She cruises around Clearwater in a Rolls Royce SUV with her custom “FASTer Way teal” interior, she captains her own boat and her family helped to fund the opening of a church. She doesn’t play around with goals or ambition. She’s not bothered by “haters.”
She has more than 280,000 social media followers. She’s a business owner, mother of five and a wife.
Talk about layers, Amanda Tress has them. Bursting with energy, she’s also incredibly down-to-earth and humble.
By the age of 30, she wanted to be a millionaire. She checked that “to-do” off her list a few years prior. She met her retirement goals by 2018. She was only 32.
In 2022, FASTer Way to Fat Loss, Tress’ Clearwater-based company, had revenue of $47.5 million. In 2023, it’s estimated to break $55 million in revenue.
Tress allows a lot to roll off her shoulders. She laughs often. But one thing she’s serious about?
Success. And she’s making it happen on her own terms.
A FASTER WAY
Playing the slow game is just not something that has ever interested Tress a whole lot. She’s ambitious, sets ridiculously lofty goals—and she meets them.
When she was in college, she was hyperfocused on making money and not leaving school in debt.
“I had five jobs at a time in college,” says Tress. She worked hard enough to not only cover her education expenses but also that of her husband, Brandon. She was relentless in her mission for them to begin their life together without being saddled with debt.
“I was like, I’m just going to work all day, every day. We were going to make sacrifices [then] so that later we would be in a good situation,” she says.
Tress was studying psychology. Brandon was studying finance. “I always say, marry your attorney or your CPA,” Tress says, jokingly, though providing solid advice.
While clearly intelligent, Tress says college life just never seemed all that interesting to her. If she finds value in something, that’s when she gets motivated.
“I just block it out. I don’t want to waste time on things that don’t interest me,” Tress says. “I’m generous with my money but I’m cheap with my time.”
In college, she became a personal trainer. Active for most of her life, she has always taken an interest in fitness, health and wellness, she says.
“I was like the Jillian Michaels of our town,” she says. “I barely had to solicit for any business. I had a long waiting list.” She attributes this to delivering results for her clients, as she does today.
As a teenager, she struggled with controlling hereditary high blood pressure, even with an active lifestyle. After learning to focus on the nutrition aspect of health, she was able to get it under control.
“I was able to wean off blood pressure medication in college once I started to really focus on whole food nutrition. That’s when I realized I needed to focus on helping my clients do the same thing,” she says.
This was the beginning of FASTer Way to Fat Loss, Tress’ multi-million-dollar fitness business.
It’s a unique system she created that encompasses fitness and the adherence to a specific food cycle that, when used correctly, is a highly effective program for women, particularly women in their 40s, 50s and even 60s and beyond, she says. A men’s program is taking off, as well.
The plan uses intermittent fasting, carbohydrate cycling and macronutrient tracking. The system she markets today, she developed in 2016, but has since perfected and turned it into a certification model.
“No one, still to this day, is pairing food cycles with workouts, which makes no sense to me,”
Tress says. “The effectiveness is insane.” The company is currently doing a clinical trial with ASPI, in Tampa.
One of the major drivers for FASTer Way’s success, was Tress’ early adoption, and leveraging, of social media before social influencing was “a thing.”
THE INFLUENCER EFFECT
Facebook officially launched in 2004, mostly for university students, but it wasn’t until 2007 that the rest of the world began to understand it and use it. Tress was an early adopter.
“I was like, ‘Oh, I’m going to use this … not for pleasure, but to market my business,” she says.
And she did, very successfully.
After graduating from Cedarville University, in Ohio, she began working for the school, in the admissions department.
“I pitched to one of the vice presidents that we needed someone to run social media. Like who is doing email marketing? Who is doing search engine optimization? And one of them said, ‘OK, you do it.’ ” And that was that.
At the time, no one was an expert in these strategies. In fact, not many were utilizing the capabilities at all, so Tress trained herself to be an expert. “I was just really intrigued by it,” she says.
Completely self-taught, Tress created social media strategies for Cedarville, completed a website redesign and created a marketing plan for the university’s admissions department.
Everything she touches turns to gold, or teal, as it were.
Meanwhile, she married her childhood sweetheart, whom she met in third grade (more on that later) and had her first child.
By the time she was pregnant with her second child, her fitness business was ramping up.
“I was like, ‘Shoot.’ I could make more money if I wasn’t working full-time. I wanted to just focus all my time on my own company. So, I quit my full-time web marketing job,” Tress recalls.
“While I was in labor, in my delivery bed, I launched my own digital marketing agency for women and fitness. I landed my first client while I was in labor.”
She had her first business meeting for her agency, three days later.
What would follow would be the precursor to FASTer Way to Fat Loss. Online training turned into certifying other trainers to replicate the system, which later turned into a lucrative franchise model.
As the business scaled in Ohio, and grew into a multimillion-dollar agency, the Tress family eyed a move to Florida.
By 2016, Tress had relocated to Clearwater and launched the FASTer Way to Fat Loss beta program.
At the time, her agency was making most of the money, but as FASTer Way picked up traction and Tress used her marketing skills to grow it further, it became clear that her winning idea was bubbling to the forefront.
“I had all of these amazing agency clients trying to ramp up their own digital nutrition and fitness programs but their clients weren’t seeing results,” Tress says. “I decided to build a certification around the FASTer Way program and then tell my agency clients that they could run it with their own book of clients. So that’s how the certification and the digital franchise model was birthed.”
After the birth of the business baby, she welcomed human baby No. 3, in 2018. She also ended the year eyeing $12 million in revenue. In 2019, that revenue had skyrocketed to $34 million.
“I wanted to be a millionaire by age 30. I didn’t know I’d be a multimillionaire by age 34,” Tress says.
Helping on the journey to financial freedom is the army of social media influencers that are along with Tress for the ride.
“The full responsibility is not on my shoulders,” she says. It’s with her “micro-influencers,” as she calls them.
Even with all this social media “know-how” and her incredibly large online presence, to the tune of nearly 300,000 followers, Tress admits it’s a chore to be on social media. “It’s the reality I live in,” she says. This isn’t to say she is ungrateful or takes it for granted, but as many have realized, it can be a blessing and a curse.
Bullying can run rampant on social media, we compare ourselves to others, and it can be draining to mental health and self-confidence. It can be an unhealthy distraction and, sometimes, even an addiction. Social media can be used for good but it has its negative aspects, as well.
Tress shrugs all of this off. She pays no mind to “the haters” that love to lurk behind their devices.
“I always say if they’re picking on me, then they’re not picking on someone else who can’t handle it. Like whatever. Come at me,” Tress says, nonchalantly, unphased, laughing.
Another thing to know about Tress? She’s tough. She is a Long Island girl at heart. Little phases her.
PROGRESS AND PURPOSE
Born in Long Island, New York, Tress was raised by her mother who maintained the home, and later became an educator, and her father, who was headmaster for a Christian school in New York.
“[My father] worked extremely hard. We would drive to school together at 5 a.m. to beat the New York traffic,” Tress recalls. “I watched how hard he worked to provide for his family.”
She describes her upbringing as simple. “We didn’t have a lot of money but we were happy,” she says.
The family relocated to Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, when Tress’ father took a job as an elementary school principal.
It is there where she met the boy who would grow up to be the man she married, Brandon.
Their parents were close friends. They met in the third grade.
Today, the couple raise their children and grow their business together.
They work hard, they stay humble, and they value the important things in life, so why not enjoy the finer things along the way?
“In Long Island, you might have a really small house, but you have a nice car,” Tress explaining her love for cars. “Some girls love handbags, clothing or shoes. I love cars,” she says, wearing a pair of stilettos, Yves St. Laurent to be specific, a gift from Brandon.
Tress doesn’t drive “off the lot” cars, though. Much like her custom Rolls, with the teal interior, she likes her cars tailor-made.
“The most important purchase I ever made was in 2018, when I bought my first Rolls Royce, because it was me knowing that this thing was going to continue to take off,” Tress says.
She is often asked, when exiting her car in public, “What does your husband do?”—people wrongly assume it’s him that bought her that car. Her answer? “He works for me,” she says.
And, when she docks her boat while enjoying a day on the water with her girlfriends, she will be told she can’t park her “charter boat” at the dock. The boat she owns and operates herself. If these men only knew she is the captain of all things Amanda Tress.
Money doesn’t make her happy. It’s not the worst thing, and it certainly makes life fun, but it’s not the foundation of what makes Tress feel she’s living a full life. Being a wife, being a mother and a dedication to her faith are the things that matter to her.
The Tress family’s latest passion project is, in fact, grounded in their Christian faith.
The Tress family has served as the major funding source for the new Grace Family Church Clearwater.
It’s currently undergoing a full remodel, which will be “absolutely stunning” when it’s complete, Tress says.
“It was our idea to start a church because we had to keep driving to South Tampa or Lutz. I was like, I can’t keep doing this, I have five kids,” she says, laughing.
This past Easter, Tress estimated having 1,000 people in attendance at the service.
“A big aspect of what I do with the business is empower other women in the wellness industry to earn an income, specifically so they can recirculate their own wealth to their family, to their church and to their community,” Tress says. “For me, it’s Kingdom work … I don’t understand how people do anything without having a strong faith and belief in God. A purpose that goes outside yourself.”
She’s had a little. She’s had a lot. She works hard and enjoys some luxury, thanks to that hard work. But it doesn’t change who she is or what she believes. Amanda Tress doesn’t waver.
“I can do big and I can do little, and that is such a great place to be,” Tress says. “It’s a really powerful place to be.”♦