Creating a Home Gym

Anyone who can commit to a routine of exercising within their home deserves a pat on the back. Getting motivated to work out solo is sometimes the hardest struggle and doing so in a homemade gym of sorts, in my opinion, requires the most motivation.  The gym setting itself initiates self-motivation, everyone is gathered there for one purpose (well typically) and being surrounded by people motivated to work out will in turn motivate you to do the same.

home gym pos

Yet it’s a completely different ball game when working out by yourself multiple times a week. Admittedly, I find it hard to keep a routine when left to my own devices at home simply because I prefer a gym setting since the atmosphere feels more motivating. My home workout is usually done with the purpose of creating a lesson plan for my fitness classes. However prior to becoming an instructor, if I was ever home during the holidays and needed to keep up with my workout, I simply focused on an ab workout during the late evening and biking or running before dinner. I kept it simple because I couldn’t bring myself to follow a workout DVD or go through repetitive exercises by myself. Which is weird seeing as anytime I go to the gym it’s by myself and I’m typically left to my own devices. Yet the difference between the two is once again the atmosphere.

Looking back, I now realize that the key to maintaining a success workout plan within the home is by replicating a comfortable and motivating gym atmosphere. The picture below contains some of the workout equipment my mother keeps in her home gym. The problem is, we keep stocking the home gym with “stuff” yet its rarely used and the space itself has become a holding area for miscellaneous things.

To remedy this, we need to redo the home gym area so it becomes a personal sanctuary because frankly some of us find it hard to sit in the living room and focus on a 45 min workout plan.

1. First decide where your home gym will be and if you don’t have an extra room to spare, try to find an area with enough uncluttered space.

2. Print out and post your workout plans and motivational pictures around the gym area. I know it may seem weird, but if you have different exercises surrounding the room, it gives you various options to try out during your workout.

3. Make sure your gym area is free from all distractions for at least an hour during the time you plan to workout. The last thing you need is your children or roommate coming in and distracting you while you have your game face on.

4. If listening to music is your thing, try to have a small stereo set that allows you to blast the music during your workout.

5. Turn Off Your Phone! Most gyms do not allow the use of phones while in the equipment area. Remember no distractions and this includes your phone going off every couple of minutes and you being tempted to break your workout to check it.

6. If solo isn’t your thing, invite a friend over to work out with you or watch a workout DVD and follow along. Nothing is wrong with needing people around you to help get motivated, it’s all about preference.

7. Post a workout calendar that allows you to cross out the days you’ve completed. Let’s face it sometimes finding time to exercise is difficult, but by making yourself responsible to check something off a list or calendar, you’re left with fewer excuses.

Sometimes going to the gym simply isn’t an option, due to expensive membership fees or simply because there isn’t a gym close by. But finding time and space to exercise should never be an issue that stops you from getting into shape. There’s tons of resources on this blog that you can easily l print and create the perfect home gym. Make sure to check out the Target Practice, Motivation and Calendar pages.

-J.S. Gates


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