There’s always some new crash diet or fitness fad claiming to have the secret to a healthy body, but we all know that hard work, good diet and exercise are the only real ways to have a healthy body and mind. Finding the time and motivation to exercise is hard enough, but when you know you’ve got to travel all the way to the gym and pay for the pleasure of feeling unfit and embarrassed next to all the fitness enthusiasts surrounding you, willpower starts to suffer and the excuses to stay on the couch come thick and fast.
Many people have chosen to work out at home instead of paying to work out at a public gym, and it has become easier than ever to create your own gym at home. After the initial cost of setting up your home gym, you’ll never need to travel out to an expensive fitness club again.
It may be hard to believe, but you don’t need to fork out lots of cash to set up your own gym; a lot of the equipment can be bought cheaply or second-hand, and you’d be surprised at how little is actually needed to get a good workout.
First of all you need to find the space to house your gym – this is probably the most difficult part of setting it up, as you need to find somewhere comfortable that is large enough to move around in. The best place to try this would be a shed, log cabin or garage, somewhere out of the way that is likely to be left unused for the majority of the year. Make sure there’s no damp, and that you can weatherproof the structure ready for winter – after all, you’ll have no excuse not to work out!
Now you need to think about your fitness goals – if you’re looking to build muscle as well as increase your cardio fitness, you’ll need to invest in some free weights and a bench. You can pick these up pretty cheaply, and these items will cover a lot of your exercise needs. You might want to pick up some resistances bands as well, to give a bit of variety to your workouts, and even a barbell if you’re really into weight training. You will also need some foam mats for support and an exercise ball for core workouts.
As for cardio, you have two options: You could spend no money and take up running or walking to increase fitness, or you could pay out for an exercise bike or cross trainer so you have somewhere to go when it gets cold and dark in winter. Either way, you’ll be able to fulfil your fitness needs. If you do want to get some equipment, treadmills and bikes are often cheaply available second-hand, if you spend a little time looking for ones in good condition.
Make sure the space you’ve chosen is wired up for electricity, otherwise all this equipment will be useless! If you’re not clued up on wiring and DIY, find an electrician who can sort this out for you. Then you’ll also be able to install a few extra luxuries, like a mini-fridge for drinks and snacks, and a fan to keep the room cool – you could even install a TV to keep you motivated while you train!