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Experience Sarasota: Get Fit Fuel

Experience Sarasota: Get Fit Fuel

With three different locations throughout Sarasota, Get Fit Fuel possesses a foodie philosophy that stems from Gentile’s realization that life is much easier when life doesn’t revolve the drudgery and expense of grocery shopping.

A store that offers a relaxed, café-like ambience, serving a menu of made-from-scratch dinners, sides and desserts all packed and ready to go is a rare breed.

However, Get Fit Fuel owner Greg Gentile insists is not a health food store. Instead, he contends, his stores offer ready-made, packaged meals that are, “Just what you make at home, but healthier. I want to help people make good decisions about what they eat.”

With three different locations throughout Sarasota, Get Fit Fuel possesses a foodie philosophy that stems from Gentile’s realization that life is much easier when life doesn’t revolve the drudgery and expense of grocery shopping.

“I like to think I know my customers and what they want,” he says. “They look for something that can save them time at home. Some people will come into the store for lunch but they’ll also buy four or five other items for their dinner. All they have to do is take those meals home and heat them in a microwave. In a few minutes they have a healthy meal for just themselves or their family.

Those meals include Chicken Enchilada, Chipotle Steak, raw salads, breakfast bowls, smoothies and juices including the ‘Kale Mary.”

“To me, everything in life is getting more expensive and people are having to work harder just to stand still,” said Gentile’s colleague Karen Noble.

“They have to figure out how to save time and money. There comes a point where you have to ask yourself do you want to grocery shop for two hours a week and then spend all that time cooking, or do you have an alternative? You can come to Get Fit Fuel, buy our juices and our food and take two or three nights off from the kitchen and instead spend that time with your family. Go do something that’s fun.”

Gentile opened his first Get Fit Fuel in 2013 at Siesta Key and has plans for a new store in St. Petersburg later this year. And as the current owner of a food distribution company, he was more than familiar with the machinations of the culinary industry and it wasn’t long before he decided to open a brick and mortar store. Citing his own lifestyle as an inspiration, he decided it made sense to offer a healthy, fast food-type of environment that has since proved popular beyond his expectations.

“Before I was married, I would go to the grocery store and come out with bags of chips and dip and very little in the way of healthy food,” he explained. And when I’d get home, I’d have a bag Funyuns for dinner, it was a disaster. In fact, I once had a customer who said she had an eating disorder and she then went on to describe her lifestyle which was my lifestyle. Something had to change.”

Admitting that he rarely cooks anything (“If I had my way I wouldn’t have a kitchen in my house,” he admitted), Gentile is constantly on the search for new recipes.

“Oh, I’m not afraid of stealing ideas,” he said. If I eat a meal that impresses me, Chef Dan and I will recreate it in our kitchen, but it will be cheaper and healthier.

Customer feedback also plays an important part in creating the store’s recipes, and Gentile is constantly learning from their requests and suggestions.

“It’s what makes each working day exciting,” he says. “I never know what to expect. That’s the best part of owning Get Fit Fuel.”

Get Fit Fuel

539 South Washington Boulevard
941 36-6700

2063 Siesta Drive
941 554-4567

Lakewood Ranch
941 961-8207

getfitfuel@gmail.com
facebook.com/getfitfuel

 

 

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