A woman working out in her home gym with her kids

3 Home Gym Must-Haves

Home gyms are a great alternative to paying a monthly fee and attending your local, overcrowded gym if you want to start a weight loss program for your New Year’s resolution. When choosing a weight management plan for your life, there are a variety of options for how you can set up and personalize your own home gym, but there are some items and pieces of equipment that every home gym should contain. Whether you want to go all out and create an expansive space with a variety of machines, or you want an efficient and low-cost gym, you should still purchase the same basic items to start with. You can always buy more optional ones later, if you wish.

Cardio Machine

First, you need a cardio machine, since increasing your heart rate is the best way to achieve weight loss. Based on your personal budget and preferences, you could either purchase a specialized machine, such as a treadmill or exercise bikes, or you can buy an all-in-one machine that provides a great cardio workout alongside working out your muscles.  If you want an alternative to large, clunky equipment, find a cheap jump rope at your local supercenter. Jumping rope isn’t just an activity for 10-year-olds in PE class; it is actually one of the best exercise routines for weight loss. A simple jump rope still increases your heart rate, burns quite a few calories, and can be easily tossed in the closet when you’re finished with it.


In addition to cardio, you also need to include weight training in your weight management program.  Weight training equipment can range from dumbbells to a full-size bench press, and you can get a great workout from both budget and costly items. After a 30-minute cardio session, you should work out specific muscle groups by using free weights or weight machines. Cardio is great to burn off calories, but you also need to tone specific muscles to increase your strength and resilience.

A Form of Distraction

In addition to choosing a weight management plan for your life, you also need to make your home gym enjoyable to spend time in. Don’t stop at just the workout equipment in your home gym; add a television or stereo system, depending on what you enjoy doing during your routine. If you look forward to watching your favorite show or listening to a new album during your workout routines, you are more likely to stick to your resolution of working out on a regular basis. Also, to keep hydrated, purchase mini fridge and stock it with water or your favorite sports drinks.

Last Updated: January 16, 2015