5 Pieces of Equipment for Better In-Home Workouts

Fall is hands down my favorite season to run. But then, fall turns into winter, and while I want to say that I’m a badass snow-loving runner, there are some mornings when I simply don’t feel like braving it. Like I mentioned in my last post, this season, I’ve been a total wimp.

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That’s where the in-home, living room workout comes into play.

There are lots of excuses to skip a workout during the winter. Maybe you need a mental break. Maybe you have the flu (for the sixth-thousanth time). Maybe, it looks like this out your window.

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But don’t let weather or the skyrocketing price of gym memberships and boutique fitness studios keep you from getting your sweat on. You CAN workout, and you can do it from home with these five essentials.

1. Free-weights

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I’ve been telling myself for years now (no, really, like five years) that I’d order a pair of two-pound weights — mainly because I’ve been using eight- and five-pounders, and for a lot of exercises (especially barre-inspired workouts) they’re too heavy for me to complete a lot of reps (don’t judge). And yet, I haven’t pulled the trigger. Instead, I’ve been using the five-pound weights this entire time. Regardless, stock up on your own weights to give your arms and abs some love. Heavy, light, heck, use soup cans. But have a set of something that you can lift up and down. This will definitely be essential.

2. Resistance bands

I don’t use these often, but they tend to come in handy for light arm work and, more often than not, core work. At any rate, they’re typically pretty reasonably priced. I use a set of bands that were Noah’s from who-knows-when, and they get the job done just fine.

3. Yoga mat

Of course, this will depend on what type of workout you’re doing. Kickboxing? You probably don’t need a yoga mat (unless you’re stretching out your muscles afterward). I find it useful for yoga (obviously), mat Pilates and even weight lifting and core work. I’m a big germophobe, even in my own apartment, so if I’m not laying on carpet, I’m a much happier person.

4. Foam roller

Don’t trick yourself into thinking that just because you’re working out at home doesn’t mean you’re not sweating up a storm! Your muscles are moving and must therefore be stretched immediately after. Foam rolling is a great way to take care of that.

5. iPad (or other media-viewing device)

A portable device is more than just a vehicle with which to watch an instructor or a favorite DVD — it’s also proof that you can seriously work out anywhere. The living room? Awesome. The bedroom? Why not. The porch of your grandparents’ house in Boynton Beach? Excuses are out! (Though, if your grandparents are anything like mine, they’ll probably ogle you the entire time.) Download your favorite videos, or connect to wifi, and you’ll be on your way to an indoor, gymless, boutiqueless workout in no time.

What’s on your indoor workout list of essentials?

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