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8 Awesome DIY Reader Home Gyms To Inspire You… And Us!

About a month ago and approximately 47,638,980 days since quarantine began, I caved and bought an exercise bike. Up until the day it arrived I was burning roughly 6 calories a day–moving from one work station to another and walking my dog was the extent of my daily physical activity. Motivation to work out just wasn’t there and when I would think about the idea of putting on an exercise video or even having to squeeze into leggings, I would get extremely irritated. Put simply, I DID NOT WANT TO DO IT. My lack of motivation resulted in anger towards myself and towards a society that was making me feel like if I wasn’t exercising during quarantine I was doing something wrong. This anger fueled me to rebel and go the opposite direction by eating what I wanted and drinking wine instead of moving my body because I am a rebel girl who doesn’t care about society’s expectations!!! (spoiler alert: I totally do).

Eventually, I started feeling like I wasn’t doing enough (of course) so I bought the bike because it seemed like the best avenue to get me to start moving again. When it arrived, my bike and I spent two glorious weeks together. I would wheel it out into the living room every morning and bike 5 miles while watching TV then I would leave it out to hop on throughout the day when I needed to move around. The best part? I actually wanted to do it!

I was loving my new workout regime until the bike proved to be exactly what I paid for. It was very cheap and pretty soon the pedals completely broke off making it unusable. I sent it back, got a refund (phew), and found myself right where I started (despising exercise). I reverted back to resenting working out and this idea that if I wasn’t trying to lose the extra “quarantine pounds” I was a bad, lazy person.

Then I saw the light once again when I read Orlando’s post about his home gym and exercising journey. I felt so seen, I even cried. He articulated the shame I feel around exercise and how it shapes how I view myself and my body. In short, I always wonder if I am committed to exercise, does that mean I can’t love my body the way it is? That I must want it to be something else? How can I trick my brain to enjoy exercise, view it as a way to be healthier, and not judge myself if I don’t lose weight? It’s a different journey for everyone, sure, but once I began to reframe my intentions around exercising, I felt 10x more motivated. Am I ever going to run 5 miles a day or be able to do more than 10 pushups? Maybe not, but at least now I feel more positive about the ways I chose to move my body and why I do it. More importantly, I learned that having good exercise equipment close by was the key to get me excited about working out, so when I saw all the real home gyms and gym nooks from our readers I was inspired even more.

So wherever you are in your health journey, I want you to know that you are enough and there is no judgment here and certainly no pressure to exercise at all. That said, if you want some gym inspiration and great product recommendations, today we have 8 inspiring home gym ideas sent in by 8 of our lovely readers. Let’s get into it:

Reuse Old Decor To Cozy Up The Space

Indoor Rowing Machine

First up, this basement turned home gym designed by one of our readers, Aimee, is a great example of repurposing unused space and old decor. She happened to have an unfinished portion of her basement which almost always had gym equipment in it but was also a storage room. She decided to officially make it into a gym last year and probably only spent $100 on decor. She repurposed items from other parts of her home that weren’t being used to make the space feel welcoming (plus she added plants which always does the job). They already had most of the gym equipment besides the indoor rower (which is so cool!) that cost around $1,000.

I love how she incorporated things she already owned to make the space more relaxing and enjoyable to be in. A gym is perhaps a really great place to use old decor that you may have grown out of in your more lived-in spaces. For example, if you are sick of a piece of art or decor in one room, try using it to liven up your workout space. We all like pretty things to look at even when sweat is dripping into our eyeballs, right?

Combine Your Home Office/Gym

Pelaton | Yoga Mat | TV | Mount | Weights | Yoga Blocks

Home offices/gyms are a 2020 trope that is not going anywhere. Many of us are working from home for the foreseeable future so carving out a designated workspace is key. Nowadays, while we are stuck inside even more than usual, many home offices are also home to workout nooks.

One of our readers, Melody, sent in her office/gym space that she started putting together a few months into quarantine. At the time her hours at work were cut back, so this project and a couple of others helped keep her sane/busy during unexpected days off. Now is an inspiring place she can go to work or work out.

From Melody: “I wanted the area to feel like my home but be a little more fun! I needed the space to bring me joy since everything outside was a little stressful, to say the least. I work in a creative field so it also needed to strike the right balance of inspiring for work and to workout.”

Yoga Mat |Peloton

Here’s another home office/gym mashup from Jess’s dear friend Casey. Before quarantine, it was an awkward rectangular space that wasn’t getting any use but when a stay-at-home order comes along, using every inch of an apartment is essential.

From Casey: “Shortly after the city went into lockdown my roommate Kaia and I knew we wanted to create a space at home to be able to work out in. Pre pandemic, both of us would take classes at boutique fitness studios but we knew the “equipment” we had would not suffice what we were used to in our workout routines. We had an old pair of 2-pound weights, a foam roller, and a yoga mat. That’s it! So we kept adding”

Gym Flooring | Weights | Bands | Ball | Weight Rack | Mirror

For Casey and her roommate, it started with weights, then a mirror, and slowly but surely they created this totally functional (and cute) home office and gym nook. I think this is one of the few positives coming from the pandemic–we are all looking for ways to make the most out of our spaces and beginning to stop taking things for granted.

Keep It Simple And Light

Not a big gym person? Me either! This is why I really appreciate the simplicity of this home yoga studio by Trini From Nayley Home. It’s calm, bright, and airy making it an ideal space to meditate, do yoga, or even get some cardio exercises in if you are into that.

From Trini: “We like to call it our “studio” to alleviate the pressure of “GYM”. I still feel accomplished if I just go in there to do some morning stretching or meditation and not necessarily a sweaty workout. 🙂

I, of course, love this sentiment and hope to one day carve out a space in my home as relaxing as this looks.

Use Up Vertical Wall Space

Mirrors | Flooring | Foam Roller | Step | Weight Set | Dumbbells | Long Resistance Bands

Here we have another basement turned home gym designed by Holly of Sunderland House. She started the project a week after gyms closed and pulled it all together within a few days–so impressive! At the time, of course, we were all told places would only be closed for three weeks so needless to say, creating this space definitely paid off over the last year.

What I love most is how she really utilized wall space for storage so no floor space was wasted (so much room for activities!). This is a really great hack if you have a small awkward room or nook that you want to make into a gym or workout area.

Split A Room Into A Workout Zone

One of our readers, Julie, turned this upstairs room into a makeshift gym and says it gets a ton of use as it is much easier to workout at home with two kids than it is to go to a gym. This is definitely what my gym nook would look like if I had exercise equipment and I love how relaxed it is. Honestly, I am not opposed to a sofa or comfy chair close by after a workout and I appreciate how Julie separated the space into two zones by adding a rug and facing the chairs towards the windows instead of toward her exercise equipment.

Add Lots Of Color

No one wants to work out in a boring box with blank walls, so decor and color can go a long way which is exactly what Jenny was going for when designing this space.

From Jenny: “This room was my former art studio, but got a makeover because it is a magical room with a door, which is prime real estate when you are remote schooling and trying to work from home. After a lot of paint, rearranging, and Ikea curtain tracks all over the place to divide the zones, it is now a home office to two people (complete with a zoom background), a pilates studio with a reformer, a place to weight train and do some yoga (when the reformer is stood up on the wall), oh and an art studio. It is the hardest working space in our home and I love how happy it looks. The curtains help to divide all the zones and help reduce the echo for zoom calls and podcast interviews.”

In another part of Jenny’s home, she shows a prime example of making it work wherever you have the extra space. If your closet can also house an exercise bike, then a closet/exercise bike station it shall be!

From Jenny: “We left the space at the end free and tucked in our wannabe peloton under the window. I love that we do not have exercise equipment in our bedroom, but you can slither from bed to the bike in a couple of steps (which is helpful when you don’t want to get out of bed). It is also nice to have it by the window to get some fresh air while you are riding.”

Transform That Extra Bedroom

Chandelier | Hex Dumbbells | Dumbbell Rack | Large Floor Mat | Exercise Bench | Bench | Rebounder

Oh yes. I would definitely feel motivated to move my body around in here. This home gym designed by Erin Wheeler of Sunny Circle Studio was once an office space that wasn’t being used anymore, so she set out to make it a gorgeous and functional home gym.

From Erin: “The room was formerly my office/lounge area and it currently wasn’t in use all that much as I had moved my home office to a different room in the house. I did think it a bit odd/unusual to transform the first room you see when you enter our home to a home gym but I have zero regrets as it feels very much connected to the style of the house.

Ladder | Floor Mirrors

I love a room that is both functional and beautiful and this right here is IT, folks. She clearly took the time to envision how she could make the most use out of this room and completely nailed it. I am not even a huge fan of working out but I want to spend A LOT of time here.

design by and photo by erin wheeler of sunny circle studio

Start With Yes Print | Storage Bins

By now, you all know I love a good storage angle right? Well, I can’t end this post without mentioning that storage for your gym is key. Even Orlando says so, so you know it’s true, and a great option for a gym is using a bookshelf like Erin did here. You can use baskets and hooks and also pepper in decor to make the space more beautiful.

Alright my friends, that is all for now. How are you feeling about gyms and working out in general? Do you find having a home gym makes working out easier? Tell me everything. xx

Opener Image Credit: Design by and photo by Erin Wheeler of Sunny Circle Studio


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97 thoughts on “8 Awesome DIY Reader Home Gyms To Inspire You… And Us!

  1. A few months into the pandemic we turned our kids’ Lego room into a workout room (they have another playroom; this was just 100% for Legos). We have our treadmill, Peloton, and weight machines in there now with a smart TV and that room is basically what’s keeping me sane these days. I know we are incredibly privileged to have an entire extra room in our house that we can dedicate to a home gun!

  2. Admittedly also coming from a place of jealousy, but the gym “nook” in my apartment consists of a yoga mat put in a corner… Freaking expensive stuff like Pelotons or rooms with the single purpose of being a home gym feel extremely far away from my reality. Somehow that’s even more apparent for me with this post than the others, wonder why? Maybe because the reader aspect makes me feel like I should relate more?

    1. If you’re interested in a Peloton, you may be able to find a deal used. We picked one up from FB Marketplace for less than 1/3 of what they cost new, plus it came with some of the shoes & accessories.

    2. I’m with you, don’t worry. I don’t even have room to put out my yoga mat without moving furniture out of the way first, and my “home office” is my living room. I do a lot of stretches and yoga poses that can be done on my bed so I don’t have to move things out of the way or lay on the cold floor. I also have yoga blocks, a strap and some hand weights that I store under the couch. That’s the maximum amount of “gym equipment” I can accommodate. I’m not even sure I would put a bike or exercise machine in here if I had the space, because it would probably disturb the tenants below me.

      I would die of happiness to have enough space that I got to CHOOSE what to use it for – guest room, office, gym, etc, just like I would absolutely freak out if I had a balcony or even a tiny yard where I could go outside and relax. I hope everyone with nice homes and outdoor space is enjoying it to the fullest because I am living vicariously through everyone else…..

    3. Just sharing, peloton has an app for $12.99 a month ….none of their fancy equipment (or any equipment at all is needed for a lot of their classes.) They offer strength, cardio, yoga, Pilates, barre, hip hop, outdoor walking, outdoor running etc and of course (there are also tread and cycle classes but you don’t need their name brand equipment to participate.) They have a ton of cardio and Hiit classes as well as bodyweight strength classes that do not require a single-thing except yourself and some water….those are actually my favorites. It’s the most affordable and BEST internet /home based exercise I’ve ever tried (I worked out at home by choice pre-covid for years and switched to using the peloton app just this past summer.) I highly recommend it! I think they offer free trials too.
      Don’t let not having fancy equipment discourage you from the huge benefits of dedicating time to take care of you!

    4. I’m 100% with you in the lack of space. I’m looking at Peloton dupes to add a workout option. The bike will likely be stuffed into a closet and rolled out daily, or tucked into a corner of the living room. BTW TailHappyTV on YouTube has good stationary bike comparisons if you’re looking for a cheaper Peloton option.

  3. Wow, jealous of that last example, but it’s so, so, so far out of reach for most of us. The workout bench is a beauty but sold out, and I’m guessing based on the price of the upholstered bench ($1600) it’s far too expensive to justify. I relate much more to the wannabe peloton in the closet, although that closet is also jealousy inducing!

  4. We are in the office/gym camp in our basement as well. My question is this, what does everyone do to keep the funky gym smell at bay? Our basement has pretty good ventilation so the smell doesn’t linger all day, but if I have to jump on a call right after my husband works out, it can be pretty odiferous. Anyone have good diffusers, air purifiers, suggestions to keep the area smelling fresh? Prefer something more natural rather than artificial air fresheners.

    1. Hi! My husband and I set up our work out space in our basement – it doubles as our TV watching/family room and gym. We have a couple charcoal bags in that room and also spray down our equipment with cleaning solution afterwards. Plus, there is a sliding glass door, so on nice days we’ll open that up to air the space out. All of those things seem to do the trick

          1. Do you mean like charcoal that you would use in a bbq for making hotdogs and burgers for 4th of July picnics? 🙂 and hopefully that will happen again some day 😉

            If not what kind of charcoal bags?

    2. Are you using a fan or a/c unit in the room? I find that keeping the sweat level down in the first place makes a big difference. I aim it all right at the bike when i’m riding.

  5. So I have your bike sitting in my Amazon cart. I’m guessing you wouldn’t recommend it lol. It was between that one and another, guess I’ll look more closely at the other one.

    We bought an entire new house so we could have a dedicated gym room! No regrets. Both my husband and I have always worked out at home and have been building up our equipment. Next up is to make a folding squat rack and get some adjustable kettlebells.

    Plus I’ve found my home trainer soul mates. Check out The sisters are amazing!

  6. Hi! This is not a critique, but I wanted to point out something I’ve noticed over the past several months. I could be wrong, but it seems as though the team’s the perception is that throughout the county, most people who previously had been in workplace offices are still working from home due to Covid, and the content/writing during this time has reflected that perception. In my area at least, and the areas my family, friends and acquaintances live throughout several other states (South, Midwest), this is generally not the case. Workplaces, for the most part, have the expectation that employees are back in offices. It might be interesting to see if this is the case for more of your audience. That doesn’t stop me from wanting one of these adorable home office/gym combo rooms for myself (transport me to Erin’s asap, please and thank you), but I wanted to bring it to your attention. Thanks Team EHD!

    1. CW, same here in Louisiana. We have been back in the office since June 2020. Everything is open here, some places with restrictions still of course, but open nonetheless.

    2. Here in Calgary, Alberta, all employees whose physical presence in an office is not deemed essential are working from home and have been since March 2020 (on and off, as the curve rises and falls). As the vaccine roll out has been much slower in Canada, employers are anticipating people work from home until maybe summer but probably fall 2021. At the very least! I find home gyms to be a very relevant topic as most gyms in my province, Alberta, have been closed for large chunks of the past year.

    3. I’m in Colorado and still working from home…almost a year and will likely continue through September(?)

      1. I’m in New Mexico and work as a Clinical Instructor and Lecturer at a university. We are teaching online, seeing clients online, and doing all student meetings online. I feel so very fortunate to be working but must admit my problem is just making the time to work out as workloads and time working have increased dramatically learning to teach, learn, provide therapy services and support students with their challenges all online! Still struggling to find a routine after almost a year. My yoga mat and hand weights do not take up much room, thank goodness!

        1. Just want to add that most of these workout rooms are much nicer than any room in my home! wow! Obviously I am not in education for the $!

    4. My husband has been home for a year now, and it’s likely he will not be going back into the office until this summer or beyond. I own my own business, so i’m home.

    5. I have been unemployed since the children’s museum where I worked closed at the start of the pandemic in March 2020. I don’t need a work out space, I need a space to do all the projects I have started but some how have’t been able to finish.

    6. Here in the Philadelphia region, anyone who can do their job from home has been doing that since March 2020. I think some offices with a small number of employees are back, but large buildings are still practicing work from home.

    7. Interesting! I’m in Kansas City and I haven’t been to my corporate office since last March. As of now, my company has been reevaluating in three month intervals and we currently are extended to not coming back to the office until at least June – but that easily could continue to extend as it has been all year. We’ve at least had ample notice for this so we can plan schedules – especially for those with kids still schooling at home or through hybrid.

    8. In southern CA, we have our own small business composed of 7 employees. Everyone moved to working from home last March (including our receptionist!) and we intend to keep it that way. We gave up the lease on our office building and are making it work. We turned our former guest room into a “gym,” spillover pantry and storage. While I don’t have the assortment of equipment that a real gym would have, the few items I do have, combined with the much cheaper workout streaming options available, have made it such that I can’t imagine going back to the gym. I light a candle, dim the lights (just enough so I don’t hurt myself,) and sweat! Plus, being able to workout whenever I can squeeze it into my schedule is so much more convenient than trying to make a scheduled class at the gym!

    9. Speak for yourself, I’ve been working from home since March 2020 (West Coast) and most people I know have been doing the same. This post was great and very relevant for me as I figure out a space to work out in a 500 sqft apartment.

    10. I’m in Minnesota, and everyone who can work from home here is still working from home (those of us who usually work in offices, that is; obviously it differs by industry), and most office buildings are closed. I’m pretty surprised to hear that it’s so different in your area, CW.

    11. I have been working at the office all throughout the past year save for about a month and a half where i convinced my boss to let me work from home. She thought it was weird that I would want to do that. I work as a graphic designer for a manufacturing company, so we are an essential business, but I can do all my work from home. Regardless, we were and are all expected to be in the office.
      All that being said, gyms are open, and have been for months, but I have no interest in being there. I’ve rearranged my sewing/guest room to also be a place where i will want to exercise. That room does a lot!

    12. I’m in the midwest and work for an essential employer (engineering/construction) – our office has been open since late summer and the circumstances of people working at home or working in the office vary by personal circumstances and employee responsibilities. That said, I have been working out at home for years – as a mom of 2 little ones who works full time, I can’t justify the added time to drive to/from a gym in my life (zero judgement on those who do! we’re all just trying to survive and raise kids that aren’t a-holes, amiright!?). So while not all are WFH right now, the emphasis on a home gym still seems relevant to a lot of lives, covid or not. That said, I do see your point that many posts begin with something along the lines of “Since we’re all working from home/spending all of our time at home/etc….” when really that disclaimer doesn’t always feel necessary for the content. Most of it is applicable regardless of covid.

    13. Yes, I’m a teacher, and we’ve been in person since late September. I taught from home last spring, but once we got our protocols in place, we all went back into the classroom (and will hopefully be vaccinated soon!).

    14. Interesting! I’m in MN and haven’t been to my office since March 2020. Work even told us they might encourage voluntary remote/hybrid work on a permanent basis as a cost-saving measure going forward. So home office content is still very relevant to me!

    15. In So Cal, I have flexibility as does my husband to work from home or office. We work from home as much as possible and just go into our offices when necessary for projects. Our companies plan on maintaining the arrangement for the foreseeable future.

      Some gyms are operating outdoors. But its so much more convenient/safer to continue working out from home.

  7. I’m guessing I’m older than most of the demographic here (I’m 65), and have some pretty major impairments from severe arthritis–a shoulder replacement 10 years ago, and a knee ditto in the near future.
    So I still need exercise. And I live in a small house. My solution was to get a wind trainer for my regular bike, and just keep it in the main room, which is open-plan kitchen/living room. Pandemic funk while I was still working in healthcare kept me off it for months, but then I retired, and time and energy came surging back. I ride every morning, staring out the front window, and listening to an audio book. I haven’t missed a day, and am increasing time at 2 1/2 minutes a week, out of respect for the knee.
    I also dog-walk every drivable day (I’ll walk in anything, but I won’t drive in anything) a minimum of the mile-and-a-half loop around a local quarry that has been made into a walking park, and kept plowed out.

    1. Good on you, Margaret! Living is exercise.
      As long as we’re aware of what we’re putting in our body and we equate that to how much we’re moving our body, things balance out.😊

    2. Ditto here as far as age goes – 65, and thought I was the only older person here. We live in a small apartment and last summer got a small folding treadmill because we lived in a high-rise downtown and it was scary out there (narrow sidewalks, people not wearing masks). It’s in the corner of the main bedroom, so nothing fancy but does the job. For me the treadmill was easier on my knees than a bike.

    3. I love the idea of a wind trainer – maybe I’ll look into it. Don’t love the idea of hauling my bike up and down the stairs (apartment building) but my summer bike rides will be so much more fun if I actually train in the off season.

  8. I was very happy to see the first basement picture, as that is where we have set up our nook, in an unfinished section of our basement. Right now, I am surrounded by 3 stored Christmas trees, painting supplies, and a wall of wreaths for various seasons. Could use some prettying up, but it gets the job done. When I am on my elliptical (got for free because the digital part doesn’t work), I open the double doors to the finished section of the basement and can gaze out the sliding glass doors to the back yard, so i am at least seeing sunlight 🙂 It was encouraging to see an unfinished basement shown as your opening shot, so thank you!

  9. We invested in a Murphy bed to free up floor space in our guest room (which with COVID has seen no guests in a year). The treadmill was always in there, but now we have floor space for weights, sit ups, etc. It’s such a better use of space, and we can still use it as a guest room when needed.

    1. We have been considering investing in a Murphy bed for our guest room, as well. It seems we could use that valuable real estate so much better, if we could get the queen bed out of there. I would love to know if you are happy with your purchase, and maybe suggest a post on how to make a Murphy bed look good?

      1. I don’t own a murphy bed, BUT I did sleep on one for a weekend at a friend’s place. It was super comfy! She uses the bedroom as her home office, and it murphy bed just looks like built in cabinets on a wall. I thought it was a really smart use of space and still cozy for a guest: win-win. I hope you go for it!

  10. Seriously, no-one needs fancy gym gear unless they have fancy bank account balances. Soup cans =weights, sit ups, squats, jump rope, etc.

    I’m over the whole gym thing, but I understand that some people need this to motivate themselves.

    I exercise by walking my dog each day. A friend came last week and thought we were going to “meander” (her word!😹), but I walk so fast with my scruffy dawg, Rosie, that it’s like the walk8ng they do in the Olympics…it’s almost running! We don’t go that far, but my legs are strong, fit and get compliments.

    Gardening does my upper body workput and itsmeditative, so my mind gets peaceful at the same time.

    Housework does my torso…it’s a workout for sure!

    I. Do. Not. Need. A. Gym. I. Need. A. Rest. 😹

    1. If you don’t need a gym, why did you feel the need to comment on this post and judge to others that might? It’s nice that you choose alternatives but it might not be available to everyone or be the best workout for them. I don’t have a fancy bank account and I bought weights (instead of using soup cans) because I want to work out safely, and have different weights to choose from. It’s one of the small luxuries I afford myself with my very small budget. People might have different priorities than you but I consistently see your comments where you shame people in how they choose to spend their resources.

      1. Oh my goodness, would have never interpreted Rusty’s comment as rude or judgemental! I thought it was silly (laughing crying kitties! I don’t need a gym, I need a rest!) And a nod of encouragement to previous commenters who shared they felt jealous because this post was outside of their reality. It is also ok for commenters to disagree with blog posts, it keeps things fun and interesting! As long as it’s respectful, which it was. Now if Rusty said only idiots buy weights, yeah that would be rude, haha.

        1. Hallelujah! Thank you, Caitlin.
          It is mind-boggling how people can read and overtly make a personal experience about them.
          Narcissism anyone?
          This place is getting “catty”, pun intended.😹😹😹

          1. The narcissist is you, Rusty. Constant posts praising yourself and preaching at every single writer and commenter who isn’t doing things the way you think they should be done. You make every post about you. People are just stating the obvious.

      2. I was speak8ng about MY OWN EXPERIENCE OF BEING IN THE WORLD, no judging in it!
        When one soeaks or writes about one’s own experiences, it us not about y o u.

        In fact I stated that understand that people are all different and that I (me, not you) actually need a rest.

        Please, big picture; not echo chamber.
        Chill out.

    2. I agree that a fancy gym at home is not a must. But I enjoyed looking at all these home gyms and think they are all well done. I live in New England and unfortunately there is so much litter along with plastic in the ocean. It’s heartbreaking. When the weather permits, my favorite workout is using a net to fish plastic from the ocean and picking up litter. It feels so good when l am done with this workout, although l have been told l am wasting my time and not making a difference. I know others pick up litter also. It would be wonderful if everyone who can would join us.

      1. I pick up litter too! Back when we worked in the office I had a few coworkers who did it as well and we’d compare how many pieces we collected during our commute. If nothing else, the walk back home was always a little cleaner than my walk to work 🙂

        1. Yaaay! Emma, I wish this vibe was contagious.
          I’ve started pulling weeds! LOL.
          I just yank ’em up, roots and all, leave tgem there and keep going.
          I also pick up litter when I walk along the river foreshore – glove in my bag, in case. 🤗

      2. I enjoyed looking at them, too.
        As I enjoyed Orlando’s post and gym, particularly his points about , uh, body shaming!
        That’s not who I am. Simples.
        People comment in the comments section.
        The longer we stay and comment, the better income for the blog.
        Used to be a win-win, but lately, meh!

      3. Tammy, such a grrreat thing to do!
        I wish more people thought, and acted, in more big picture, altruistic ways. 🌏 Yaaay!

        Now, this, I’d be into, because it’s not all self-centred.
        Hahaha 😹

  11. I’ve been exercising at home long before the pandemic, but I have quite the modest space. My current workout area is approximately 3’x8′ along the side of our bed. The only equipment I have (besides some bands and ankle weights) is Powerblock adjustable dumbbells (that go from 3 lbs. to 24 lbs. each), which I can’t recommend enough – and they’re also a great small space hack!

    Me on my soapbox: I lost 55 lbs. with this set up, so you definitely don’t need fancy equipment and tons of space to get the job done and stay healthy 🙂 But I also love Ryann’s message to exercise in whatever way sounds the most fun and motivating to you, and if that’s an exercise bike, go for it!

    Love seeing all these spaces! One day I’ll graduate from my beside-the-bed situation and implement some of these tips 🙂

  12. I took over half of the play room but created motivational Disney Princess art to make us both happy in our new shared space.

  13. wow! when I saw the call for entries I never even considered submitting mine. I figured most people would have an Orlando-level situation. I can’t tell you how much better this made me feel to see so many others just making it work with what they have. All lovely spaces, and they feel real and totally do-able. Writing from my own office / guest room / gym I feel like I’m in familiar company.

  14. I am pregnant for the first time and wanted to try to keep doing low impact activity throughout my pregnancy to stay healthy and feeling good. Wisconsin winters make this hard – especially this year (we just had a stretch of “feels like” temps in the -20s for 7-10 days). Anyway, 3 months ago we bought a Sunny exercise bike (1805 model) to use with the $12.99/mo Peloton app and it has been the BEST purchase/decision of the pandemic.

    Disclaimer – I really don’t like gyms or formal “exercise” and prefer to get outside to walk the dogs, hike, kayak, or bike to commute. I have tried gym memberships before and while group classes are fun, I have trouble fitting them in and getting motivated to go. Peloton did NOT seem like something I would ever get into but I (and my partner) LOVE this cheaper version of the program. The music is high energy, the instructors are positive and encourage you to modify as able (great for pregnancy). I look forward to the 20-45 min I spend on the bike almost every day, and since it’s in my basement I don’t have a problem finding time to fit it in. I know we will continue to use it beyond the pandemic, and the app contains tons of stuff beyond cycling – yoga, strength, outdoor runs, stretching, meditation, etc.

    Here’s our bike, which is SOLID. We love it.

    Good luck with whatever you decide to do to keep active during this time!!

    1. I recommend the Peloton app to everyone! We have a regular (non-Peloton) treadmill as my husband and I are both runners, and I use the Peloton app for my workouts. I’ve started doing some of the strength, cardio and family classes as well and found it’s well worth the $12.99/month. Highly recommend to anyone that can’t afford a Peloton but wants the workouts!

    2. Agree on the Peloton app! I use it with our (non-Peloton) treadmill and also on the mat. I’m about to go do a ‘stretch’ class, as that’s what the bod needs today. Oh, and I also have our “gym” in our unfinished basement and feel lucky to have the space, even though it’s far from ‘pretty’!

    3. I was going to jump on here and recommend the peloton app with a regular indoor bike. (And follow Robin Arzon for lots of prenatal exercise options. She is expecting her first.)

  15. Years ago, we changed the bed in our guest room to a murphy bed. It cleared up the space for our exercise bike and to pull out my yoga mat and props to practice regularly. It’s easy to tuck things away to pull out the bed when we (rarely) have guests. The change was so worth it!

    1. Also, I love all the home offices combined with gym space. And the IKEA track curtains as dividers are brilliant. I’ve been considering those curtains to divide some space.

  16. Just last night I was reading a chapter in the new book called More ThanA Body: Your Body is an Instrument, Not and Ornament by Lexie Kite and Lindsey Kite that addresses the issues you bring up in this post surrounding shame, exercise and how it affects our perceptions of our body. It’s such a great book and I highly recommend it!

    In other news, we have a small extra bedroom in the basement that we turned into an exercise space many years ago but it’s never really been decorated. I am very inspired by the super colorful space you shared here! I actually want to hang up vintage posters from the Olympics but haven’t convinced my husband they would be worth the dollar amount!

    1. Sounds like an interesting read.🧐

      My personal thing is to have a strong body to be as well as I can be (quite the challenge).

      There’s a site xalled ALLPOSTERS that sell reproduction prints of everything, seriously, it’s a massive site!
      I bet they’d have some, and they’re really affordable!
      They do framing too, but cheaper to frame your own since they’re standard sizes.
      US company.

  17. Our house is small (864 sq feet with two adults working from home plus a 6 month old and a dog), so we do not have room for a gym except for the spin bike in the garage that is WAY too cold to use right now! However, our bedroom has big sliding doors in it and there’s a perfect spot between the bed and the dresser for me to lay out my yoga mat and do yoga classes once a day with my AirPods in, looking outside, with the door closed to the rest of the house. Just finding that small space within our home has brought me so much joy and make me look forward to my time on the mat! Love these comments about other people finding similar small space places for them.

  18. We also jumped on the Peloton bandwagon this year and love it! Started just using their digital app for bodyweight strength and HIIT classes early last year and then bought a non-peloton bike and larger weights this past fall. Bike lives in our (smallish 1 bedroom apt) bedroom and we do other workouts in the living room….

    QUESTION! I HATE the dumbbells on display in our living room! I have been searching for creative storage and keep coming up empty handed. I tried putting them in baskets on a bookshelf, but they felt like they would break with the weights in them, especially needing to pull the baskets out every time we wanted to use them. I can’t seem to find any remotely stylish, sturdy, not-actual-weight-rack options. Any creative dumbbell storage stories out there???

    1. Not sure that this will convince you that looking at your weights is acceptable but I just saw someone post a wooden weight holder that was cool and sort of design looking? For my part, I’m with you, don’t love looking at them but haven’t figured out a better solution.

    2. It wasn’t the most stylish but I used to use a sturdy shoe rack and draped a nice throw over it when I didn’t want to look at the dumbbells.

  19. This is timely! I’m in the process of rearranging to turn a spare corner into a ‘gym.’ Does anyone have an elliptical they would recommend? I didn’t realize they are so expensive. However, that’s what works best for me and I want to make sure I get one that will last.

  20. Our (rarely used) dining room doubles as a yoga/pilates space with room for 2 mats when my partner wants to join me. Just a couple baskets for mats + props along with a few plants and it looks pretty similar to Trini’s ‘light and simple’ studio! 🙂 We also use the paved space next to our garage for kettlebell and HIIT style workouts. Thanks to tall fences and trees it’s actually quite private!

  21. I just changed to parking my car outside instead of in the garage and we’ve added a gym mat, weight bench and some dumbbells. We also hung a Smart TV on the wall so I can do YouTube workouts. Nothing about it is pretty but I love that we’ve made the space usable. Everything can be collapsed and put away in case I do need to park in the garage for any reason.

  22. These are cute, but I prioritized investing in a new tv space instead of a gym space in quarantine! Guess that says something about my priorities 😂

    1. Each one of us has our own, individual priorities and that’s a fabulous thing to do for you!
      I need a rest, so my new-ish mattress was my priority!
      I hear you! 🤗😹

  23. Over the years we’ve bought a few different pieces of exercise equipment, used them for a bit, and then … not. There was the ski machine, the exercise bike, then another exercise bike.

    We live in a small house and just always ended up annoyed by the space these machines took up. So clunky, too. So we’ve given up exercise machines. Now we walk.

    But if I had a spare room … I’d still probably not turn it into a gym. Lol. 😉

    1. LouAnn, walking is probably tge most sustainable exercise for anyone’s lifetime.
      An elderly lady down the street has walked to the shops EVERY day for over 50 years! She’s now 88 and what an inspiration!

  24. I’ve been waiting for a post like this, could not get enough after Orlando’s gym setup. These examples are very realistic, and though I have even less space than what’s illustrated, they’re definitely inspiring.

  25. A few years ago we converted our dining room (where we never ate) into a library. When the kids started to take piano lessons, our upright piano went across one wall, with a mirror above. When COVID hit and I started doing Barre3 online every blessed day to keep myself emotionally balanced, I took the occasional table out of the center of the room, put a big basket of yoga mats and props in the corner and made it the most serene workout space ever! It’s not large, but the mirror over the piano shows my form, the breeze comes in the windows and I gaze at books as I stretch!

  26. Can someone explain to me the “wall ladder”? I remember seeing those in the park gymnasium as a kid and never understood what they are used for?

    Also how does someone use that trampoline without hitting their head on the ceiling?

  27. Thanks for great collection. These ideas really make sense…A home gym might be just what you need to find motivation to exercise. If you don’t have a dedicated workout room, that’s ok. Even a nook or a part of your garage or basement will do for many types of exercise.

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