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Chris Gronkowski is the founder of Ice Shaker. Ice Shaker is a vacuum-insulated, stainless-steel protein shaker that holds ice for over 30 hours and is the chosen shaker bottle for people like Alex Rodriguez and Mark Cuban who are both investors, Marshawn Lynch and of course all the Gronkowski brothers – Glenn, Dan, Gordie and Rob. Chris is a former NFL fullback who played for the Dallas Cowboys, Denver Broncos and Indianapolis Colts. He played college football at the University of Arizona. He was on the hit TV show Shark Tank and received an investment from Mark Cuban and Alex Rodriguez for 150K for 15% and just 1 year after being featured Ice Shaker grew from 1 product to over 80 SKUs. Today, you can find Ice Shaker in over 3,500 GNC locations and UFC gyms across the USA.


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Here’s a glimpse of what you’ll learn:

  • [1:50] Jeremy welcomes his guest, Chris Gronkowski.
  • [3:50] Chris explains how his wife started a side gig that took off.
  • [9:15] How did the business get so much early momentum?
  • [11:20] What were the early top sellers?
  • [13:30] How did Ice Shaker start?
  • [17:00] Challenges with creating and sourcing your own product.
  • [20:30] What was life like in the Gronkowski household?
  • [24:15] Chris talks about “Club G.”
  • [26:45] What are Chris’ NFL career highlights?
  • [33:30] Chris tells a story from his childhood that made an impact.
  • [35:00] What was the pre-Shark Tank version of the Ice Shaker?
  • [38:50] Why Chris and his team featured the Ice Shaker on Amazon.
  • [40:15] How did Chris prep for Shark Tank?
  • [44:00] Which Shark did Chris want to go into business with? What advice did he receive?
  • [48:10] What is the status of Ice Shaker today?
  • [52:30] Where you can find the Ice Shaker.
  • [54:00] The lowest moment in business for Chris.
  • [57:00] A moment that Chris is proud of.

In this episode…

How do you make a pivot in your professional career? Can you really change lanes and go in a different direction or at some point is it too late? On this episode of Inspired Insider, you’ll hear from entrepreneur and former NFL player, Chris Gronkowski. In his conversation with Jeremy, Chris opens up about his career in the NFL, what led him to start his own business, what it was like growing up as a Gronkowski, challenges he has faced along the way, and much more. You don’t want to miss a minute of this fascinating episode featuring Chris’ story!

After four seasons in the NFL, Chris Gronkowski decided that it was time for a change. His then girlfriend and now wife was working on a side business that piqued his interest. After working with her to build the business, Chris started to think about how he could take something he cared about to the marketplace. As you can imagine, Chris’ head was full of ideas, but nothing was quite sticking out. Then, one day, while working out at the gym – it came to him! What if he could take a product he loved, like the Yeti rambler, to the gym? This idea eventually became the basis for Chris’ invention – the Ice Shaker.

As many of you know, an idea is one thing, implementing it a whole different animal. Chris and his team faced the usual challenges you’d face with creating a product from the ground up. Once they honed in on their concept, Chris took the very rough idea and concept design to Shark Tank. Thankfully, Chris’ gambit paid off, and he was able to attract the interest of Alex Rodriguez and Mark Cuban. The Shark Tank process was anything but easy, Chris had to wrestle with some serious decisions, but in the end – the benefits outweighed the challenges. What can you learn from Chris’ story?

When you think about your journey, are you thankful for the early lessons you learned or are you still in the middle of trying to figure things out? Let’s face it; difficulty will come, no matter what – the challenge is, what are you going to do when it arrives. Are you prepared to withstand anything that you run up against? While Chris Gronkowski’s father didn’t prepare him specifically for life as a business leader, the truth is, many of the lessons he learned as an athlete were transferable. Chris credits the strength and conditioning he learned as a young man to the toughness and perseverance he exudes today as a business leader.

Are you inherently a risk-taker? Many business leaders are risk-takers, and almost every entrepreneur is one too. When was the last time you stretched yourself and took a risk? You’ve heard the quote from Wayne Gretzky, “You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.” What do you have to lose? Get out there and shake things up – don’t be afraid of what might happen! Learn from Chris’ example – he didn’t have any guarantee that Ice Shaker would make it, but he gave it everything he had anyway. You can learn more about Chris and his powerful story with Ice Shaker by checking out the link to his site located in the resources section at the end of this post.

Resources Mentioned on this episode

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