You don’t need a gym membership to get fit and healthy. You actually don’t even need any equipment! There are plenty of exercises you can do using your body weight only. Here are few body weight only workouts if you’re looking for ideas:
But it can be good to have a bit of equipment that you can use to add variety and make your workouts a little bit more challenging.
Here are some of my favourite pieces of gym equipment, that aren’t big, heavy or too expensive. I also travel with some of these too!
Having a resistance band comes in handy for a lot of upper body exercises. There are only so many body weight exercises you can do for your upper body. Having a resistance band means you can do a lot more. Most of the time, I also prefer using a resistance band over dumbbells (and focusing on endurance) to give a more lean look.
I love these because they’re so small but they really help you get more out of your core workouts, and I love using them for leg workouts too. Check out my full body workout using these gliding discs.
I think having a yoga mat is essential. It just makes all of the exercises that you need to do on the floor so much more comfortable. They can be a little bit more expensive but they are so worth it! You can get some cheaper ones, but if you use it a lot and sweat a lot (like me), the Lululemon ones are supposed to be awesome!
As well as stretching after each workout, it’s a great idea to invest in a foam ball or roller to massage your muscles when they’re feeling sore and tight. I prefer the ball as it gets in deeper to your glutes and hip. This is the one I use. I also travel with it as it’s quite small and light.
Some exercise do require a bench. I do different types of butt exercises using a bench, and then there’s other ones such as tricep dips and bench hops. A solid chair will work, but if you have the space, it is worth investing in a bench. Before I was travelling, I managed to buy a really cheap one on Gumtree, so you could always look for second hand ones!
I think all of these 5 pieces of gym equipment are necessary for a home gym. I always travel with the resistance band, sliders and foam ball too!
These are some other products that I would recommend investing in, but aren’t 100% necessary.
I LOVE ankle weights for all of the butt workouts that I do, and you can also use them as hand weights when you need a little extra. I use them a lot for my skinny legs style workouts. These are the ones that I like to use. I use the 2 pound ones, but if you want more, you could use the 5 pounds.
A swiss ball is one of my favourite things to use for ab exercises. They’re not necessary, but if you’re decking out a home gym, then they’re a great addition! There are lots of cool exercises you can do using a swiss ball (or a TRX). If you want me to do a workout video for some of them, let me know!
I personally don’t do much skipping, but it can be really handy when you want to do cardio and it’s raining or too hot / cold outside. And it’s also great to travel with!
This one is good if you ever get plantar fasciitis. I get it when I do lots of running and my shoes are wearing thin. Rolling your foot on one of these really helps to relieve the pain! They’re really cheap and good to have just in case. This is the one I use.