If you forgo the gym to get your workouts in at home, you know outfitting your home gym with a variety of equipment can be just as expensive as a gym membership itself. You don’t actually need to spend tons of cash on cardio machines, weights, kettlebells and resistance bands to get a varied workout- you may have everything you need already right in your kitchen.
The kitchen is usually a place you want to stay away from as much as possible when trying to lose weight, but if you use it right, it can be the home gym you’ve always dreamed of. By using items most people can already find in their kitchen or pantry, you can get in a great workout, and possibly be inspired to make a new healthy dish for dinner at the same time.
Soup cans can double as hand weights. Soup cans are very light, so if you are starting a fitness routine for the first time, these are easy to use because they are light and easy to hold. As you become stronger, you can use heavier objects like jars of coins or frozen water bottles, which have the added bonus of melting while you sweat so you can down some ice cold water after your workout.
Milk jugs can double as kettlebells. Anything heavy with a handle can be used as a kettlebell. Use a jug of milk while following that DVD or doing lower body strength training instead of dropping double digits on a kettlebell. If your milk level is running low and isn’t enough weight, save last week’s jug and fill it with water, or if that’s not heavy enough for you, you can fill it with sand or pebbles. Save them up, and soon you will have a whole set of kettlebells at different weights for different workouts.
Bags of rice can double as sand bags. Sandbags are a great workout tool because they are awkward to handle and super heavy, perfect for lugging and throwing around. Use a bag of rice or flour in exactly the same manner. Hold them over your shoulder as you do lower body exercises, use them as resistance during ab exercises, or use them for cardio and carry back and forth down your hallway or toss back and forth with a partner. Just make sure whatever bag you use is sealed tightly or you may have a big mess on your hands.
Paper plates can double as sliders. Sliders are sort of a new and not widely known piece of fitness equipment, but they are amazing for pretty much any exercise you can dream off. The purpose of them is to slide on the floor, mainly carpet, to increase the resistance during body weight exercises and they are perfect for at home workouts. You can stick them under your feet and drag them during side lunges or hamstring curls or place them under your hands and slide your hands in and out during pushups for an added blast to your pec muscles. If you don’t use paper plates in your home, magazines or DVD cases work just as well.
Kitchen towels are perfect for stretching. Towels are the perfect aide to help you with your after workout stretching. Wrap the towel around your feet and pull lightly when stretching your hamstrings. A good chest stretch with a towel is to sit with your feet straight out in front of you with good posture. Place the towel in both hands and raise your arms above your head, elbows by your ears. Slowly and gently, move the towel from directly over head backwards, elbows slightly behind your ears, until you feel a good stretch.
Use what you’ve got before you go out buying new equipment you don’t need. Get creative: if you can workout with things in your kitchen, imagine what a fitness equipment gold mine you have in the rest of your house.
February 3rd, 2012