Having your own place to train is worth it if you do it right.
By Roger Lockridge
There have been more posts on social media about training at home than ever before. People do this for several reasons – comfort, personal plans, saving money on memberships, and there are many others. I committed to my own home gym right after we moved in my home three years ago. My reasoning was simple. It was 20 minutes to the nearest gym or 20 seconds to my own. I saved money on traveling, membership, and could train my own way. No brainers.
If this is something you’ve considered doing then you should know the right way to go about it. A fly-by-night commitment and throwing of money at it won’t help you in the short or long terms. So I’m going to share over the course of a few different articles how you should go about creating your own home gym so you can maximize its and your potential.
Don’t Cancel Your Membership Yet
Yes, doing so would save cash instantly but your home gym isn’t ready yet so not going to the gym means you wouldn’t be training at all which only hurts your fitness levels and can lead a loss of motivation. While you’re in the gym, use that environment to help you come up with ideas for what you want in your own space when you create it.
Designate Your Space
Throwing your equipment in another room of the house isn’t a wise choice. Let’s say you add the home gym to your bedroom. That bed can tempt you to skip the training altogether. If it’s in your utility or laundry room, your equipment can become a collector of things you don’t use. Whether you commit half of your garage or find a room you’re not using – designate that space as the home gym space and nothing else. Committing the space is a great reinforcement of the commitment you’re making.
Look for Ideas but Don’t Copy
There are several great home gyms out there and people who are proud of them share photos or videos of them often on social media. Others have written articles about their personal fitness space. It would be a good idea to see what others have done for their home gyms and be inspired by what you find.
However, that doesn’t mean you should do exactly what they do. Their home gyms are specifically designed for what they need. That’s the beauty of having one – its purpose is to help you. So why should you try to copy someone else’s? You might not have the same space, budget, or fitness goals. Be inspired by what you see but remember at the end of the day, this is your space so design it for your needs.
Design Your Room First
Going out and buying everything you want with the hopes it would fit will only lead to aggravation. Did you buy furniture before making sure it fit in your room? Of course not. Get the measurements of the room and then create a rough design of how you want this space to look once it’s complete. Make sure you can fit a squat rack, bench, and dumbbell rack before you go shopping. If you want machines, make sure they will go in so that you can still comfortably train. A 9 foot rack won’t do anything for you if your ceilings are only 8 feet high. This appears to be common sense but you’d be surprised how many people have made this mistake. Don’t be one of them.
Aside from assigning the space, one more sign of a solid commitment is going out and buying the first pieces of equipment. No one knows your budget but you but if you were able to fully stock your home gym in one order then you probably would’ve already done it.
For those of us that need to start small and save up, you can take a few bucks out of your next paycheck and hit the local sporting goods store. Make sure that whatever it is you choose to buy is something you’re certain to use on a regular basis. It can be an exercise ball, resistance bands, an ab wheel, or even tennis balls to help you with grip. Once you have your items, take them straight to your home gym room and do your first workout with them. Even if it’s a few sets, doing this now not only reinforces your commitment but helps you solidify it by having your first session under your belt.
In my next article I’ll share the next steps you should take in becoming a home gym member.