How To Build An Affordable Home Gym
You don’t need a monthly membership to a gym to work on your fitness. But you do need the right equipment to get the results you want. Below are some basic, yet effective, tools to get you started regardless of your fitness level or your budget. An investment in a home gym is an investment in yourself!
BOSU – Described best as a blue half-dome of inflated rubber, this versatile piece of equipment can be used for many of your exercises. A BOSU, also known as Both Side Up or Both Side Utilized, can be flipped over to its hard platform side or to its rubber side when being used. The BOSU requires balance and stability, making all of your exercises more challenging since your core is working hard to stay balanced. The best part about this instrument is that you can use it as an integral part of your workout for weight training or for a cardio boost. Visit the BOSU website for more information. Cost: $85 – $120
Dumbbells – Get your hands on free weights in three different pounds, usually light, medium, and heavy sets. Depending on your desired outcome, three sets of weights allows you to switch back and forth between exercises and target particular muscle groups. Use your dumbbells in conjunction with other exercises to maximize your time and enhance your workout. Cost: $3 – $20 per set
Jump Rope – You may have not jumped since elementary school, but jumping rope is an effective and easy way to get your heart rate up. Cardio acceleration (pumping up the intensity) increases the calorie burn. If you get bored with the normal jump, switch it up with more skilled jumping moves. Integrate it into your workout as a warm up or during an interval. You can also jump with a weighted rope for more of a punch. Cost: $12 – $35
Foam Roller – This cylindrical piece of equipment can help you massage and stretch out your tight muscles after an intense workout. In addition to the post workout benefits, foam rollers can be used for your glutes, quads, hamstrings, shins, and calves. Cost: $17 – $24
Resistance Bands – Used for strength training, resistance bands feel different than free weights because of the opposite pull against gravity. It’s best to get two varying resistance bands, a light and medium resistance. Incorporate it into your routine by using it against your body weight or loop it against a bar for added resistance. Cost: $7 – $15
Fitness Mat – Designed for comfort, your mat should provide you with cushioning while working out on the floor. Choose a mat with your desired level of cushioning and length; you’ll be spending a lot of time working on your abs. Cost: $14 – $22
Things to Keep in Mind
Building a home gym can take time. If you’re strapped for cash, invest in a piece of equipment that allows you to explore a variety of workouts (hint: BOSU). You can always spend time adding pieces to your gym down the line.
Stick to your workout. Being at home can provide you with many distractions and deterrents from working out. Stay motivated and keep to your schedule.
Find ways to switch it up. Don’t become bored with your at home workout. Find a workout that challenges you and provides you with the results you want. That way you will never find an excuse to not keep up with your fitness.
Play those tunes that keep you pumped. You are your own DJ at home. Select a playlist that matches your workout. Play the music at a level that motivates you.