Ohh how I ache this morning.. Currently I am recovering from last night’s workout of: three rounds of 24 Switch Lunges, 110 lb Farmer Walk @ 200 feet and a 264 yard backwards run, but that’s not the story, lets talk about my garage gym that helped me feel these ‘growing pains’
About 18 months ago, I joined TNL CrossFit Tampa. I lost my cookies on the first visit and I was hooked. It was a bit pricey compared to a regular gym and the only time I could fit in the schedule was butt-crack early in the morning. Anna was only a few months old, Natalie was just starting back to work, and right in the midst of it all, I changed to a job that required constant travel, so I stopped.
Last year I was running late at night, making quite the habit of it for some time. I would help put the kids to bed, and go for a run. It was good, I was feeling great, continually increasing my pace and endurance, then life happened and that habit died as well.
Earlier this year I hit a number on the scale that is OK for most guys my age and height, but for me, it was a high point I’ve never seen, and I wasn’t particularly comfortable with. My clothes were tight, carrying the kids got me winded, and then I realized, this is not how you age gracefully.
A few months ago I started watching what I ate which helped me get back to a more reasonable weight, but still not to ‘sexy beast’ level that I was aiming for. Since I am the worst person in the world to keep to my diet, I knew I had to find something to compensate the occasional doughnut or the late night cereal cravings, I had to get active again.
After evaluating the gym options, pricing, and location I decided that I should just build my own gym in my empty garage. Since CrossFit style workouts work well for me, that was the type of equipment I would need.
After coercing my brother-in-law, Wes, to join in my adventure, I started to procure equipment. I found some on Craigslist, built a few items, and picked up a few items from a local gym supplier. For me, the accountability of having someone show up at your house makes it hard to allow myself to skip a day, and working out with friends/family is a good enough motivator not to slack during the workout. It is a good setup for me.
So far I have built 2 PlyoBoxes, Pair of Parallettes, and a Pull up Bar. I bought a set of weights, bars, and heavy kettle bells from a guy on Craigslist (pictured here) and we
stole got a really good deal on a squat rack from Craigslist, and to round out the initial collection, I picked up some odds and ends from a local retailer called Valor Fitness (their prices are MUCH more reasonable when you go to their warehouse than those listed on their website)
So far, we’ve been going at it for three nights a week, for about a month or so. There are a few other piece of equipment I want to pickup, but none are essential at this point. We have a friend who does power lifting who joins us on Sunday morning workouts, as well as a friend who is a CrossFit coach who is scheduled to start joining us soon as well. I get to squeeze in some people time during our workouts in great, as occasionally forget to do with our busy schedules. Life its good.
As an added bonus to being in better shape, I have met a few neighbors who also workout in their garages; building the community bonds through sweaty garages is awesome.