Being healthy and fit is important. Maybe you enjoy working out or are transitioning a regular workout regimen into your life. But if you might happen to be, say, a germaphobe or introvert, then a gym membership is probably not on your bucket list. You’d rather work out at home by yourself so you have no audience and know the only sweat that’s dripped on the elliptical is your own.
Feng Shui Your Workout
Good intentions (and hygiene) aside, keeping your home gym organized can be a workout of its own. First and foremost, determine where your home gym will be because this will determine what you actually put in your workout space. If you’re lucky, you have extra space that will do just fine, such as a spare bedroom, half of your home office, a large finished basement, or even an outdoor patio. If space is an issue, utilize compact and storable workout equipment to turn a corner of your living room into an as-you-need-it home gym.
In an article on Shape.com, Jessica Smith says a home workout space should be light and airy, starting with lots of natural light. “While adding in windows may be impossible, you can add in more light sources to your room: mimic recessed lighting with tap lights, or add a few lamps that use soft white bulbs,” Smith says. “Bringing in plants can also help boost oxygen levels in the room. Ferns, bamboo palms, and spider plants top the list for their indoor air purification powers.”
If the space is cramped, consider adding a mirror to make it feel larger. Mirrors are also a great source of motivation during your workout and help you monitor your form as you exercise. If you have big equipment that you like to use, find something that folds up or can be set in a corner, easily out of the way. If your living room is your workout area, consider equipment that is easy to move, so you can store it elsewhere if needed. If space is limited only for a time, relocate the big equipment to a storage unit to maximize your space at home until you find a place that accommodates it all.
Also keep in mind that there are effective alternatives to big machines. “Rather than springing for a bulky, expensive treadmill for cardio, pick up some jump ropes,” says Geralin Thomas of Metropolitan Organizing, LLC. “They’re cheap, easy to store, and when used properly, are a great way to get your heart pumping.”
Nifty Workout Equipment Storage
Any home gym has a variety of small and inconvenient items that you obviously don’t want laying just anywhere, especially when guests arrive. These storage options will help to unify and maximize your space without harming interior design:
- Over-the-Door Towel Rack – Rather than rolling yoga mats, hang them from an over-the-door towel rack, which also saves space. “Hanging your yoga mats is also a great way to help them dry quickly after giving them a scrub . . . you are giving them a scrub, right?” inquires Emily Bibb of POPSUGAR.
- Storage Ottoman – Many ottomans now have a storage compartment, which is a great place to toss your jump ropes, small dumbbells and other small workout equipment, and to kick up your feet when you collapse on the couch after some heavy cardio!
- Belt/Tie Rack – For tangled stretch cords, bands, jump ropes and the like, hang a belt/tie rack on the wall, which will not only keep them knot-free, but allow you to organize them by color and/or resistance level.
- Baskets – For the bigger items (larger dumbbells, foam rollers, balance discs, etc.) use decorative woven baskets that look great on the floor, wire baskets added to the bookcase, or even short storage bins with rollers that slide under furniture (such as a couch or bed).
Put it to Good Use
Regardless of where you put your home gym or how you store all your workout equipment, the most important thing is to use it. While getting it organized may be a chore, the work doesn’t stop there. Stay organized and stay fit to keep those endorphins pumping through your veins!