Peer Perspective: Angela Mader, Fitlosophy Brands
Angela Mader, Vice President
Fitlosophy Brands through CSS Industries | Newport Beach, CA
Tell us how Fitlosophy came to be. After battling disordered eating from the young age of 14, it was through the process of journaling that I was able to overcome the obsessive calorie counting, tune into mindfulness, and finally reach my goals in a healthy way. I created my first product, fitbook (a fitness and nutrition journal), out of a personal need to gain some semblance of structure around my fitness and nutrition. Then I realized that I had an opportunity to use my past struggles and turn them into a strength by helping other people who might also feel the same way. It was the final year of my MBA program that I created fitbook as a part of my entrepreneurship courses, and I officially launched the company in 2008. No one (including myself!) envisioned that one product idea would grow into the lifestyle brand that Fitlosophy is now, a decade later.
What’s the inspiration for your line and various designs? We’ve always embraced a research-backed, no-gimmick approach to creating products that matter. Every single product is carefully crafted word-by-word in a way that captures and communicates our mantra: live life fit. So whether it’s a fitness journal that is proven to up the odds of goal achievement or portion control products that are backed by nutrition research, we are in the business of changing lives with products that work. There is no quick fix. My thought process behind every single product is to inspire them with beautiful design and mildly entertain them with creative content. But we always (always) are meticulous about creating and curating a line of products that serve our customers – that is our goal, our mission, and our purpose.
What are your best sellers and personal favorites? To this day, fitbook (or my “baby” as I endearingly refer to my first product) is our flagship fitness journal that still sells like crazy. Our fitspiration journal, which is a gratitude-meets-fitness journal, has actually given fitbook a run for its money – and I’m quite alright with that. I love how the fitspiration journal goes beyond fitness to really focus on gratitude and encourage you to reflect daily. That said, they’re quite different products, so lucky for me I don’t have to choose a favorite “child” because they play together so nicely. If I had to choose a personal favorite of our new line of products, I’d have to say it’s our 2-sided eat fit kit, which is a shopping list on the front and weekly meal plan on the back. I mean, it only makes sense that you’d plan your meals for the week and then have the corresponding shopping list on the back! One more fav: absolutely adore our fitdesk calendar. Creating a 365-day product was no joke, complete with unique motivation and a fit tip every single day. Aside from fitbook, that’s our most-instagrammed product for sure – people just love the thrill of flipping the paper of our perpetual calendar to start each day inspired.
Are there products you’re hoping to incorporate into your line in the next few years? Absolutely! Launching for 2019, we’re expanding our message of healthy gratitude into the youth and tween space. We’ve learned that our products tend to resonate specifically with girls in the 8-16 age range so we’re creating products specifically for them. Research shows that gratitude among youth is linked to improved academic performance, lower levels of depression, and increased health, so by providing them with products specifically for them, we’re giving them a healthy head start on life! Beyond 2019, other areas with significant growth opportunity include corporate wellness, scalable digital content, and branded lifestyle apparel.
What is your favorite quote? I think the first thing that pops into my mind is: “Perhaps this is the moment for which you have been created,” (Esther 4:14) because it just exudes so much power and potential – and that’s how I feel about the brand (and my life) right now.