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Sometimes working out at home is the best option. You don’t have to drive to the fitness center. You don’t have to co-mingle and compete with other people for different machines. It is less expensive, and the snack bar and shower are just a few steps away when you’re done.

For under $1,000, you can set up a home gym that meets all your exercise goals. Home gyms can focus on aerobic fitness, muscle strengthening, flexibility or all three. Your priorities will determine which pieces of equipment you start with.  

In this article: Nordic Track T 6.5 S Treadmill, Flybird Adjustable Utility Weight Bench and Nitrofit Limber Pro Stretch Machine.

How do you decide what equipment to start with?

The first question you should ask yourself is: What are you hoping to accomplish with your workouts? Increasing cardiovascular capacity? Treadmills, exercise bikes and rowing machines may be your priority. Building muscle? You will need to consider a utility bench, squat rack and accompanying weight plates and dumbbells. Improving your flexibility? A quality yoga mat and stretching machine may be in order. Your ultimate goals should direct your choice of equipment.

You also should decide how much weight resistance you want. Are you looking for lighter weights to tone muscles and provide multiple reps, or do you want a lot of weight to build muscle? There is a wide variety of weight resistances available.

Remember to invest in a high-quality exercise mat that protects your floor from heavy exercise equipment and provides a more comfortable workout environment.

Are home gyms worth it?

According to an analysis covered in the Wall Street Journal, the closer you live to a fitness center, the more likely you will use it. A home gym eliminates all the excuses about getting to the fitness facility.

Fitness center memberships can cost hundreds of dollars per year. A home gym under $1,000 pays for itself in just several years. You also save money on gas and child care, which can add up quickly.

Additionally, you will also save time. You can save over 100 hours per year in commuting time if your fitness center is just 20 minutes away and you work out three times a week.

How do you combat isolation in working out at home?

While some people like the privacy of home gyms, others eventually feel isolated. You can do several things to fight the loneliness of your at-home routine.

  • Mount a small TV set to watch your favorite show or play your favorite music, just like the fitness centers do.
  • Consider one of the exercise apps that incorporates a trainer and other participants from around the country. The larger community may provide extra incentive. Be sure to weigh the subscription costs against your goal of staying under $1,000.
  • Invite your significant other, children or friends to join you regularly. Having someone in the home gym with you can be extra motivating.

Best home gym equipment for aerobic fitness

Best Nordic Track T 6.5 S Treadmill

Nordic Track T 6.5 S Treadmill

This sturdy treadmill from a world-class manufacturer is Wi-Fi-connected, is equipped with 2-inch speakers and has one-touch speed control. It folds up for easy storage and comes with a two-year parts warranty and a 10-year frame warranty.

Sold by Amazon

Best Schwinn IC4 Indoor Cycling Bike

Schwinn IC4 Indoor Cycling Bike

Using magnetic resistance, this indoor exercise bike has 100 adjustable levels and a full-color LCD console. It is compatible with third-party cycling apps or Schwinn’s JRNY app.

Sold by Amazon and Dick’s Sporting Goods

Best Sunny Health and Fitness Magnetic Rowing Machine

Sunny Health and Fitness Magnetic Rowing Machine

This rowing machine has eight adjustable resistance levels, a large LCD console and adjustable foot straps. It comes with built-in wheels for easy transportation around your home.

Sold by Amazon and Dick’s Sporting Goods

Best home gym equipment for muscle strengthening

Best Flybird Adjustable Utility Weight Bench

Flybird Adjustable Utility Weight Bench

This heavy-duty steel bench has a 600-pound weight capacity, genuine leather and high-quality foam. It has six back positions and four seat positions.

Sold by Amazon

Best Fitness Gear Pro Squat Rack

Fitness Gear Pro Squat Rack

With up to 10 plate storage dividers and 28 height levels, this steel squat rack works for users of all heights. It has two J-hooks and two spotter arms. There are extra wide feet for support.

Sold by Dick’s Sporting Goods

Best BalanceFrom Everyday Essentials Bumper Plate Set

BalanceFrom Everyday Essentials Bumper Plate Set

These bumper plates are made from high-density rubber and a 2-inch inner steel ring. The plates are color-coded for easy identification. They come in sets of 160 to 370 pounds.

Sold by Amazon 

Best Fitness Gear 40-Pound Adjustable Dumbbell Set

Fitness Gear 40-Pound Adjustable Dumbbell Set

This versatile dumbbell set comes in a resin carrying case. It has two 14-inch handles, four 5-pound weight plates and four 3-pound weight plates for different weight combinations up to 40 pounds. It also comes with a two-year warranty.

Sold by Dick’s Sporting Goods

Best home gym equipment for flexibility

Best Manduka Pro Yoga Mat

Manduka Pro Yoga Mat

This popular yoga mat protects against moisture and bacteria with a closed-cell fabric free of toxins and latex. It works on hard and soft surfaces, is slip-resistant and comes with a lifetime guarantee.

Sold by Amazon and Dick’s Sporting Goods

Best Nitrofit Limber Pro Stretch Machine

Nitrofit Limber Pro Stretch Machine

This stretch machine works your entire body with nine stretch exercises and an adjustable calf stretch board. It has built-in wheels for easy transportation and a removable media shelf for electronic accessories.

Sold by Amazon

Worth checking out

  • The Bowflex Blaze Home Gym has everything you need to perform 60 exercises with up to 210 pounds of resistance, including a utility bench and built-in resistance bands.
  • Don’t overlook the WOD Nation Speed Jump Rope, which is easy to use and affordable, and it provides an excellent cardio workout.
  • No matter what equipment you use, put Superjare Thick Exercise Equipment Mats underneath to protect your floor and provide extra cushion for your feet.

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Steve Ganger writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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