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December 28, 2005


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I want to gain weight.

Blaine -- allow me to introduce you to a wonderful way to gain weight. Go to :-)

Blaine, if you really want to gain weight you should stop exercising so much... ;)


Thanks a bunch for posting about SparkPeople!

I completely understand your cynicism - I was cynical about many dot-coms myself. Here's some background for anyone interested, it fits pretty well with this site's mission in many ways.

SparkPeople is doing well as a company - we've made several large sales to insurance companies and other types of large companies (I'm not allowed to mention them because of our contracts - but our customers include multiple companies in the top 20 of the Fortune 500).

However, my main goal when starting this company after my first company was acquired by eBay was to build our own brands into sites that help millions of people reach their goals using health and fitness as a springboard to success. With that first company, we kept our expenses so low by doing everything ourselves that we never needed outside financing, and I've tried to replicate that with SparkPeople.

You are definitely right that building a consumer brand from scratch in this category is really really hard since there are established companies. But, we believe our program helps people in a better way. So, we work hard to keep our expenses as low as possible to be able to offer the site free with a minimal amount of quality advertisers. I look at Craigslist as a model for this - they have only 18 employees and a minimal amount of paid advertising.

Who knows what'll happen, but we're having fun helping a lot of people and working hard to be the small company that takes on the big sites with what we think is a better mousetrap.

Thanks again!

Chris Downie

Chris -- Don't take me seriously. Sometimes I just get into one of those moods. ;-)

Boy, things have changed a ton when a website talks about keeping costs low. I remember us going through $30 million like it was water. But that was "back in the day" -- before we all went bust, that is.

Anyway, good luck with the concept!

Haha - I seriously know where you're coming from - without knowing the whole story I would have had the same reaction.

I think that's one of the benefits of being from the midwest (we're located in Cincinnati, not exactly the internet capital of the world) - we're conservative around here with money for the most part.

Thanks - and good luck with your site too!


Heh, FCN & FMF...that may seem like a good idea, but it really isn't. First, I do not like sweet foods or beverages so I do not have a lot in my diet. An occasional ice cream is good but I can not eat it regularly. And if I stop exercising so much, then I lose weight, I don't gain it. If I am not exercising then I will not get hungry, and if I am not hungry then I will forget to eat. My normal 3000 to 4000 calories a day can quickly drop to 1200 or so if I am not working out and not being mindful about eating. My body is funny that way.

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