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Purchasing a home gym system shows that you are making a commitment to your physical health which in turn can reward you with not just a great looking body but can add years to your life. These aren’t just years, but healthier years and as scientists have found – healthier years are also happier years.

If you plan ahead, you’ll have all the tools you need to get the most from your home gym. I’m not talking which one to get or where to get it from but how to choose one and get the most once you own it.

When friends and readers ask me about buying home gym equipment, I can go on for hours but there are really just a few basics that you need to know.

1) Buy a high quality home gym:

Unless you have a vast area in your home to dedicate to several pieces of equipment, you should look for a home gym that covers all the major exercises (including the ones you don’t like), such as chest, back, legs (hamstrings & quadriceps), shoulders, biceps and triceps.

Also think about who will be using the equipment. Is it mainly for a man, a woman or both? Most home gyms have features that appeal to both but I highly recommend one that offers the option of using your piece for Pilates exercises if a woman will also be using the machine. A Pilates set of exercise will help to tone, sculpt and burn fat but they also help to help stretch and balance the body which makes it more feminine. So she can slim down and feel sexy, not bulky.

2) Make sure your home gym is stable:

There’s a saying, ‘You get what you pay for.’ Most of the inexpensive home gyms you buy from a local department store have very narrow bases, so they tend to rock. Stay away from home gyms that do not have a good stable base.

For a basic rule of thumb, look at home gyms that are more ‘square’ or ‘as high as they are wide’. As an example, you won’t want a home gym that 10ft high x 2 ft wide x 2 ft deep, unless you are going to anchor it to a concrete floor.
While you may not be able to physically use it before you purchase be sure to read reviews and see what previous customers and users say about it. Reviews are a great resource.

3) Put your home gym in a place you will use it:

If truth be told, if you leave your home gym in a room you normally don’t go into to, odds are high that you aren’t going to use it. The more inviting the room where you place your equipment, the more likely you will use it (how many of us really want to work out in a room that is not inviting?).

If there’s only one place you can place your home gym, then work on the room to make it more user friendly. Maybe add a coat of paint or put up pictures that inspire you (motivational posters are great). Add a stereo system or a wall mounted television. By making the room inviting and inspiring, you’ll ensure that workouts will be enjoyable and the more enjoyable the more use it will get.

4) Make a simple & short workout 15-20 minute routine:

Many people start off by trying to do too much too quickly and either get injured or burned out. Start off slowly with just 10 minutes. I know that you are excited about your new equipment so if you really want to spend more time – get to know your home gym.
Go through the routines slowly not really working out but learning. Then as the days go by you can more a bit more until you have a good 15-20 minute workout that makes you feel good afterwards but not so exhausted that your overly winded. Remember that your home gym system will last for years and years so there really isn’t a hurry to rush it.

Do this workout 3 to 5 days a week. Remember to work all your muscles (not just the ones you like) for optimum results. It helps to keep a record of your workouts on paper so you can see just how far you’ve come.

If you’re stuck on what to do, don’t worry. Many home gyms come with beginner workouts. But again, don’t go all out and over extend yourself the first few workouts – start from where you are and build on it. Consistency is key for an awesome body.

5) Write your workout days on the calendar:

Like any important appointment, make an appointment with your home gym. You need to make the effort to put yourself, your body and your health first – especially at the beginning stages. Experts tell us it takes 3 to 6 weeks ( about 90 days) before actions become habit. Once you’ve built the habit of working out, it will get easier.

To help you stick to your exercise appointment, get loved ones to encourage you and make you accountable. Once you get past the 8-week mark, you’ll feel (and look) so great you’ll wonder why you didn’t get a home gym sooner. It will also be a part of your life and you will find that when you miss a workout day you really do miss it and look forward to the next day when you are scheduled to work out.

The Total Gym is my choice for a home gym system and if you want to read more about it and find the absolute best deals just
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