Fit and fabulous! How to build a home gym on a budget

Posted on Dec. 17, 2014 by Canada Post in smartmoves

It’s not surprising that fitness and regular exercise are one of the most popular New Year's resolutions. Exercise keeps you healthy and makes you look and feel better. Make this year the time to get in shape with your new home gym!

Pick your space

Choose an area that you will actually use for your workouts. If you hate the smell or lighting in your basement, don't set up shop there! You can set up a well-equipped workout room or a small corner of your living room.

A space with plenty of natural light is often helpful to get motivated. Get dressed in your workout clothes, play music—whatever it takes to get you to switch from being at home to exercise mode.

Start with these 6 smaller pieces of exercise equipment

  • Dumbbells or kettleballs
  • Stability ball
  • Resistance exercise bands
  • Jump rope
  • Yoga mats or larger area mat
  • Music system – seriously you need some tunes while you work out!

Invest in 1 big ticket item that you’ll actually use

Do your research to find the piece or pieces of equipment that are the right fit for you. Purchase from salespeople who are knowledgeable about fitness and exercise equipment.

Consider your space, both vertical and horizontal, for the machine you choose. Here are some popular cardio machines and the space they require:

  • Treadmill — 2.8 m2 (30 sq. ft.)
  • Stationary bike — 0.9 m2 (10 sq. ft.)
  • Single-station gym — 3.3 m2 (35 sq. ft.)
  • Rowing machine — 1.9 m2 (20 sq. ft.)
  • Stair climber — 0.9 m2-1.9m2 (10-20 sq. ft.)
  • Multi-station gym — 4.7m2-18.6m2 (50-200 sq. ft.)

Create a workout schedule

Organize your space and your plan of action. Even the best home gyms won't do you any good unless you actually do the workouts. Create a schedule for your week and decide when you'll fit in your home workouts.

It's too easy to get distracted by the phone, computer, or kids being home, so make an exercise appointment you won't miss by scheduling it into your week.

Don’t break the bank

All this equipment can cost a fortune if you buy it new. Do a little research and try using websites like Kijiji to find used exercise equipment. Don’t forget that gyms are always going out of business. You’d never know, but there's a lot of gym-grade refurbished equipment out there. You can get top of the line machines for about the same price as new home-quality machines. It never hurts to ask!

Do you have a home gym? Let us know in the comments below how you put together your exercise space.