Since the beginning of COVID, folks have been wanting to stay at home a lot more. Driving is a hassle. Going to the office is a hassle. Hell, putting on pants is a hassle now. Even more so, sweaty nasty people are a hassle. More now than ever, people are finding ways to work out at home. It means less driving, less time wasted, and zero membership fees. If you have your own home gym, it’s just you and the weights.
Here is how I built my home gym in a carpeted office for under $3,000.
The floor mats may have been the most important purchase for a home gym. Research about putting weights on carpeted flooring indicated that the thicker the better. Due to that and some research on pricing, I landed on American Floor Mats, Fit-Lock Rubber Standard Size: 10% Grey Tile: 3/8″ Thick – 2′ x 2′ mats for $10.25 each.
American Floor Mats has reasonable pricing and a really easy-to-use website. The gym was going to be in a rectangle-shaped space. This means that I would need both corner and edge pieces as the mats connect like puzzle pieces. The website gives a super easy-to-use tool that does the math for you and tells you how many Center Tiles, Border Tiles, and Corner tiles you will need for your LxW-measured room.
The shipping price was the only bad thing about this process. That is to be expected though with heavy rubber tiles like this. If somehow you land on a free shipping deal for floor mats, jump on it.
American Floor Mats, Fit-Lock Rubber Standard Size 3/8″ thick
Center Tile: 3ea
Border Tile: 8ea
Corner Tile: 4ea
Shipping Price: $67.83
PRICE TOTAL: $232.10
Adjustable dumbbells for the home gym can tend to get expensive. Months ago I bought some cheap ones off amazon and hated them. The small plates would slip off the bar, the tension clip wouldn’t hold. They just weren’t great. Then I finally decided to buy once, cry once and looked at the Bowflex SelectTech 552 Adjustable Dumbbells.
These dumbbells are AMAZING. How they work is simple, both dumbbells sit on a platform. Simply click each side of each dumbbell to the weight that you want. When you remove the dumbbell from the platform, the weight that isn’t needed will stay on the platform, and the weight that the dumbbell was set to will go with it. You don’t have to place the other plates somewhere else. You don’t have to put plates on the bar. It is all done for you. Each dumbbell goes up to 52.5 lbs.
An adjustable bench can be used with both the dumbbells and the cable machine. When looking for a bench, ensure that it has both back and seat adjustments. You will also want a bench with a wheel and handle to move it around. As for the material on the bench, try to find one without that shiny slick material. If it looks matte it probably is the type of material that won’t stick to your sweaty skin as much.
These can get expensive. However, I found a quality low price one on the same website as the cable machine, thus saving on shipping. It comes in 4 colors as well with one color being less expensive. Spray paint party?
AB-3100 ADJUSTABLE WEIGHT BENCH
Ah, what we are all here for, the home cable machine. The main reason for wanting a cable machine vs other things is that the cable machine gives you a lot more adjustability. Some machines out there on the market right now mount to the wall and have arms that come out with cables that can be adjusted for tension. This can seem like the way to go due to how small of a space it takes up. However, that kind of machine doesn’t allow the difference in height that a full cable machine gives you. Imagine doing abs on the ground with the cable machine, then standing up and doing lat pulldowns. Those workouts need the machine to be adjustable.
The Rep Fitness FT-3000 Functional Trainer hit everything I needed in a cable machine.
- 112 lbs on each side
- Can be assembled with two people
- Places for attachments/accessories
- Pullup bars
- Clean adjustments from the floor to the ceiling
- Impressive hardware, heady duty, no wobble
- Doesn’t take up much space
- Free delivery
It took about 4 hours in all to assemble the cable machine. Two people are needed due to having to hold the bars up that the weight plates sit on before bolting them in.
The only snag in the process was the delivery. It takes several steps. After the Rep Fitness warehouse processes the order, the trucking company picks it up. The actual delivery must be done by appointment because somebody has to be at the house when it is delivered.
Overall this process took about a month. The longest part of the wait was at the warehouse because so many orders were coming in. Once the trucking company received the machine, scheduling took two days. The cable machine was on an 18-wheeler, which needed room. If you live at the end of a cul-de-sac it could be difficult. My driver was very competent, though, and delivered it to the end of a gravel road where my house is. Then, it had to be removed by a pallet jack. Yes, it is heavy when put all on one pallet. After we got it off with the pallet jack we took individual pieces into the house one by one. Don’t forget though, delivery was free!!
Overall, everything was worth it for this machine. REP Fitness was communicative during the whole process and nothing was broken or missing on the machine.
FT-3000 Functional Trainer | REP Fitness | Home Gym Equipment
The total price for floor mats, dumbbells, an adjustable bench, and a cable machine, all able to fit into a small home office?
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