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SparkPeople: A (5-Minute) History

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This short video clip from Fox News Chicago does a great job sharing a brief history of SparkPeople. Our Founder, Chris "SparkGuy" Downie, reached his own goals by co-founding eBay's leading competitor and selling that company to eBay as their first acquisition.

Chris first developed the SparkPeople program to overcome his own social anxiety. A co-worker named Pat then used the same program and lost 50 pounds, which changed his life. Pat then went on to start a walking group and motivate many people. Seeing Pat's transformation made Chris understand that our daily actions and words impact more people than we realize.

Chris then decided to start a new company with the mission to SPARK millions of PEOPLE to reach their goals using health and fitness as a springboard to reach milestones in all areas of life (yes, this is where our name came from). Now, Chris considers himself to be just a small part of the SparkPeople team--and that team includes our millions of members supporting each other to reach goals.

Our team loves seeing real people reaching life-changing goals on the site every day--like those featured in this video. Thanks for your support, and have fun reaching your goals!

Member Comments

  • I am grateful to Chris Downie and his beliefs. Thank you for this website. Now, I can not remember how I actually got here. I take it as a gift from God. *sigh, of relief* One Day At A Time. Everybody, we are in this together, and can succeed. Great video from Husband and Wife with Daughter. Onward to reach our goals. Best Wishes. :-) - 9/17/2014 3:31:08 PM
  • Thank you to Chris Downey! I am looking forward to starting your program! - 9/17/2014 2:17:51 PM
  • i'M back. Well it took two years. I need motivation and support. I rejoined the gym a week ago and it took me a week to actually go, but I finally went tonight and logged my first mile. I want to work up to 10 miles. Of walking a week. This goal will take some time to reach.. My hubby was recently diagnosed with type 2 diabetes so keeping sweets around is not happening, but I like to sneak and eat them. I need all of the encouragement I can get. I am 63 and this is a health as well as self image issue for me. Good luck to everyone. - 9/16/2014 9:29:52 PM
  • I am trying to get back into Spark People, because it holds me accountable. As I get older, I have more and more physical problems which a good diet and ample exercise would help. Right now I am about rock bottom and seldom leave the house. Returning to Spark People friends will help me to recover as much healing as possible. - 9/15/2014 10:52:32 PM
  • I have been Sparking since 2007. This site does help me to track my food, not only for tracking but also for my overall health. It helps me to record what i've eaten, and I can see any patterns when any of my back pains flare up. - 9/15/2014 10:02:58 AM
  • i too like so many others struggle with continued commitment, so i'm back again, this time just taking baby steps until it becomes as daily exercise to check in daily - 9/13/2014 6:18:39 PM
  • I love this program! I have lost more than I thought possible because I have tried so many times. But the most important thing--it's free! It's not that I want to take advantage of the deal--of course I do!--but the spirit of generosity and community replaces the food cravings with a caring community. Hard to put into words, but that's about it. - 9/10/2014 11:33:23 AM
  • I love this program! I have lost more than I thought possible because I have tried so many times. But the most important thing--it's free! It's not that I want to take advantage of the deal--of course I do!--but the spirit of generosity and community replaces the food cravings with a caring community. Hard to put into words, but that's about it. - 9/10/2014 11:32:53 AM
  • informative - 9/8/2014 3:06:34 PM
  • Thank You, Thank you Thank You Chris!!! This site is amazing :) - 9/8/2014 10:59:47 AM
  • I feel very motivated and it is also inspiring to see Chris helping others. - 9/7/2014 7:36:32 PM
  • WOW ITS REAL LOOKING FORWARD TO GETTING STARED - 9/7/2014 3:15:17 PM
  • I need motivation. I Started a couple of years back and fell off the wagon and just gave up. As I get older I realize that I need to get myself healthy. So here I am again. This video gives me a boost to come back and get this done. Thanks for sharing!! - 9/4/2014 5:55:07 PM
  • I was at my "wits end" about my weight. I goggled low carb diet and this was one of the sights to come up. I need to loose 60 pounds. I can't believe here's a program to help me for free. - 9/4/2014 3:16:11 PM
  • I joined in July 2014, and am still discovering more about this site. Already with the little I have learned I can see positive results in every part of my life (really! physical, nutritional, emotional, intellectual, social, spiritual - you know what I mean). I am truly grateful. Thank you all for making this uniquely excellent program available to all. - 9/2/2014 2:43:37 PM

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