Eleven years ago, Matt McLellan moved back to Decatur, Alabama, after earning his degree from Auburn University. It was 2008 and jobs were scarce; finding an internship or an entry-level position was challenging. Rather than sit back and wait for an opportunity, Matt decided to pursue his dedication to health and fitness on another level.
“In Auburn, there was a sports nutrition store that offered all kinds of high-quality products at fair prices without having to wait for online orders,” said Matt, Owner and Founder of Absolute Nutrition. “It was my favorite local shop. When I moved back to Decatur, I wondered if something similar would do well there. After a lot of research and surveys at nearby gyms, I decided to go for it. That’s when I founded Absolute Nutrition and opened our first store.”
Absolute Nutrition is a North Alabama-based brand with three locations: Decatur, Huntsville, and Madison. But after several years in its current Madison shop, Matt and his team have decided to relocate operations to the newly redeveloped Hughes Plaza in a 1,600-square-foot space.
“Our relocation will make us much more accessible to our Madison clients,” he explained. “Beyond that, the area is becoming a fitness hub for the city. There are several gyms within a one-mile stretch of Hughes Plaza and the site has excellent co-tenancy.”
Matt is counting on synergy between Hughes Plaza’s tenants with a fitness focus. So far, Fleet Feet and Just Love Coffee have announced they are opening at the center with the already established Bicycle Cove. Absolute Nutrition will bring yet another piece of the fitness puzzle to the renewed development.
What is Absolute Nutrition?
“We are a sports nutrition retailer that offers nutritional supplements, healthy smoothies, pre-cooked meals, weightlifting equipment, and even nitro cold-brew coffee,” said Matt. “We are celebrating our 11th birthday this week and it’s amazing how far we have come. It has been an honor to grow with our communities.”
The company prides itself on offering the best products on the market and highly vets everything before it reaches the shelves. Products are investigated at a formula level to make sure that quality, effectiveness, and price all line up to create something stellar.
All staff is trained to assist guests with a number of health goals like improving sleep, weight loss, weight gain, workout recovery, and much more. They even help customers with special dietary restrictions or needs. All of this education creates an informed and transparent company culture that Matt believes is essential to success.
“Things can get confusing in the health and wellness market, especially when it comes to supplements,” he said. “My staff and I have personally tried most of the items on our sales floor and discussed results before making them publicly available. We strive to create strong relationships with quality vendors and manufacturers and we believe we are bringing the best products to our customers.”
More Than Nutritional Supplements
“When I began Absolute Nutrition the goal was to help people and provide a better service than what was available locally at the time,” said Matt. “The range of goals that we serve is wide; therefore, our offerings are too.”
Absolute Nutrition serves up pre-cooked healthy meals, nutritional smoothies, nitro cold-brew coffee, and weightlifting equipment too. According to Matt, pre-cooked meals have become a big part of the business.
“We’ve offered a variety of pre-cooked meals for five years now,” he said. “We partnered with Fit Five Meals based in Birmingham because they have found a great balance in creating healthy items that still taste incredible. They use seasonal ingredients, and they offer a variety of choices week to week. It’s an excellent alternative to fast food.”
Meals like Stuffed Chicken Parm Peppers, Chicken Kabobs, Chicken Bacon Ranch Wraps, and Buffalo Chicken Stuffed Sweet Potatoes are just a few of the customer favorites you can try. There are even desserts like Kit Kat bites and Oreo Fireworks Bites made with rolled oats, crunchy peanut butter, protein powder, Oreo crumbles, stevia, and honey. Customers can wash it all down with some fresh nitro cold-brew coffee.
“I fell in love with nitro cold-brew the first time I tried it,” smiled Matt. “So I knew that was something I wanted to introduce into the business. After six months of trial and error, we developed an awesome nitro cold-brew offering.”
The nitro cold-brew from Absolute Nutrition can also come in a variety of special flavors. There’s even a “Nitro Plus” drink that adds protein to your coffee. But if coffee isn’t your thing, you can also opt for a nourishing smoothie.
“Smoothies come in 16-ounce and 32-ounce sizes with a variety of flavors to choose from,” said Matt. “Classics like Chocolate Peanut Butter and Peanut Butter & Banana are always great. But we also have selections like the Green Goddess for anyone wanting to up their vitamin intake. Kids love them too!”
Weightlifters also have something to look forward to at the shop because they can purchase equipment like bumper plates and barbells.
“Our team takes your needs and goals personally, and that’s not by accident,” said Matt. “We have been able to stand the test of time for 11 years now because we care deeply about the quality of the products and services we provide to our customers. We want to ensure that they can trust us to have the best products at an affordable price without the wait.”
Welcome to Hughes Plaza!
Absolute Nutrition said they expect to be up and running in their new Madison location this August. Matt said the crew looks forward to being in the heart of Madison and near so many fitness-minded businesses.
“In the 9 years we’ve been here, Madison has evolved and changed so much,” said Matt. “We are thrilled to be relocating to a place closer and easier for our clients to access. For anyone who hasn’t tried Absolute Nutrition yet, we’d love to meet you. We have something for everyone from smoothies and refreshments to vitamins and pre-workout supplements. Come grab a Fit Five meal or a nitro cold-brew to go. We have something everyone can enjoy.”
Now, another nearby property will experience renovations and add more retail and office space to the square. 107 North Side Square will be transformed into a space desirable to restaurants, office users, and retail. Crunkleton will be handling the leasing for the project and working with other local groups who are handling the redevelopment.
“Environmental, economic, and social sustainability—those are the pillars of our company,” shared Candace Stough, co-owner of The Foundry Coffee Roasting Company. Have you ever considered the many skilled hands it takes to make your morning coffee? From the farmers to roasters and baristas, it takes a village to create each pour. The Foundry will bring sustainable coffee practices, products, education, and more to the Huntsville area that will have a global impact.