It can be really nice having a gym membership. Some gyms even offer great amenities such as tanning salons and one-on-one personal training. Yet even with the amenities, some of us would prefer to work out in the privacy of our own homes. It’s appealing to think about working out without feeling self-conscious or waiting while others finish using the machines we want to use. Especially considering memberships for families of more than one person, gym memberships can quickly become astronomical in price. We justify paying these high memberships when we assume that paying those gym dues is surely less expensive that what it would cost to have a gym at home.
However, what if creating a home gym wasn’t as expensive as you might think? What if your home gym would pay for itself after a brief period of not having to pay for monthly and annual membership fees? Here’s how you can have a budget home gym of your very own.
Home Workout Studio
Ideally you’ll have a designated space in your home for your home gym. If you have a spare room that can be converted into a gym space or an office that can double as your workout studio, you’ll have more space for your equipment. It will also make you feel more like you’re “going” to the gym, which has the effect of feeling detached from the rest of your home and helping you to maintain focus and drive.
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The design of your home gym will depending on your workout style. If you’ll be doing yoga or Pilates, then subdued, cool colors would be the best choice for your home gym. On the other hand, if your workouts will be high-energy you could choose more vibrant primary colors for your home gym.
Although you don’t necessarily have to replace your existing carpet, the best flooring for a gym or workout studio is something hard and smooth like wood or concrete. Basements and garages have been a popular area for a home gym since the concrete floors are great for working out and prevent you from having to install flooring. It’s also important for you to have plenty of light in your home gym. Natural light would be preferred, but you can use ceiling lights and lamps too so long as the room is fully and adequately illuminated.
Perhaps the most expensive component of a home gym is the exercise equipment. You’ll be pleased to know that the cost of most gym essentials has come down in price quite a bit in recent years. You can get a stationary bike or treadmill from your local big-box general store for just a couple hundred dollars, which is likely less than your annual gym dues. Additionally, the equipment you buy will depend on your budget, your personal preference, how much cardio you want to do, and of course the space you have available; you may be content with just a motorized treadmill, but someone else may want an elliptical too.
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You can buy exercise equipment from any number of places. Walmart and Target offer choices both in-store online at very affordable prices and even Amazon offers a whole range of options that can fit any budget. Some of the most essentially cardio equipment for a home gym will include a treadmill, an elliptical, and a stationary bike. An elliptical, for example, runs between $200 and $300 for a mid-tier model on Amazon; in fact, you can get a Gold’s Gym-brand elliptical for $299 with free shipping and you’ll be using the same equipment you would at the gym.
Like a well-rounded exercise, your home gym should offer weight and strength training in addition to cardio and endurance training. You could keep is low-cost and budget-friendly by investing in dumbbells and free weights. When purchasing your weights, you should consider your current strength level as well as the level you want to attain. The average person will find between two and four sets of weights — with each additional set being incrementally heavier than the last — to be sufficient. Another important piece of the puzzle is an adjustable bench for weight-lifting to help you target more areas of your body for strength training. Depending on the quality and its features, a mid-range adjustable fitness bench will cost about $150.
In addition to cardio and weight-training equipment, there are some other things that would be good to have in your home gym. Burst-resistant exercise balls are useful for a variety of workouts, come in many different sizes, and are very inexpensive. Resistance exercise bands are also useful, versatile, and inexpensive. Pull-up bars are cheap and hang in most doorways, giving you yet another low-cost exercise. It’s also a good idea to have exercise mats; they’re like yoga mats, can be made of thick foam or thin vinyl, and come in handing for exercises that involve kneeling or lying on the floor.
This is a guest post by Dane O’Leary from Modernize.com, a blog that offers home remodeling ideas and design inspirations.