis and, possibly due to the Paleo F(x) cooking demos, offering new Paleo-friendly options as well.
“The truck was not planned out to be a Paleo truck but has definitely evolved to be one. I sell other items that are not Paleo such as burgers, but my beef is all Grass-fed from US-Wellness Meats. The truck has been hugely successful and we just had another event yesterday where we sold out of all paleo dishes.”
If you ever find yourself in South Florida, be sure to look Miguel up. You can find out where he is delivering his mobile Paleo meals by checking out his “Health Nut on Wheels” Facebook page.
“When people approach our menu and see “Paleo Meal”, they either know it and order right away or are curious and ask about it. This is the best because we get to expose someone new to the Paleo nutrition world and to educate them on this simple and effective way to live. I’m proud to say this way of life is PALEO!”