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Sweet Sweat Up: How to Put Together a Home Gym in Any Size Home

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Home gyms have come a long way from the era of Jane Fonda Workout tapes and leg warmers in the living room. Today, the ideal home gym caters to a variety of fitness needs – whether it’s for early morning yoga, five-minute workouts, or full-body strength and conditioning.

Plus, the perks of being able to exercise at home are threefold: Home gyms are more affordable in the long run, there’s no commute time, and best of all, you get to shower in your own bathroom afterwards.

To get your (creative) blood pumping, here are five key tips for putting together your own home gym, plus a few home gym ideas – leggings optional:

#1: Decide where you want to put your home gym

Where you decide to set up your new workout center really boils down to the space and availability in your home.

You might have the resources to set aside an entire room, or you may need to squeeze into a small corner of your home office. If your basement or attic is underutilized, it could be a fit – but make sure it’s temperature controlled. You don’t want to freeze in the winter, and sweat more than necessary in the summer. Windows or fans are also a must – you’ll want to circulate out all that sweaty air in every season.

Typically speaking, the living room is a solid choice, since that’s generally where the TV is; it’s a built-in perk if you plan to use workout videos. Got a guest bedroom? It could work as a gym when you need it, and those extra closets and shelves can be used for equipment storage.

Where you set up shop is totally a matter of preference, but one word of caution: Avoid your own bedroom, since bringing any energies that distract from sleep or your relationship – e.g., fitness equipment – is a feng shui no-no.

#2: Declutter before decorating your home gym

It’s one of the tenets of decorating any room, and the home gym is no exception: Cut the clutter to make room for more space (and in this case, more movement).

Use Dolly to schedule a junk removal, or donate any non-joy-sparking paraphernalia standing in the way of you and your fitness goals.

Make sure to clear out any boxes or objects that are in the way of nearby windows: Natural light is more energizing than artificial light. (If natural light isn’t an option – e.g, you’re setting up in the basement, or you tend to work out at night – try using 6-inch round recessed “pot” lights for every 30 feet of floor space.)

#3: Add some personal flair to your new home gym

Now that you’ve selected the spot for your home gym and cleared out the space, it’s time to get decorating.

Incorporate colors and artwork that motivate you. For inspiration, look to color psychology: Bright shades like yellow, orange, and red can get you pumped up, while muted hues of grey and blue are the perfect zen backdrop for a personal yoga and meditation spot.

If you’re short on space, or you’re setting up in a multi-purpose room, put furniture to double duty. Use an ottoman to store equipment like dumbbells, jump ropes, and resistance bands. Some hooks over a door can go a long way for hanging items like foam and yoga mat carriers. And consider what space will need to be put away during workout hours. If you’re working out in a guest bedroom, maybe opt for a foldable futon instead of a permanent queen bed. Lightweight furniture that’s easy to move will be your friend when you need to move the couch back after you’ve been deadlifting.

#4: Consider adding a mirror to the space

Dang, you look good! You should put a mirror up in your home gym.

Okay, mirrors aren’t just for vanity purposes. They’re also a good way to assess whether you’re doing certain poses correctly.

There’s a reason so many gyms have mirrors by the weight racks; it’s the easiest way for people to see exactly what position they’re in when stretching and lifting. You can put one big mirror up, or spread multiple, uniform ones along a wall.

Need a hand bringing a heavy mirror or two home? Give Dolly a call. Our Helpers will arrive at a time that’s convenient for you and get the mirrors delivered crack-free.

#5: Tips for building a home gym on a budget

Like we mentioned earlier, the cost of a home gym will likely be cheaper in the long run than a gym membership.

We know you want to crunch abs, not numbers, so we did the math for you: The average gym membership costs $60 a month, and almost 70% of those go unused. Subscription workout services like ClassPass can run up a pretty penny, too: Memberships can cost up to $165 per month.

And in fact, while the costs of building a home gym may seem high up front, they don’t have to be. If you’re on a tight budget, start small: Never underestimate the power of a jump rope, a yoga mat, and some dumbbells.

Some minor, inexpensive touches can go a long way in decorating your home gym, too. Put an aroma diffuser on a nearby shelf and keep it filled with energizing essential oils, like citrus, peppermint, and pepper.

Stream fitness classes for low or no fees – CorePower and ModelFIT cost $20 per month, and celeb trainers like Andrea Speir have free Youtube classes.

With just a few home workout accessories, you can make your own personal fitness center on a shoestring budget.

If your heart is set on top-notch treadmills and ellipticals, look for used equipment online. Craigslist, LetGo, and OfferUp all have machinery. Check out our guide on how to move a treadmill (or just ask a Dolly Helper to do it for you!).

Whether you’re having an oversized elliptical or a set of heavy dumbbells delivered, make the process smoother with Dolly. You can find out the cost of your Dolly upfront before you book, set a time that’s convenient for you, and relax. Save the workout for your brand-new home gym and let Dolly do the heavy lifting.

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