A home fitness area in your new home in the Twin Cities provides a number of benefits: You save the cost of the health club membership, you don't have to spend time traveling back and forth to the gym, and if you have young children, you can work out without having to worry about childcare. Keep these points in mind as you plan a fitness area in your new home:
• Think about the equipment you need based on the type of workouts you do and your personal fitness goals. Consider the equipment you already have plus the items you'd like to add. Then make a list of what you need to buy to create the home gym you want.
• Calculate how much space you'll need to use the equipment. For example, a treadmill takes about 30 square feet; a stationary bike, 10 square feet; free weights, 20-50 square feet; a rowing machine, 20 square feet; and a stair climber, 10-20 square feet. Don't clutter your workout area; you want easy access to every machine.
• Consider where in your new home you'll want to put your equipment. You don't want to trip on it during the night, and you probably don't want it in a place where your kids can "play" on it when they're not supervised. Ground level or basement rooms are usually the best for a fitness area. A garage may be an acceptable option if it is air conditioned and/or heated. Home builders in the Twin Cities are happy to talk with you about the best place for a fitness area and how to incorporate that feature into the floor plan you prefer.
• Prepare the room before setting up your equipment. Create a layout of where each item will go. If the room you're using for you home gym is carpeted, you'll want mats under your cardio machines. Put thick rubber flooring under free weights or weight stack machines.
A home fitness area is an ongoing project. If you can't afford to buy everything you want at once, set priorities and buy things as you go along. Keep informed about new equipment and new training techniques you might want to try. Most important, invest in equipment you like and know you will use and get rid of the stuff that's just collecting dust.