with Heather Hawk

Healthy Planet Fitness Writer


Your Personal Home Gym


At the end of a long day, the most challenging part of your workout can simply be getting yourself to the gym. Imagine being able to exercise at home, where it is most convenient for you.  Believe it or not, you can design your own home gym on any budget.  The key is to start small. Over time you can always add to the variety of equipment.  The holidays offer the perfect opportunity to purchase equipment as a gift to you or your family as well as to put items for your home gym on your own holiday wish list.


The first step is to choose a desirable area in your home.  This should be a place with good lighting and ventilation, and sufficient space to move.  If at all possible you want to select an area of your home that is not a “high traffic” area where you will easily be distracted from your workout.


The next step is to select the supplemental furnishings (everything other than the exercise equipment).  You will need some type of cushioning on the floor for support during your workout.  Of course, wall-to-wall carpeting or rubber flooring is the ultimate goal but carpet remnants will certainly do the trick.  Mirrors enable you to focus on proper form. You can purchase large mirrors for the wall or the bargain shopper can purchase door mirrors at any discount store and lay them against the wall.  To keep you motivated, I also suggest music or television.


The equipment is the final and most important step in designing your personal home gym.  A weight bench and dumbbells are the perfect foundation for any strength routine.  If you have a confined amount of space then you may want to consider a bench that folds or a fitness ball as an alternative. Accessory items such as weighted medicine/toning balls, a fitness or yoga mat, a jump rope, or resistance bands are inexpensive additions to a workout room that add a great deal of versatility to your exercise regimen.


For your cardiovascular training, you can select from several pieces including a treadmill, elliptical machine, stationary bike, or stepper.  The price of the units vary according to the features the machine offers.  Each piece of equipment offers multiple unique programs that enable you to step up your exercise program and keep you motivated for continued results.


As your needs (and your budget) grow you can slowly add equipment to your workout room.  If you begin planning your home gym now, then you can add equipment to your wish list.  Remember, a great workout is not determined by the amount of equipment in your home but rather the appropriate equipment for your goals.  Begin establishing your own home gym, the convenience will help you reach your goals and eliminate your excuses.


Got a fitness or health question?

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