October 2012. The home Gym has change now that I have changed my focus to include cardio and have found that I like running. The platform is now only 66 inches deep although I kept the width at 8 feet. The Olympic bar is pretty long so best not to mess with the width. Squatting heavy is no longer safe like it was prior to the change.
The change in the platform allows my to have more stations and I hope to get a set of rollers for my bicycle which I can use on the platform occasionally. I am trying to use the free weights to help build some core strength and improve posture. The cardio machines that are in place currently are an Elliptical, two Treadmills and my Ab Lounge. I have an old NordicTrack skier machine in the garages that I will be bringing in as well. Especially while I let my hip flexor recover.
October 2011. The equipment for Starting Strength is minimal and most gyms should have the items. It is a barbell program so you need a barbell and weights. Also, needed are a bench and a squat rack. Possibly one could do without the rack but I wouldn’t. I have these three items in my home gym. It takes up just a little over an 8×8 square as I store the weights just off my platform. The platform is simply 4 sheets of plywood stacked two layers high. The upper sheets are turned 90 degrees from the lower so that there is no movement of the sheets. This protects my carpet as well as giving me a firm area to work.
The weights, bench and squat rack can probably be found used in most communities by checking the local papers, Craiglist and ebay. However, I live on an island with a small population and for mostly financial reasons chose to make my own squat rack. It would have been best to make it out of steel but I made mine on the cheap and built it out of 2×6’s. I found the plans online and then beefed it up from there. I don’t believe that something performing a critical function can be over built. I also won’t try to convince anyone that my squat rack is as good as a quality rack made of steel. However, I started out really weak and as of yet the rack hasn’t seen any real weight.
Since the Starting Strength program or any weightlifting program is about increasing the weight for adaptive change, I cut some micro-weights out of plywood. I made a total of four half pounders and two one pounders. This allows me to increase the weight on the bar in as little as a one pound increment. I also cut out two rounds the same diameter as the 45 pound plates. These spacers hold the bar the correct height from the ground for Deadlifts and Pendlay rows.
I chose to work out at home as I think that I will have fewer excuses to not work out. When it is cold and blowing here it is hard for me to get out in the weather. So, I have used the guys and gals on the forums for help. I set up an old computer with an inexpensive webcam and video my workouts. Videoing the workouts allows me to review my form and if I wish I can post it to the forum. A few people on the SS forum critique people’s form which I have found beneficial. Most phone cameras will video but I had everything I needed already so I used it.