Wednesday, September 18, 2013

My Guest Post at Eat. Drink. Be Skinny! Building a Home Gym on a Budget

Today over at Eat. Drink. Be Skinny! you can read my guest post about building a home gym on a budget!  If you thought you had excuses for not getting to the gym, I have the answer for you!
Head on over to read Build a Home Gym on a Budget!  This is part 1 in a 2 part series, check back next week for your killer workout with your new equipment.

 If you are looking to excuse proof your workouts building a home gym is the best way to do it.  When I say building, I don't mean adding another room to your house to "build" a gym, I mean shopping for some awesome fitness items that you can keep in a spare room, your room, or anywhere that you can get a good workout in the space that you have.  If you wake up and see your equipment staring at you it will motivate you to get your butt out of bed to workout.  We are all pressed for time in the fast paced world and usually the first thing to get cut is the workout!  Why?  Because we say, "I don't have time for that today, I will get to the gym tomorrow, I PROMISE!"  How many times have you said that to yourself and before you know it a whole month has passed and you haven't made time to workout?  Well, here is your answer...Build your home gym...on a budget!  I have put together a list of what I feel, being a personal trainer and a busy mom, are the best fitness tools to have at home so you can get your workout in and stop making excuses.


1. Dumbbells- These are a must have for any strength training session!  You can create this collection slowly, but the first two sizes to get are a 5 and 10.  You will want both, there will be some exercises that will target smaller muscle groups and you will want the lighter weight, conversely you will want the heavier weight for the larger muscle groups and to challenge your self.  These are a great place to start, and as you get stronger you can add heavier dumbbells to your collection.  Most sets will run you $10-15, you can find them sold together or separately. Hit up your local sporting goods store because shipping these can get pricey.

2. Stability Ball-  Besides being fun to bounce on, this ball is great to build up your core stability.  It is such a versatile tool to have in your home gym, you can do crunches, use it against a wall for squats, or laying down for hamstring curls (see photo below).  I have included a diagram to show you exactly how to pick the right size for you, this is awesome, because now you can pick the right size so you fit correctly while working out.  Depending on the size expect to pay $20-35 for the ball.
Stability Ball Hamstring Curl- Photo credit here
Ball Size Chart
3.Resistance Bands- When it comes to adding variety to your workouts resistance bands are your best friends!  Plus if you have a vacation planned they fit great in your suitcase so you can get a quick workout in where ever you go!  They come in a variety of resistances and I usually like to have easy, medium and hard.  Every company color codes differently, so make sure to check out what the package says.  I have a set that has two handles and three bands that can be used separately or together to create multiple resistance combos.  These are great for bicep curls, tube walks, and shoulder presses (see photo)   A set like the one pictured below should cost around $30.  
Resistance band shoulder press

Set of  resistance bands
  4. Kettle Bells- I love kettle bells, so much so that I became a certified instructor.  They provide a functional workout which means you can do strength, cardio and flexibility movements that help with movement in your everyday life.  Not to mention you burn a ton of calories working with these babies!  Even the most seasoned athletes can benefit from adding kettle bells to their routine.  There are a ton of exercises that can be done with these.  Here are a few of my favorites kettle bells swings (see below), shoulder presses, russian twists and upright rows.  Kettle bells can be expensive so I would start with a $15 which will be about $20-30, again try a store like American Home Fitness because shipping can get costly.  Also, make sure that you buy a kettle bell that is once piece CAP is a great brand, these are more sturdy than some of the others and will last forever! 
Kettle bell swings- Calorie burner!!

CAP 15 lb Kettle bell

5. Additional items- There are a few other items that you can add depending on the space you have available and the surface you are working on.  If your workout area will have hard floors, I would invest in a padded mat, these are not too costly around $15-20, but will be appreciated during floor work.  Love to jump?  Add a jump rope, this classic will help you to get your heart rate up during your workouts and burn some extra calories.  If you don't have space indoor you can always head outside to get a few sets in, and at $10 or so its an easy addition.  The last optional item is a step system, however if you have stairs in your house those will work fine for step ups.  If you are looking for more of a cross-fit jump type workout investing the $30-50 is worth it.  The step can also be used as a bench for chest presses, tricep dips and dumbbell rows. 

Thanks again to Teresa at Eat. Drink. Be Skinny! for having me guest post!