Ambition without compromise – The story behind Get Nourished
Really chuffed to be featured in the Mirror Online last week. For their take on the story so far and a bit more about the launch of our iced coffees, click the link here.
For a bit more detail on how I got to this point and what I want Get Nourished to become…read on. Consuming a high protein diet started to become important to me once I’d finished Uni. I was a typical skinny fat guy, reasonably fit, very average diet, boozing too much, carrying some excess body fat, but ambitious and keen to get in good shape to pursue a semi-pro football career.
I went for trials at AFC Wimbledon when they formed in 2002 and to cut a long story short, I got in and played in their first ever game at Sutton United in front of a crowd of thousands. Amazing experience, but there was an ongoing problem. Despite lots of gym work and some pretty intense training, I could not get through games. I’d get to 70 mins and be in bits. I used to have the nickname Cramp David at Uni and I assumed boozing and fitness had created that problem, but I was still struggling with tiredness and cramp. I used to finish games and have the most unbearable stomach cramps tying me up in knots leaving me sat on the toilet for most of the evening impacting on nights out, going out for dinner, or even just trying to eat dinner at home. Looking back now it was obvious.
I was fuelling my body with a balanced diet, it had a good macro-nutrient mix (probably too low on fat but that was fashionable for a relatively poorly nutritionally educated person like me in those days), I used protein powders and shakes to hit my protein numbers, ate plenty of porridge for breakfast, 5 fruit and veg a day, religious on the timing of my nutrition before sport (meal 4 hours before, snack 2 hours, hydrated throughout) but little did I know that the lactose and gluten that was rife in virtually every meal I consumed couldn’t be processed properly by my body and therefore the nutrients I needed to fuel myself weren’t being absorbed. I was literally running out of fuel. On top of that, just when my body needed the right nutrients most, I gave it more of the nutrients it couldn’t process.
This, combined with my (as my PE teacher once summarised fairly bluntly) ‘limited ability’ put paid to any real footballing success at semi-pro level. My intolerances heavily compromised my marathon attempt (2:30 through 18 miles, 4:30 through 26 miles) and were causing anti-social bowel problems, tummy discomfort and unusual levels of tiredness.
It wasn’t until 2014/15 that I finally decided to take a food intolerance test. It showed up intolerances to gluten, lactose and, to a lesser extent, yeast. I’d already started taking lactose out of my diet on an elimination basis and then proceeded to do the same with gluten. Game changer. Energy levels UP. Concentration levels UP. Number of toilet stops DOWN. Number of ‘excuse me’ from meetings DOWN. Number of episodes of cramp NIL.
HOWEVER, finding food and drink on the go that ticked all these boxes (good quality protein, lactose and gluten free, tastes good) was, at times, impossible. Lunch was frequently a salad and ready to eat chicken. Snacks were dry protein bars full of soy crunchies. I wanted something better, something without compromise.
And that’s when Get Nourished was born. High Protein, Gluten and Lactose free and delicious food and drink. This was, and still is, ambitious. In some food and drink categories, no-one has done this before. We’re starting with coffees, but we want a cornucopia of High Protein Deliciousness and we have LOTS of products in the pipeline.
But this, for me wasn’t enough. For ambition without compromise to be truly embedded in Get Nourished, it meant creating a business where this is the culture. I want Get Nourished to help people be successful and achieve their goals (including me!). Be that through our food and drinks helping people with their nutrition goals without having to compromise on taste or ingredients or intolerant reactions. Or by ensuring we create a meritocratic environment where everyone can share in the success of the business. Or by committing to invest in community projects, charities and individuals that will help give the next generation opportunities that they may not have been afforded otherwise. Or by sharing hints and tips from the journey I’m on to create this business, from the mistakes I’ve made (there’s been a fair few) to managing your mental state in times of extreme stress or attempting to balance family, business and fitness (in that order) all at the same time.
So this is my ambition. A business that help people achieve their ambitions, whatever they are, be they fitness, life goals, nutrition, education, charity, big or small, scary or everyday…without compromise.
That’s the mantra.
High Protein Deliciousness
Ambition without compromise