There has possibly never been a better time in all of American history to convert your home’s extra bedroom, basement, attic or garage into a fitness area that you and your family can use. This is not simply due to the fact that this health crisis currently has our nation without a single gym that’s even open! (Let’s add country clubs, tennis clubs, ballfields, basketball courts, residential fitness centers, Pilates studios or yoga studios, hiking trails, beaches and national parks to that list.) It is also because most of us are doing our best to remain homebound at all times right now. In this “strange new reality” we’re all experiencing, we do this for the collective good. So it’s harmonious and synergistic that such profound action, born of concern for our fellow man, can set the stage for a project that delivers a powerful personal reward to ourselves.

Converting an area of your home into a gym provides not just one, or two, but three fantastic benefits: One, it feels great to join forces as a couple or a family and work industriously toward a common goal during a challenging time. Secondly, the teamwork being exhibited as the project comes to fruition happens while increasing the value and utility of the home. And lastly, completing the project essentially “re-opens the gym” for you and your family, so you can begin burning-off all the stress and anxiety that this whole situation has been causing in the first place!

There is no doubt whatsoever that building a home fitness studio can be an expensive project. Financially well-off folks have invested upwards of $50,000 into their homes to convert their garages into fully decked-out gyms, for example. But it’s not likely that many economists would recommend such a move for most of us at this time, however!

The good news to be shared here is that it’s totally possible to create an effective home gym with as little as $1,000, and also totally possible to make a warmly designed, aesthetically pleasing space for less than $5,000. You really only need a few essential pieces of equipment to get started. However, before you run out to buy free weights, a yoga mat or a treadmill, first pick the room or space that you intend to convert. Think about factors such as basements having a tendency to be dark or damp, and how attics can get really hot in the summer. Pick a spare bedroom or garage that has lots of great natural light, if you can. We don’t want to hope for miracles from an economically budgeted project, but we do want to achieve the desired outcome: A repurposed space in your home that you’ll want to spend more time-in…. a lot more time!.

Now that you’ve selected the space you wish to convert, it’s time to begin saving all of the future gym-membership money that you’ll never have to spend!

It All Begins With Atmosphere

Creating a positive yet relaxing esthetic in your home fitness studio will help motivate you to be more consistent with your training routines. The power of removing barriers to good habits cannot be stressed enough here. It has been said that the more positive “triggers” a human being may experience throughout an ordinary day, the easier it is for them to maintain a habit. Music and lighting are two of the most powerful ways to create a pleasing environment for your individual and family workout sessions, and what’s beautiful about this fact is that they are the two most cost-effective upgrades you can make to any space!

The Sound Of Success

Music that excites you and stirs your internal passions can have serious performance-boosting effects. A lot of folks aren’t aware of the fact that the use of headphones is banned by many marathons and running races all over the world, especially for professionals or Olympic athletes who are striving to medal. This is because music can give you a competitive edge, especially during a physical challenge that asks you for peak moments of strength or deep reserves of stamina. The average person among us reaches for a good playlist to make our workouts more fun, and to lend additional motivation to us. Here are some great reasons to crank it up during your next gym session:

  • You’ll work harder physically without even being aware of the fact!
  • Music can boost your mood. While tempo and volume both affect how the music makes you perform, how the music makes you feel is even more important to producing results with your workout.
  • Music improves your coordination. Studies have shown that listening to the music you enjoy increases the electrical activity in the regions of the brain that are responsible for coordinating movements.
  • Music is darn-near free! You already know the songs that you love, and the internet gives us access to free streaming services like Spotify and Pandora. You can search youtube by the name of an artist, name of an album (including the words “full album” after the title of the album will play the whole thing) or even themes or styles, such as “island music” or “French cafe.” Many of us have old iPods with lots of tracks residing there, and many more have smartphones with itunes or other applications that access music. Some folks still have the old, large, traditional stereo systems with the detached speakers (that have given way to bluetooth speakers of today). If you’ve still got one of these modular systems lying around, you might have some old CD’s, as well. Especially in consideration of the year 2020 that we’re experiencing thus far, it’s as good a time as any to get retro!

Shed Some Light On The Subject

Light itself is energy, and a bright space with a generous amount of light is definitely more inviting for exercise. This can be crucial to creating just the right environment for a workout. Natural light coming down from already existing skylights would be the most ideal, of course. The next best thing is natural light coming through windows. Both of these scenarios are great for your budget.

High-Quality Fluorescent Lighting

If natural light is minimal or non-existent in the area you’re set to repurpose, then high-quality fluorescent lighting will do the trick. Due to the stigma created as a result of their large scale adoption by the institutions and office buildings of yesteryear, this recommendation may sound a little crazy. But high-quality fluorescents actually emulate sunlight, and the science supports this. Look for bulbs that have a “high color temperature” between 5000K and 5500K, and a “color rendering” of 82 or higher. Finding aftermarket fixtures to mount to your ceiling will help you save dollars. As the summer of 2020 approaches, we may see more American businesses shuttering their doors than we have at any time in the last 90-years, and there will certainly be gyms and fitness centers among them. But checking craigslist, ebay, and popular new apps like “Offer Up” and “Let Go” for aftermarket lighting fixtures and equipment is something you can do right now!

Besides being a good substitute for natural lighting, high-quality fluorescent lighting can also provide even distribution of light throughout your home gym. An adequate number of well-positioned fluorescent light fixtures will minimize any bright “hot spots” (or “point sources”) of light, which can be unpleasant and distract you from your exercise regimen. Another way to mitigate this is by installing track lighting, which provides the ability to cast multiple lights in different directions at one time.

Track Lighting

The fitness industry enthusiastically adopted track lighting way back in the 1980’s, and there’s still a bunch of it out there. So keep an eye on the aftermarket because many health clubs and gyms may not be fortunate enough to reopen once the economy is restarted. There are always the big box home goods stores and other retail lighting outlets to source as well. Track lighting is affordable, uses regular light bulbs which are less expensive, and creates no hazards during or after disposal.

Dimmers & Dual Switching

Lower energy activities such as yoga, stretching, massages, and cool down periods may have you wanting to reduce the light levels. Dimmers can assist you in controlling the brightness of the lights in your home gym. Most track lighting systems come with dimmers, but only some fluorescents do. If you have fluorescent lights that are not equipped with special dimming ballasts, then you may want to wire some of the lights to be controlled by one on/off switch, and the remainder of them to be controlled by a second. This is called “dual switching” and it is a relatively easy way to simulate the dimming process with fluorescent lighting.

Padding The Floor

Whether you are converting your basement, a spare bedroom, attic or garage, you’ll want to lay down some kind of padding to protect your floor from setting-down barbells, dumbbells, and other weights. You can order interlocking rubber tiles online for around $300. In addition to protecting the floor and your equipment, rubber tiles are a natural sound insulator and will help to reduce noise. This is especially recommended if you’re converting a space on the 2nd or 3rd level of your home. A successful home fitness studio is only successful if every member of the household can utilize it without disturbing everyone else. Now that you’ve created the proper esthetic, it’s time to shop for some gear.

Get Your Gear: The Basic Gym Equipment You Need

You don’t need to order a fancy contraption that takes years to pay-off to get a good workout at home. Some items are non-negotiable, including the ten listed below:


Dumbbells are one of the first pieces of home gym equipment you should invest in. If you don’t want to replicate the giant rack of dumbbells you’ll find at the gym (and why would you?) you can look for adjustable dumbbells instead. Adjustable dumbbells, you guessed it, adjust to different weights, so you get all the variety without sacrificing a ton of space.

BOSU Trainer

BOSU (Both Sides Up or Both Sides Utilized, depending on who you ask) Trainers are great multipurpose tools. Challenge your balance and stability, get some support during abdominal exercises, and add extra resistance in plyometric moves like burpees. BOSU Trainers serve many purposes. That’s why everyone’s always fighting over them at the gym. If you invest in one for your own private workout space, it’s always open for you to use, and you don’t have to worry about it being covered in someone else’s sweat!

Jump Rope

If you can’t afford to invest in a cardio machine (or you just flat-out refuse to use one) you can buy a jump rope instead and get your cardio in that way. Jumping rope burns around 100 calories in just 10 minutes, so it’s a very efficient option if you don’t have a lot of time for your workout.

Stability Ball

Stability balls are one of the best pieces of home gym equipment out there. They’re extremely versatile and can be used for leg and upper body workouts as well as core work.

Pull-up Bar

Pull-ups are a great exercise that works a variety of muscles in your upper body. Pull-up bars can also be used for abdominal work, making them another awesome multi-purpose piece of equipment. Another good thing about pull-up bars is that most are easy to hang in your doorway and don’t take up a ton of space.

Mini Resistance Bands

Once you get comfortable with the basics and want to challenge yourself, you can add a mini resistance band to exercises like squats to make them a little more difficult. Mini resistance bands are also great for mobility exercises, and they take up virtually no space at all. You can even take them on the road with you, so you never have an excuse for missing a workout!
We hope these tips will help you stay active and facilitate the process of building your home gym. If you have any questions, always feel free to reach out to the Dumpster Company!