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Create The Perfect Zone To Train At Home

By Expert Author: Lisa Kowen

Have you ever thought about the convenience of having your own training space in the comfort of your home? If time is of the essence and if you have the space perhaps it’s something to think about…..below are some suggestions on how to go about getting into the zone at home!

Discipline

If you are not committed to your training and are going to struggle to train on your own, setting up at home is more than likely going to test the discipline and commitment to your exercise regime even more! Although a home gym is ridiculously convenient, there are distractions happening around you which could steer you away from your training zone! My first recommendation, if you are going to go to the effort and expense of creating this space, make sure you are going to use it!

The Space

When deciding on an area in your home that is going to be dedicated to your blood, sweat and tears; clear the clutter and create the aura of a gym! Ensure the area has sufficient natural light and good ventilation; if not you may have to consider air conditioning which will add to the expense. Flooring is an important consideration; for hygienic reasons a surface that can be easily cleaned is always a good option.If cardiovascular endurance training is going to form a large chunk of your training time you may want to budget for a wall mounted LCD screen to help pass the time.

Mirrors are critical to good form and correct exercise technique, unless you have a personal trainer guiding you on this, a mirror is the only form of feedback you have as to whether you are executing movement correctly or not. Aesthetically mirrors naturally give the perspective of a larger space, adding a new dimension to your training area.

Gym Equipment

The choice of equipment for a home gym is dependent on three factors:

1) Budget – How much am I willing to spend?

2) Training goals – What equipment will help me reach my training goals?

3) Personal preference – What exercises do I enjoy?

The cardiovascular component of any facility; be it home or commercial will consume most of the capital in setting up your gym. Do not buy cheap in this department; look for semi-commercial or commercial products from reputable equipment suppliers that offer excellent after sales service and more importantly carry spare parts – do your homework before purchasing, it’s a competitive industry shop around and make sure you are getting the best deal.

When purchasing strength equipment; avoid bulky machine weights and all in one “multi stations”. Go for free weights; Dumbells, Olympic bars, Wall mounted pull up bars and kettlebells all of which are relatively inexpensive in comparison to machines and take up far less space. Keep in mind, the heavier the weight the more expensive it will be. You will also need a bench; preferably an adjustable incline bench and some racks to store your dumbells.

In addition to your cardiovascular and strength components that make up your gym, you will need some smaller accessories; which could include items such as: mats, medicine balls, BOSU balance trainer, skipping rope, TRX, physio ball, foam roller and rubber bands.

Taking the above into consideration, the cost of equipment can be equated to the saying “how long is a piece of string” A treadmill can cost in the region of anywhere from R25 000 – R100 000 and a skipping rope will cost you R80.00 – at the end of the day both raise your heart rate and will improve your cardiovascular capacity! You do not need to spend a fortune on gym equipment in order for your training space to be effective – it is a case of personal preference, how creative you are and what you can afford.

When it comes to the purchasing of your gym equipment, do it slowly and in stages to ensure you get what you want. Don’t be afraid to investigate reconditioned commercial models which come with a guarantee and search the web - places like GUMTREE for strength equipment and accessories.

Set yourself up for success and make sure you hit your gym at home at least three-four times a week; if you see yourself slipping hire a personal trainer or get a training buddy to help you stick to your training routine!

Lisa Kowen has 20 years experience in the fitness industry in South Africa She is director at The F.I.T. Principles Academy, American Council on Exercise (ACE) representative in South Africa, co-owner and developer of http://fitnessconnect.co.za/

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