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How to Optimize Your Workout Space

his article was written by Melissa Pelowski.

Is there anything worse than getting down and dirty with your virtual kickboxing class, only to jab down your grandmother’s hundred-year-old ceramic vase or stub your toe against the wall mid-side kick? Whether you’re a diehard gym rat or quarantine has made you crave a good sweat for the first time, we’re all trying to find new ways to optimize our home workout spaces. If your square footage is less than ideal, check out these tips to perfect your little fitness haven.

1. Find your happy place.

With that being said, I’ve recently found it incredibly refreshing to dedicate time away from technology. So I challenge you to commit part of your day to step away from your computer, turn off the TV, and set your phone on “do not disturb.” You will likely have a clearer mind and feel refreshed when you return!

When you think about all the exercises from your favorite YouTube channel, how many of them take up more than a yoga mat’s worth of space? Chances are, not many—and that’s the beauty of home workouts! Ideally, you have an area where you can lunge in all directions. That being said, I once set up my workout space sandwiched between three beds, a desk and two roommates in a room the size of a linen closet—so, really, just about anywhere will do.

What’s more important is that you find a space you feel best in, even if that involves a bit of rearranging. Do you like working out in front of a window or a mirror? On the hardwood floors or carpet? In a common area or somewhere you won’t be disturbed? Just like your bed is for sleeping and your desk is for working, creating a designated workout space at home will help get you in the zone and keep you there.

As a bonus, work out in the same place you store your gear to promote the most gym-like experience.

2. Get the most bang for your buck.

There’s no shortage of tough body-weight workouts, but if you’re looking to invest in some extra equipment—aim for diversity. There’s no sense in having a gigantic tricep dip machine taking up precious floor space when you can place a dumbbell in your lap and use your desk chair. Adjustable dumbbells, a resistance band set, medicine balls, loop bands, sliders and stability balls are all effective (and storable!) strength-training tools. As for cardio…have you ever tried a 10-minute jump rope workout? It was harder than my half-marathon.

3. Think vertically.

Walls are the hallmark of small workout spaces. While the actual workout may not take up much space, what do you do with all your stuff? Hanging your bands on hooks and mounting your stability ball on a wall rack allows you to both keep your floor clear and display your gear for an extra hint of visual motivation. You can even drill some resistance band anchors into your wall or attach them to your door.

The work-from-home shift isn’t easy but creating a great home workout space can be. What are some of your favorite #WorkoutFromHome tips?

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