Build a Budget-Friendly Home Gym

After we moved into our house, one of the first projects on my mind was creating a home gym in our basement. Building a home gym sounds intimidating but it is possible to make one on a budget!

Here are just a few reasons why a home gym is worth it for us:
  • No babysitter needed.
  • Exercise time is flexible.
  • $$$ is being put towards assets rather than a monthly membership fee. 
  • Adding items to the home gym can be a gradual process.

I do miss the community of working out in a local gym but being able to workout at home is a lifesaver when caring for a little one full-time!

What's In Our Home Gym

Here are the main pieces of equipment that make up our home gym. Some I have collected over the years, some were bought secondhand and some were bought new. I have included a price estimate based on that may be helpful if you are planning out your first home gym or adding to a current one!

Cardio Equipment

  • Proform Treadmill: $500 to $2,000+ - The treadmill was our biggest investment because we wanted quality and something that would survive many speed workouts and long runs. Running is the main thing I do, so might as well get one that lasts!

    We went with the Proform Pro 2000 and it has been awesome - sturdy, incline/decline options, fan and able to handle long runs. Pricing on treadmills varies greatly depending your type of use (walking/running) and frequency of use. This treadmill was $1,300 bought new.

Free Weights

  • 10-lb. Dumbbells: $25.00 - Great to use with workout DVDs or for strength training circuits at home. Bought these at Walmart and I highly recommend buying weights in-store because shipping weights is crazy expensive!
  • Barbell/Dumbbell Set with assorted weights: $135.00 - We hit secondhand heaven with this one! Our neighbors were selling their set and contacted me because they knew we were looking. Secondhand the whole set was actually given to us (I could have cried).

The Stretching Station

  • Yoga Mat: $20.00 - I bought mine about 5 years ago and it's still going strong! Great for stretching on hard surfaces and for toddler tumbling, too.
  • Massage Bar: $25.00 - Perfect for rolling out muscles post-workout. I prefer this over the foam roller!
  • Foam Roller: $22.00 - Another great tool for rolling out sore muscles. I think ours came as a set with the yoga mat and it's still in great shape years later.

Other Accessories

  • Resistance Band: $14.00 - I use a stretching band I was given to rehab tennis elbow back in high-school for strength training, especially hip exercises. If this ever breaks, I may buy a "real" resistance band! Some day...
  • Sound System: $35.00 - My iHome2go has been chilling with me since around 2007. I've almost given it away a few times but found the perfect use for it now as strength training sound system (and toddler distracter)!
  • Baby Monitor: $15.00 - We didn't get one until E was almost a year old and now it's my best friend at nap-time. I can fit in a run while he sleeps and still hear when he wakes up. Baby monitor prices vary greatly but our plain audio-only and cord-necessary model was very affordable.
  • Step Up: $50.00 - An actual step-up trainer is sturdy and adjustable. Until I find a super good deal on one, I'm using a kitchen chair very carefully.

Additional Home Gym Items

What you have in your home gym all depends on your specific exercise preferences and the amount of space you have available.

If you aren't a runner, skip the treadmill and go for a stationary bike or eliptical instead. Maybe you are into weight machines rather than free weights. The customizing possibilities are endless because it's your personal gym!

Here are a few additional items that are on the home gym "wish-list":
  • Stationary Bike: $150.00
  • Jump Rope: $5.00
  • Bosu Balance Trainer: $105.00
  • Exercise Ball: $23.00
  • Kettle Bell Set, 2 weights: $36.00
Do you have gym membership or a home gym?
What items would you add to my home gym "wish list"?

Linking up at Fitness Friday and Mommy Moments.


  1. What a great list of equipment! I'm so impressed with your dedication to exercise and fitness. Well done. :) Thanks for the inspiration and the post.

  2. I love my ProForm treadmill, too, but I'm totally jealous of yours. I didn't think I'd care there wasn't a front-facing fan. I was wrong. I think that's a necessity for me at this point.

    And I highly suggest the kettlebells. I have two, and they're my favorite at-home piece. Not to mention the pullup bar that's in the doorway to the room. That thing...OMG it's amazing.

    Thanks to Jill Conyers for pointing me here. #FitnessFriday

    1. The fan is definitely helpful though they aren't super powerful. If I'm planning a longer run on the treadmill, I plug in an extra fan and place it in front of the treadmill to stay cooler! Makes a huge difference.

      I will put the kettlebells at the top of my wishlist! I'm not sure what kind of workouts to do with them but will have to do my research :) Thanks for stopping by, B.J.!

  3. Great list! I love working out at home and over the years I've collected many items for my workouts. Bosu Trainer is on my list of "wants". The two added things I have in my home gym are my Shih-Tzus. They think when I'm on the mat it's group activity time. :)

    1. Haha your Shih-Tzus sound like my toddler! I have debated making him his own toddler-style yoga mat and weight set. He grunts and tries to pick up the 10-lb. dumbbells and it's just asking for trouble... a bruised toe for either him or me.

      Definitely want one of those Bosu trainers! They had one at the old gym I went to and it was great for balance training BUT I had no clue how expensive they are! Waiting for a sale :)

  4. Excellent. I'd probably add a bench/step and lifters (like they have in pump classes). I have a gym membership, but it would be awesome to have more fitness equipment at home. Thanks for sharing!

    1. I have heard those pump classes are a blast! Definitely would try one out if they had them at the gym in town. The bench/step and lifters would be a great home gym addition!

  5. Very practical information--I love that you included prices of each item in the gym. Great for the person who is just starting to build their gym at home.

    1. Glad the information was helpful, Joli! Thanks for stopping by!

  6. What an awesome home gym you have!! I'm a little jealous :) I'll have to remember this if we ever make our home-gym more legit. I've used the gym off-and-on over the years but with me not working, a membership isn't really in the budget but I NEED to workout. I have a few free-weights, resistance bands, TRX. I'm dying for a BOSU ball! That's next on my list.

    1. BOSU balls are so nice! That's on my list for now, too, until I find one on sale :) Looks like you have a home gym in the works! It seems like ours just gradually came into form over the last year.

  7. I live in the country and the gym we have here is not really suitable (hours wise) for me, so I decided to set up a home gym.
    I started off with bands, then got myself some adjustable weights. Then I invested in a barbell, with some more weights.
    My most recent purchase has been a suspension strap.
    I can get a killer workout with all of these items, and have properly saved a fortune than getting a gym membership.
    I still want to get a bosu ball, eventually.

    1. It's so true! Investing in your own home gym does save a ton compared to a gym membership.

      The two options are similar to renting a house or buying a house - you put your money towards your own assets or give it to someone else! When the space is available, a home gym is definitely the way to go!


Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

#RuntheYear 2022 + Knockaround Slingshot Snow Goggle Review

Race Report: Fargo Marathon 2023

Save Those Toes | KT Tape Blister Prevention