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Since I work out at home the majority of my workouts involve no equipment at all. I make a point of creating workout plans that require very little or no equipment so that anybody can do them anywhere. However, even I have some favorite pieces of equipment for my home gym.
Here are my 4 must-haves…
- Yoga mat – my workout room is carpeted but I like to use my yoga mat for stretching, ab work and other floor exercises. There’s nothing worse then laying on carpet when you’re all sweaty. I also use my yoga mat if I exercise outside. It’s easy to clean, just wipe it off with a damp cloth. Ironically, I don’t really do yoga but the mat sure comes in handy!
- Foam roller – there are many sizes and variations of foam rollers and I have a pretty simple one but I love it. I have chronically tight hamstrings combined with a mild low back injury and my foam roller keeps me functional and mobile. I use it before and after cardio workouts and anytime I just feel tight. I roll my calves, hamstrings and glutes almost daily.
- Exercise ball– this is such an inexpensive and versatile piece of equipment that I think everybody should have one. I use it for ab exercises, low back exercises and in place of a bench for things like chest presses or shoulder presses. I also use it to stretch out my back. It’s another piece of equipment I can take outside too. These balls come in different sizes so just make sure you know what you’re buying when you shop.
- Treadmill – OK, I know this is actually a big, expensive piece of equipment and not an option for a lot of people but I am fortunate to have space and recently took advantage of a good sale so I have a nice treadmill. I love to run outside but, for various reasons, that isn’t always an option. Check out this post about why I love my treadmill. Since I run regularly and do a number of races every year, I consider my treadmill an indispensable piece of home exercise equipment.
Just to be clear, these four items are not the only pieces of home exercise equipment I have. I have a room full of equipment. Some of it gets used ALL the time and some of it, not so much. But, if I had to pick, these four pieces would be the ones I’d want to keep.
Let me know in the comments what items you love or can’t live without in your own home fitness routine.