Like Father, Like Son

As Mackie Shilstone sells off his health business, Spencer Maxwell Shilstone opens the doors to a new health business

NEW ORLEANS, LA, March 2022 – The Shilstone name is synonymous in New Orleans and around the world, for that matter, with fitness, nutrition, and wellness. For over four decades, Mackie Shilstone has worked with thousands of professional athletes, including tennis sensation Serena Williams – along with actors and actresses, tactical athletes, like SWAT teams, and members of military special forces & operators.

Shilstone has also helped hundreds of people in need of improved wellness through his multiple in/out of state hospital-affiliated wellness programs. His six nationally-published books on wellness have given his readers a path to take back ownership of their health.

In addition, he’s owned and operated multiple GNC franchise stores in the metropolitan New Orleans area, St Tammany and Livingston Parishes. But at some point, Shilstone says, “You know when it’s time to walk away from some professional responsibilities in your life. “I’ve worked hard to build a trusted brand – Mackie Shilstone, but I want to pursue other interests. Therefore, I sold my two remaining GNC franchise stores, as I now look forward to the next chapter of my life.”

That chapter now reflects the proverbial saying, “The apple never falls far from the tree,” because as Mackie was dissolving himself of his franchise business, 30-year-old Spencer Maxwell Shilstone was in the process of launching his new company and brand, MaxWell Nutrition, which features a variety of well-sourced, U.S.-made health, wellness, and nutritional supplements for men and women, based on science-driven research meeting the highest purity standards. “I knew I could offer a better alternative—one driven by science-based, research-driven nutritional products—than what’s currently available in vitamin-type shops and online sites,” notes the younger Shilstone.

MaxWell Nutrition also offers a wealth of information on fitness and nutrition in online articles and videos, including Mackie’s well-known web series, Workout Wednesday, his Maximum Wellness column and podcasts, and unique, healthy MaxWell recipes. “Despite my growing up around this kind of business, I had no idea I would one day have my own brand,” says the younger Shilstone.

As a 2014 marketing and business management graduate from the University of Mississippi and a Certified Nutrition Coach from the National Academy of Sports Medicine, Spencer started a film company with a friend right out of college, before eventually joining his dad and working his way up the corporate ladder, even humorously remarking, “I guess you can say my career somewhat started when I was 12 and was tasked with sweeping floors! After college and venturing out on my own a bit, I joined my dad and really learned all aspects of operating a business, and that is an invaluable education.” His MaxWell Nutrition concept came into focus after he applied and was accepted into the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses Program, which provides education, capital, and business support services to entrepreneurs.

While Spencer’s MaxWell Nutrition model follows the scope of work of his dad’s legacy, that’s about the only commonality between the two. Spencer is focusing on one Garden District location at The Rink on Prytania Street, and unlike vitamin shops around town, his anchor store will encompass less than 500 sq. feet. Spencer knows that his target audience is more likely to be shopping online rather than in-person, so a great amount of sweat equity went into developing a comprehensive, user-friendly website populated with all the MaxWell Nutritional products and even a line of high-tech health monitoring wristwatches.

As Spencer explains, “My goal is to have the best products in the market; I’m not looking at quantity, I’m focused on quality, and that is what I have. Also, a lot of people need guidance in getting healthier, so we are not only an online retail store but a valuable resource with health and fitness articles and videos.”

The official opening of MaxWell Nutrition is Ash Wednesday, but he’s already thinking ahead as Spencer’s long-term goal is to develop paid subscriptions for phone apps to help people stay on track with their nutritional and health goals and build personal training programs they can use on their own.

“I’m very proud of Spencer and all that he has accomplished,” says the elder Shilstone, who says he plans on watching his son’s success from the sidelines, except for continuing to help Serena Williams, while additionally serving on wellness and fitness advisory boards and continuing his fitness-oriented TV segments.

For the younger Shilstone, he’s forever grateful for the advice his dad has provided along the way. And, like his dad, Spencer says he’s driven to help people to achieve their maximum wellness potential and that’s why he created MaxWell Nutrition.

As for the name of his venture, Spencer laughs as he explains, “I come from a long line of Maxwells; family members for decades have been named Maxwell, so I played on that name as it’s been around for generations, and I see my business doing the same.