A lifetime proponent of good health and nutrition practices, Julie Pech heard a knock of opportunity the moment she heard of the health benefits of dark chocolate. She decided to approach her long-ignored dream of becoming a published author head on, and she quickly penned The Chocolate Therapist: A User’s Guide to the Extraordinary Health Benefits of Chocolate. Motivated to further share the healthy way to enjoy great chocolate, Pech then opened a storefront in 2008 where expert chocolatiers craft a host of healthy sweets each day from all-natural ingredients. While Julie has turned her attention to expanding the brand and opening new stores, new owners Jeff and Libby Nordeen are committed to continuing the mission of offering high-quality, hand-made chocolates. They have also expanded into gourmet beverages and now the staff also mix up hot lattes and cappuccinos from fresh-roasted coffee and farm-fresh, hormone-free milk, and pour cups of rich sipping chocolate that offer a liquid alternative to inhaling chocolate from your at-home vaporizer.
Local cows yield local milk, which yields the local yogurt found at Yogurt Shack. Their all-natural flavors include tastes such as coconut, peanut butter, and tart, all of which are loaded with live and active cultures, protein, and other vitamins and nutrients. More than 40 toppings that range from Fruity Pebbles and M&Ms to cherries, banana chips, and cookie-dough pieces help to craft customized treat combinations.
For many, maintaining a healthy fitness regimen is an off-putting chore on par with cleaning the garage or assembling that backyard roller coaster for the kids. The folks behind Snap Fitness, who now boast locations all over the world, are of the opinion that this doesn't have to be the case. They believe 24-hour access to premium cardio and strength-training equipment, innovative easyFIT monitors to track personal progress, and perpetual guidance from certified professionals can help transform physical fitness into an accessible activity that yields measurable and tangible results. In addition to providing online workout rubrics and meal plans, they work to keep sweat glands up and running by offering work out rewards programs, making regular check-in calls, and measuring bodies—sans padded muscle suits—every 30 days.