My name is Summer and I am 32 years old, working and living in Toronto.  I am a primal girl that is a Crossfitter and paleo enthusiast.  Even though my fitness and nutrition is on the primal side, I still love my Venti Americano’s, Michael Kors bags, skinny jeans, Lululemon’s, and a good girl’s night out.  I have a big dream to change the way that people think and engage in nutrition and fitness.  My goal with this site is to inspire other urban-dwellers to live primal by trying new recipes, pushing your fitness to new levels and learning more about the Primal lifestyle – with an aire of sophistication.

Here is are a few facts about me:

  1. I am married to an amazing husband and we have 2 of the best dogs in the world.  A bulldog and a pug.
  2. I have been a member of Crossfit for 5 years and am now a coach at Quantum CrossFit.  Prior to this, I thought that 45 minutes on the eliptical and a half hour in the circuit made me ‘fit’.  I was dead wrong.
  3. I have been eating a paleo diet for the past 4 years and have seen significant improvements in my body composition, performance, health and well-being.  Experimenting with Paleo recipes is therapeutic for me.
  4. I am surrounded by incredible family and friends who are supporting me on this journey to inspire others.  I love you all.
  5. Through my childhood and teen years I was “the fat kid in gym class” and dreaded the annual 1km run.  I came in dead last every year and phys-ed was my worst subject.  Now i can easily do numerous pull-ups, push-ups and throw heavy weights over my head – I NEVER thought i could be this fit. Insert cliche:  If i can do it, anyone can.
  6. My mother has Italian heritage so I grew up loving pasta and eating as much as possible while getting praise for finishing the second giant helping of spaghetti (“Now do you want some fruit salad?!?!?”).  Cutting the devil (gluten and sugar) from my diet was not easy, but I did it and i will never go back.
  7. I am not perfect.  I still indulge in the odd glass of Champagne, Cabernet, my mother-in-law’s amazing homemade desserts, spending an entire weekend on the couch watching PVR’d episodes of the original 90210 and a trip to Burger Shack.  It’s all about balance.

34 Responses to “About”

  1. Belinda Says:

    I LOVE your blog!! I’m new to crossfit and paleo and have been struggling with paleo ideas, so I’m SO THANKFUL I found your blog!!

  2. Sandy Says:

    Love it! Since going Paleo/Primal, I definitely use fashion as a way to show off how awesome I feel — skinny jeans, summer dresses, high heels, etc. I want to be primal without reminding people of a caveman!

    1. awesome comment…i couldn’t agree more!

  3. Hollie Says:

    I am so happy to see this great blog dedicated to eating Paleo and living CrossFit!! Here is a great website you should check out (unless you already know of it) fantastic recipes with almond flour…

  4. Dawn Says:

    I love your angle! I have always lived the “double life” of girlie-girl and athlete (dedicated climber, mountain biker, etc. and now occasional cross-fit style training). Have been eating primal/paleo with my hub for a few months now and loving it. Thanks for the awesome inspiration and recipe ideas!

  5. Lana Says:

    Hi, Summer. I was wondering if you could do a post on your meal planning. For some odd reason I find it challenging. I know there are some folks who can eat the same thing day in and day out, but I am not one of them. So, how do you plan your meals? Weekly? What do you freeze? Which days do you cook? What’s for lunch? I live alone, so portions are also smaller. Help?

    1. Hi Lana – I think that’s a great idea for a post. I just need a bit of time to write that one. Let me work on it and hopefully you’ll see a post soon!

      1. Lana Says:

        I look forward to reading it, Summer.Thank you.

  6. planeta Says:

    Hi Summer.
    Love your blog and have a recipe question 4 you.

    In many of your recipes you call for the use of “sesame oil” but I wasn’t clear if you meant we should use the dark colored toasted sesame oil, or we should use the pale non-toasted kind. Using one or the other definitely makes a huge difference in terms of taste.

    I was looking at the Asian slaw recipe and some others earlier, and was stumped as to which oil was the right one to buy.. 🙂




    1. @Planeta – I’m glad you like the blog!!
      I use dark toasted sesame oil – I didn’t realize there was a difference in taste between the 2 varieties, so next time I’ll specify in the recipe. Mark’s Daily Apple recommends the dark sesame oil as a ‘good’ oil in his Primal Blueprint book too!

  7. Jessica Says:

    Summer…in addition to the meal planning question above – how often do you recommend eating? I know some folks do intermittent fasting and eat three times a day (fewer insulin rushes, then?). Just wondering what your thoughts were. At this point, I wake at 5:30, teach all day and eat dinner with the family around 630-7. Each of my three meals would have to be 600ish calories (based on my activity level), but I’m so used to eating 4-5 times a day that I don’t even know what a 600 calorie meal should look like! Are you an ‘eat when you’re hungry’ girl?

    1. @Jessica – I plan on doing an entire post dedicated to meal planning which will hopefully be soon. In the meantime, I would recommend eating when you’re hungry. This is also something Mat recommended and I truly believe this is the best way to go. Some people do better with more frequent smaller meals and others manage well with 2-3 larger meals a day. Eating more frequently may give you a tiny disadvantage in terms of an insulin rush, but if you’re eating clean (Protein, Veg, Fat) this effect is probably so small. You’re better off ensuring your sleep, stress, eating and training are perfectly in-check first before you tamper with IF or less frequent eating. I would say that if all the other factors are in-check, you could test your eating frequency both ways, see how you feel on each approach and then go from there. Personally, I eat 4 times per day. I’ve tried cutting back to 3, but I didn’t like the way I felt missing my 3pm snack and found myself wanting to gorge at dinner. I’m definitely an “eat when you’re hungry girl!” You have to figure out what works best for you.
      Hope this helps!

      1. Jessica Says:

        Very much…thank you!

  8. Alyssa Says:

    I always pass by a crossfit after leaving work. What is exactly Crossfit? I know it has to do with working out and etc. But what exactly? I’m so interested and want to start the primal life style. I plan on doing so this weekend. I’m getting married in April of next year and want to feel and look my best!! I’ve always been the fat girl at gym too 😦 Do you have to be slim/certain shape to start Crossfit?

    1. Hi Alyssa! Crossfit is the best! It’s basically group classes where the workouts are a combination of olympic lifting, gymnastics and metabolic conditioning. It’s gotten me in the best shape of my life and I highly recommend it! Check out the website and look around to do some research on what it is. The workouts are completely scalable, so it doesn’t matter what your skill level is – I’ve seen all walks of life participate in the program. I would recommend that you check out the location near you and try a class. Every location is run a bit differently, so it’s important to find one where you like the trainers and the program that they offer. If you’re looking to look and feel your best by your wedding, Crossfit in combination with a Paleo/Primal diet will get you there! Good luck:)

      1. Alyssa Says:

        Thank you so much!! Today is day 3 of primal and already I feel different. Not sleepy/tired after lunch. I emailed the trainer at crossfit and already I am excited!!!

      2. Congrats Alyssa!! Keep up the great work! If you have any other questions, feel free to ask:)

  9. Kym Says:

    Have been a Crossfitter for about 12 months now and cannot speak highly enough about it. I am a 51 year old male (from Australia)and have never been fitter.
    I have recently been converted to the primal/paleo way of eating but have been really struggling with tasty recipe ideas. So glad to have found your website and will certainly be an avid reader.

  10. Primal Toad Says:

    I just found your blog and love it! I have been living the primal lifestyle for 5 months and will never look back myself. I have a large primal/paleo blog list at my blog that is ever growing. I also have a twitter and facebook list.

    I have added you to the twitter and blog list. Let me know if you want to be on the facebook list and I will add you. Just give me the link and remind me that you live in Canada!

    I am doing everything I can to bring the primal community together so spreading the word will become easier. These lists are part of my effort!

    Grok on!


    1. Hey Todd! Love the name, Primal Toad! Thanks for adding me! I just checked out your site and it’s great! I will also add you to my links. I’d love to be on the facebook list. Cosmopolitan Primal Girl has a fan page here:
      And you can find my personal page under Summer Innanen.
      PS: Reminder – I live in Canada:)

  11. babs Says:

    I found your blog a few months ago and love it. I have been paleo/primal for a year now. I always struggle with new ideas and keeping it fresh. Thank you for taking time to experiment and share with the rest of us. I am thrilled to start trying some of your ideas!

    P.S. I love that you put together primal dinners. Fantastic way to share primal recipes.

  12. I am so glad I just stumbled upon your blog. I am JUST STARTING on this diet and excited about changing a lot about my fitness, and energy levels.

    can’t wait to read more!

  13. Cheyenne Says:

    Hi Summer!

    I just stumbled upon your blog and I’m so happy to find someone close to home in Toronto living the good life too! I’ve been looking for a good source for local information and I’m glad I’ve found your blog.

    I’m planning on starting Crossfit as soon as finances permit and have been living primal since the spring! Still have a way to go on the journey but so far it’s been the best decision I’ve made all year. And is possibly the best thing an ex has ever given me! 😉

    Keep up the great posts!


    1. Hey Cheyenne! That’s awesome! I love it when non-crossfit people are living the primal life. If you need a recommendation for a Crossfit location or primal fitness facility, let me know. There are locations close to every neighbourhood. I’m obviously partial to my spot, Crossfit Quantum in Leaside.

  14. Dagney Says:

    Hi, I just found your website. I just started Paleo one week ago, and I like your approach to the lifestyle!

  15. Hi! Someone in my Facebook group shared this website with us so I came to check it out. I’m definitely enjoying the information. I’m book-marking and will be tweeting this to my followers! Fantastic blog and great style and design.

  16. NYCAli Says:

    HI Summer!

    I just found your blog after doing a “primal” search and am so happy I did! I just have a quick question for you which you have probably already addressed but how has your body composition changed since you started the primal lifestyle i.e. weightloss, muscle mass, shape of your body, cellulite reduction (if you had any before – sorry to get personal its just that I seem to have a chronic case of cellulite no matter how toned I get and I am curious if eating primal will help with this issue). I would love to hear about the changes you have experienced! Thanks for sharing!

    1. @ Ali – The combination of Crossfit and Paleo/Primal was the golden ticket to seeing the body comp changes I had been trying to reach for years by countless hours on the treadmill and lowfat everything. I didn’t necessarily lose weight on the scale, but I got much leaner and stronger. I have muscle definition that I never had before. The best compliments I get now are when people tell me that I look strong and they can see my muscles. AND There was most definitely a reduction in cellulite! As long as you are combining it with some good training, you’ll for sure see positive changes! Let me know if you have any other questions….I’m happy to help!

  17. Shelley Says:

    Hi Summer,

    I am new to paleo and crossfit and i have fallen in love with both! I was wondering if you could tell me if any of the Paleo Brands are available in waterloo, ontario. I looked on their website but couldn’t see where they where sold.


    1. @Shelley – They do ship to Canada but it’s quite expensive. I ordered jerky from them and I think it was $50 for 5 packs – which was not very much jerky! You could email them via their contact page and see if they will do a mass order at a cheaper price? Are you looking for a particular product (ie: coconut snacks or jerky?)? If so, I might be able to give you a Canadian alternative. It’s the frozen meals that I don’t have an alternative for.

      1. shelley Says:

        Yes definitely, i would love a canadian alternative! Thanks!

  18. Chelce Says:

    I love your blog, and I cannot wait to starting making some of your reciepes, just became primal about a month ago, my boyfriend and I are on this journey together, but Ive already lost 10 lbs this month, and he has lost 20! Thanks for having a fun site to make the transition a little easier lol

  19. Hi Summer,

    I’m trying to reach you to discuss the possibility of including a few of your recipes (with credit and a link) in a meal plan web app I’ve created. I can’t find a contact form here so I figured I’d try leaving a comment. Can you please contact me at this email address to discuss this further?


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