If you’re at the gym a lot and you’re confident in using all the equipment, it’s possible that you’ve wondered whether you could build your own gym at home. This happens because you want to save time and money. Most of us are not lucky enough to have our favourite gym just across the road. The gym I like the most is a full hour from my home. That’s two hours it costs me every time I go there. And I pay for the pleasure! Obviously saving money is something most of us are interested in and gym membership can be very expensive. After the initial investment in your room and equipment, if it looks like you’re going to be saving a decent amount of time and money, then a home gym could be perfect for you!
Scope out which parts of your house are most suitable for gym conversion. Remember, you’ll need to access the bathroom and shower and you don’t want to disturb other people either by dropping sweat on them or by annoying them by making noise. A lot of people choose to convert their cellars or their garages. You’ll need to think about air circulation and temperature and decide if you’ll need to make any changes to the existing set up.
The next thing you’re going to look at is rubber flooring. This is for your protection and your equipment’s protection. Take your measurements and then look for a good price online. It’s not difficult to install, so you shouldn’t have any difficulties with this.
Take a look at your electrical supply – if you are going to use electrical equipment, even if it’s just a water dispenser, you might have to adjust the position of the sockets. You should also consider your lighting. Is the light of your garage enough to use a regular light in a gym? Does it flicker? If you’re spending long periods of time in your gym, you’ll need lighting set up which is comfortable for your eyes. You can look at LED lighting which will save you more money in the long run than halogen bulbs, for example.
Now look at how much space you have. You don’t want your gym to become cluttered as this can restrict the ways you can use your gym and can also be dangerous. You might want to use some of the space for a TV screen and speakers so you can rock out to your favourite tunes for inspiration while pumping that iron.
Don’t forget about a fan, a wall-mounted clock and a storage unit for cleaning equipment and storing gym stuff.
Have in mind what results you want to get from your gym exercise and this will dictate what equipment you need. Most people with home gyms use them for building strength. If that applies to you you’ll be needing a pullup bar, barbells, bumpers and a rack. Be especially careful using this equipment on your own – you should always have someone to spot you. Solo gym accidents can be fatal.
Depending on how much space you have you might want to add a punch bag or a kickbag and a bench. You might consider and exercise ball, too.
If you’re getting short on space, you might be forced to choose between pieces of equipment. Think about versatility and how full a workout you can get from your gym equipment. Many people will choose an elliptical trainer over a treadmill for these reasons, or a rower over a bike. If you want to know more about the benefits of home rowers, check out Kara’s training efforts which has a lot of information.
One last consideration is not to make anything too permanent – don’t be permanently fixing pieces of gym equipment to the floor for example, as you won’t know what changes you want to make to your gym setup until you have been using it for a decent amount of time. If you get it right, you could be keeping fit and saving both time and money before you know it!