Building A Home Gym on A Shoe String Budget
Let s face it; convenience is key when it comes to fitting in your
exercise routine. When you think of the time consumed in packing
your gym bag and toiletries, driving to the gym, parking, checking
in, going to the locker room, waiting for equipment, making some
polite conversation with staff or members and then reversing the
process, you can potentially be looking at taking 2 hours out of
your day. Do that 3 4 times a week and it s easy to begin making
statements about why you don t have time to exercise.
The home gym is quickly becoming the solution for your no time
objection. You no longer need to agonize over researching and paying
for a health club membership when with a small investment and the
discipline to execute your routine; you can get the same results
in the privacy of your own home.
When exercising from home you can maintain regular workouts even
when you life becomes irregular. You just can t beat the convenience.
Building a Home Gym without a budget and with limited space.
Start by knowing there are many exercises you can do simply with
your body weight especially if you are a beginner. Some examples
of strengthening exercises include; push-ups, wall squats, stationary
lunges, leg lifts and sit-ups. Jumping jacks, stadiums (taking the
steps), walking and jumping (with or without a jump rope) can be
done for cardiovascular endurance. No equipment is necessary for
Without any equipment at all, you can set up a mini-circuit around
your living space that includes alternating the above strengthening
and cardiovascular exercises. Build up to repeating the circuit
several times per session. Printing out the names of the exercises
on index cards and placing them around the room will help you to
keep order and efficiency in your routine. Change the sequence of
the exercises each workout for variety and fun.
As you get stronger, progress by using household items like soup
cans, gallon and gallon containers filled with water for the strengthening
exercises. You can also fill a back pack with weighted objects for
added resistance as you do lunges and squats. You can increase the
intensity of the cardiovascular exercises simply by moving a little
faster which will ensure that you continue to work within your target
For your flexibility program simply plug in your favorite soothing
music, dim the lights, relax and slowly go through a total body
stretching routine. You re only a few steps away from a hot shower.
If you have a small budget up to $100.00 the following items will
give you the most mileage for your money. With limited funds you
want to include equipment that is flexible and can grow with you.
Resistance bands also known as fitness tubing are a great alternative
that can be used in the smallest of spaces as well as thrown in
a suitcase when traveling. These are available with variable resistance
and most exercises can be adapted with a little creativity. Adding
door connections to resistance tubing will aid in completing a full-body
workout. Fitness tubing kits are available for under $30.00.
Exercise Balls Also known as Stability Balls, Resist-A-Balls, Therapy
Balls or Swiss Balls, are the best-kept secret for the home as they
are cherished by physical therapists and personal trainers. The
balls can provide a total body strengthening workout as well as
be incorporated in cardiovascular activities and assist in stretching.
Exercise balls can be used with your body weight or you can add
resistance to it like the bands mentioned above. They can replace
a flat or incline workout bench and create a challenge not only
to your strength, but balance, stability and coordination as well.
Exercise balls come in several sizes and beginners should work with
a larger less inflated ball. As you become accustomed to the exercises
add more air to your ball.
One of the best features of the ball s that most of the exercises
incorporate the abdominals and lower back which are great for posture
and giving you a taller and leaner appearance. You need a space
about as long as your body to work within. Fitness Balls can be
purchased found for around $30.00. And when you are not exercising,
you can sit on them in place of a chair at your desk.
Exercise Video s are a wonderful way to add variety to your program
and keep your routine interesting. There are thousands of videos
available in every discipline of exercise including kick boxing,
Pilates, step, tai chi, flexibility, funk, belly dancing and abdominal
conditioning. Most video s average $20.00, can be done in minimal
space and with little or no equipment. Video s can also be rented
from a video store or library or swapped with a friend.
Dumbbells run about $.89 cents per pound. A beginner should get
a set of 3, 5, 7 & 9 pound weights to start. Dumbbells will add
many options to your exercise equipment repertoire; they are very
functional and can produce wonderful strength gains which will ultimately
increase your metabolism. Dumbbells can easily be stored under a
bed or couch or at the bottom of a closet for convenient access
to your total body workout.
Ankle Weights are a great tool for a total body strengthening workout.
They should not be used in conjunction with cardiovascular conditioning.
Ankle weights can be placed around the wrists or ankles for a complete
workout. They are especially desirable for hip, butt and thigh work
that is difficult to target with dumbbells. Most exercises that
can be done with a dumbbell for the upper body can be done safely
with ankle weights.
Use all of your resources If you have a bike for outdoor use, simply
hop on and start pedaling. If you reside in a place which has facilities
like a meeting room, fitness center or swimming pool, take advantage
of their space and equipment if any. Borrow equipment from friends
that are letting it collect dust or shop for equipment in the classifieds
and at auctions like eBay. Many equipment stores will also sell
reconditioned equipment or floor models for pennies on the dollar.
Here are some buying tips
When possible, purchase equipment from knowledgeable sales people
who are savvy about health and fitness equipment. They should be
able to answer specific questions and help you buy the right equipment
If you can t try it don t buy it. Go to the store in workout gear
and use the equipment for at least 10 minutes. If you re ordering
by phone or through the Internet, be sure to check out the return
policy, time limits, warrantees and guarantees.
Home equipment can be a hit or miss when it comes to quality and
durability, as you may have witnessed. If you are going to make
a purchase, it should be durable and well made and stable during
use. The action should be smooth and most importantly, it should
be an activity that you enjoy doing and will continue doing down
the road. See if there is a loner program for a week to take it
home and try it out.
There s Still No Quick Fix
Beware of infomercials have helped sell over $450 million worth
of exercise equipment over the past few years. These slick commercials
with beautiful bodies and celebrity endorsement prey on people wanting
a quick fix. Here are a few ways you can spot misleading claims
and avoid getting stuck with something you won t use:
If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Fitness results
don t come easy and they definitely won t come in only 5 minutes
a day without sweating. "Rocking away fat" or "squeezing your way
to a trimmer you is not realistic. To burn fat, you ve go to strengthen
your muscles and get your heart rate up.
If you can duplicate the movement without the equipment then you
probably don t need it. If you aren t getting the results you want
from abdominal crunches, then an "ab roller, ab trainer or ab twister
isn t going to do it either.
Nothing is going to take the place of good old-fashioned hard work
and discipline. Don t look for a short cut or an easy way out. The
best way to get a fabulous body is by combining a low-fat healthy
diet, regular cardiovascular exercise and weight training.
When putting your routine together think about keeping a balance
between cardio and strength options.
If you can do your aerobic training outdoors year round, focus
on strength equipment for the house. If you are limited to seasonal
outdoor activities, a cardio video may be a priority for your home
Remember, you can get a complete strength workout with very little
equipment. A plethora of exercises can be done with limited space
or tight budgets. As long as you follow the basic principles of
exercise training such as challenging your muscles, progressing
your workouts and working within your target heart rate, you are
guaranteed to see results.
A one-time investment in minimal equipment can give you a lifetime
of enjoyment. I m confident you won t miss the drive to the gym
to wait to get on sweaty equipment.
Kelli Calabrese MS, CSCS, 2004 Personal Trainer of the Year, Exercise
Physiologist, Author of Feminine, Firm & Fit. Kelli is a 20 year
fitness industry leader and spokesperson. She has helped thousands
of people just like you achieve their fitness dreams. For more information,
go to http://www.KelliCalabrese.com
or e-mail Kelli@KelliCalabrese.com.
Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Kelli_Calabrese
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