Do you prefer to workout at home? At-home workouts are great: They save you time because you don’t need to drive to the gym. They’re convenient because you can work out when you feel like it or when you have time. And, they can be much cheaper than paying for a monthly gym membership.
To get a good, full body workout at home, though, you should invest in a few pieces of portable equipment. My home gym is full of dumbbells, BOSO and Swiss balls, and even a heavy bag. But, when I am looking for a good at-home workout, I always migrate towards 5 of my favorite pieces of equipment.
TRX or Suspension Trainer:
I am a HUGE fan of the TRX trainer and I am constantly looking for challenging new ways to use it! The TRX is a great piece of portable equipment because it’s light, it’s easy to install and you can curl it up and throw it into a suitcase so easily.
The TRX is great for at-home workouts because you can work just about every muscle group. Core stabilization is the more important aspect of a TRX workout so, even if you’re not focusing on ab work, every single exercise on the TRX strengthens your core.
A branded TRX suspension trainer is $175.00 or more but you can find imitation trainers at Fitness Depot for $50-80. Considering how much of a workout you can get with one of these trainers, the cost is definitely justifiable!
For some great TRX inspiration, check out these moves!
Mini-bands are popular for adding some resistance to common moves like the squat. You can loop the band around your ankles or knees to make many lower body exercises more challenging. The bands can also be added to push-ups or triceps exercises to increase the resistance and improve strength.
I found my mini-bands at Fitness Depot for around $5 each – a very cost-effective investment!
For some great inspiration, check out these 15 exercises for which you can use the mini-band.
There are two versions of gliders – for smooth surfaces or for carpet – so make sure you buy the right ones for your at-home workout space. The gliders are awesome for adding resistance and difficulty to exercises you typically do in a full-body class.
Some of my favorite gliding disk exercises are plank jacks (or hip abductions), curtsy squats and mountain climbers. Have you ever done 30 seconds of mountain climbers with the gliders? Your abs will be screaming – how awesome is that?!?
Gliding disks are pretty reasonably priced. Again, I bought mine from Fitness Depot a few years ago for around $35 but Amazon has them as well. They come with a short video with some ideas on how to use them. If you’re looking for inspiration, check out this full-body workout.
You don’t need a whole bunch of kettlebells to get a great workout. I recommend one that feels moderately heavy to you and one that feels quite heavy. For myself, I use my 10 lb kettlebell occasionally but turn to my 15 lb and 12 kg (20 lb?) ones more often. It will depend on your strength and the exercises you choose to do.
Kettlebells are fairly inexpensive additions to your at-home gym too. A couple of decent kettlebells will cost you around $80 and you can use them for so many different exercises!
For inspiration, check out these 22 kettlebell exercises.
My sandbag perhaps doesn’t get as much use as it should but when I do incorporate it into my at-home workout, I love it!
One of my favorite sandbag exercise is the lateral sandbag drag.
This move really forces your core to stabilize and strengthen while working shoulders and arms too!
The sandbag can also be used for exercises like a weighted squat, weighted lunges or a shoulder thrust. For some more ideas, check out these 9 exercises.
A sandbag can be a bit more of an investment. The heavier they are, like most exercise equipment, the more they cost. My sandbag is 20 lbs and I get a lot of benefit from it. Remember that you’ll be mainly lifting it with both arms, so choose a sandbag that is not too light.
Track Your Movement:
Fitness trackers are quite popular now, too. I know I am pretty attached to my Fitbit Alta (and, occasionally, irritated with it when it tells me I have to get off my butt and move). If you’re not quite sure about which trackers to look at, check out this excellent resource.
You can easily create your own workout using any or all of the above pieces of equipment. Choose two moves for each piece of equipment and perform 10-12 reps each; repeat for a total of 3 circuits.
You go, girl!