Living with COVID-19 for the last two years, we’re no strangers to spending most of our time at home.
Those who are lucky enough to work from home have probably made their own little office spaces more comfortable and accessible. However, not the same can be said for “workouts from home.”
Staying fit through exercise is an integral part of staying healthy and virus-free; however, given limitations of working out at home, it can be hard especially amid the pandemic.
All that being said, let me share a few tips on how you can set up your very own pain cave to make it not only more conducive to exercise but also make it practical and accessible.
Make things accessible
I understand that not everyone has enough space for their own home gym. However, if you do have the chance to repurpose a room into a pain cave, make sure everything you need is within reach.
Your bike, treadmill, and weights should always be ready to go. This not only reduces the overhead in training time, it also makes it easier to start training to begin with.
On the other hand, if you don’t have enough space and need to “share” your pain cave for another purpose, plan it out such that there are only three steps to setting up your workout area. If it takes more than three steps to get things started, chances are, you’ll get lazy to do the workout.
Keep your cool
Remember, we live in a tropical country and things are starting to get even hotter as summer nears. That said, if you’re doing your cardio indoors, there’s a high chance of getting dehydrated due to lack of airflow. Stale air isn’t effective for heat transfer; this means that heat released by your body stays close to your skin, creating a “heat bubble” of sorts. Proper airflow “removes” heat from your skin and in effect cools it down.
Take it to the next level by getting a properly sized air conditioner. This, contrary to popular belief, won’t hurt your fitness since it allows you to push yourself longer and harder.
Heat training helps, yes, but you don’t need to do it every single session. You can refer to this guide to gauge how big of an air conditioning unit you need. Since you’re setting up a pain cave, get a unit that’s a size larger to handle all the heat released by your body and equipment.
Wick out the moisture
As we sweat during our workouts, we release a lot of moisture into the air. This makes the room feel warmer and more uncomfortable. So, a dehumidifier is your best friend.
Not only does it have a cooling effect on your surroundings, it also helps get rid of unpleasant odors and prevents the buildup of mold and fungi.
I’d recommend getting the more expensive, larger units for your pain cave as these do a better job of removing moisture. It would also be great if you could set it up such that a drain hose can be attached so you can forget about removing water from its compartment.
Keep yourself entertained
Most people like to listen to music while they workout while some like to watch TV. Whatever you prefer, I recommend getting a television with Bluetooth speakers you can move around.
Having a TV, as long as it’s hooked up to a streaming device (or has Android or Apple TV on board) gives you more options. Not only can you watch your favorite shows or movies, you can also download the Spotify app (or something similar) to help hype you up for your workout.
With the Bluetooth speaker, you can move it closer to your bike, treadmill, or weights so you can enjoy music without disturbing neighbors.
Thank you very “mats”
Pardon the bad pun, but mats are really important for your pain cave. These allow cleaning to be a breeze as well as help prevent any damage to your floors and tiles. Just remember to choose waterproof and non-porous mats if you want a low-maintenance affair. The last thing you want is for odors from your sweat to stick to the mats and make them a liability. You can also use disinfectant sprays such as Everyday Athlete to help keep things pleasant for the next workout.
All things considered, your home gym is a personal patch of space that needs your own touch. Whether you’re into cycling, endurance sports, or strength training, there’s always a way you can maximize that particular space and call it your own.
Have some training questions, feedback or suggestions for future articles? Drop a note in the comments section below or on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram. You can also get in touch with Don directly here.