Setting up a home gym
A strength training programme is a key component of any triathlon training plan. However, it often falls by the wayside with swim, bike and run sessions taking priority. In between work, commuting, family, social life and other responsibilities, most triathletes have very little additional time for trips to the gym.
The ability to train at home can be a convenient option for some triathletes. Setting up a home gym means that workouts can be inserted into your day, without the travel time to and from the gym. It also has the benefit of being private, less intimidating and is more affordable than a membership.
However, you do need a level of motivation to train at home. It’s a common pitfall to purchase all the equipment just for it to gather dust when motivation levels wane. Some people prefer the environment of a gym as there are too many distractions at home.
If you decide to set up a home gym, finding the space is the first stumbling block. A spare room or garage are the ideal locations, but your living room could also double up as a workout space.
Next, you’ll need to choose some equipment based on space and workout goals. Setting up a home gym doesn’t need to be expensive, look for items which are multi-purpose to get the most value for your money.
- Rubber or foam floor tiles– these will help to protect your flooring, reduce noise and provide cushioning for floor-based work.
- Fan– keep cool during a sweaty workout.
- Foam Roller– a really effective tool for giving yourself a deep tissue massage and releasing tight muscles.
- Resistance Bands– compact, inexpensive and easy to store. Resistance bands come in a range of lengths and tensions- they can provide a full-body workout using small, controlled movements
- Balance Ball– can be used for a variety of purposes including strengthening, stretching and improving stability.
- Kettlebells– a set of kettlebells can be used for a wide range of exercises including squats, presses, cleans, snatches and swings.
- TRX– extremely versatile, as well as being lightweight and portable. TRX uses your body weight and gravity to build strength, balance and flexibility. Use for lunges, rows, squats and pushups.
- Ab Roller– designed work the abdominal muscles, this piece of kit gives a challenging core workout- just be mindful of technique.
- Turbo Trainer– for a cyclist or triathlete, this is an essential item for winter training allowing you to ride indoors.
Some other items to consider are a skipping rope, medicine ball, dumb-bells and adjustable bench. Trevor McClintock also has some great ideas for setting up an affordable home gym.
Post written in collaboration with Trevor McClintock.
Have you considered setting up a home gym? What items do you use to work out?