I’m very excited to reveal my home gym transformation in this post. It’s taken a little while to actually come together, but when we moved we knew above all else that we wanted to have a home gym set up. We couldn’t have one before as we were in a one bedroom flat. We had a lot of free weights and other gym equipment, but stored them in a cupboard which was less than convenient. A home gym seemed a little too indulgent for a three bedroom house, but we wanted to prioritise working out and to save on our gym subscriptions. After much deliberation we decided we’d turn the smallest bedroom in to a gym.
We’d bought the largest piece of equipment, a Macey MWB1282, not long after moving in. It’s available here at Argos, but we bought it for less on eBay and had fantastic service from this particular seller. We set it up in the bedroom…and then proceeded to turn the room in to a dumping ground. I’m talking DIY tools, spare rolls of carpet, bags of old clothes to take to a car boot sale….anything ‘unsightly’ and without an alternative home went in the gym. Suddenly it wasn’t a gym anymore but just a room that we shut the door to and tried to ignore. You couldn’t even get in to use any of the equipment.
We knew it had to be sorted out. We took everything to a car boot sale, found somewhere for the other items to go, and set about decided how to make the room more inviting.
Like much of the rest of the house when we moved in six months ago, the walls were magnolia with a border all the way around.
A lonely lightbulb dangled in the centre of the ceiling. We had nothing covering the window.
The room is rectangular, with one small-ish window and a door at the opposite end. The cream carpet was not too bad, with just some patches to clean.
We decided to keep the carpet in there. I don’t mind the colour of it, and as we are using it as a gym for the foreseeable future it seems an unnecessary expense to change it. Some of the gym equipment could actually make the carpet worse as it is.
The multigym is a very nice piece of equipment and has everything I’m looking for (I’ll review it on my fitness blog in the near future). It dominates the room, however, and we also needed somewhere to store the extra bits of equipment like resistance bands, extra weight plates, and kettle bells. We wanted to create as much floor space as possible so that the room is easier and safer to use as a gym.
The first thing we decided on was the paint colour. I wanted the gym to be painted in a fresh and clean colour, as I felt this would encourage me to go in and work out. But it had to have a natural tone to it and not give off that clinical feeling you get in a dental surgery, for example. I also want the colour to be easily transferable to a bedroom if we decide to move the gym somewhere else in the future. Browsing through the Colours Of England collection from Little Greene, we settled on the colour Salix. The finish we chose is their Intelligent Matt Emulsion. Not only is it environmentally-friendly and child-safe, it’s also washable. This is perfect for the gym as there are several pieces of equipment in there that could mark the walls.
Our first impressions of the paint was that it is extremely thick, and we wondered how well it would apply. It was actually really easy to use and we were so pleased with the finish. The paint spreads easily, covers extremely well and dries quickly to an even finish. It is also very low odour. I love the finished look of the walls. The colour gives the sophisticated feel I’m looking for, and goes so well with the black and white furniture and accessories. I love how fresh and bright Salix is.
This piece of furniture is of course from Ikea. We actually found this one at a local secondhand furniture shop. The storage box in the bottom corner is perfect for hiding away the awkward smaller pieces of the gym. It’s full of the clips for the ends of the dumbbells and barbell, plus spare headphones, lifting gloves and resistance bands. This smaller set of hooks also came from a charity shop. This is where we hang our lifting belts and headphones. I also have a cardio belt here which I use when I go outside for a run. The hooks are also the perfect size for storing the dumbbell irons when they’re not in use.
The white mirror previously had a grey frame, and we spray painted it white to match the room. It’s in the ideal location for where most of the working out takes place. You can check your form while using the smith machine and the bench.
We placed a larger set of hooks from John Lewis on the opposite wall from the mirror. They match the smaller hooks almost exactly, with the wood being slightly darker. I like the iron hooks as they give a ‘toughness’ to the room while still being stylish. This side of the room houses the extra pieces of the multigym like the cable pull and ankle strap. I also store longer pieces of equipment like my skipping rope, resistance bands and cables, and lifting straps. I often hang my hula hoop on here too, as well as the barbell.
We replaced the pendant ceiling light with a smaller, flat light which gives off a very bright white light. It’s perfect for lighting up the room completely at night, and stays well out of the way of any weights. We also got a white wooden blind from John Lewis (although you can’t really pick this up in the photos). As the gym is at the front of the house and looks down the street, we can work out in private and don’t have to inflict the view upon the neighbours.
The barbell on the multigym itself was a little too long for the gym to fit in against the back wall. Sean actually cut a few inches off of each end and it now fits in perfectly! There’s still enough room to load up the ends with weight plates.
This leaves more room in the centre of the floor for yoga and stretching, plus using the free weights and bands.
Resistance band set – similar here (I love these for travel, and also wrap them around the multigym to do fly exercises)
I’m so happy with how the gym looks now. I’ve created as much floor space as possible by keeping things up on the walls and on shelves.
I print out my workouts and keep them on this gold and acrylic clipboard. When they are hung or propped up conveniently, they are easier to use.
There are a couple of final things we want to do in the near future to completely finish the room off. The multigym comes with a large poster demonstrating the different exercises you can do on it, and which body parts they work. We’ll frame it and put it up behind the door so you can see it when the door’s closed. We also want to add a small TV on the wall above the lightswitch. There’s just enough room to do a workout DVD. We’d like to be able to watch our favourite shows while in there too. Anything that will encourage us to actually work out seems like a good idea!
I would also really like a water dispenser of some kind. We also need somewhere to store our supplements such as BCAA powders. There are quite a few supplements on rotation between us and it makes more sense to us to keep them in the gym.
So now I have no excuses left and really must start using the gym!
What do you think? Do you like my choice of paint colour? Are there any pieces of equipment you’d recommend we get? Perhaps you can suggest the perfect water dispenser for this room? I’d really love to hear your thoughts and tips!
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