The future of proactive, personalized care has arrived.
From AI to GLP-1s, 2023 was full of industry-defining developments, the effects of which will unfold over the next decade.
Today, we’re exploring how recent advancements will shape and merge the futures of fitness, food, health, and wellness — creating opportunities on the edge of innovation.
New approaches could boost gym membership and activity levels to record highs.
Systemized strength. Weight training is hot, but workouts aren’t one-size-fits-all. Goal-specific classes for injury prevention, fitness racing, and healthy aging will grow as class times shrink toward <20-minute lifting snacks.
Hyper-personal training. Technology won’t replace trainers, it’ll 10x outcomes while reducing costs. Armed with wearables and AI, PTs will serve more clients, layering accountability atop tech to optimize gains, nutrition, sleep, and recovery.
Gym-as-clinic. Part fitness center, part longevity lab, gyms will evolve into holistic health hubs where clients receive preventative scans, blood tests, and pharmaceuticals (like GLP-1s and HRT) alongside programming.
Recovery clubs. Iterating on services like IV drips and ice baths, companies will infuse community. Expect more immersive group experiences, like sauna + psychedelic sessions, cold plunge retreats, and mindful walking groups.
GLP-1s won’t change the fact we’re overfed and undernourished.
Prescription diets. Reactive healthcare stifles food as medicine, complicating payment, access, and administration. But as startups remove barriers, food as medicine as corporate wellness could provide an alternative to employer-subsidized GLP-1s.
Eco-eating. Consumers will ditch ultra-processed foods, seed oils, and toxins. Stepping in, specialty stores, DTC subscriptions, and purpose-driven restaurants will provide small-scale, organic, and regenerative options.
Stealth health. Personalized and performance-minded, packaged bevs and bites will be tailored to bioindividual needs, optimizing for brain and gut health. As better-for-you becomes the baseline, modern branding will emphasize indulgence and fun over function.
Curation station. Playing tastemaker, indie grocers, influencers, and health clubs will give young brands a platform. Viral moments will push foods like tinned fish, gut health shots, seaweed, and foraged mushrooms from social feeds to shelves.
Pharmaceuticals will be a last-ditch complement to behavior change.
Blue-collar concierge. Whether from big-box retailers or specialized providers, on-demand services will spread across income levels. As admin is offloaded to AI, digital twins and individualized therapies will replace mass prescriptions as best practice.
Self-health. As companies refine tech, gain FDA approvals, and integrate data, healthcare partnerships will help democratize wearables and at-home diagnostics. Biometric-tracking apps, personalized lifestyle prescriptions, and AI health coaches will redefine health agency.
Wellness rewards. Incentivizing a new order, insurance companies will allow nutritionists and personal trainers to bill for services, offering rebates for improved biomarkers. Elsewhere, consumer apps, health savings accounts, and credit cards will reward well-being.
Scaling up, commercial wellness will reach higher tiers on the hierarchy of needs.
Immortality elixirs. Metformin, NAD+, rapamycin, and biological age tests will proliferate, triggering mainstream demand for longevity drugs. In search of a holy grail, consumers will stack ingestibles, injectables, and topicals to fend aging.
Mental fitness. The pursuit of resilience will rise to combat an obsession with instant gratification. Physical challenges like cold plunges and rucking will popularize as tools for fortitude and self-regulation.
Wellhoods. Replicating Blue Zones, private developers will expand utopic neighborhoods conducive to community and outdoor activities — complete with recovery-equipped homes and state-of-the-art fitness centers.
Looking ahead: In the quest for well-being, two distinct poles are pulling from either end — health is either a pill with a price tag or a rediscovery of your primitive self. In the year ahead, expect this gulf to widen.
🎙 On the Podcast
TRX founder Randy Hetrick & TRX CEO Jack Daly discuss revitalizing the brand.
Former Navy SEAL Randy Hetrick developed portable suspension straps while on deployment in the ’90s, launched TRX in 2004, and led the business for 15 years before selling. In 2022, Randy teamed up with Jack Daly to reacquire the brand out of bankruptcy, kicking off its new chapter.
We also cover: product innovation, acquisition opportunities, TRX’s digital platform, and the future of functional fitness.
Listen to today’s episode here.
🤝 Peloton strikes content deal with TikTok
In-app. A mix of short-form workouts, live classes, and bonus footage from instructors and celebrities will be available — marking the first time Peloton has produced custom social content outside its own network.
Fitness for all. Stacking partnerships, Peloton’s reaching users across hotels, colleges, sports leagues, and corporate wellness.
Late last year, it also teamed with lululemon — becoming the apparel brand’s exclusive digital fitness provider while absorbing offloaded MIRROR users.
Exercise snacks. Creating shareable fitness content for the younger demo, Peloton promises to influence “culture, communities and conversations.”
Punchline: Peloton shares spiked on the news, but its true value will be determined by how many social followers convert to paying customers.
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💉 Eli Lilly launches DTC weight loss prescriptions
The pharmaceutical giant will push direct-to-patient weight loss prescriptions through a new website, LillyDirect.
All-access. Partnering with telehealth provider Form Health, the drug maker aims to increase access to obesity drugs like its recently approved Zepbound — promising “efficiency and convenience” for “consistent access to Lilly medicines.”
Drug wars. With the market for weight loss drugs tracking toward $200B by 2030, Lilly hopes to outmaneuver rivals like Ozempic maker Novo Nordisk. The move also threatens GLP-1-prescribing digital platforms like Ro and Found.
In or out. The flurry is prompting response from fitness and wellness brands. Last week, recovery spa Restore Hyper Wellness launched an obesity drug weight loss program, joining WW, Noom, Life Time, and Xponential Fitness as opt-ins.
Another approach, Equinox is tailoring personal training to clients on weight loss drugs — curtailing significant muscle loss associated with treatment. Given its high-end clientele and notable health advisory board, the company could soon opt in.
Looking ahead: Solving the obesity epidemic requires a multi-faceted approach. But, if we shill miracle cures without addressing root causes, the problem will only get worse.
📰 News & Notes
- F45 Training launches athletic-style Pilates concept.
- Community, trail sports headline Strava’s annual report.
- Hyperice hits rival Therabody with sweeping patent suit.
- Apple Fitness+ teams with Gympass amid partnership push.
- Fitt Jobs: Hundreds of top health & fitness companies are hiring.
- GORUCK scores apparel and footwear partnerships with CrossFit.
- Elo Health teams with Nourished for 3D-printed gummy supplements.
- Truemed, NASM unlock HSA/FSA dollars for personal training sessions.
- Amazon debuts health monitoring program, partners with Omada Health.
- Mental health shot Magic Mind lands Sprouts Farmers Market distribution.
- STEPR signs on with Safeware to ensure extended longevity of its stair-climbers.
- Pendulum Therapeutics hires former Mayo Clinic director as chief medical officer.
💰 Money Moves
- Ohio-based ForeverLawn Sports Complex received a $10M investment from billionaire sports owners Josh Harris and David Blitzer for youth sports programming.
- Acupuncture and TCM brand WTHN raised $5M in a Series A round led by L Catterton for physical expansion.
- SYSTM Foods, a functional beverage brand platform, acquired HUMM Kombucha.
- Plant-based protein bar brand Mezcla raised $4M in Series A round led by Dream Ventures and Santatera Capital.
- Oakland-based, DEI-focused specialty run store Renegade Running received an undisclosed investment from REI Path Ahead Ventures.
- Heranova Lifesciences closed a $13.5M seed round for women’s health solutions, starting with noninvasive endometriosis tests and treatments.
- Platinum Equity acquired dairy brands Horizon Organic and Wallaby from global food company Danone.
- Virtual mental health startup Tava Health secured $16M in a new funding round.
- Women’s health-focused Cosette Pharmaceuticals acquired Vyleesi, a therapy for biopsychosocial conditions.
- Holistic health and fitness platform FlexIt acquired mental health startup Sukhi Inc.’s enterprise wellness business.
- Beckley Psytech, a psychedelic biotech company, received a $50M strategic investment from atai Life Sciences.
- O2X Human Performance (O2X), provider of wellness and performance programs for high-stakes operators, received an undisclosed investment from Falfurrias Growth Partners.
- MDMA-assisted therapy company MAPS PBC, closed a $100M oversubscribed Series A round led by Helena and rebranded to Lykos Therapeutics.
- Health In Her HUE, a digital health platform connecting women of color with culturally competent healthcare, secured $3M in a seed round led by Seae Ventures.
Today’s newsletter was brought to you by Anthony Vennare, Joe Vennare, Ryan Deer, and Jasmina Breen.