Getting in shape can easily become an expensive endeavor. Paying for a monthly gym membership or buying your own equipment can really start to add up. But what if you could get the body of your dreams with just one piece of equipment?
Sometimes simplicity is the answer.
The following 5 pieces of fitness equipment can be all you need to get into shape. Each one can be had for less than a couple months of a gym membership (some even less!) and can give you tons of options to keep your workouts fresh.
The TRX is a suspension trainer that allows for hundreds of different movement and exercises to help burn fat and build muscle.
Movements from pull-ups to rows, pushups, dips, and core exercises the TRX offers a wide variety of exercises with the ability to scale each movement depending on the trainee.
The key is to change the angle of the movement, decreasing or increasing the difficulty of the exercise.
The other benefit is that the instability of the TRX means you’ll be recruiting more of those smaller stabilizer muscles to help out.
More muscle recruitment = more muscle = less fat.
You can purchase the TRX from any fitness store or online at their website. They also have tons of workout routines on their site as well as Youtube.
DUMBBELL COLLARS AND PLATES (OR ADJUSTABLE DUMBBELL)
Dumbbells are some of the most widely used gym items around. Not everyone has space however for an entire rack of dumbbells. So the alternative is to get a dumbbell collar that you can then load up with plates (or adjustable dumbbells).
Having a set of dumbbells that you can load up as needed is great for its versatility and saving space. We have a set of dumbbell collars and weights that we can load up to 70lbs. This is more than enough for the majority of dumbbell movements we use.
There are plenty of dumbbell only workout programs out there, so with a set of these, you’ll have all you need to get in great shape.
It was only till recently that both Dionne and I got into kettlebells but WOW do we love’em. There’s something inherently badass about throwing around a cannonball with a handle.
Kettlebells were made popular by Pavel Tatsouline, a guy who has trained the Russian special forces using the kettlebell. They have since exploded in popularity because of their effectiveness and simplicity.
His program Simple & Sinister is a combination of the two main kettlebell movements, the swing, and the Turkish getup will help get anyone into shape real quick.
Again, this is a piece of equipment that could be all you need to get fit.
For those looking to purchase a kettlebell there are some recommended starting weights;
- 8kg (18lb) for Woman
- 16kg (35lb) for men.
You may look at the weight and think “hey, that’s way too light, I bench ___ and squat ___” but believe me, the kettlebell will be hitting muscles you probably haven’t used before. Not only that, but kettlebell exercises are usually meant to be short and intense, so while it may seem light initially, it will quickly become challenging after a few reps.
It’s highly recommended you find a certified trainer near you to learn the proper form and movements.
Check out this site for instructors near you –> Strongfirst Instructors
The trap bar or hex bar is a piece of equipment that is used primarily for “trap bar deadlifting”. A trap bar deadlift is a combination between deadlifting and squatting. Not quite one, not quite the other, but is a great exercise to increase leg strength and definition.
Why get a trap bar instead of just a straight bar?
Because it is a hybrid between deadlifting and squatting, you don’t need to get a straight bar (which would also mean buying a squat rack if you want to squat with it). Even though you can work your legs with dumbbells, kettlebells, and bodyweight you just can’t get that heavy stimulus from lifting… well… something heavy!
So instead of getting a straight bar with a rack which would take up a good portion of space and be much more expensive, trap bar can be a great alternative.
A great tool to build up leg strength the trap bar can also be used for pressing, rows and farmer’s walks (walking around while holding it up)
Bands are an amazing piece of equipment. They’re super cheap, very portable and come in so many different strengths and sizes that there will never be a lack of exercises you can do with them
With bands, you can do all types of exercises and even have a good workout with just these alone, a quick search on Youtube has tons of different routines to try.
These are great quality and are holding up strong after two years of use –> Rogue Bands
Fit On A Budget
Every one of these pieces of equipment could get you into great shape, taken together you could have an awesome home gym. The best part about these is most can be had for less than $100 – even less if you get them second hand!
Check out our post on creating your own gym at home with this equipment, it’s easy and super cheap compared to a gym membership –> Home Gym Starter Guide