Home Gym and Workout Ideas With Everyday Household Items

This post was made in partnership with FunkAway. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

The coronavirus has closed gyms and studios around the country and many of us are searching for new at-home workout options and scurrying to build our at-home gym arsenal. One of biggest challenges that I’ve faced amongst the quarantine and mandatory shut down is missing my gym and studio! I’ve always struggled with at home workouts and loved having the in-person atmosphere with the contagious energy and accountability to push me harder and stay motivated.

Switching to an at-home routine was daunting and overwhelming at first. The good news is that there are so many options out there to continue with healthy habits and exercising. Whether you’re meeting up with gym friends on Zoom chats, creating your own at-home routines or using streaming services, you may have to get a bit creative with the items you have around your home to improvise your workouts.

Dropping a ton of money on equipment for a home gym isn’t necessary to get your sweat on. So many everyday items in your home can serve double duty as workout equipment with some modifications and creativity. Find a space to be used for your workouts, put on your fav gym outfit (keep it smelling fresh with FunkAway), assemble your “weights” and equipment and get sweating! I’m sharing a ton of my favorite gym equipment substitutes below, as well as a few ways to use them!

Creating Your Space

Finding a space in which I can keep all my “equipment” ready to go and grab makes the whole process easier than constantly having to gather all my items everyday. We’ve been storing everything in our entry closet for easy access, but noticed a bit of stink due to our sweaty goods! The last thing I wanted was to have our house smelling like a gym so we started using FunkAway products to help banish the stink! FunkAway has a variety of odor eliminating products like sprays and laundry booster to eliminate noxious odors. FunkAway products are plant based, pet friendly, non-toxic and hypoallergenic and most importantly guaranteed to work!

The biggest culprits were definitely our tennis shoes and hubbies CrossFit Gear! Since you can’t throw them in the wash, FunkAway was a perfect option! We simply sprayed until wet, let dry and the smell was gone! Using the sprays directly on our shoes, hats, and gear helped eliminate the embarrassing stink. We’ve added a few of their odor eliminating beads throughout our home (closets and bathrooms) to leave our home smelling fresh and clean.

Now that you’ve eliminated the stink, let’s get to all the awesome ways you can use household items to continue your workouts from the comfort and safety of your home!

Everyday Household Items That Can Be Used As Workout Equipment

Canned Goods, Water Jugs, Detergent Bottles, etc. for Weights

Simple, but effective! Using cans, water bottles, pop bottles, and detergent bottles in simple movements (like squats, shoulder press, bicep curls, tricep kickbacks, etc.) can create more challenge and amp up your workout when needed. Adjust the weight as needed for strength and intensity. The average gallon container of water is 8.6 pounds which can really crank up your workout!

Books for Yoga Blocks

If you don’t have yoga blocks, stack some heavyweight and durable books to assist instead. Yoga blocks can be so useful to make poses more accessible and comfortable by providing additional length, support and helping with alignment. They can also be used for more advanced postures and strength building (i.e. bump ups).

Towel or Belt for Strap or Resistance Bands

Towels or belts are a great option for assisting in stretches (especially hamstrings, calves and it bands) and abdominal work. Lie back, grab a towel to wrap around the sole of your foot and gently stretch.

Chair or Bench for Step Ups & Dips

Step-ups are great for working the lower body – glutes, quads, hamstring and calves all benefit from this simple and easily accessible exercise. Find a heavy and steady chair or bench and build strength and endurance. For additional challenge, hold a weight in each hand (or in this case a jug of water).

Tricep or chair dips require nothing aside from your own body weight and a steady surface like a bench or chair.

Reusable Grocery Bag for Varied Weights

Need more weight than what is provided with canned goods or gallon containers? Reusable grocery bags can be loaded with cans or books until they are at your desired weight. These are great for farmer carries or single arm farmer carries.

Pull Up Bar on Swing Set

Play like a kid again and borrow your kiddos swing set for a little workout action. My CrossFit hubby has been using our children’s swing set for pull-ups.

Duffle Bag Sandbag

While I haven’t tried this one (yet!), I’ve seen some amazing tutorials about making your own sandbag with pea gravel and a duffle bag for carry inspired workouts substantially cheaper than those sold at sports stores.

Dish Towel or Paper Plates for Sliders

Sliders can be amazing for a myriad of movements that target your abs, glutes, and upper body. Homemade sliders can be improvised easily with the use of dishtowels or paper plates. I love utilizing them for pikes to help strengthen my shoulders and abs for my handstand practice.


All that working out means lots of sweaty clothes! Our workout clothes are always the toughest to get clean and fresh smelling. It’s bad enough that we have separate laundry baskets just for gym gear and clothing. Adding a laundry booster like FunkAway Laundry Detergent Booster was a game changer for our clothing. No sour smells remain with the addition of one capful to our laundry loads. Keeping FunkAway Odor Eliminating Beads next to our laundry basket has helped with keeping our bedroom funk free by absorbing & eliminating all the stink!

If you’re a fitness fanatic like me or a mama with messy (and sometimes stinky) kids, FunkAway is a great addition to add to your odor fighting arsenal (those with little boys: you need the odor absorbing beads in your bathroom). You can order online or pick it up on your next Walmart run or curbside pickup!

Has your fitness routine switched with the stay-at-home and quarantine changes?

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By |2020-04-14T21:21:31-04:00April 13th, 2020|health|6 Comments

6 Comments

  1. Heather April 14, 2020 at 3:37 pm - Reply

    I love the idea of using everyday items that you have lying around your house to work out. It makes me have less excuses about not having the equipment and I don’t have to spend any money.

  2. Amber Myers April 14, 2020 at 3:53 pm - Reply

    How cool! I will try these out for sure. I need to start working out more often since I keep snacking.

  3. Mimi April 14, 2020 at 4:45 pm - Reply

    I’m definitely ready to start workout a little more, so I’ll try and do these

  4. Kileen April 14, 2020 at 11:07 pm - Reply

    What an awesome post! I never realized all the things around my house I could use for exercise!! I’m going to implement a bunch of these ideas!!

    Kileen
    cute & little

  5. Marina April 15, 2020 at 3:46 pm - Reply

    I’m doing my workout at home at the moment…a challenge, so all these tips are very welcome x

  6. Monica April 15, 2020 at 8:04 pm - Reply

    I love this! It’s fun to get creative like this. My fave gym instructor has been posting workouts on her instagram. The other day she used a cereal box as a slider.

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