It can be challenging to find time to make it to the gym, especially if your gym isn't near your house or you workout at odd hours of the day. Having a separate room to transform into your home gym is great but isn't essential. Even if you only have a corner of your bedroom to store equipment you can still have a home gym of sorts. When you are ready to work out, all you need to do is find a bit of space and bring your equipment out.
Following is a list of equipment that is handy to kick-start your home gym:
Skipping Rope - Remember the humble skipping rope? Turns out it is a fabulous cardio exercise which can reduce that tummy in weeks! You can use it to either just warm up prior to your work-out or to build stamina when done for a longer duration. Also, these require very little space and cost only around Rs. 200.
Cross Trainer - The most expensive piece of equipment we suggest (a second hand machine will cost between Rs. 10,000 to 20,000, a new one will be upwards of Rs. 30,000), the cross-trainer has one up on the good old treadmill as it allows for greater body movement making it highly recommended for cardiovascular training and is a great exercise for weight loss.
Dumbells - Get yourself a set of adjustable dumbells, which consist of dumb bell rods with weights you can easily add or remove. Light weights (2 kgs for women & 5 kgs for men) can be used for the first set of each exercise whereas the heavier weights (3 kgs for women & 7 kgs and above for men) should be used for consecutive sets. Dumb bells are multi-purpose equipment and can be used to workout various body parts including your chest (Dumbell Press), shoulders (Overhead Press) and back (Dumbell Row). A set of adjustable dumb bells will cost approximately cost Rs. 1000.
Adjustable Bench - An important piece of equipment, the best benches are those that can be made to either lie flat, inclined or declined. Most weight and abs exercises will require you to use the bench in various modes. A bench will set you back around Rs. 3,000 to Rs. 5,000. And no, the bed in your house just won't do as it doesn't allow you to move your hands freely. You could try a sturdy coffee table, but it may allow for only limited movement.
Yoga Mat - To get those flat abs, you will need to get down on the floor and do your crunches and planks. You do not want to lie down on the cold, solid, hard floor, which is why we recommend you get a yoga mat , which will cushion your back. This will, of course, come in handy for your yoga practice too.
Swiss Ball - Another multi-purpose piece of equipment is the Swiss Ball, which can be used for various body parts like chest (Push-Ups), legs (Hamstring Ball Curl), abs (Ball Crunch) and triceps (Ball Tricep Curl). This is a must buy as it gives you many exercise options whilst occupying little space in the house and is basically perfect for a full body workout routine. The Swiss Ball will cost between Rs. 500 to Rs. 1000.
A quirky addition we suggest is a motivational poster. An inspirational quote (“If you are determined, there is ALWAYS a way”), a movie poster (Rocky, Lara Croft) or even a fit celebrity (Stallone for the guys, or Ryan Gosling asking the women to work out harder) can get you to put in that extra effort. It's not a strict fitness tip but just something to remind you of your goals constantly and motivate you daily!
You don't need to have every piece of equipment, depending on your budget you can pick up a few pieces to get started and then build on your home gym over time. It is best to at least have a selection of pieces that cover both cardio and strength training to get you started.
Happy working out at home!
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