Meet The Juice, the New Philly-Based Juice Cleanse for Athletes
It wasn’t until after college that Malvern resident Katie Rodger got into running. She’d been a Division 1 swimmer at James Madison University, but once pool time was no longer readily available, she decided to test her running chops. It helped that her mom was an avid and accomplished runner, too.
“I watched the effect running had on her mentally, emotionally, physically,” Katie, 29, says of her mom. “She really found herself, and I wanted that.”
So Katie slapped on a pair of running shoes and hit the road. But after a few years marred by pesky injuries, she says, “I realized I wasn’t training correctly, and I wasn’t eating correctly.” Over the past three years she’s done a complete diet overhaul. She’s moved to a mostly plant-based diet, and steers clear of gluten and dairy. She got into juicing and raw food, too.
“I’ve noticed a complete difference in athletic performance,” she says. “I can run longer. My body is performing better.” She credits this, of course, to her new diet.
This past spring, Katie officially launched a business to bring her lessons to the public, and she just quit her job at Comcast a few weeks ago to focus on her business full time. It’s called The Juice, a juice company (duh) focused on athletes.
First thing’s first: Forget everything you’re imagining about a typical juice—you know, the thin, just-liquid-no-pulp juices you’re used to getting bottled up at Whole Foods. Katie’s juices are thicker because they contain the plant fibers along with some added boosters, like plant-based protein powders (she likes Vega, by the way), maca powder (which brings extra vitamins, iron, potassium, copper, magnesium, selenium, phosphorous and calcium to the table), and chia seeds (a terrific source of fiber, calcium and phosphorus and manganese). In other words, her juices are more like what you would consider a smoothie than a juice. (In fact, I’ll just call them smoothies from here on out just to avoid confusion.)
She offers a basic cleanse that anyone can try (six smoothies a day for up to three days), but she also works with athletes to make eating plans tailored to their needs; these plans include her smoothies, but also recipe ideas and other guidance. “I thought that from an athlete’s perspective, the juice cleanses are great, but you have to pause your active lifestyle to do them. On a typical cleanse, you can’t really be working out at the same intensity,” she says. So she creates detox plans for athlete-clients who want to pack their bodies with nutrition but still need solid-food calories to fuel their workouts.
Right now, she operates her business out of her home, delivering smoothies to over 300 clients. But she’s starting to make connections at local fitness studios and businesses (Plank and Lululemon in Wayne, Flywheel in Center City), who will begin carrying her products to sell in their stores. And by next spring, she hopes to have a food truck up and running so she can sell smoothies directly to customers.
“You know how ice cream trucks have music so you know they’re coming?” she says. “I’m working on my own sound so you’ll be like, ‘Oh, that’s the juice lady!'”
The Juice smoothies come in reusable glass jars. Katie doesn’t charge a deposit fee but offers discounts on future purchases to clients who return them. The products can last anywhere from 42 to 72 hours in the jars.
The smoothies are $8 each; the Detox Program, which includes coaching, raw-food supplements, snacks, recipes and delivery, ranges from $35 to $45 a day for the three-a-day program to $70 to 90 a day if the customer would like up to six juices a day, plus ingredient prep and with more advanced recipe consultation. She delivers throughout the region—from the city to Bucks County—and is happy to make deliveries to New Jersey.
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