Favorite Tools & Toys for At-Home Workouts: Quick-Ship Exercise Equipment & Activewear
I’ve put together a curated list of my favorite fitness things. Many of you have asked me through the years for recommendations for everything from comfortable leggings to reliable exercise equipment to measuring body fat with the least error rating. You can find all of it here and it’s all available to be shipped quickly to you from Amazon.*
Foam Floor Tiles and Yoga Mats
Let’s start from the ground up. If you’ve ever had to take a second to roll out your wrists or get off of aching knees in the middle of your workout, then foam floor tiles and a good yoga mat are for you. I have both of these in my studio and they allow me to kneel to chat with you and demonstrate exercises to you with less stress to my joints. They’re worth it. Plus the wood grain pattern on these floor tiles looks nicer that the typical black gym floor mats, so if your workout area is used for multiple purposes you can leave the tiles down between workouts without the obvious eyesore of a gym mat.
Stretching, Myofascial Release, and Icing
I am a big fan of making sure you properly recover between your workouts. These are some of my favorite tools to reduce soreness. If you are working with me after recovering from a past sports injury, these tools are extra important and I’d highly recommend you include the cryotherapy ball in your toy box of exercise equipment to reduce any inflammation post-workout with a 15-20 minute ice massage.
For those of you who cannot yet touch your toes this simple tool is a great way to practice to help you get there. Wrap it under your feet with legs extended while seated on the ground and walk your hands as far as you can with your knees straight. Hold for 4 deep breaths. Keep practicing.
Foam rollers, acupressure balls, and pinky balls are excellent tools for releasing sore and tired muscles post-workout or post-run to help you recover faster. Use them on the arches of your feet after a run, sit on them and roll out the deep muscles of your hips to reduce symptoms that mirror sciatica, or follow along in the video in my previous post and foam roll the major muscles of your legs. Want to know more ways to release your muscles with these tools? Ask me in the contact section below or during your next scheduled session. I’m always happy to help you move better and recover well.
Stability Work: Steps, Exercise Balls, Gliders, and BOSUs
Hello BOSU my old friend. You all know the BOSU is one of my favorite toys for workouts for its endless versatility, adaptability, and scalability. I love to program workouts that include stability work and the BOSU is the best toy for it. This is one piece of equipment you won’t grow out of.
For those starting out and wanting a bit more of a stable base in their stability work, grab a step. You won’t grow out of it either as it’s adjustable to different heights and you can stand on it, jump on it, place your hands on it, etc. Let the fun begin.
For my more advanced clients, get some gliders to take your leg work and core work up a notch by adding an element of instability that your body has to work against. Gliders are also one of the more portable pieces of exercise equipment. Pack them away in your suitcase with a resistance band when you travel and I’ll see you on the road.
An exercise ball is also wonderfully scalable and one of my essentials I have in my own studio. This one comes with a pump to inflate your exercise ball in case you don't have a bike pump available to you at home. Use the exercise ball to support your back when doing wall squats or to add difficulty to your planks.
Strength Work: Dumbbells, Kettlebells, Medicine Balls, and Resistance Bands
Start with a resistance band and a medicine ball as a base for your strength work. Once you have some baseline strength from bodyweight exercises, let’s do some weight-bearing to continue to gain strength and work to protect your bones for the long term.
Arch Support, Shoes, and Women’s Activewear
To get the most out of your workout and protect your joints, you need good cross training shoes, and if you have high arches, you’ll need good arch support as well. Cross trainers differ from running shoes in that they give you lateral support in your mid foot so that you don’t feel like your foot is sliding around in your shoe.
For a quick second, let me speak to my female clients specifically. The struggle to find comfortable leggings that stay up when you’re working out is real. I’ve heard it and as someone who wears leggings daily while leading you through your workouts, I’ve tried a few. Here’s two pairs from Amazon that are soft, comfortable, and one even has lots of pockets. You’re welcome. :) Need a shirt that doesn’t come up over your belly-button when your arms go overhead and is soft and breathable? This is one of my go-to’s.
Measuring Body Composition
Alright, so you are all ready to work with your new toys and tools of exercise equipment and feeling good in your new activewear. Now how do you track your progress if your goals include feeling even more comfortable in your clothes? Measure your body fat percentage and take a measurement of your waist, hips, mid-thigh and mid-biceps once a month. Put in the work for 4 weeks and then check your progress. I’m here on this journey with you. Forget the number on the scale and focus on your body composition not your weight. You got this.
What are other fitness-related tools and toys you are looking for? Do you want suggestions for treadmills and spin bikes or running socks and shorts? Reach out to me in the comments below and I’ll respond personally as well as add my recommendation to the Caitlin Live LLC Amazon list.* Click below for the full list.
(*Caitlin Live LLC may earn commission off of any Amazon product recommendation from this post.)