As the old year turns to the new, those annual resolutions keep on rolling along. If you’ve made a resolution to get and stay fit, and you’re serious about going ahead with it, then you might want to think twice about taking out a gym membership and design your own home gym instead.
If you think about it, buying a gym membership isn’t cheap, even if you get an early month offer. You should be honest with yourself about whether you will continue to go to the gym on a regular basis or if you’ll give up bothering because it’s a bit far away or you’re not very interested in the whole scene.
Why not consider building your own home gym? It’s not that difficult and could mark a major change in your health and fitness.
Identify your goals
This process is easier than you might think. What do you want to get out of your home gym setup? What space do you have available for it? What budget are you prepared to put into your training? By identifying your goals, you’re a long way into figuring out how you’re going to get things organized to achieve them.
The two major areas to think about are strength training and aerobics. You should always look to build up your strength, no matter which exercises you choose to do, because this can help you lose fat and gain muscle as well as become a better runner. Couple this with aerobic training to build your endurance, and you’ll have the all-around tools to radically improve your fitness.
Design your gym space
A dedicated room is the best way to develop your gym space. It doesn’t have to be large, but its size will dictate the type of equipment that you can fit into it.
- Make the space comfortable and welcoming. Look to create a room that you want to go to regularly and enjoy being in. Avoid vivid colors and go for neutral creams, whites and grays. You don’t have to make the room look sparse, but it’s there to do a job. You can choose laminate or real wood flooring, but ensure that you have mats for when you’re doing some of your workouts.
- Think about the lighting. Sometimes, you may only have a basement to work with. Wherever your gym is, you need to consider how you will light it. Bright and vibrant light makes a real difference as to how you will feel about your training regimen. It encourages positivity, while dark and subdued lighting can easily distract you from the work that you want to do.
- Assess your natural light. This relates to your lighting, because even in a basement you’ll probably have a window of some sort, as it needs natural air and light. If your gym is on the ground or an upper floor, then you’ll have windows anyway. You need to find the best way to not only to keep the natural light that you want but also, where necessary, limit very bright light and heat. Covering your windows with shutters can make a real difference in terms of the light that comes in and goes out. Designed to fit any size or shape of window and available in many colors and styles, shutters give you the choice of easily controlling your light and air sources.
- Reduce the moisture. Working out can be tough depending on how hard you want to push yourself, and you’re inevitably going to get hot and sweaty. You can help reduce the moisture that your home gym develops not only with adjustable shutters that can give you comfortable airstreams but also by having a small air con machine to take some of the added moisture away.
- Plan your equipment. This comes down to space, but it’s always useful to have some storage for strength equipment such as barbells, kettlebells and dumbbells. Try to make room for some aerobic equipment and include a treadmill, cycling machine and rowing machine if you have the space. You can program time limits and difficulty levels into these as you move from beginner to expert over a couple of months. Every tool that you use will increase your fitness and health.
Your attitude to training in your home gym is the key to how well you will do. If you’ve created it, then you’re much more likely to want to use it and develop regular exercise habits to keep you fit and healthy well into the future.