Body of A Warrior
Each month I will post an article on the body of a warrior. What does it mean to have a body of a warrior? I believe that the body needs constant maintenance in order to maintain and improve. Improving you body for performance or appearance requires discipline above all. Being consistent and putting in the work is essential to success. This first post will focus on some of the basics of my garage gym. I was an athlete in college (lacrosse) and then took up CrossFit after college to prepare for the Marine Corps’ Officer Candidates School. Since that time I have bounced between CrossFit and more traditional Strength and Conditioning methods. Now I write my own programs and workout at home.
The Garage Gym
The idea for my own gym came after my first son was born. Time is at a premium with kids and money gets tighter. I have many reasons for owning my own gym, but time and cost were major factors for me. I love training at home and I have found that getting after it in my own gym has been very rewarding.
Why I Own A Garage Gym
Being a warrior means training the mind, spirit, and body. To have a body of a warrior you have to physically challenge your body. For me, I have found that owning a garage gym is a worthwhile investment. A garage gym gives my schedule flexibility and makes my training more interesting to me.
The obvious first answer to why I own a garage gym is so I can workout whenever I want. I live in the north east and we have had and will always will have nasty weather in the winter. Bad weather often results in businesses closing their doors. I really do not want my ability to workout to be dependent on someone else opening the doors to their business. Also, I have two sons, a wife, a full time job, a blog, and I’m working on my masters. There is only so much time in the day and walking out the front door to my garage to workout saves me a lot of time.
My second reason for owning my own garage gym is that I can train however I want without anyone looking at me weird or telling me what to do. I cannot lie to you my friend, I’m bougie. I do not like working out in the average gym. Mostly because they do not always have the things that I want like bumper plates, good barbells, kettle bells, etc. Also, I did CrossFit for a long time because I like the challenge of the program and the movements are fun.
However, I’m at the point in my life where I just want to write my own programs to keep myself healthy and relatively strong. I do not need to be a competitor in this stage of my life. Also, if I have specific goals in mind I can change my program to meet my goals. For example, I have the goal of completing a GoRuck Heavy event in September. As a result, I’ve changed my program to reflect that.
Lastly, having my garage gym saves me a lot of money. Yes, I could workout on base and not even buy a garage gym, but see the above paragraph. Even the base gym will close down in bad weather. In addition, the gyms on the Air Force Base are just not as good as the Camp Lejeune offerings.
Having my own gym saves me the cost of paying for a gym that I actually want to train at. Yes, there is more up front cost depending on what you purchase, but in the long run I could pay $100 to $200 a month for a CrossFit membership or membership to the tune of $1200 dollars a year or more. Or, I could just purchase my own gym, which is what I decided to do. The pieces that I bought for my garage gym should last me a really long time. Especially since my wife and I will be the primary people using the equipment.
Best Purchase Ever
Ultimately, I think that the garage gym allows me to pursue any athletic endeavor that I want. I can run long distances, lift heavy things, and move quickly. Having the garage gym allows me to train in any way that I desire to be a balanced athlete. However, if I were a person that was new to training I may hesitate to jump into working out by myself. A coach can be a very useful guide to help a person meet their goals. A good coach cannot be replaced, but I feel that I am knowledgeable enough about training and my body to know how I need to train to meet any fitness goal that I have. Admittedly, I have been more focused on my weight loss, which I will discuss in depth on next month’s Body of the Warrior Post.
In closing I’m going to list some key pieces of equipment that I have in my gym that I feel are essential to my training in order of importance. The links lead to pieces that I have purchased from Amazon (free shipping with Prime which will save you a ton).
- Barbell (I want an Ohio bar, but I’m currently using a cheap bar like you would see in a regular gym)
- Plates (I prefer bumper plates because you can do Olympic lifts but steel plates will do for most lift)
- Kettle bells (I have a pair of 16KG and 24KG bells)
- Squat rack with pull up bar and platform (or rubber mats)
- Gymnastics rings
These five pieces of equipment could cost anywhere from $1000.00 or less to $2500.00 or more. It all depends on how and where you buy the equipment from. See the links below for what I have in my gym/recommendations.
Five Optional Pieces For Workout Variety
If you have the money to spend and you want to add more variety to your training see the list below for additional equipment that I have that I enjoy training with and a respective link.
In my gym my wife and I have many items that we purchased off of yard sales. We have used Craigslist, Facebook yard sales, and other yard sale sites to acquire our equipment. Be patient if you are short on cash because someone out there will inevitably sell the item that you want. Eventually I’ll upgrade some of my items like my barbell and airdyne (or just buy a ski erg), but I’m pretty happy with the setup in my gym right now.