Six Must-Haves For Your Home Gym

by Samantha Peters

Setting up a home gym is the best way to get in shape without having to spend a fortune on a gym membership, but buying expensive equipment can cost a lot. You’ll be able to work out at home, though, and the right equipment will make your workouts more effective.

The good news is that you don’t need too much equipment to get your home gym set up, but you should be fine with just a few things:

Free Weights

dumbbells at home gymA free weight set will cost you a pretty penny if you buy it brand new, but you can often find these weight sets at thrift stores and garage sales.

Check for second-hand weights before opting to buy brand new, and it will be a good way to save money.

Ideally, you should have a pair of dumbbells and a barbell, but at least get a barbell.

Working out with a barbell will make it easier for you to concentrate on building the primary muscles, without having to worry as much about keeping two weights stable.

If you can afford to buy both barbell and dumbbells, it will help you to have more options of exercises you can do. The weights will help you to get in shape, and you won’t be as limited as you would be with a weight machine.

Cardio Machine

Whether you buy a stationary bike, a treadmill, or an elliptical machine, you need some kind of cardio equipment in order to help you get in shape. You may not have a good running trail or bike path near your home, but a cardio machine will allow you to get a good workout from the comfort of your home.

Those that are trying to lose weight quickly should get a treadmill or elliptical machine. Those with joint problems will probably want a recumbent bike or elliptical.

A rowing machine will be excellent for a full body workout, and it will help you to get a very good muscle workout while building your cardio resistance.

Heart Rate Monitor

If you’re new to the world of fitness and exercise, chances are you don’t know what your body is capable of. If you want to make sure that you don’t push yourself too hard, a heart rate monitor will be a must for your home gym.

Most cardio machines come with a monitor, but you’ll want one for when you are running or lifting weights. A heart rate monitor will not only help you to prevent overworking yourself, but will help to stop you from underworking yourself.

You want to push your heart to a certain BPM in order to lose weight and get in shape, and the heart rate monitor will help you get your heart up to your target BPM.

Automated External Defibrillator

No matter how tough you are, there may always be a workout that will push your body a bit too far. Those in their 40s and 50s need to be careful when working out at home, as their hearts aren’t what they used to be.

With an automated external defibrillator, you’ll always feel secure at home. You can know that you’re prepared for anything that may happen as you work out, no matter how hard you push yourself.

If you’re going to buy one, make sure to shop at a reputable website like to be sure that you’re getting a machine that is high quality and reliable.


Need to know how long you are running or cycling for? Not sure how many minutes of exercise you did while lifting weights? A good timer will be a must for you if you are going to work out at home, as it will enable you to track your time.

Whether you’re trying to hold yourself in the plank position to work out your core or you’re spending a few minutes stretching, it’s important that you keep close track of your time.

You’ll be able to keep up with your exercise, and you can quickly check your timer to see how much you’ve done and how much you have left to do. Rather than having to squint down at the tiny numbers on your stopwatch, you can just look up to see what the interval timer says.

Pull-Up Bar

Pull-ups are some of the best body weight exercises that you can do, and few other exercises will work your shoulders, back, and arms as effectively as pull-ups and chin ups will. You can pay a few dollars for a solid metal pole, which you can hang from the roof by a chain as a cheap alternative.

However, this will not be as stable as you might like, so it’s probably a good idea to invest in a quality pull-up bar that you can hang over your door frame. You’ll be able to use it anywhere in the house, and you can even take it with you when you travel. If you want to stay fit no matter where you are, a good pull up bar will be a must!

(This guest post is written by Samantha Peters, a blogger and health enthusiast who enjoys writing about how to stay active and healthy.)

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