REAL, FRUGAL, HEALTHY, and FUN!!!
No Home Gym?
Alright, lets get back to saving you money while getting those workouts in. We talked about saving you money on gym fees in the post Save On Your Gym Membership. Maybe you don’t want to go to the gym. For whatever reason, you’d rather work out at home. However, you don’t own any workout equipment.
Bodyweight excercises are so good for you. There are pushups, sit-ups, squats, lunges, planks, and so, so much more. Even people who use weights should do body weight excercises from time to time. They’re great for your core and your balance. You can transition from one exercise to another much faster, and they are often easier on your joints.
You Want More
Ok. So you know about bodyweight excercises, and you’re already doing them, but you want to build more muscle. Or you just have more fun working out with equipment. You want a home gym, but have little to no money to put into it. Hold tight. I got you covered.
When it comes to a home gym, weights of some kind are a great place to start. Weights (dumbbells, kettlebells, and weight plates) can cost anywhere from $1 to $2.50 per pound. In the pictures above, I made a 3lb DIY dumbbell out of an empty water bottle, and a 10lb DIY kettlebell out of an old milk jug. I filled mine with rice, but you could fill yours with sand, dirt or rocks from outside to save even more money. To my dismay, it rained here yesterday, so everything here is wet. Filling the bottle and jug with different things can also change the weight. You can always bust out your bathroom scale to check them like I did. Also a little duct tape around the lid is a good idea if you have it. Make 2 dumbbells if you can. Use them for bicep curls, hammer curls, chest presses, chest flies, front raises, latreral raises, and shoulder presses, bent over rows, upright rows, tricep kick backs, overhead tricep presses, etc. You can use the jug for those excercises if the bottles are too light. You should try using the jug when working the lower body, such as for squats, and lunges. The sky is the limit.
Ok, I know you have a chair, and I’ll bet you have a step stool, too. You can get a great glute workout doing step-ups on either, however, if you have a stool, I’d use that to preserve your chair cushion if it’s a nice chair. That, or take your shoes off and do them in your socks. Dips can be done on either, but the chair may offer more stability. Before I got my stability ball, I used to use my stool as a bench, as well. I’d rest my shoulders on the stool, and press my glutes up. In this position I did chest presses and flies. Just be creative.
There’s a whole world available for free cardio right outside your front door. Walking, running, and stairs. You can do it all for free. Check out these awesome stairs by my house. I run down the stairs, up the other stairs, back down, and back up. That’s 1 lap. I do 12 laps after a workout from time to time. It’s a lot of fun. There are a lot of places you can get free cardio outside. Just look around. If you don’t want to go outside due to weather or personal preference, you can get free cardio inside, as well. Jumping jacks, high knees, running in place, and burpees are just a few forms of free indoor cardio.
No DIY, Inexpensive Equipment
Maybe you don’t have a lot of money, but you’re not into DIY’s. That’s ok. Check this out. For about $15, you could buy a resistance band and a jump rope. For about $35, you could get a whole set of resistance bands and a jump rope. The set allows you to workout with varying intensities. That’s pretty inexpensive considering you could work your whole body and get your cardio in. Still above budget? Ok, check out 2nd hand sporting goods stores. You can get quality workout equipment at a fraction of the price. Last time I was in one, they had so many used resistance bands for sale. You can also check out their dumbbells, medicine balls, stability balls, and, well, the rest of their inventory. Yard sales and Craig’s List can also be great places to get used gym equipment.
Start Small And Build
If you’ve noticed in my workout posts, I have a nice handful of home workout equipment. I didn’t come by it overnight. I’ve been working on my collection of gym equipment for over 5 years. When I didn’t have something I needed, I improvised. Start building your home gym now, and add to it over time.