We can’t overstress how many more viable meal options Japanese convenience stores have compared to their overseas counterparts. Any of the country’s major chains is stocked with bento boxed lunches, rice balls, sandwiches, and pasta dishes, all of it tasty, fresh, and affordably priced.
However, convenience stores in Japan also have plenty of high-calorie temptations, from Japan-exclusive Kit Kats to cream-filled pastries and, of course, refrigerated cases filled with beer and canned shochu sour cocktails. So as enjoyable as a trip to forage for snacks at the convenience store may be, the aftermath can often have you feeling like you should get some exercise to offset the indulgences, and convenience store chain Family Mart is planning to let you do that all in the same building.
The company has announced that it’ll be getting into the fitness industry with the creation of a fitness club chain called Fit & GO, which, like Family Mart’s shops, will be open 24 hours a day. Around-the-clock gyms are few and far between in Japan, but they’ve been growing in popularity recently, especially among exercisers in their 20s, 30s, and 40s, which is also the age range of Family Mart’s primary customer demographic.
Exact equipment will likely vary by location, but Family Mart says that Fit & GO gyms will have treadmills and weight machines, as well as personal trainers to assist clients develop a fitness program (Fit & GO will have its own dedicated staff, so convenience store workers won’t be pulling double duty). There will also be shower facilities, and the company expects a certain amount of synergy since customers can buy workout-related items such as towels, soap, and dietary supplements in the convenience store to use before or after they hit the gym.
The first Fit & GO is expected to open in February, attached to a Family Mart in Tokyo’s Ota Ward. While the gyms won’t have as much floor space as larger fitness centers, the aim is to provide a convenient place for people to get in a quick 30-minute workout at the start or end of their daily commute, and could be a great way to stay in shape, provided you don’t make a habit of rewarding yourself with a piece of Family Mart’s fried chicken after you’re done.
Source: Family Mart
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