With the longer days and the promise of spring, there has never been a better time to get fit. But not everyone likes going to the gym because of the financial outlay and the possibility that good intentions will fade — with membership wasted.
As Fintan Ryan, the operations manager at inthemarket.ie, points out, going to the gym is time-consuming between getting there, finding a parking space, showering and generally organising yourself. The solution is to invest in gym equipment for the home.
Fintan says that his firm's biggest selling product is gym equipment. Treadmills and spin bikes are big sellers for inthemarket.ie, which has 30 years of collective experience through its team.
The company, set up in Carrigtwohill, Co Cork, 12 years ago by Fintan's brother, Liam, guarantees delivery of goods to people's homes within four days.
Liam, managing director of inthemarket.ie has followed the advice of Confucius. The wise philosopher said: "Choose a job you love and you'll never have to work a day in your life."
With his passion for gym workouts, gardening and pets, Liam created his online company selling products related to his interests.
As Fintan says: "Liam saw the trend towards online purchasing. We have big sellers in pet products such as chicken and hen coops, dog runs, and on the gardening front, poly-tunnels. As well as the gym equipment, these are our biggest sellers. We also do marquees."
January and February are the months when we promise ourselves to lose weight and get fit.
"Even though gym equipment sells all year, we sell a huge percentage of spin bikes at this time of the year. People have the spin bike at home, in front of a television or their laptop and they can put something on from YouTube or put on a podcast or just put on music. It's the same with the treadmill."
With more and more people working from home, it makes sense to have gym equipment on hand for workouts.
"You can throw on your raggedy shorts and an old T-shirt and exercise. It's time for yourself. If you invest in a treadmill or a spin bike, it's paid off for the same amount of money that you'd pay for two or three months gym membership. The worst-case scenario is that you can always sell on the equipment whereas with your 12-month gym membership, it's tough luck if you don't use it."
The home gym equipment that inthemarket.ie sells is generally on wheels so it can be tucked into a corner of say the utility room. The company also sells treadmills that can be folded up.
About 50% of the sales of inthemarket.ie are from clients aged forty and over. Some senior citizens in their seventies and eighties might be after an operation and are advised by their doctor to go walking. But they are unable to find a safe place to walk in their local area.
"They come to us, recommended by their family and friends and they'll buy a treadmill. When you think of treadmills, you associate them with running but you can also walk on them. It makes walking easy for older post-op people who mightn't like going to the gym."
Householders are also buying chicken and hen coops and supplies from the company. Looking after poultry gives children something useful to do, collecting eggs, and cleaning the coops.
"People have thought about their lives in a broad sense and are interested in sustainability. We sell twenty-two different type of coops. We're the biggest chicken coop retailer in the country. They don't take up that much space, just a few square feet."
Poly-tunnels are as popular as the chicken coops. They're a massive seller for inthemarket.ie.
Last summer, there was a worldwide shortage of them as the demand was so high. But fortunately for inthemarket.ie, they had ordered a large amount of them in advance.
The company has a warehouse to store products, another big selling point for them. While ordering from UK companies incurs red tape and custom issues affecting cost, inthemarket.ie can get products delivered quickly.
Another big seller for the company are dog runs. People who are returning to work don't want their dogs to be stuck in the house while they're gone. A dog run is a good solution. It's like a pen with a roof on it. The dog's kennel can also be put in it, ensuring the pet won't get wet. It seems inthemarket.ie, which plans to expand shortly, has thought of everything.
- Adopt an all-weather healthy lifestyle plan.
- Invest in secure safe equipment.
- Be assured that there is a two-year warranty on exercise equipment.
- Spare parts are bought by inthemarket.ie for repair purposes if needed.
- Enjoy rapid 32-county delivery.