View Post

Barbell collars. Why, when, and which are the best for you?

In Equip Your Gym by Tim Steward

Last updated on February 28th, 2021 at 06:15 pmDetails can be significant. The occasional crashes I would hear in commercial gyms (way back in the day when I still belonged to one) were a reminder of that. As plates fell off of bars and hit the floor, I always cringed. I wish I could say I was never the cause of one of those crashes, but I’d be lying. There was a time when I …

View Post

Gym Closed? Work out at home for under $100!

In Equip Your Gym by Tim Steward

Last updated on March 16th, 2021 at 01:31 pmEveryone should have the ability to work out at home. That simple idea is why I built GymCrafter. With recent events (This article is being written in mid-March, 2020, right at the beginning of a shelter in place order where I live in Illinois), people who previously relied on commercial gyms for their fitness are coming to the same realization. The problem is that too many people …

View Post

Is Titan Fitness worth your money? An honest review.

In Equip Your Gym by Tim Steward

Last updated on March 10th, 2021 at 03:50 pmIf you’ve done any research at all into buying gear for your home gym, you’ve almost certainly come across Titan Fitness. You’ve also probably come across a variety of strongly held opinions about them. Very few other companies in the fitness industry are as polarizing as Titan is.  Some people hate them. Others love them. And that can leave you wondering if the gear they make is …

View Post

Should you buy weight plates in lbs or kilos?

In Equip Your Gym by Tim Steward

Last updated on March 3rd, 2021 at 12:58 pmWeight plates are something we should only have to buy once. If we buy right the first time, they typically won’t wear out. That means there are a few decisions we need to make when buying weight for our home gyms. Steel, coated, or bumper plates? How many? What sizes? New or used? I answer most of those questions for you here in my comprehensive guide to …

View Post

The best ways to store your barbells

In Maintain Your Gym by Tim Steward

Last updated on March 9th, 2021 at 01:47 pmToo much gear and not enough space. It’s the age-old dilemma faced by most home gym owners. For some gear, it doesn’t matter how you store it. For your barbell, that’s not the case. Improper bar storage can damage your prized barbell, so it’s important to follow a few basic guidelines. Proper barbell storage guidelines: Store your bar horizontally if possible Store your bar up high, not …

View Post

How to buy the best weight bench for your home gym

In Equip Your Gym, Guides by Tim Steward

Last updated on March 16th, 2021 at 01:39 pmWhen I was building my garage gym, I searched on Google for “what makes a great weight bench for a home gym”. The only results that came back were site after site listing their “best benches of 20xx”. There was no good advice. There was no one explaining what to look for.  In reality, every one of those sites was simply a giant list of affiliate links …

View Post

9 Must Have Essentials Found in the Best Home Gyms

In Equip Your Gym, Guides by Tim Steward

Last updated on July 12th, 2021 at 11:56 amA lot of the articles on this site address the issues of space and budget constraints. Building a great home gym when you are short on space and/or money can be challenging at best. But what if you have both space and the budget? What then? Even after limited casual shopping, you’ll find more home gym equipment than you could ever possibly use. It’s a big part …

View Post

How to Fit a Gym You’ll Love in a Small Apartment

In Equip Your Gym, Guides by Tim Steward

Last updated on July 7th, 2021 at 12:55 pmWhile my current home gym is located in my garage, that wasn’t always the case. I’m very fortunate to have a two-car garage and only one car. That has allowed me the room to build a home gym I could only fantasize about previously. Apartment Gym Challenges For many years, I lived in an apartment. No garage. No extra space. No squat rack, barbell, or bumper plates. …

View Post

How to Buy the Perfect Barbell For Your Home Gym

In Equip Your Gym, Guides by Tim Steward

Last updated on March 10th, 2021 at 02:36 pmEven if you limit your search to Amazon and a few quality barbell manufacturers, there are easily over 100 different barbells to choose from. When putting together a home gym, it can be hard to figure out which one is right for you. Especially considering it’s one of the most important purchases you’ll make when it comes to weight training. A barbell is what connects you to …

View Post

How Much Does it Cost to Build a Home Gym You’ll Love?

In Guides, Plan Your Gym by Tim Steward

Last updated on July 7th, 2021 at 02:12 pmThe first thing most people consider when building a home gym is where in their home it might be able to fit. A millisecond later those same people are usually wondering what their new gym is going to cost. It’s probably a safe assumption that budget is one of, if not the primary concern of most people putting together a home training area. The average home gym …

View Post

Getting the Smell Out of Your Rubber Gym Floor

In Guides, Maintain Your Gym by Tim Steward

Last updated on March 4th, 2021 at 06:31 pmWhen people ask about the best flooring for their home gym, the answer is almost always rubber. Rubber flooring has a ton of benefits and is the ideal floor for your home fitness area. That said, it’s important that you use the right kind rubber. If you don’t, you can run into a few different problems, not the least of which is odor. And we aren’t talking …

View Post

What is Barbell Whip?

In Equip Your Gym by Tim Steward

Last updated on July 7th, 2021 at 01:57 pmI thought buying a barbell was going to be easy. It’s a metal rod that holds weight, how hard could it be? Apparently a lot harder than I thought. Did I want a 28mm or 28.5mm shaft? Did I want bearings or bushings? What kind of knurling and knurl marks did I want? Which of the seemingly endless coatings should I buy? And then they threw in …

View Post

Should You Bolt Your Squat Rack to the Floor?

In Equip Your Gym, Plan Your Gym by Tim Steward

Last updated on March 9th, 2021 at 08:51 pmThe sound of the power rack’s metal feet scraping across the floor was almost unbearable. Real nails on a chalk board type sounds. I had attached a heavy band to one of the uprights and was trying to do banded rows. Every time I pulled, the rack moved. This wasn’t the only time I was having problems either. I looked at my buddy (this was his garage …

View Post

Fractional Plates, A Worthwhile Addition to Your Home Gym

In Equip Your Gym by Tim Steward

Last updated on July 7th, 2021 at 01:38 pmOne of the great things about having a home gym is that it gives me the ability to train with equipment I wouldn’t normally find at a commercial gym. It’s allowed me to be thoughtful about the gear I buy and to buy things that genuinely compliment my programming. I’m not stuck with whatever the gym owner or manager wants in their gym. For me there’s no …

View Post

How Much Room Do You Need For a Squat Rack?

In Equip Your Gym, Plan Your Gym by Tim Steward

Last updated on March 9th, 2021 at 08:42 pmI get pretty pumped every time I add a piece of gear to my home gym. But no addition has ever excited me more than the addition of a power rack. I’ve lost count of how many times I’ve stood in my garage imagining a full-size rack as the centerpiece of my garage workout space. Only one minor detail stood in my way. How much room would …

View Post

Is It Safe to Build a Home Gym on the Second Floor?

In Plan Your Gym by Tim Steward

Last updated on February 28th, 2021 at 06:38 pmSometimes my imagination gets the best of me. As I was using my treadmill the other day (it’s in an upstairs bedroom), I envisioned my 205 lb. frame riding the 350 lb. treadmill as it crashed through my floor into the garage below. I’m fairly sure that won’t happen, but that’s just how my mind works sometimes. That got me to wondering how much weight my second-story …

View Post

How to Get Top Dollar For Your Used Fitness Equipment

In Guides by Tim Steward

Last updated on March 10th, 2021 at 03:12 pmI have owned not one, but two Bowflex home gyms in my training lifetime. A bunch of years back, I owned two of the exact same model within about a year of each other. It’s too long of a story to explain here, but the short version is I apparently don’t learn from experience very well. When It came time to sell the first one, it took …