Sharing tips on how to create a home gym on a budget and what equipment you need.
For this post, I wanted to chat about how to set up a home gym and what equipment you need, especially since many of us are still working out at home, or you might be considering building a home gym on a budget.
Home gyms are getting even more popular since the pandemic started and there are SO MANY benefits to having your gym at home. One of my favorite parts is that there’s zero commute time, no gym membership, and if the kids are home, I can just get in a workout while they play or watch a show.
Creating a home gym can be a bit challenging if you have a limited budget (some gym technology and gear is pricey!) but there are ways you can create a home gym that works for your needs without breaking the bank. You can also customize it based on what you like to do and what products you think you need.
Before I get started, I just want to emphasize the fact that you don’t need fancy or expensive pieces of equipment to get into a great workout. All you need to get an awesome workout is a plan, sneakers that fit you, and motivation. Anything else is just a bonus.
How To Create A Home Gym On A Budget
Take advantage of what you already have and create a wish list for future items
Grab a program like Microsoft Excel or Google Sheets and start listing all the stuff you already have. Then, prioritize them in the second column by assigning a rating system or numbering them. For the items you want to get your hands on, add them in a third column and prioritize them too. This will keep you organized and help you make smart decisions about what to get next. So, get ready to conquer your shopping list like a boss!
Create a budget and estimate expenses
Determine a total spending budget and after doing some searching online, you can estimate how much your total gym set-up will cost. Be realistic and don’t break the bank! Next, hit up the interwebs and search for the equipment you want. Check out prices on different sites and make a list of what you need. Add up the total cost and voila! You’ve got an estimate. Just remember to factor in any extra costs like shipping or assembly fees. Now you’re ready to flex those budgeting muscles and get your gym set up on point!
Invest in multi-tasking tools at first
An example of this is if you’re looking for strength training equipment, find something that you can use for multiple things (like dumbbells) and is versatile, before expanding into different products in the same theme (like barbells, kettlebells, etc.)
Create a dedicated workout space
There can be a full-room gym in your house, a garage gym, an office corner gym, or whatever you have the room to use. If you don’t have a dedicated space, you could even store your workout items in a closet in a large bin. If space is an issue, focus on the items that don’t take up a ton of room (like resistance bands, jump rope, small Pilates ball, etc.)
Buy secondhand equipment
Looking for a deal on gym equipment like iron plates, bumper plates, or a squat rack? Check out Facebook Marketplace for some sweet discounts on used gear. Just make sure to inspect it before you buy it! And keep an eye out for gyms that are closing or moving – they may be looking to sell their equipment to recoup some costs. But remember, if they leased it, they can’t sell it. So do your research, negotiate the price, and get ready to pump some iron without breaking the bank!
Choose the equipment you will use!
This one seems obvious, but don’t purchase anything you won’t be excited to use in your routine. A spin bike makes a lovely clothing rack but would be a waste of money.
Tips For Creating An Apartment Home Gym
Living in an apartment doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice your fitness routine. While you may have less space to work with, there are still plenty of ways to create an effective home gym right in your apartment. One key tip is to focus on equipment that can be easily stored away when not in use, such as resistance bands, yoga mats, and adjustable dumbbells. You can also look for equipment that doesn’t require jumping or making loud noises, like stationary bikes or rowing machines with magnetic resistance.
Another tip is to use vertical space to your advantage – consider installing wall-mounted shelves or using storage bins to keep your equipment organized and out of the way. This will help you maximize your space and keep your apartment looking tidy. Finally, don’t forget about the importance of noise reduction – using a noise-reducing mat or investing in quieter equipment can help keep your neighbors happy. By following these tips and getting creative with your setup, you can create a functional and effective apartment home gym that fits your space and your fitness goals.
Here are some of my top home gym essentials!
Home Gym Essentials
Weights and resistance training
- Dumbbells: The classic never dies. I think if you add anything to a home gym, a couple of sets of dumbbells are all you need and provide the best value and versatility. I’d go with a light pair (3-8 lbs) and a heavier set (12-25 lbs). Adjustable dumbbells are another great option if you don’t want to take up a ton of space.
- Kettlebells: Kettlebells are a great way to switch up your strength training. I love using them for swings and unilateral strength work like single-leg deadlifts, shoulder presses, farmer carries, and rows. A kettlebell workout is here.
- Barbells: If you’re used to strength training with dumbbells, a barbell can be a fun way to do something different.
- Bowflex or cable machine: A Bowflex is a little less cumbersome than a cable machine and does a lot of the same things. I have this one and love it.
- TRX: TRX is another one of my must-have items. You can install them anywhere, they’re extremely lightweight, and you can do so many exercises with them. My favorite TRX exercises are here.
- Resistance bands: These are perfect if you’re a beginner and don’t want to purchase dumbbells yet, or if you have limited space. These are also wonderful for travel.
For cardio options, check out Facebook Marketplace or Craigslist. People are always getting rid of fitness equipment and you might find something awesome!
- Treadmill: My #1 favorite brand is Woodway, but they’re hard to find, and Peloton offers a treadmill. <— I haven’t tried it but know it has to be good.
- Spin bike: My Peloton is still one of my all-time favorite purchases. I use it at least once a week and LOVE the classes. The Pilot is hooked on it now, too! I recommend a spin bike because it’s low impact, you can get in an excellent cardio workout, and they don’t take up an insane amount of space. Check out my review of the Peloton bike here, and how to PR on the Peloton here. If you decide to go for it, email me and I’m happy to pass along my referral code.
- Rowing machines: These are incredible to have at home if you want a different cardio option or you like interval training. I like the rowing increases strength and definition in arms and back, when these areas can be a bit neglected on the spin bike, treadmill, or stairclimber. I recently got an Aviron and can’t wait to report back!
- Battle rope: Battle ropes are so much fun (lots of exercises here!) and a fantastic way to get your heart rate up quickly.
- Jump rope: This is the most economical cardio option. Grab a jump rope and do some jump intervals.
- Stretching, yoga, and recovery
- A foam roller or rumble roller. My tips for foam rolling are here!
- Mat. Any mat will do, and Target and Amazon offer inexpensive mat options. My all-time favorite mat is Manduka.
- Theragun. This handy tool is inssannnnneee at relieving sore muscles. If you’re looking for an ultimate recovery tool, this is a good one.
(I miss my lil Bella Boo)
Apps and On-Demand Workouts
I think we all know I love Peloton. The classes are fantastic and I love the music. I will say I prefer the cardio and yoga classes over the strength and boot camp classes, but I think they do an incredible job. Check out my full review of the app here.
Les Mills On Demand:
Les Mills On Demand is one of my very favorite resources for home and travel workouts. The instructors are the best of the best and the workouts and science-driven and research-based for maximum effectiveness. They put a lot of care and science into the structure and design of their workouts, and you can tell. My top classes are BODYPUMP, BODY ATTACK, and GRIT.
Sweat App. If you’re looking to follow a precise plan, the Sweat App is the place to be. They have so many different programs and I like these workouts when I don’t want to think about anything and just go.
Physique 57, Pure Barre and barre3. These are perfect if you’re looking for a barre workout! I used to prefer the P57 workouts but I feel like the On Demand ones have been a little stale lately.
I also LOVE Sculpt Society. You can use my link for one month free on the app!
How Much Does A Home Gym Cost?
How much does a home gym cost? Well, that depends on how fancy you want to get. You could go all out and spend upwards of $15,000, or you could keep it simple and spend as little as $200. Don’t let the price tag scare you away though! With some savvy shopping and a bit of creativity, you can build a budget-friendly home gym that will help you crush your fitness goals without crushing your wallet. So, whether you’re looking for a full-blown fitness palace or just a small space to get your sweat on, there are plenty of options out there to fit any budget.
Get fit without going broke – create a budget-friendly home gym and crush your fitness goals!
You don’t need to spend a fortune to get fit and healthy. With a little bit of creativity and planning, you can create a home gym that won’t break the bank. Just remember to prioritize the essential equipment, look for multi-functional items, and keep an eye out for sales and discounts. Trust me, with some effort and dedication, you can achieve your fitness goals from the comfort of your own home without having to shell out a ton of cash. So, what are you waiting for? Start building that budget-friendly home gym today!
Do you work out at home or the gym? If you could add anything to your workout space, what would it be? I want a Peloton tread… or a Technogym Skill Mill.
Do you use any apps for classes?
Easy ways to update your home gym
How to combine Peloton with other workouts