How to create a home gym

Do you want to work out but can’t get to the gym? Here’s the perfect solution! We give you tips on creating the perfect home gym

home gym
Too busy for the gym?

Most of us want to get active and keep fit but it isn’t always easy. Finding the time in a busy schedule can be tough, especially when general life gets in the way. And gym memberships are a waste of money if they rarely get used or there’s no one to watch the kids while you exercise. There is a simple solution however – a home gym. It’s easier than you think and all it takes is a little creativity.

Here’s our guide:

Find a space

The first thing to do is find room to exercise. This is obviously easier said than done and there are a lot of factors that will dictate it, such as how big your property is, how many people live there and what each space in your home is already used for.

Finding space will also help you decide on what type of work outs you plan to do. It might be a simple case of pushing the furniture back in the sitting room, so you can do a cardio work out, or having an area in the bedroom where you can lay a yoga mat on the floor.

A handy cupboard holding equipment such as hand weights or exercise mats, as well as water bottles and towels, will help when space is at a premium. Not only will it mean your equipment is stored neatly, it will also give you a focus as when you want to work out you’ll have everything you need in one place. It’s more motivating than having an exercise bike in the corner of the room, which only ends up becoming a clothes horse.

Don’t forget to use the garden, which is a fantastic place to exercise. Keep some kettlebells, hand weights and a mini trampoline in the shed or in a storage box so you can pull them out and do a work out on your patio or lawn. It’s also worth investing in a pop-up gazebo for when it’s raining.

If you want to create a more permanent solution have a think about your home. A garage sitting idle with only bikes, boxes and storage inside would be the perfect place for a home gym. Sort through the boxes and get de-cluttering to make as much space as you need.

A spare bedroom will also do the same job. If you need a bed for when guests stay over, why not install a futon or sofa bed? It’s space-saving and will help the room feel like more like a work-out area rather than a bedroom with exercise equipment in.

If you want to go all out, however, you could install a permanent gazebo or even a log cabin in your garden as a work out space. They’re not cheap but what a great motivator to get on your exercise bike.

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What type of exercise

Think about the work-outs you want to do at home. If space is limited choose something that doesn’t require lots of equipment, like a work out on the TV, either via a fitness DVD or app.

In terms of equipment multipurpose things are great to start with, so think along the lines of hand weights, kettlebells, an exercise ball, step platform and yoga mat. A pull-up bar that can be mounted on a door frame is good for strength training.

Don’t rush out and buy expensive exercise bikes and rowing machines straight away. Instead be realistic about what you want to do. Perhaps start with a treadmill, which can be used for gentle walking exercises, hill climbing work outs and jogging, so it grows with you as your fitness improves.

If your home gym becomes well-used, then you can always add in extra equipment as time goes on.

A punch bag would be a great addition to any home gym as just a few minutes each day can get your heart rate going and offer a top work out. It’s also a fantastic stress reliever, which is good for body and mind.

Many fitness experts also recommend a TRX suspension system as it can build muscle and improve flexibility. It can be hooked onto anything, inside or outside.

Mirror, Mirror

Those endless mirrors at the gym might seem unnecessary but they actually serve a purpose.Watching yourself means you can see you’re working out correctly, which in turn means you’re less likely to be injured. If you’re creating home a gym a huge mirror is a must.

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Get it right

The most important thing is to ensure your work out space is right for you. If you like to watch a screen, listen to music, have photos or pictures on the wall, then make room for them in your home gym. It needs to be a place you want to be.

Before you start, however, it’s worth getting some advice on developing an exercise programme for yourself. You could consult a personal trainer who can make recommendations and offer advice. Overdoing it at the start could lead to injuries so it’s vital to get it right.

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