You shouldn't have to live in a McMansion to stay fit.
If you're like 61% of Americans, the last year has been rough on your physique.
Whether you've been losing muscle mass or packing on some extra paunch, chances are you are starting to see the appeal of a home gym setup.
Even if public health was not a concern, nothing beats the convenience of working out in the comfort of your home, rain or shine. But not all of us have a living situation where we can devote an entire room, or even a large closet, to storing our gym equipment.
For those of us living in cramped apartments, it might seem impossible to get a serious full-body workout without leaving our homes or sacrificing precious square feet. But with this compact equipment, you can get a full range of cardio and strength training without sacrificing more than a small corner of a room or the space under your bed.
These are the best products to transform your apartment into a compact home gym and start shaving off that belly fat and sculpting your muscles.
The value of a yoga mat is pretty self-explanatory. It gives you a soft surface where you can comfortably do all sorts of workouts, from pushups to sit-ups to, well, yoga. But the added value of a thick yoga mat if you're living in an apartment is that you don't have to worry about annoying your downstairs neighbor when you incorporate some jumping jacks or other cardio into your workout routine.
This yoga mat from HemingWeigh is 1/2" thick, so you can avoid noise complaints, but it comes with a carrying strap that helps keep it compact when rolled up for storage or transport.
Speaking of cardio, there's no more compact and affordable option for getting your heart pumping and working up a sweat than a speed rope. Just a few minutes of jumping with this adjustable speed rope from YZLSPORTS will have you feeling the burn.
If you've got a bit more budget for your cardio, you might want to consider something that lets you keep up a continuous moderate pace. This folding electric treadmill from UREVO is small enough to slide under most beds, and its 2.5 horsepower motor delivers speeds from 0.6-7.5 MPH. You can walk or jog to your heart's content without worrying about the weather.
It's available for around $380 and includes a safety clip for automatic shutdown in case of any issues.
The Whipr is another impressively compact piece of cardio equipment. With adjustable resistance and a tiny form factor, its inflatable anchor system can be set up under almost any doorway, with compact add-ons transforming it for sit-down rowing, pull-down skiing, or upright paddling.
The tiny 7 pound base unit is available for pre-order for around $250, and the full package including ski, paddle, and row add-ons is available for around $650. All of them break down into compact form for travel or storage.
If pedaling is more your speed, you might want to check out this folding exercise bike from Lanos. With adjustable positions and 10 levels of magnetic resistance, it tracks your speed, heart rate, and calories burned. Suitable for users up to 6'0" tall and 300 pounds, it also folds up small enough to squeeze into the corner of a small closet.
A pull-up bar is a great uption for upper body strength training at home, and there are a lot of options. Among the easiest is a simple bar that locks in place across the width of the door frame, like this bar from KeepFitUp. It can be locked into place in doorways from 25-39" and used for either pull-ups or dips. It's available for under $20, and it promises not to bruise the doorframe, so you can get your security deposit back.
This slightly more elaborate option from ProsourceFit is available for around $30 and can also be used for deep push-ups. And for the truly devoted who have a little more room to spare, the Shamrock Triple Gym offers high pull-ups, deep push-ups, and full-body dips in one doorway set-up for around $80.
Adjustable Weight Set
If you want your strength training to go beyond pull-ups and push-ups, the most versatile option is an adjustable weight set. But rather than getting a full rack of weights, you need to find an option that fits in your home.
Fortunately, there are a variety of options, like this simple, compact 110-pound set -- with two barbells and one 60-inch bar -- available from XINQUITE for around $170 dollars, or this fancier quick adjust dumbbell from IPOW, which dials in from 6.6 to 44 pounds in a matter of moments and is available for around $150.
Of course, if you're working with free weights, you may want something more than a yoga mat to get the most out of your workout, but most workout benches take up a ton of room. But there are some exceptions to that rule.
One option, this aerobic deck from Leikefitness, is made for a variety of workouts, from step aerobics to pushups to dips to resistance band workouts. And with two height options, three bench angles, and a weight capacity up to 330 pounds, it's also suitable for a variety of free weight strength training.
Of course, if you need something a bit more heavy duty, you can opt for this adjustable weight bench from KOMSURF, which can handle up to 500 pounds and folds to less than three cubic feet.
While all of this fitness equipment is compact and effective for a small home gym, if you still find your apartment getting cluttered, the most important equpment for your home gym might be a set of bed risers to make room to store all your new stuff — when you're not getting shredded.