How to Setup a Home Gym
There are many advantages of training at home, not the least of which is showering in your own shower after a workout, saving time and money, etc.
Whatever the reason you might be interested in setting up a home gym the chances are that you simply cannot go out there and purchase any and all pieces of training equipment that you might like. So we are going to look at the specifics of setting up a home gym while on a tight budget.
Looking online and in other classified ads for a barbell and some plates can be a bit shocking if you do not pay second hand prices. An Olympic barbell would be better than an ordinary barbell but you must take what you can get from second hand adverts, including weighted plated that fit the barbell.
An Olympic bar with a couple of hundred pounds extra plates will easily cost you over $1000 if you purchased it retail, but second hand for the same thing will only cost you $200. Machines are expensive so you need to be careful what you want and what you can afford. This is the big advantage of using a barbell, using fixed dumbbells and machines is just too expensive.
The point is that a barbell with weights will be more than four times more versatile than machines or a fancy set of fixed dumbbells. If your objective is to increase your functional strength then the barbell is the way to go. Cables will shred on a machine eventually, rubber bands will break and leather will eventually tear but a barbell and weights will last forever.
If you do decide to spend money on dumbbells never buy a fixed set of dumbbells, always make sure that the dumbbells are easily adjustable on each end so that you can change the weight whenever you like. This might mean an extra expense on some extra weight to add to your dumbbells but with a barbell and dumbbells you will have everything you need to get stronger and change the way you look and feel.
A bench is a must have, get one that is adjustable so you can do both flat bench press and incline bench press, also a leg extention / leg curl attachment is a big bonus.
If you still have some money left in your budget for your home gym a squat rack or power cage would be the best investment. They are certainly not cheap and it would serve you well to look for a second hand one. Whether you purchase a squat rack or not, you should definitely add a pull-up bar to your home gym, which can be cheap if you look around.
Depending where you live you might never need a treadmill for example as there is plenty of space around you. You could easily go get some sand and fill a few bags to do the very effective sandbag training routine, it is tough and gets results to increase strength.