Home Gym Ideas

Fitness experts recommend maintaining consistency when working out in your home gym. A good workout plan includes a balanced mix of strength training and cardio.

It comes down to your weight loss or fitness goals and what type of physical workouts you plan to do.

Several home gym essentials exist that range from basic to advanced. Remember that you can also build your home gym as your fitness goals change over time.

Here are a few ideas to get started with a home gym.

What should I put in my home gym?

home gym equipment

The basics

These are generally small and inexpensive items that can help you achieve a wide variety of physical exercises that use body weight and weight plates. These basics of a home gym include;

  • An exercise mat. A yoga mat can work just as well.
  • Light, medium, and heavy resistance bands.
  • A stability ball.
  • A small bench or a wooden box (something to give you some elevation).
  • Jump rope.
  • A pull-up bar.
  • A workout bench.

Weight equipment

These include;

  • A suspension trainer
  • Light, medium, and heavy dumbbells
  • Kettlebells
  • A weighted vest
  • Barbells and plate weights

Remember that bodyweight movement can compensate for the lack of weight equipment in various exercises.

Cardio equipment

treadmill

Cardio, shorthand for cardiovascular training, refers to any rhythmic physical activity that raises your heart rate, respiration, and blood flow throughout the body and keeps them elevated for a prolonged period. Equipment that can help you do cardio includes;

  • Treadmill
  • Stationary cycle
  • Elliptical
  • Cable rower
  • Stairclimber

Without using these sets of equipment, you can get your cardio done by going out for a jog, power walking, jumping jacks, walking lunges, and burpees.

Other items for training

You can get more advanced items for your home gym besides cardio, weight training, and essential equipment. These include

  • Battle ropes
  •  tower
  • A squat rack
  • A punching bag

There are a few basic things that every home gym needs. Remember to acquire:

  • a foam roller, 
  • a ceiling fan, 
  • a towel, 
  • and a mirror. 

While these are not strictly necessary for a good workout session, it is more convenient to have them within reach and not have to interrupt your workout to look for them every so often.

A towel will help you wipe off any moisture from your face and your hands. Aside from being more comfortable, wiping the sweat from your hands will increase the likelihood of preventing needless accidents.

Handling weights and cable machines with sweaty hands can result in slipping and crushing your foot or damaging your floors is not on the workout menu.  Therefore, having a towel to dry your hands occasionally is a good idea to prevent accidental drops and injuries.

Consider a chalkboard or a dry-erase board to write down your workouts, rather than reaching for your phone every few minutes. This may be distracting or inconvenient, making the workout session less immersive.

Another excellent idea is to get storage solutions for your workout equipment. This can be a wall-mounted rack for your dumbbells and a storage cabinet into which every loose item can be tucked away.

This will ensure all your equipment is neatly stored and is not left strewn around to cause any injury or obstruction. 

Storage solutions will also make it easier to clean your workout space and use it for any other function since the storage solutions will safely and neatly hide all your equipment. This means you can easily create space for furniture or a car after a workout session in case you use your garage as a home gym.

What is most important for a home gym?

dumbells

All home gyms require three essential things. These include;

  • Enough space to work out.
  • Enough resistance to train with.
  • An indoor cardio option.

Resistance is usually achieved using resistance bands, kettlebells, dumbbells, barbells, racks, and plates. Indoor cardio options include treadmills, jump ropes, rowers, and ellipticals.

You should prioritize your home gym with equipment with which you are familiar before moving on to more advanced equipment as you grow more comfortable with a consistent workout routine.

How can I make my home gym look good?

gym space

Invest in overhead lighting, large mirrors, and soft flooring to make your gym look exciting and inviting and have a space that feels nice to work out.

Remember that the lighting solution in your home gym should match the type of workouts you are interested in. For exercises like Pilates and yoga, low soft lighting is ideal. Whereas with high-intensity cardio and weight training, proper bright lighting is essential.

Designers recommend incorporating a combination of lighting solutions for your home gym. Diffused LED strip lighting that is recessed into joinery and ceiling coffers will give off a soft mood lighting that can be uplifting. This is ideal for yoga, warming up, and other relatively relaxed movements.

For any other intensive exercises and movements, bright overhead lights will work well to allow you to see every part of your space and workout equipment well.

You can add some aesthetic accent lighting to your gym to give it a personal touch and an elegant finish. Consider bronze wall and contemporary crystal lights, which can bring a unique visual finish to your home gym.

Another factor worth considering is the availability of natural light. You want to avoid running up your light bill by having a home gym that requires lights to be on all the time.

If your home gym is located in the backyard, the side of the house, or any other space that is adjacent to the outdoors, consider installing folding and glazed glass doors that easily let natural light flow in.

These doors will not only allow you to see better during the day, but they will also provide excellent ventilation during intense energy-fueled workout sessions.

Ventilation is essential in working out, and sliding doors do the trick if you do not have enough windows. You may want to get a dehumidifier or an extractor fan to prevent the room from becoming steamy, especially in cold weather.

Conclusion

A home gym should be able to meet all of your general exercise needs. It should facilitate the basics of working out, such as warming up, cardio, and weight training. These different considerations will guide you in deciding what to put in your home gym.

For more information on home gym ideas, check out our blog. We have a few other resources that explore the concept of home gyms and everything you need to consider when setting up something similar in your home.

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