Gym chains and fitness centers are everywhere in cities and suburbs. But what if you live in a rural area miles from the nearest gym? And what do you do on those cold, snowy mornings where you don’t want to leave the house?
Depending on your personality and fitness needs, a home gym can be a great way to get in your workouts from the comfort of home. But they can be expensive, and you don’t your equipment collecting dust. So here are 10 home gym tips to get the most out of your workout.
Calculate How Long It Takes To Pay For Itself
Gym memberships add up. If you want to build a home gym to eliminate the monthly bill, make sure you know what you are getting in to. It often takes years to make your investment worth it. So calculate the total amount it will take to purchase all the equipment, and subtract monthly gym dues. Depending on how much you want to spend, it might not be worth it.
Check Out Craigslist
New equipment is expensive. Luckily, there is a never ending parade of used fitness equipment for cheap on Craigslist. Some people don’t want to lug heavy barbells with them when they move. Others are trying to recoup money for equipment they aren’t using. Swoop in and take that perfectly good gear at a fraction of the price!
You can’t buy your way to good habits. A lot of people think that if they invest in an expensive home gym, then surely they will use it to get their money’s worth. But if you can’t get yourself to exercise somewhere else, there’s no guarantee you’ll work out at home. Then your $4,000 treadmill will sit there collecting dust. So start with a few inexpensive pieces like dumbbells and an exercise ball. If you consistently use what you have for months, then it will be safe to expand your collection.
Personalize Your Space
It’s your house, you can decorate how you want to! Make your exercise space the kind of place you want to spend time. Put up posters, add a TV, get some nice speakers, put in a house plant, anything that gives the room attitude and helps you get in the zone.
Get Multipurpose Equipment
Maybe you have unlimited money and space to build your home gym. Go wild! For the rest of us, it is better to make more with less. Get adjustable dumbbells or rubber bands that are versatile and can grow with you.
Become a DIY Guru
Building a home gym is the perfect excuse to level up your crafting skills! If you’ve already got a loaded workbench you can build complex projects like a squat rack. There are plenty of projects for newbies too! Add some shelves to put your speakers on, or stencil in a cool design on the walls.
It’s Never Too Cold
Cold weather is the bane of garage home gyms. Luckily, a few space heaters can turn the frozen area into a cozy lair. That just leaves one problem: the olympic barbell. Weightlifters know all too well the bite of cold steel when they step up to the squat rack. If your olympic barbell is just too cold, bring it inside after every workout and and just take it out to lift.
Start A Social Hour
Miss the energetic buzz of the gym at peak hours? Invite your friends over to work out! Your new space can be the start of a fun social hour (provided it is big enough). Just tell your friend to bring some healthy post-workout snacks!
Soften The Blow With Rubber Mats
One of the first things you should put down in any home gym is some soft synthetic floor! Even if you aren’t doing deadlifts, this will make the area warmer and more comfortable. You can use a large yoga matt or even the puzzle piece foam blocks you find in children’s play areas!
Mirror Mirror On The Wall
Floor-To-Ceiling mirrors are expensive, but you can stack full-length closet mirrors next to one another to create a similar effect. Mirrors help you check your form. They also make the room look bigger, which will help those working with a small space.