Home Gym Equipment

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    Feb 05, 2007 2:02 AM GMT
    I am interested in purchasing bowflex extreme or Ultimate system which can be costly. I am looking at recomendations as to what you may think of these machines. I live about 25 miles from a gym so it is rather difficult to get there daily and I am not really into working in front of others until I am in better shape.
    I will be getting back into my swimming as well for the cardio. Any help would be appreciated.
    Thanks
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    Feb 05, 2007 6:02 AM GMT
    Personally I bought the Ironman thin weight bench. It also has butterfly attachments and leg attachments. I'm personally not comfortable enough yet to go workout at a gym so I thot if I had it here in my apt. I would have no excuse to not work-out. I love it!
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    Feb 07, 2007 11:49 PM GMT
    I looked at those things years ago and concluded that they were at best, rather limited and at worst, over-priced junk. I'm not really familiar with what's on the market right now, though.

    Real gym-quality equipment is cheaper than the stuff advertised on TV, lasts forever, and doesn't really take up much more room. Plus, you can buy it one piece at a time, as you can afford it, instead of making one big purchase and maybe going into debt.

    I was kind of gratified to read in the February "Men's Fitness" their list of equipment needed for a home gym. It was very close to what I've collected over the years!

    Their list: Power rack, olympic barbell, adjustable bench, olympic weight plates, Swiss Ball, bands, dumbbells, punching bag, floor mat.

    I don't have a punching bag, but I've got a climber machine and my power rack has a pulley system instead of bands. They also left out racks to store the plates and dumbells.

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    Feb 08, 2007 2:27 AM GMT
    Hi,bcbou all you realy need are a bike for cardio, and a set of free weights. if you had the room a rowing machine as it works all the muscle groups of the body.GOOD LUCK.
  • RobNC2001

    Posts: 8

    Feb 16, 2007 12:36 PM GMT
    I'm with gonzo and mindgarden. Save your money on the overpriced junk. In spite of what all those infomercials say, there is just no substitute to working out with free wieghts. And you can buy some real gym equipment much more cheaply. A good set of free weights, an adjustible bench with a leg extension, a decent exercise bike, and, if you have the room, a squat rack with a pully system for tri's and pull downs are about all you really need for a great set up. And if you have even more room, I'd add a dip stand and a good rowing machine (ergometer) for a really deluxe home gym. And these guys are right, this stuff lasts forever. You'll only need to buy it once.
  • free4lifeau

    Posts: 18

    Feb 16, 2007 10:52 PM GMT
    I have a Total Gym at home, and being a qualified personal trainer helps too.

    It is great as you can do a hard weight session as well as all your cardio - if your clever you can combine the both and cut your trainig time down.

    Or you can just jump on it for 10 minutes at a time to really pump one muscle group - if you do this 6 or more times a day as well as your morning 'wake-up' pushups/ lower & upper abs crunches/ squats its a great combination.
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    Feb 26, 2007 6:46 AM GMT
    Thanks for the info guys I have looked at a couple of home gyms that are a lot less expensive and will probably go for one of those instead. I appreciate all the feedback and will get started real soon.
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    Apr 09, 2007 9:32 PM GMT
    Hi Guys, I am thinking of buying an "InspireFitness" M1 home gym. I have some free weights and a very old Marcy weight stack kind of gym, but I think it might be better for my back to use a home gym rather than free weights, at least for most exercises. This unit is the only one I found that is not too tall to fit in my bungalow basement. Anyone have any experience with it, positive or negative? Thanks
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    Apr 11, 2007 3:13 AM GMT
    I still think a set of free weights, a swiss ball and a bike are probably all you need for a home gym. I prefer my bike to be one that I actually ride around the place rather than a stationary exercise bike, but whatever.
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    Apr 11, 2007 2:22 PM GMT
    I think over the last 15 years I must have spent $6000 bucks setting up home gyms, and the watching the investment float out the door when I realize I can't train at home...I NEED a gym environment to keep me motivated.

    I have owned a Soloflex, Eleiptical, BodySolid universal gym, 4 different benches and attachments and more free weights than you can shake a stick at.

    My recommendation.... buy a good adjustable bench (flat/incline/decline) with a leg attachement (for decline work) and a preacher curl attachment. That should run you about $300. Buy a full run of cast dumbells from 10 to 50 lbs...don't waste your time with a zillion plates and collars, just buy the cast dumbells, there easier to use, don't rattle and are sold by weight ($.33 to $1 a pound so shop and ask for discounts if you make a big order)

    That will give you everything you need to perform a very complete workout. Minimal cost, minimal space used and if you ever change your mind you won't have a $2500 clothes rack you can't unload.

    If you have more money to spend you can add a bench rack to the bench you've bought and an olympic bar and some plates (10,25,45 lbs, 2 of each) From there you can perform heavier lifting excersizes and I'd probably add an ez-curl bar at this point to maximize the plate use.

    Last thing I'd add....and only for variety of movement... is a cable cross over station IF you can spare the room. You can get them with plate racks that use your olympic plates (easier to move than weight stacks if you ever need to sell or relocate this thing)

    Big custom designed all-in-one machines are too expensive and require so much pulling of cables,levers and pins to go from one excersise to the next...drives me nuts. Plus you're always in the same place...BORING. Lastly, machine excercises tether you to a specific series of movements. There's no room for improvisation, variation or challenge. Free weights are always superior because along with the pros I just mentioned you will also develop the supporting stabilizer muscles for each main muscle you work... not so with machines which artificially constrain your movements never allowing your body to truly adapt to the full range of motion.

    Hope that helps.

    Eric
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    Apr 12, 2007 3:43 AM GMT
    Thanks Eric and Cooper for your replies. Appreciate your comments.
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    Apr 12, 2007 3:55 AM GMT
    Over the years I've designed a number of workout programs for people who either don't live near gyms, can't afford a big gym, or travel a lot for work.

    There's a lot that can be accomplished with a set of dumbbells and an adjustable bench. Adding a few specialized pieces over time can help, but a STRONG adjustable bench and dumbbells will do more than just get you started.

    Don't go cheap on the bench, though, or on the dumbbells. Get a couple of sets of the dumbbells so you can have 2 different loads set up when you need them.
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    May 19, 2007 4:08 PM GMT
    Bowflex (and similar machines) are junk and over priced. I have assembled several for people, appalled at the quality (I am an engineer). The movements appear to be designed by school kids. Great coat hangers and a fantastic marketing ploy. If you really want one, there are clones for much cheaper.

    Best to outfit a garage or basement with at least a power rack, bench press, safety stands for free weight work, a pulley machine for high and low pulley work, a good leg extension/leg curl, a flat and incline to straight up free bench, a set of dumbells (or dumbell bars with weights), a Olympic weight set (the equipment to be designed for Olympic bars). Can add leg presses, sit up boards, deadlifting platform, incline and decline benches. Cardio equipment is expensive, should be able to save money by swimming, running, biking, etc. For indoors, a used commercial quality ellipical trainer is good.

    Best to buy from hardcore equipment outfits. This includes Polak Made (polakmade.com), Louie Simmons (Westside Barbell), Forza, Hammer Strength (expensive), there are a number of others. Stay away from Sears, Walmart, K-mart, Dicks, etc.

    Little John
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    Jun 12, 2007 11:38 PM GMT
    we purchased the Fitness Gear Ultimate. and the only reason we did so, was that the gym we both went to for years, one day closed it doors (with no warning to clients or employees, there's some legal action agaist the owner)anyway, it was right across the street from us, and we were SO used to the convience. the only other gym close to us is about 20 minutes away ( i know not far but). so we purchased this equipment out of lost convience. it is only okay. I haven't felt like I have gotten a GREAT workout yet. plus its bulky, and needs to be re waxed often. also it is completly based on pulleys. and only two racks for weights, and trying to do super sets or giant sets, well lets say you get your cardio running around chaging your weight LOL. so don't get that one unless it just for maintnce training or light days. i rate ours as like a 6. the gym is the place to get quality workouts from equipment.