Chalk, Music and Plates - Building Your Home Gym

Chalk, Music and Plates - Building Your Home Gym


Building Your Home Gym Your home gym always depends on what you want to do in your training  and what your goals are. But for simplicity sake, let's just say you want to be strong and awesome. This is by far the easiest thing you can train for, and probably the cheapest. Here's what you'll need.

Power rack/Squat Stands – There is an awesome 5/3/1 Squat Stand made by Williams Strength and can be bought through them or EliteFTS.  I do not receive any money/compensation for this rack - so I have zero financial interest in your choice.  But I asked to have one made, this is what I use and it's great. Click on this link for the ideal rack/squat stands for your home.

5/3/1 Squat Stands/Power Rack

Texas power bar – Don't get a cheap bar. The Texas Power Bar is BY FAR the best all-around lifting bar there is. If I'm going to put a bar on my back, over my face, or over my head I want to be sure that it is built to last. This is NOT something I'd skimp on.

Platform – I'm assuming that you'll be doing deadlifts and cleans so this is a no brainer. And it's cheap too. Build a 6x8 platform using 2x12's and plywood. I did it and I have a public education and drank most of my brain cells away. I also put a 6x8 piece of carpet on there so my feet don't slip. That thing is bomb proof and a great way to have a  dedicated area for deadlifts and cleans.

Weights – This is where you get killed so look around for gyms that are going out of business or go to a used sporting goods store. Also, check classified ads like Craigslist    (not the personal ads, for a change) and any other resource you can find. You can always find good used stuff if you're patient and know where to look.  A little rust never killed anyone.  Power rack, weights and a good bar is all you really need to get strong as hell.

Mats – This isn't necessary but most people cover their floor with some kind of matting. I'd really look at places that sell horse mat stalls as they're infinitely cheaper than gym flooring and are the same thing. I got mine at Tractor Supply.  It pays to think outside the box.

Specialty bars – This isn't necessary but you may want to look into something like a Texas Squat Bar, trap bar, Texas DL Bar, Safety Squat Bar, or a Swiss Bar.

Chalk – The reason you want a home gym, right?  I keep mine in bucket with a tight seal lid that I got from a hardware store.

Cheap but loud radio – This will get covered in chalk so don't invest too much.

Space heater – This is a must for cold weather states if you train in a garage. Hearty Canadians can skip this or use the cash for a chalk stand shaped like the Stanley Cup.

Adjustable dumbbells – I like the ones from Ironmind or you can simply build your own. They're easy to make and assemble. Look around the Internet for more information.

Adjustable DB - 531 Wrist Straps

Sled or Prowler – Again, this isn't necessary but I love the Prowler for conditioning and use the sled as well.  These you can get in time.  

Bands – A great substitute for a pulley system. You can do rows, pulldowns, face pulls, and triceps pushdowns with them. Right now I use them mostly for stretching and warm ups.  I recommend getting some light and average bands for this.  

Once you get the basics, feel free to add in anything that will help you reach your goals.  Some ideas include a heavy weight vest, KB's, bumper plates and a 45 degree back raise/GHR.  Also having a white board in your weight room can help you make notes during training, write down important program information and you can pass notes to your wife letting her know that even though it's only 95lbs she still needs to take the goddamn weights off.

A home gym is a GREAT investment if you're committed to the basics of training. My last piece of advice is to rid your space of anything that isn't training related. Make it your space. You shouldn't study where you sleep and you don't train where your kids play video games. 

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Jim Wendler Home Gym 

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