Tooreen native, Joey Ganley, established Just Go Fitness in Ballyhaunis in 2018 before opening up shop in Castlerea in 2022. Speaking to Roscommon People reporter Dan Dooner this week, Joey says there has been a shift in the fitness landscape during that time…
DD: Hi Joey, tell us a bit about your business…
JG: I studied business in recreation and leisure at IT Sligo and worked as a personal trainer/gym manager in Ballinrobe for seven years. It was always in my head to open my own gym so I started with fitness classes in Ballyhaunis. I then opened Just Go in Ballyhaunis in 2018 and then took over the gym at The Hub in Castlerea in 2022.
DD: How did Covid-19 affect operations?
JG: We pivoted really well and offered online classes and coaching during the lockdowns. Then we adhered to the guidelines during the reopening by offering outdoor classes. Covid changed the business model and we went from bigger groups to smaller classes. People really liked it so we kept that model when reopening the gym in Castlerea.
DD: What kind of challenges does the average gym member face?
JG: Accountability is a big one. People can really struggle to know what to do in the gym. They’ll go in and do a few minutes on the treadmill or on the machines but they won’t really be getting anywhere. Having a coach or a personal trainer means there’s accountability and structure.
DD: Have people become more aware of the importance of exercise since you first started in the Irish fitness industry?
JG: I think since Covid people have learned to appreciate the importance of health that bit more. Not just the physical side but also when it comes to mood and stress and anxiety too. People are looking after themselves a bit more and maybe not going out drinking every weekend. They’ve also learned to appreciate the benefits of that release of endorphins after working out!
DD: What can members expect at Just Go Fitness?
JG: We work in smaller groups of six to eight people and it’s not like one big workout or a boot camp. Members have individual plans within that group so we have those who are starting out and others with a bit more experience. We also offer online coaching for people living further away and that involves advice on nutrition and training programmes and accountability on your fitness journey. There’s also open gym access for members through their key fob, which allows them to work on their own individual programmes when it suits them.