Home Gym Essentials

home gym  photo

If you’re considering working out at home check out these four easy categories of home gym essentials.

There are a lot of pros and cons regarding working out at home or in a gym.  For many people going to the gym is almost as much about social interaction and their mental well-being as it about physical fitness.  Working out is of course great for our bodies and our minds, but for many people going to the gym provides a needed break from the stresses of home and kids, and gives them a chance to interact with friends.  However, for a great many people having a home gym is ideal because it is the ultimate in convenience and can be more affordable in the long run.  It is also great because it provides no opportunity for using excuses like, “It’s snowing and I can’t drive to the gym today.”  If you decide you’d like to work out in the comfort of your own home here are some home gym essentials to keep in mind.

  1. Workout mat.  This is first and foremost in your home gym essentials.  It’s amazing how much you can do with just your body and the proper workout mat.  Look for something that is safe, durable, spacious and multi-functional, like Pogamat XL or Pogamat XXL.  Both of these workout mats are equally effective for yoga, pilates, weight lifting , plyometerics and more.
  2. Cardio equipment.  Depending on your budget and fitness goals, this could be anything from a state of the art treadmill or elliptical machine to a good old fashioned jump rope.  Cardio is an important part of any workout routine, so take a careful and realistic look at your needs and budget, as well as the space and your workout habits.  A portable stair climber is a great example of equipment that provides great workout opportunities, but doesn’t require a major commitment of money and space.
  3. Weights and strength training equipment.  Again, the type of equipment you get will vary greatly on your budget and your needs.  There are endless items for strength training, many of which are very affordable including, free weights, resistance bands, kettlebells, exercise balls, pull up/chin up bars, and much more.  If your budget allows you could even invest in one of the many home gym systems available on the market that are equipped for dozens of different types of exercises to work out your entire body.
  4. Direction or guidance.  Working out involves a certain amount of risk.  Your body is your greatest asset and while it’s crucial to exercise, you must do so safely.  You might want to think about working with a personal trainer to develop a safe, effective plan that’s right for you.  Or if that isn’t in your price range consider some workout DVDs, which are affordable but still provide guidance.  It’s always a good idea to visit your doctor and make sure you’re clear to begin whatever plan you decide on.  Whatever you do, don’t forget to always listen to your body and don’t make risky choices that could result in injury.

Photo by Rene Cunningham

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