Tips For Building Your First Home Gym
Whether you just can’t find time to make it to the gym, the gym is always closed by the time you get off work, you feel insecure working out in front of strangers, or you’d like to up your game by adding home workouts to your fitness regiment, you may have decided to build a home gym. But you have to remember that, with a home gym, you won’t have trainers standing around, ready to instruct you on how to use the equipment. You also won’t have that wonderfully cushioned floor that can survive dropped medicine balls and dumb bells. You need to account for your family, significant other, or roommates, who perhaps don’t even want a home gym taking up space. These are all things to consider when constructing your little private paradise in which you can sweat in peace. Here are tips for building your first home gym.
Invest in rubber mats
Your joints will thank you. Your floors will thank you. Your downstairs neighbors (if you have them) will definitely thank you. Even doing moderate exercises like jumping jacks on regular floors is hard on your knees.
Put your accessories in a lock box
If you have children, pets, or anyone who could hurt themselves on workout equipment left out, get a large lockbox for your accessories, and put them away after your workouts.
Leave the heavy-duty equipment to the real gym
Everyone is different, but most people don’t end up getting the return on their investment in a $2,000, fancy, enormous piece of equipment. Leave those to the real gym, and go use theirs on the rare occasion you feel like it.
Any good home gym should have shelving. Here you can put your water bottles, snacks, books, iPod, resistance bands, and all sorts of things while you’re working out, rather than sprawling them on the floor.
Make use of what you have, with resistance bands
Resistance bands belong in every home gym. With a couple of these bands, you can make a quality workout out of a doorframe, doorknob, bench, tree, and really any stable surface. Plus, they take up almost no room.
Opt for an under-utilized room
If you have the option, go for an under-utilized room. You don’t want your spouse or kids knocking on the door every ten minutes, needing to grab something out of the room.
Skip brand names on generic items
When buying straightforward, basic items like racks, skip the brand names. These are overpriced but offer no added benefits. Your local sporting goods store probably has generic, well-priced options for the more basic equipment.
Attend a fitness show
If you are set on getting brand name items, or the newest equipment, attend a fitness show. Here you can often get equipment for wholesale prices, plus a bunch of free samples on things like protein bars, water bottles, sweat bands and more.
Give the room plenty of light
Light is energizing, so don’t work out in a cave. Choose a room with plenty of windows and if you can’t get that, put in lots of lamps and other light sources.
Add indoor plants
When you’re huffing and puffing your way through reps, you need clean air. So add indoor plants to purify the air. You can also just add an air purifier.
Grab jump ropes
Jump ropes, like resistance bands, offer a wide variety of workouts and take up very little space in your home gym.
And foam rollers
Foam rollers are great because they’re lightweight, and safe to keep in a home that has kids. But they still provide great workouts. Use them for core workouts or as props for yoga positions.
Make it a room you’re happy to be in
The ambiance is everything when it comes to a home gym. Put up artwork that inspires you and makes you happy. Remove all clutter. Choose a room with a nice view. Put up photos of loved ones. If you’re happy in your home gym, then you’ll spend more time in it.
Check out Craigslist and yard sales
Workout equipment can often survive plenty of wear and tear and pass through several hands while still in great condition. So don’t forget to look to Craigslist and yard sales for traditionally more expensive items.
Get a “Workout in progress” sign
One upside of going to a real gym is that nobody can bother you there. Invest in a little “Workout in progress” sign for your home one so that your kids, spouse, or roommates don’t bother you with questions that can wait.