The $100 Gym

The $100 Gym

Written by Alex Reid
Posted July 23, 2012

If you’re trying to cut back on monthly spending, one of the first non-essential expenses you might cut out is that expensive gym membership.

But not to worry, you don’t have to sacrifice your workouts to save some bucks. You can have a satisfying workout from the comfort of your own home for under $100.

Oscar "O-Diesel" Smith, GQ’s go-to trainer, lists his essential gym equipment and workout routine for staying fit in this month's issue.

The Gear:

1. Jump rope, $8 at amazon.com
2. 10-pound dumbbells, $30 for two at amazon.com
3. Exercise mat, $23 at amazon.com
4. Pull-up bar, $29 at amazon.com
5. Medium resistance band, $10 at amazon.com

The Workout:
Complete the following circuit three times, three days a week. Exercises using dumbbells can also be done with the resistance band.

10 pull-ups
Hang from a bar with your palms facing forward, shoulder-width apart. Pull yourself upward until your chin is level with the bar, then lower yourself down again.

10 chin-ups
Hang from a bar with your palms facing toward you, shoulder-width apart. Pull yourself upward until your chin is level with the bar, then lower yourself down again.

10 close-grip pull-ups
Hang from a bar with your palms facing away from you, with about a hand's width between your hands. Pull yourself upward until your chin is level with the bar, then lower yourself down again.

10 dips
Sit down on a chair or bench and cup your hands on the edge on either side of your thighs. Walk your legs out until you're no longer sitting and are supporting yourself on your hands. Using your arms, lower yourself in front of the chair or bench, then push back up until your arms are fully extended. You can also use the pull-up bar, placed upside down on the ground.

10 incline push-ups
You can use either a chair or the pull-up bar upside down on the ground for this one. Get in push-up position with your hands either on the seat of the chair or the elevated portions of the pull-up bar. With your feet together and your body kept straight, do a push-up.

10 regular push-ups
Start in push-up position with your feet together and your hands shoulder-width apart on the ground. Keeping your body straight, lower yourself until your nose almost touches the ground, then push back up until your arms are fully extended.

Use 10-pound dumbbells for the following three exercises:

10 curls
Standing with your hands at your sides and your palms facing forward, curl the dumbbells up until your forearms are perpendicular to the ground, then lower until the dumbbells are back down at your hips.

10 tricep extensions each arm
Holding a dumbbell in one hand with your palm facing your body, lean forward and place your other hand on a chair. Your legs should be staggered, with the foot on the dumbbell side behind the other, and your back should be straight. Raise the upper half of your dumbbell arm behind you until it is parallel with the ground. Holding your elbow in the same place, raise the dumbbell behind you until your whole arm is parallel with the ground. Keeping your elbow where it is, lower your forearm back down until your arm is again at a 90-degree angle, then repeat.

10 hammer curls each arm
Standing with your hands at your sides and your palms facing your body, curl one dumbbell up until your forearm is perpendicular to the ground, then lower until the dumbbell is back down at your hips. Repeat with your other arm. The key here is keeping your palms facing inward, rather than forward like a normal curl.


25 full sit ups
Laying on your back with your feet on the ground, sit all the way up to your knees, either keeping your arms at your sides (but not using them to assist) or keeping them crossed over your chest to add resistance. Lower yourself back until your shoulder blades touch the ground, then repeat.

25 crunches
Laying on your back with your feet on the ground, sit up until your shoulder blades are off the ground. Lower yourself back until your shoulder blades touch the ground, then repeat.

Use 10-pound dumbbells for the following three exercises:

10 front lateral raises each arm
Stand with the dumbbells in your hands and your palms facing behind you. Keeping your arms straight, raise one arm in front of you until it is parallel with the ground. Lower that arm back to your side, then repeat with the other arm.

10 side lateral raises each arm
Stand with the dumbbells in your hands and your palms facing your body. Keeping your arms straight, raise one arm up to the side until it is parallel with the ground. Lower that arm back to your side, then repeat with the other arm.

10 shoulder presses
Sitting in a chair, hold the dumbbells at shoulder height with your palms facing forward. Raise both hands simultaneously toward the ceiling until your arms are fully extended over your head. Lower the dumbbells back to shoulder height and repeat.

After you have done the circuit three times, jump rope for 15 minutes.

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