Festive joy | 

RTE fitness guru Ray Lally can’t wait for Christmas after the birth of his daughter

The ‘Today’ show trainer is thrilled to have Santa this Christmas

Ray and his family have just moved into their new home

Ray and Amanda with baby Indie

Little Indie arrived in November

Eugene MastersonSunday World

TV fitness guru Ray Lally says this Christmas will be his most amazing ever as he welcomes Santa for the first time as a father.

Proud Ray and his wife Amanda recently moved into their new home in Co Kerry with baby daughter Indie.

“Indie was born on November 18 and I think we moved in four or five days later — she came home from hospital with Amanda. That was the first night we spent in the new house,” says Ray.

Ray and Amanda with baby Indie

“The night before I was up painting the stairs.

"Her brothers and brothers-in-law, they were there every single evening, since we got the house two months straight, every waking moment they could. I was there, her mum and dad were there, painting, sanding, doing the floors, all sorts of things.”

Ray was taken aback to learn that Today’s third presenter, Sinead Kennedy, gave her first child the name Indie too when she was born earlier this year.

“No way, I didn’t know that,” he exclaims.

“It was Amanda that thought of it. We were trying to think of names and when she became pregnant, we were like ‘we don’t know’.

“When we found out it was a girl we were all completely excited and we just couldn’t think of any names.

“I was trying to think of old Irish Celtic mythology names, or Egyptian princess or names that really have meaning to it.

"A lot of Irish names like Sarah and Fiona. Then Amanda came up with Indie. We just kind of loved it. Then when we met her and looked at her, ‘Yeah Indie’.”

Corkonian Ray has become a fixture of RTÉ’s Today show, where he regularly puts hosts Dáithí Ó Sé and Maura Derrane through fitness routines.

Ray grew up in gyms, having first got a job as a cleaner in one at the age of 16. He became a personal trainer when he was 18.

He is also a talented footballer and has played for Cork FC and Cobh Ramblers, as well as captaining the Ireland Under-17s and colleges’ teams and he had trials with English clubs, including Everton and Nottingham Forest.

But he chortles when asked if he’s the ‘Irish Joe Wicks’.

Little Indie arrived in November

“It’s a lovely comparison, he’s got fantastic hair,” he jokes. “I’d be happy with his wallet — he’s a multimillionaire! I don’t know him personally, but he’s always promoting good health and healthy eating.

“It’s always about positive body image and everyone gets fit, which is what I like.”

As for new parenthood, he says: “We are absolutely over the moon, everything has happened so fast. Indie is fantastic. We get to feed and cuddle her, she goes back to sleep,” he beams.

“I had never changed nappies in my life. We do things together. I am loving every bit of it. She is a really good baby.”

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