Working out is hard. Anyone who says otherwise is lying to you, and/or trying to convince you to join their spin studio. But if my doctor is to believed, it’s also an important part of one’s overall health. So if you, like me, are trying to take better care of yourself with any more regularity, it’s important to have the best home fitness equipment at your disposal. Or at least, the best home fitness equipment for you. Because gyms are expensive, personal trainers are for celebrities, and honestly, this pandemic isn’t going anywhere soon.
Best Desk Elliptical: LifePro FlexStride Plus
Once I managed to set this up, I ended up actually enjoying it. The exercise the LifePro FlexStride Plus provides is the right amount of challenging, and doesn’t require too much focus to accomplish, which is nice. The pedals were a little stiff at first, but that’s mostly because I had the resistance knob cranked up too far at the beginning (oops). The monitor display is simple, with a screen that can toggle between distance, RPM, time used, estimated calories burned (and more). The screen turns on and off automatically, and the exerciser’s carrying handle makes it easy to pick up and put down wherever it is you want to use it. So it might not be life-changing, but it’s a nice thing to have around for someone like me. I can totally see myself making it a regular part of TV or work time to sneak fitness into the day.
Best Yoga Mat: BalanceFrom GoYoga All-Purpose Mat
Yoga: It’s important. It’s good for increasing strength and flexibility, as well as helping to regulate your breathing and center your mind. I like the Balance From GoYoga All-Purpose Mat ($16 at Amazon right now) because at 1/4in., it’s thick enough to be supportive but thin enough to be lightweight. It’s double-sided and non-slip, so it’ll stay in place while you attempt whatever pose you’re trying this week. Plus, the mat rolls up for easy storage. If you fell asleep on it after watching Yoga With Adriene, I wouldn’t judge you. And when you’re ready to take a class with other real-life humans, the carrying strap is included.
Best Weights (Small): Amazon Basics Dumbbell Hand Weight Set
Even though a magazine definitely once told me that two big water bottles were sufficient, it turns out that when incorporated into your regular workout, hand weights are actually a better tool for effective tone. I like the $35 Amazon Basics Dumbbell Hand Weight Set for a few reasons. One of them is that the weights are coated in neoprene, which makes them durable and easy to hold. Another is that they’re colorful, which is fun; you can almost trick your brain into actually wanting to use them. The final reason is that they come with their own stand. This makes any home gym setup (or apartment fitness corner) feel very official.
Best Weights (Big): Fitini Adjustable Dumbbells
Bro, do you even lift? If you buy this set, the answer will be yes. Compared to hand weights, which are more of a fitness enhancer, these Fitini Adjustable Dumbbells equal a workout on their own. The easy-to-assemble pair includes. two bars, 4 sets of plates, and a carrying case, and all for under $100. You can put them together and take them apart in seconds, and bring the set around for when you need to get your pump on on on the go. Unfortunately, a hot person to spot you comes separately. At least, I think so. I haven’t gotten these yet.
Best Ab Roller: EnterSports Ab Wheel Roller
The best part of the EnterSports Ab Wheel Roller is that it’s over 3" wide, which is more than double the standard width for similar products. That means that it offers extra support and stability while you work out your core. (Like, a lot of stability: According to the manufacturer, it won’t wobble at all, even up with up to 600 lbs. on it. Pretty good.) And, unlike other ab rollers, this one comes with two EnterSports resistance bands, a set of pushup bar handle grips, and a knee pad to center yourself on, so you don’t, you know, break your body apart while trying to strengthen it. Currently priced below $30 for everything included, this easy-to-store set is an absolute steal.
Best Stationary Bike: Yosuda Indoor Cycling Bike
Spin classes? Too loud. Pelotons? Too expensive. A regular stationary bike? Now you’re talkin’ my language. At $316, the Yosuda Indoor Cycle Bike is an ideal option. First and foremost: It’s compact enough to fit in an apartment. We love this. It’s also comfortable and adjustable, which you won’t get from every inexpensive stationary bike on the market. Based on reviews, the Yosuda bike is easy to set up, which is important, but my second-favorite feature (after its size) is that it has a built-in mount for your iPad. Deal with that, Peloton!
Best Treadmill: NordicTrack Commercial Series Treadmill
Treadmills!!!!! A classic of the home fitness genre. Simple, elegant, and easy to use, they’re an effortless way to transition from sedentary to Instagram Fitness Babe. This NordicTrack Commercial has everything you need: One billion workout customization options, an HD display screen, and a mega cooling vent because getting healthy be sweaty. This model can be paid for in installments, and even includes a 30-day trial to iFit to help you kick off your new fitness routine. Probably better if you have access to a basement or garage, but being so committed to working out that you replace your living room furniture with a treadmill would be a pretty good bit.