Many people put off being active because they think they don’t have the fitness equipment they need. The reality is that you don’t need expensive gym equipment, just a little time and a lot of motivation.
Here are 10 fitness must-haves that will help you get active without breaking the bank. There is a no-cost or low-cost alternative for each item, perfect for beginners who aren’t certain they want to make a financial commitment yet.
1. A Water Bottle
If you’re working out, then you need to hydrate. Be sure to bring water if you’re out for a walk or any other type of exercise. Even if you’re at home, remember you need to drink and refill your water bottle a few times a day.
Alternative: Use a recycled water bottle.
2. A Yoga Mat
A yoga mat is a portable workout zone!
You don’t have to be practicing yoga to get good use out of a yoga mat: they are perfect for push-ups, sit-ups and work great as a non-slip, clean surface for workouts on the go.
Alternative: A cushioned surface,
like a carpet or a towel.
Dumbbells are great for portable strength training. Be careful to choose the right dumbbell weight for you: good form with a lighter weight can create better results than bad form with a heavier weight.
Alternative: Anything that you can pick up safely, such as sandbags or full water bottles.
4. Skipping rope
You can have fun and do a great cardio workout with a skipping rope. Skipping ropes also come in handy as a stretching strap for improving flexibility.
Alternative: Any piece of rope will do, or simply jump without one.
5. A Resistance Band
A resistance band is a great piece of fitness equipment for when you are on the road! They are practical, lightweight, and easy to use.
Alternative: A piece of soft rope or a rolled towel can work well for basic exercises. Don’t risk using tubing or rubber bands not designed for fitness, as they could snap and cause an injury.
6. A Medicine Ball
There are so many effective upper and lower body exercises that you can do with a medicine ball, and they’re especially useful for partner workouts.
Alternative: A basketball or soccer ball. Even without the added weight, you can still do many movements to help improve your coordination.
7. An Adjustable Workout Step
A workout step takes up very little space, and you can use it as part of a circuit or get a great cardio blast. Choose a workout step with a non-slip surface and adjustable height to suit your personal needs.
Alternative: A sturdy wooden box, crate, or stairs.
8. A Timer or Stopwatch
It’s an essential tool for interval training. A stopwatch also keeps you honest about your workout length or running time.
Alternative: A phone with a stopwatch app.
9. Motivation Music
Put together a great workout playlist with your favourite motivational music. Music can relieve stress and take your mind off how many minutes you have left.
Alternative: Turn on the radio or find your favourite music app.
10. One Perfectly Fitting Fitness Outfit
Treat yourself to a quality workout outfit, including training shoes. Choosing an outfit that fits well, supports you in all the right places, and makes you look good to help you find the motivation to work out!
Alternative: Comfortable pyjamas are an acceptable workout outfit. But, ladies, make sure you invest in a supportive sports bra!
Before embarking on any physical activity, please consult your physician.
You should aim to consume at least 20 grams of protein within half an hour after exercising.
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