Co-founder and recipe brains Lauren Fleshman is here to share a little Picky history lesson, our dreamy future plans, and the exciting new addition that’s going to pull it all together. Read on for the big news on our growing team (and soon to be product line!)
I used to cook. I really did. As a professional athlete with shit-else to do besides run and an appetite to match the 70 mile weeks, it wasn’t a big ask. Not a fan of supplements and passionate about clean sport, I relied heavily on the nourishment of my food choices to optimize performance and health. So yeah, I cooked. Even when I didn’t feel like it.
Then I had a kid. The crazy fatigue, the lack of free hands, and the long stretch of time ahead before I could really be fast again led to some bad habits I still haven’t fully kicked, like an aversion to vegetables and a lot less time spent in the kitchen. I’m almost embarrassed admitting them knowing that the person this blog is about (bear with me, we’ll get there) is going to read this.
I may have made Picky Bars as an antidote for Jesse’s farts originally, but they have been the most consistent way for me to guarantee some fruit, mineral-rich nuts and seeds, and balanced nutrition on-the-go these past four years. Yes, it would be better to also cook amazing meals every day, but it is nice knowing I’m getting some nutrient variety in my diet. And it comforts me that Jude’s daily Picky Bar rounds out his preferred pancake/quesadilla/milk rotation.
For the past three years, I’ve wanted to create more Picky Foods that our customers can rely on when convenience inevitably trumps kitchen time. But I kept putting it off. I always felt like we got lucky with the recipe for Picky Bars. We wanted this very specific thing, Steph and I got in the kitchen, broke a bunch of mixers, and eventually we freaking did it. We surprised ourselves in creating a product that still can’t be beat at its mission, even six years later. Making new flavors from there was relatively straightforward because we had a template to work from.
But anytime I imagine going outside the lines and trying something new, I freak out. It’s just not my area of expertise. I need help.
So, I went out and found some help.
I knew Elyse Kopecky from my early Nike days. We worked together during the Objectify Me campaign, almost ten years ago, and she went on to have a very successful career in marketing. Earlier this year Elyse moved to Bend and we caught up on life. Listening to her talk about her major career change I was inspired by her personal story, her risk taking, and her passion for changing the culture around nourishment for runners.
Reconnecting at this time in our lives was pretty lucky for Elyse and I. After her massive success with Run Fast Eat Slow, Elyse was looking for another tangible way to put her kitchen knowledge to work while writing her next book. I was looking for help breaking out of the Picky Bar wrapper I’d sealed myself in. Having Elyse as a teacher and a leader in new product development for Picky is pretty much heaven. Her philosophy about food is spot on, her experience is legit, she is fun to cook with, and she brings snacks to work. You just can’t beat that!
"I love that Picky Bars is built on the same real food ethos and “indulgent nourishment” philosophy that I believe in. Outside of training, learning to cook is the single greatest thing an athlete can do to improve their performance (and their long-term health and happiness).
Athletes need an incredible amount of nutrition to stay healthy. This collaboration with Picky Bars enables me to get crafty in the kitchen with concocting delicious recipes that use some of my favorite ingredients for energy and recovery. My hope is to make people’s busy lives just a little easier by packaging up real food that they can take while on-the-go."
– Elyse Kopecky
Chef, Nutrition Coach, New York Times Bestselling Author
I’m so happy we get to celebrate Picky’s partnership with Elyse Kopecky with all of you today. We’ll keep you up to date on our progress, and Picky Clubbers can look forward to first tastes of future kitchen experiments, as always. We consider it a huge privilege to be the maker of snacks so many people enjoy and rely on, and we very much look forward to the challenge of making more things deserving of a space in your pantry.