Sometimes it’s more convenient to set up your own private gym area at home than it is to trek out with the kids to the local facility. Some have daycare options, but some don’t. Some have classes while others only have weight facilities and a track or treadmill. Sometimes you just can’t get what you want without driving well out of your way to find a gym that meets your needs. In these instances it can be more cost effective and time efficient to workout at home.
There are several different types of equipment that have come down in price and are now more affordable for the home. For instance, the stationary bike can now be found for just over $100 that doesn’t have a large footprint – or rather doesn’t take up a large amount of space in the room. A recumbant bike is easier on your back, can be set up in front of the computer or television and will have options that should you milage, speed, calories and a running odometer so you can keep track of your progress over time.
Sporting goods stores will carry a variety of different types of treadmills that will be for people who enjoy walking or those training for a marathon and need a place to run indoors during inclement weather. Buy the most expensive treadmill you can afford because they will last the longest and the belt will slip the least amount possible than the lower end models. Some models will also fold up and can be wheeled against the wall and hidden behind a door.
Treadmills should come with an emergency cord which, when pulled, will quickly stop the belt in case you are injured or need to get off quickly. A treadmill can be programmed to perform different workouts or you may want to program it manually as you move along through your fitness program. Some of the more expensive models will have a memory chip to keep track of your progress over time.
Elliptical trainers are popular both at home and at the gym. They have similar features to the bike and treadmill where they can monitor and keep track of your milage, speed, calories and have a running odometer of your time. Most elliptical models will also have several different programs that can automatically be programed based on your age, weight and resistance you want to use. These machines can’t usually be folded or stored in a closet.
If you are looking for weight or strength work, there are several different types of weight machines that either use bands or your own body weight to accomplish the work involved. While strict bodybuilders will tell you that you can’t build muscle using resistance bands, there are several professional football and basketball players who use nothing but resistance bands. Terrell Owens, former 49er was one such athlete. Six foot three, 225 pounds and 3% body fat, he built his frame on resistance bands, limited free weights and good nutrition.
The options you use for your home equipment shouldn’t be limited by what you THINK you can afford. Don’t forget to shop at the second hand shops, Facebook groups and advertising sites online. Just remember to practice safety when you are picking up the equipment or checking it out. Take along a friend, pay with cash (or accept only cash) and inspect the equipment thoroughly before purchase. Don’t be afraid to try it out – so much easier to refuse to buy it than it is to try to get your money back and return it!