Annette Rosenthal, Real Estate Sales Representative

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Home Gyms

For people with busy schedules, a home gym can be an ideal way to exercise and stay fit. Nothing can beat it for convenience. You donít have to wait to use equipment and you donít have to follow special hours set by the health club.

After researching different facilities offered at several health clubs; the cost of joining, the cost of subsequent yearly membership and the travelling time, you may find a home gym is a great alternative.

The initial investment may seem like a lot but you and your family will continue to reap its benefits for years to come. In addition, a home gym eliminates the uneasiness you may have about exercising in a room full of strangers, and the pressure many people experience in health club environments ďto be dressed up.Ē

In the comfort and privacy of your own home, you can throw on an old pair of sweats, put on your favourite music, and lose yourself in the exercises.

Depending on the size of your pocketbook, a home gym can cost anywhere from $450 to as much as $8,000. Like most things, you get what you pay for. A basic factory made unit including an abdominal board, pull downs, and cement weights covered in plastic will cost around $300. You can add a bicycle, treadmill, or rowing machine for the cardiovascular part of your exercise routine.

To start, you may want to pad the floor with mats, cover a wall in mirrors, and install a steel bar along the wall for stretching. Bring in the CD/MP3 player, and youíre ready to get in shape.

No home gym is complete unless it has a machine, which provides an aerobic workout. Rowing machines, stationary bikes, and treadmills are excellent ways to get your heart pumping. And they donít jar your body like jogging does.

State-of-the-art exercise machines contain microprocessors, which measure speed, distance, calories per minute, and total caloric expenditure. All you do is set your body weight and speed. The machine does the rest. A home gym is a lifetime investment in good health.

On the most advanced home gym weight equipment, youíll find two three hundred-weight stacks and selector pins to adjust the weights according to your needs. Light weights, with high repetitions, are beneficial for weight loss and toning. Heavy weights, with low repetitions, are useful for building body mass and strength.

Certain accessories will help you perform with greater ease. Leather gloves will help protect your hands, and a leather belt will help support your lower back. Separate weights, jump ropes, and music can all enhance your workout.

The best treadmills on the market are light, durable, and made of anodized aluminum. Running belts of specially formulated elastomer are wrapped around a low-friction bed for a smooth, non-sticky surface. The runner can check his distance and caloric expenditure on a control display panel.

Stationary bicycles range in price depending on the feature offered. You may find that a basic bicycle is all you need. High tech lifecycles include electronically controlled devices displaying elapsed time, heart rate, speed, and calories expended. Some bikes have interval training options, so you can ride hills or go on flat terrain. Most bikes have an adjustable seat for a more comfortable riding position.

A rowing machine is probably the most effective way to get a complete aerobic workout. It exercises the arms, legs, shoulders, lower back, and stomach. The best ones are light, and maneuverable, fold up, and can be stored in your closet without cluttering your living space.

Having made this investment in your home, youíll have 24-hour access to your private gym. When embarking on a new fitness program, remember moderation and consistency are very important. Donít exhaust yourself, and consult your physician before you start your new program.

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