BONUS XOMU: Setting up your home gym
My favorite home workout equipment for budget setups to advanced garage gyms
I spent the summer of 2020 (peak pandemic) working out in my garage gym, using equipment I’d been collecting since I owned a CrossFit gym back in NH. Once my fancy gym reopened, I went back—but now every summer, I migrate back to my garage and train at home with the door open and the fresh air in my face.
The benefits of decking out your home gym are endless: No commute time, no need for outside childcare, no crowds, and no monthly membership. But it can be intimidating and expensive to start a collection of home workout equipment.
Today I’m going to walk you through three different options, from basic to intermediate to deeply committed, based on equipment I’ve been using for years. I’ll provide approximate costs, but your mileage may vary. Sourcing used equipment on Craigslist, Facebook Marketplace, or used sporting goods stores can bring costs down even more.
Level 1: Effective basics
If you have a small space, want shorter workouts, or are looking to start workouts in a budget-friendly way, here are some space-saving, versatile tools. You can always add onto these pieces if your interests, space, or budget expands.
Yoga mat ($20-150): You can find a plethora of 20-minute no-equipment workouts online—sometimes free, often through a paid subscription. For many, all you need is a yoga mat. I like the Manduka brand—their Pro mat is cushioned and comfortable even on concrete or wood, but you can search for “best budget yoga mats” and find a ton of excellent options (like this extra-thick Amazon Basic mat) for under $30. Use this for push-ups, core work, yoga, mobility, stretching, and plyometrics like burpees.