by Kathryn Weber
The resolutions to lose weight, stop smoking or cut out sweets is a common goal for each new year. But resolutions such as going to the gym can fall by the wayside when the thought of heading out for an early morning workout means having to get dressed for the day at the gym. Good intentions aside, having a home gym is perfect for anyone who wants to exercise more, and wants a way to be able to do it conveniently and avoid excuses like the weather or inconvenience.
Having a home gym means excuses about inconvenience go away. Plus, with a gym in your home, you’ll be able to work out, clean up and go about your day without having to lug it all in and out of a car or wipe down someone else’s sweat from your favorite exercise machine.
If you have a spare bedroom, finding space for your gym is solved. But what if you don’t have a spare room for a gym? Basements and garages are tempting gym spots, but if they’re not heated or air-conditioned, they could be too cold or too hot to exercise comfortably, and that could discourage you from exercising. Instead, look for a corner of a room where you could create a gym space. Once you have your gym site selected, it’s time to outfit it for your workouts.
No matter what type of exercise you prefer, there are several things you’ll want to do whether you lift weights, walk on a treadmill or do yoga. The first is to find good flooring. Look into interlocking gym mats that you can use to outline your gym or your gym space. These mats are terrific for almost any type of exercise and will give your feet and gym equipment added cushion and stability — and give your space the look and feel of a real gym.
Second is the lighting. Make sure you have adequate lighting from windows or from overhead fixtures. If there’s a window in your gym area, consider adding a large leaning mirror to the opposite wall. This will double up the light and make your space feel larger and more open. This is also a great option if you’re renting and can’t make changes to your space. However, if you’re converting a room into a gym, give some thought to adding a mirror on one wall. The mirror will help to keep you motivated and check your form at the same time. Overhead, add a track lighting style fixture will brighten up your gym area and help you see well.
Other ideas for your home gym include adding a television so you can watch and ride your exercise bike or run on the treadmill, for example, or do follow-along exercise videos. Give your gym some musical inspiration with Bluetooth speakers so you listen to your favorite workout playlist and keep your motivation up.
Add a hook on the wall for a towel and place a basket on the floor against the wall to store clean towels and other exercise equipment. For other members of the family into working out, install personal lockers for a locker room experience at home.

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