How an Olympic Hopeful Googled Her way to a Gluten-Free Food Business

Stephanie Rothstein Bruce is an inspiration to a lot of athletes because of her real stories of being a mom and a professional athlete. Some of those fans might not even know that she also has a successful organic energy bar business.

Stephanie formed Picky Bars with two other athletes: Jesse Thomas and Lauren Fleshman. In the beginning, the product was created specifically for Jesse, who was gluten intolerant and needed a bar to provide the right energy balance for a triathlete. After a year rolling together “balls of mashed up dates” with some other foods, Stephanie googled how to build that into a business. An industrial kitchen and a chance article in Runners World got them kickstarted, and now they are sold from REI, Trader Joe’s, as well as their unique subscription-based e-commerce store.

As another shot at the Olympic dream passes, Stephanie talks about how she can represent Picky Bars as a pro athlete, knowing that her career as a runner is a short one. It’s a unique episode for a lot of reasons.