Every month on the Lunette blog we’ll be featuring a badass founder who is doing amazing work in the health and wellness space.
This month, we’re talking to Kaeli Bauman, founder of Flight Fūd.
What was your first job?
I’ve actually always been a bit of an entrepreneur, when I was young I used to catch fish in the pond, put them in mason jars and go door to door selling “fish tanks” to my neighbors.
After that, I started a snow cone stand at my elementary school during recess. My parents owned a bottled water company so I took a roll of their cone cups, orange juice and coca-cola to school with me and set-up shop. I think I charged 10 cents for a snow cone, and kids would come up and choose which flavour they wanted and I would grab a handful of snow, put it in the paper cone and drizzle their choice of orange juice or coca-cola on top.
This business lasted all of 15 minutes before I got pulled into the principal’s office to shut it down because I was running an “unsanitary” business.
My first “real job” was working at McDonalds. It was great because it was basically an extension of high school—all of my friends worked there!
Tell us about your brand!
My company is Flight Fūd, and right now our flagship product, Inflight Elixir, is loved by pilots, flight attendants, and business travelers across North America. The idea to create this product same to me while I was working as a Flight Attendant and studying Holistic Nutrition. I started to get curious about the health effects flying had on my body—it didn’t make sense to me that my body needed the same support on the ground as it did at 35,000 ft in the air, and I started to question if this career had any potential long-term effects on my overall well-being.
Through a bunch of research I discovered six main health effects of flying—exposure to cosmic radiation, chronic dehydration, poor circulation, low immunity, bloating and indigestion, and chronic jet lag.
I learned that flying at the frequency which flight crew and business travelers fly significantly increases their chance of hormonal related cancer, skin cancers and causes premature aging. Chronic jet-lag actually speeds up the clock! After learning all of this information, I searched for a product to counteract these effects and to keep me healthy in the air, and I couldn’t find anything—this is when I knew I had a big opportunity.
What has been the most challenging part of being a female founder?
The most challenging part is feeling lonely and isolated at times. Even though I have really supportive friends and family, it can be hard for other people to relate unless they are in the exact same boat as you. It can be hard for them to understand why you work 15 hour days and have to turn down friday night wine dates.
What has been the best part?
The best part is seeing your idea come to life—it’s so surreal. I look back to earlier this year when Flight Fud was just a bunch of words scribbled in a notebook, and now it’s a real product which people are using and buying. It shows you that you really can create and do just about anything.
Can you give our readers your best piece of career advice?
Just start! So many people have great ideas and very few of them have the courage to actually go for it. People are scared to take a risk and put themselves out there, they are scared of failing and are scared of what people will think of them. It’s all about taking small deliberate steps in a forward direction every single day. Just start and you will gain momentum. Starting is the hardest part.
Tell us about a time when you had to do something scary in your life. How did you handle it?
After leaving my hometown when I was 18, I moved back after 8 years to start Flight Fud. I had a whole bunch of student debt to pay off and I knew that if I were to stay in the city where I had so many distractions and where my cost of living was so much higher that it would take much longer to both get out of debt and launch my company. I wanted to fast track things so I cut myself a slice of humble pie, moved back in with my parents and got to work. This was super scary for me because my pride and ego wanted so badly to get in the way, but ultimately I was so focused and committed to make Flight Fūd happen, it was the smartest choice at the time. I was willing to go “backwards” and put all of my time and money towards growing this company instead of taking vacations and shopping.
Aside from your career, what is your lifestyle like? What kind of things do you do for fun? What are your passions?
I am obsessed with personal development and am in constant pursuit of excellence. I actually schedule in about 3 hours a day to read/listen/watch/study people like Tony Robbins, Jim Rohn, Brian Tracy etc. I am obsessed with becoming a better version of myself and see myself as an eternal learner. Other than that, yoga and pilates are my favourite ways to sweat. I love discovering new coffee shops, going on road trips, and spending time outdoors whether it be hiking, skiing, or kayaking. Oh, and traveling, of course!
If someone told you that they wanted their life to be “better”, what advice would you give them?
I would tell them to become very self-aware. Figure out exactly what you want out of life, what is important to you, what are you passionate about, and then map out a plan to get your life to look exactly like that. I think so many people chase other people’s dreams...they get the job they “think” they should get, they buy all the shiny toys and cars, and yet still feel empty and lonely inside. When you are chasing the things that aren’t actually important to you, that’s where there is a disconnect and you feel stuck, bored, angry, and unfulfilled.
Is there anything else you’d like to tell our readers?
Stay in your own lane, there’s no traffic there. Focus, commit, discipline. You might surprise yourself with what you can actually accomplish <3
What are your social media links so our readers can find you?
Want to win a pack of Flight Fud’s Inflight Elixir (along with other great wellness products)?
Enter Lunette’s #morethanaresolution giveaway!