Building A Home Gym For Beginners: Easy Tips To Get Started

Home Sweat Home!

What do you do when it’s difficult or impossible to get to the gym.  Answer: Have the gym come to you!

I’m Barrie and I warmly welcome you to my bi-weekly blog: Over50andFit.ca.

Home gym

Benefits of building your own home gym

Home gyms are becoming more popular during the Covid era, and I suspect that they will remain equally prevalent in the post-Covid period. Why? Because there are numerous benefits of building your own home gym: less cost, less total time (including commute time), more convenience (when you want, no waiting for people), and following your personally chosen online workout on your device. You could add to these benefits, avoiding equipment which may not have been sanitized.

Setting up your home gym

Choose a bright, well-lit, cheery and inviting room, preferably with a window. You may only have part of a room available. If you live in an apartment, you may have to choose a section of a bedroom or even the living room. Ensure that this space is dedicated to your gym and that all clutter and distractions are removed from it. An empty wall could become a hanging organizer. A large mirror on a wall would help you to keep an eye on your form as you exercise.

Above all, as you begin to build your home gym, it does not have to be complex – keep it simple.

Setting goals to determine which equipment you need for your home gym

The gym equipment you buy will depend on the goals you want to achieve. Each goal may target a different aspect of fitness. Once you have determined your goals, then you are ready to equip your gym. You may wish to consult a fitness professional for help.

Equipment for your home gym

The equipment you require will depend entirely on you, as individual needs will vary significantly. Do consider that there is a plethora of bodyweight exercises which do not require any equipment.  Among the more popular are: push-ups, planks, lunges and step-ups. You may decide on resistance training or cardiovascular training or a combination of both.

Resistance Training (also called Weight Training)

Resistance bands or dumbbells enable a wide range of strength training exercises. Ensure you have an exercise mat. My favourite equipment is a set of TRX (or suspension training) straps.

Cardiovascular Training

To facilitate various levels and types of cardio training, you may want either of these: a treadmill, elliptical, rowing machine or stationary bike. If you are not sure about this more expensive equipment, you could try them out in a gym until you know that you are committed to their use. Given time, you will know what other equipment you need and you will be able to add to your home gym accordingly. You may be overwhelmed by the plethora of equipment available; consulting a fitness professional could be of immense help.

Sites which provide help in setting up a home gym

www.shape.com

YouTube

www.garagegymlab.com – intended more for professionals

Please feel free to share your comments and questions.

Do remember to keep hydrated and drink lots of water.

In my next blog, I will discuss the merits of stretching.

Yours in fitness,

Barrie

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Vanessa

Hi Barrie, which store do you recommend buying gym equipment through? Also located in the lower mainland. Thanks for your tips!

Barrie

Vanessa,for weights I have had good results on CraigsList, although I would not want to buy equipment with moving parts – such as a treadmill or rowing machine – here. Amazon and Walmart have a good election of equipment at reasonable prices.

Allan

Hi Barrie, when I go to my local gym I usually warm up on a cycle or treadmill. But I haven’t the room to add these big machines at home. What do you recommend as a warm-up activity with a home gym?

Amir

Dear Barrie,
I am very proud of everything you have accomplished, and look up to you as a role model.
Thanks for everything,
Amir

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