5 Must-Have Items For Your Home Workouts

Rucuss staffNovember 1, 2011

There are various reasons why people fat and thin hate the gym.

Large gyms are usually extremely crowded. A 45-minute workout could take as long as an hour and half to complete because of the wait times to use different machines. Not to mention the high cost for a membership and the gas to get there.

Many people dodge gyms all together and it leads to weight and health issues, because they can’t find other alternatives to workout. If these you can relate to these issues than maybe its time for you to purchase items for home workouts.

Life2PointOh.com spoke to award-winning fitness coach Kelli Calabrese to help us narrow it down to five essentials. Here’s what you need:

Fit Ball – Otherwise known as stability balls, this tool can be added to a variety of workouts and can cost less than $10! The ball works the entire core, hamstrings, hips and chest by challenging your balance, agility and stability. “Fitness balls allow you to work in a greater range of motion, feel good against your body and challenge your smaller stabilizing muscles,” Calabrese says.  Another tip? They also make for a great chair to improve posture!

Exercise Band – The bands are stretchy, take up almost no space and can run as low as $6 to $12.  They are used to create resistance to increase your muscle strength and endurance.  Many come with a door attachment to add to the variety of exercises you can do. “Band exercises also get deeper stabilizing muscles,” Calabrese said. “You can increase your speed performing band exercises, providing more of a cardiovascular effect.”Depending on your fitness level, you can also gauge the amount of resistance you want in a workout, from light and moderate to heavy resistance.

Body Bar – These weighted bars can be used in a variety of ways from squat and chest presses to rotating lunges and a variety of upper body moves. The weighted bar provides added resistance and challenges the balance of the body. Calabrese recommends 8-12 lb. bars for beginners, 10–18 lb. bars for intermediate and 20+ lbs. for the more advanced.

Dumbbells – Dumbbells are a classic (but very effective way!) to work the entire body from head to toe.  They range in size and weight, allow for free movement and can work every major muscle group. They are also conveniently packaged –you can get one set of adjustable dumbbells that allows for 5-22 pounds of resistance. Or start out with a few pairs based on your ability. Beginners should start with 5, 7 and 10 pound weights.

Medicine Ball – Medicine balls can also be used as resistance tools. They are easy to hold, compact and are able to bounce. Calabrese suggests adding them to core or upper body workouts to really get your heart pounding. They also come in different sizes and weights that can be adjusted to your fitness ability.

Having trouble locating one of these products? Try these easy-to-find substitutes, which will also keep your body fit and fabulous.

Water bottles – If you can’t find dumbbells or resistance weights, use a full 16 oz. water bottle. It weighs about a pound and is perfect for beginners. If this is too light, increase the number of reps you do or use a gallon jug, which weighs about 8 pounds when full.

Jump Rope – What used to be your favorite childhood toy can also be used to keep your workout challenging and fresh! Jumping rope provides a great cardio workout and you can really do it anywhere.  Another bonus? You can get a double dutch jump rope and ask a friend to join you!

Stairs — If you want to squeeze in a heart-pumping workout without having to spend a dollar, just run and up down the stairs in your house, neighborhood or local school a few dozen times. Also try using the stairs as a platform for your lunges and step-ups.

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