Nothing beats being able to work out without leaving your house.
If you have a home gym, it is easier to stay motivated. You might be busy and considering skipping your workouts. A home gym makes it easier to stay in shape when you have limited time and energy.
Even if you don’t have any trouble making it to the gym, a home gym is convenient. You won’t have to pack gym clothes, get changed, bring a pair of indoor shoes, or travel there and back again.
Having a home gym allows you to invite people over to work out with you. Another great benefit is that you’ll have all of the equipment to yourself. You won’t have to wait for someone to finish using the squat rack.
Covid-19 might not be going away entirely anytime soon, so things might be closed on and off in 2022 and beyond. You can beat any future lockdowns if you have a home gym.
A Home Gym is an Investment
With all of those advantages, what you might wonder is: how much does a home gym cost? It depends on how many pieces of equipment you want and whether or not everything has to be high-quality.
Since high-quality equipment is significantly better than cheaper stuff, you should invest in excellent equipment because it is worth it. High-end strength training machines and treadmills feel great and give you the support you need. Cheaper machines break down fast and cost a lot more in the long run to maintain.
Higher-end home equipment just lasts longer than cheaper stuff does. Excellent equipment can last for decades, even if you use it often. There’s no point in getting a cheap machine if it will stop working properly in a few years.
A home gym might even save you money. If you spend more than $50 a month on your gym membership, that is more than $600 per year. If you have had a gym membership for a decade, that would cost $6000, and many people spend a lot more than $50 per month.
You might have a gym membership for even more than a decade, so high-quality gym equipment can pay for itself. Taking fitness seriously is also great for your health, so it is worth the money. You can think of a high-end home gym as an investment in your health and quality of life.
A home gym can also save you time. If you don’t have to travel back and forth from the gym, that saves a huge number of hours over the years. Time is money. If you think of a home gym as an investment, it does not seem so expensive.
A home gym doesn’t always take up a huge amount of space either. It depends on what equipment you want to include. You can always start with a relatively modest home gym and then add more to it later on.
Does Everyone With a Home Gym Get Rid of their Membership?
If money is not a problem and you like going to the gym, you might have both a home gym and a gym membership. If the weather is bad or you don’t have much time, work out at home. Leave your house if you want to use the pool, the sauna, or some equipment you don’t have.
Gyms also let you pay by the day to use them, rather than a membership. If you want to swim laps or jump off a diving board once in a while, you can pay a day fee occasionally.
Your Budget for Your Gym?
First off, we do not recommend getting cheap equipment. Cheap machines are particularly bad. Used machines are even worse – they may stop working properly very fast and may not even be safe.
You don’t have to spend several thousand dollars all at once. You might buy one item at a time. Start with a dumbbell bar, a bench, and plates, and buy quality. Add a squat rack a little later, and eventually get to machines when you can afford them.
You will be happy with your high-quality home gym equipment once you have it. You are better off buying quality equipment one item at a time than buying cheaper equipment all at once.
To start, you might have as little as:
- Weight plates
- Barbell bar
- Weight bar
- Squat rack
- Pullup bar
None of that equipment is very expensive, not even if you buy higher-end stuff. Even with that little equipment, you can have a great workout at home. There’s nothing wrong with using machines, but you can work all your muscles with free weights.
If you want treadmills, exercise bikes, and strength training machines, you will have to spend more. Bad exercise machines don’t feel smooth and are a chore to use. Invest in good equipment that may last a lifetime. Cheap equipment will break and won’t be backed by a good warranty.
Buy New Rather than Used Equipment
One should be particularly skeptical of anyone selling a used treadmill or exercise bike. Used machines are often on their last legs and already have problems. Don’t waste your money on something that may break before the end of the year.
Buy Compact Equipment to Save Space
One reason to spend a bit more money on better equipment is that it is more compact. Higher-quality equipment tends to be more compact equipment. If you don’t insist on the cheapest stuff you can find, you can save space.
Companies sell dumbbells with adjustable bars to save space. You can also get adjustable benches, foldable squat racks, and smaller than average bars. Standard barbell bars are 7 feet long and weigh 45 pounds; you can get a 6 foot and 35-pound bar instead.
Whenever you are trying to save space, wall-mounted items are better. If you have suitable walls, you should consider wall-mounted plate holders. You can also get wall-mounted foldable squat racks and many other space-saving items.
Less is More
You don’t need a lot of different equipment to exercise your whole body. You can train a huge number of different muscles just with dumbbells.
Many machines also let you get a full-body workout. Kettlebells also let you train nearly anything. For cardio, a single machine is enough. If you get an exercise bike, you can use it either for cardio or for more intense sprint cycling.
Examples of Home Gym Equipment and Prices
For anyone doing strength training, the most basic equipment is the bench, the weight plates, and the bar. If you want, you might start with only that equipment and then add more from there.
If you are planning on getting rid of your gym membership, the starting equipment should not be too basic. Don’t give up your gym membership until you can get a good full-body workout at home.
Kettlebells are inexpensive and are something many people who don’t have full home gyms buy. They work well to strengthen many different muscles if you know how to use them properly. They also don’t take up much space. There is no reason not to add them to your home gym.
You can train all three of your strength, cardio, and flexibility with kettlebells. If someone has only one set of exercise equipment at home, they should have a set of kettlebells.
Training with kettlebells is in many ways better than training with barbells. Kettlebell exercises are compound exercises, which work many different muscles at once. These exercises are better than isolation exercises that work only one muscle at a time.
High-quality, well-balanced kettlebells can cost anywhere from a little less than $20 to a little less than $200. Larger kettlebells are much more expensive than smaller ones. You can buy gym equipment in multiple payments, even for smaller purchases.
If space is an issue, a foldable bench is the best way to go. If you do bodyweight exercises in addition to weights, you need an incline/decline bench.
Get an adjustable bench that can be either on an angle or flat if you want to do any exercises that require putting the bench on different angles.
Even if you don’t do a lot of bodyweight exercises, many exercises with weights require an adjustable bench. You can emphasize different muscle groups by adjusting the bench.
You might use your barbell bar more often than any other piece of equipment, so make sure you get a good one. A durable barbell bar will last for a very long time.
If you get a cheap bar, it will bend sooner rather than later. A bent or kinked bar is unstable and may not be safe. Get a high-quality barbell bar that can take heavy use for many years without bending.
Every home gym needs a good selection of weight plates. You don’t always need to go with steel plates – rubber plates can also be high-quality.
High-quality weight plates keep their appearance for longer. If you buy low-quality rubber plates, they will lose their finish very fast.
You can exercise your whole body with simple hand-held weights. They are not only for working out your biceps. If you learn a little about all the different exercises you can do, you can use dumbbells to exercise all muscle groups.
If you have a good set of dumbbells of different sizes, you can work your way up from lighter to heavier weights. You will be in excellent shape before you can easily use the heaviest ones.
You can use an exercise bike either for cardio or for more intense exercise. One of the best things you can do for your health is high-intensity interval training (HIIT). HIIT is at least as good for you as weight lifting.
With HIIT, you sprint very fast for 30 seconds and then go much slower for another 30 or 60 seconds. This is very intense and will make you strong and energetic. Any kind of sprint cycling is a great exercise.
If you are short on space, you should get as much foldable equipment as possible, including a foldable treadmill. A good treadmill should be durable and backed by a good warranty before anything else. It should also have a display, a heart rate monitor, multiple programs, and a wide enough running surface.
The first thing a good squat rack needs to be is durable. You are going to set a heavy barbell on it many times over the years, and it needs to be durable enough to take it. A great squat rack might also be foldable to take up little space and include a pullup bar.
Strength training machines can build up your muscles just as well as weights can. It is a myth that you won’t do as well with machines. You can do very well with either or with a mix of the two. It depends on what you prefer.
A good cable machine can last for a couple of decades with little maintenance. You really get what you pay for with strength training machines. If you buy an excellent one, you might not miss giving up your gym membership.
Floor Protection is Important
You will quite likely need to protect your flooring when you set up your home gym. Floor protection is crucial as dropping the weights can damage an unprotected floor. Your weights will also last longer if they fall on a softer surface.
Home Gyms are all Over the Place in Price
Some home gyms are vastly more expensive than others. Some people build a home gym for only $1000; others spend as much as $50,000 on a huge home gym with many different machines.
If you aren’t rich, you don’t have to spend tens of thousands of dollars. You don’t need a dozen different machines. You can target all of your muscles with free weights. Many people also buy a bicycle, treadmill, or rowing machine, but you don’t need all three.
However, you shouldn’t try to minimize your budget when you build a home gym. You should buy good quality equipment. Buy one thing at a time if you would find it hard to afford all at once. You can pay for everything in monthly installments.