Allow myself to introduce uhh myself. I am Dante Trudel, alot of you know of me. I am the guy who rambles on, rants, raves and rapscallions (I dont know what rapscallions means but it will be the first and last time I ever get to use it in a sentence). This is my blog. Im not only going to talk about bodybuilding and nutrition and supplements, Im going to talk about all things I have an opinion on, whether it be society, business ideas, human nature, health, how asparagus should be cooked (baked in oven for 25 minutes at 400 degrees after being drizzled with olive oil), and basically anything that comes to my mind.Â Without further delay:
Hey Dante how the heck did Truenutrition come about?
How did you meet your business partner?
We usually answer that last question with the quick answer on match.com….to bankers, business folk and people we dont know very well to fill the room up with their TMI oh really? We let that linger for a few seconds and then we tell them the truth.
The year 2002. As some of you know in the 90’s I had a newsletter magazine called Hardcore Muscle. Then in the late 90’s and early 2000’s I decided to give my opinion anonymously on a little known bodybuilding message board. After thinking for a few seconds of what I should use for my anonymous screen name, I used the name Doggcrapp. Didnt really give it much thought (I should have). I gave my opinion and that thread took off like a wildfire blaze of uncontrollable abandon. It garnered something like 2.5 million views a year later or some absurd number like that. It didnt take long for some readers of that thread to recognize my (yea right…anonymous) writing style before people were guessing hey I think thats Dante Trudel who published Hardcore Muscle, DAMMIT! They exposed me! Release the Krakken again!!!!
Where was I? Oh yea 2002….. I got an email from a guy named Doug Smith in Orange County. He had a business idea. I recieved a lot of emails from a lot of people with a lot of business ideas. DELETE! He emailed me again. I perused it. I believe I answered it with a couple questions….but kind of shuffled it to the side again. He emailed again, maybe a month later.
A short time before these emails, I had been contacted by two known names in the industry, that shall go un-nnamed in this blog. One is a household name, known far and wide, a multimillionaire of epic proportions. He wanted me to work for him. I wrote him a letter telling him NO…in a large way and telling him ‘how he betrayed all the bodybuilders who had made him, followed him and supported him’, and how I will never work for someone that turned his back on the very people who had made him successful. The second individual (not as well known as the guy above) got me on the phone and also wanted me to work for his company. Halfway thru that conversation after I questioned him about a supplement his company was selling that I felt was bunk, this was the line from him “Come on Dante you know the deal, this whole thing is a bullshit pipe dream to sell some kids some supplements so they can be the big guy and get the hot girl…..you know that”………that call ended very shortly after that (on my part)………so to get to the point….my mentality at that point regarding some of the people that were in the bodybuilding supplement business, was not in a very positive place.
So with that said, there were some words in Doug Smiths email that were intriguing to me. Basically the underlying feeling was that he had been blindsided with the shiny label with the fireworks exploding off of it with the supplements he had bought with his hard earned money. And that he had been shoved the pipe dream in a waffle cone, with sprinkles and a cherry on top.
At that time, I made pretty good money and had a good job at the time selling software, I didnt really want to screw that up but I talked to my wife (girlfriend at the time), and decided to meet this supposed Doug Smith character.
He had a business plan. It was worthy…it was general, not exactly what we did or were going to do but he had a general gameplan. I remember he went to the bathroom or took a call and I had looked thru it and thought he had done his homework. I remember my words to him, ‘If I am going to do this and be a part of something like this, it has to be top of the line, I mean the best supplements, the best raw ingredients we can sell, it just cannot be halfass, that’s the only way I will be part of something like this.’
He resoundingly agreed……we tossed some ideas around…..and I went home and discussed it more with the gf/wife. It was a very tough decision. Stick with the solid job with good pay or take a leap of faith with something you feel strongly about but is very unknown. Thirty seven flippings of a quarter later I had made my decision. We are going to create a supplement company that is completely transparent. You will actually get what you put your hard earned money down to buy! HOLY CRAP you would think that is obvious but virtually nobody but us is doing it! Proprietary labels? So the buyer doesnt know whats in it in what ratios? (which usually means you the buyer is getting screwed)…..NO MORE! If you order 10 pounds of this, 5 pounds of that and 1 pound of that over there, we are going to walk over there and get you 10 pounds of this, 5 pounds of that and 1 pound of that over there…..If you want 15 pounds of something flavored in chocolate….we are going to get you 15 pounds first and then add the chocolate flavoring, unlike all other companies which get you 14 pounds of protein and then 1 pound of chocolate (didnt know that did you?)
So thats how Trueprotein which evolved into Truenutrition got started. Two guys who got sick of the shystering going on in the supplement industry and decided to cut out all the middle guys making their cut and decided to actually show the public what they where buying by being 100% transparent. Could we do what we did back in 2002 today in 2013, not a chance in hell. We were into 6 figures back then to start the company. Nowadays it would take (in my estimation) well into the 7 figure range to start a supplement company like ours. The paperwork for the FDA and all the bureaucratic paperwork that has to be done, plus the consultants, the testing, the procedures….its beyond extensive. It couldnt be done today…but we hit it right back in the early 2000’s and grew into what we are today.
Ok I got to go do some wind sprints (watch TV) and 225lb football field lunges (lay back in the recliner and watch more TV)