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Tips To Make A Killer At-Home Gym

You don't have to break the bank to afford a good sweat session.

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Photo: Perfect Fitness
Photo: Perfect Fitness

Let’s face it: gym memberships and class passes can sometimes be too expensive. On top of that, getting out of the house or leaving the office to make it to the gym can be a challenge. If you find yourself wondering if there is a solution, a home gym may be it.

Though it is an investment, over time, you will probably save money, as you won’t be paying a monthly fee. Having the freedom to not be tied down to specific hours of operation is another added bonus. If you’ve decided to ditch the gym and dedicate some space in your house to your workout equipment, where should you start? We have some tips for building a home gym that is just as efficient as working out at a fitness club.

Related: 4 Ways To Squeeze In Short And Sweat Workouts

Don’t worry about getting everything at once, just choose equipment you can expand on. This allows you to add pieces over time and invest little by little. Many companies understand the importance of getting the most out of equipment at home, and Alden Mills, Perfect Fitness founder and former Navy SEAL, explains, “We are pleased to offer products that engage a wide range of muscle groups in the most efficient and powerful movement patterns to ensure that athletes are able to make maximal fitness gains from anywhere.” When thinking about getting equipment that you can build on, for example, try the Perfect Fitness Multi-Gym. This piece of equipment will let you do pull-ups to work your arms and straight leg raises to work your core. Even better, you can get the Perfect Fitness Ab Straps Pro, which is an add-on that attaches to the Multi-Gym. This gives you the option of additional work for your core and hip flexors.

Learn to look for ways to get multiple workouts out of one piece of equipment. You will definitely start to get creative with how you use equipment. For example, resistance bands not only are great for getting the most out of your squats—they can also be used for stretching or even for activating your chest muscles with resistance band chest pulls.

Related: 7 Fitness Videos To Get You Cross-Training

Don’t forget about recovery tools. It is still important to warm up and cool down, even without a trainer there watching you. Investing in recovery tools—especially those that can be used after a long run—is important. We recommend TriggerPoint’s handheld tool, the GRID STK, to really target certain muscles and prevent injury.

Keep everything clean and sanitized to prolong its life (and keep you healthy). When you are at the gym, it is important to use sanitation products to avoid contamination. Even if you are the only person using your home gym, it is just as important to keep your equipment clean. “When the family works out at a home gym, which from a germ perspective is a healthier option than public gyms, remember that without proper sanitizing or washing of the hands throughout the day, you and your family could share all the germs and bacteria each have collected during their day,” shares Roger Wilson, president of WillSpeed Technologies GermBloc Brands. “It is important to try your best to build a barrier around you to defend yourself from all the things the world of exposure has to offer.” Products such as GermBloc, which come in a spray or lotion, will help you protect your at-home equipment and your body without alcohol or other chemicals.

Ashley Lauretta is a health and fitness journalist living in Austin, TX. Assistant editor at LAVA Magazine, Ashley also regularly contributes to Women’s Running, Active.com, LIVESTRONG.com and more. Find her on Twitter at @ashley_lauretta.