Best Equipment for Weight Loss at Home

So it is that time of year again, and there are thousands of articles, guides and companies wanting your money on the promise of helping you shift some of that gut. But what really is the best equipment for weight loss at home?

Well, this is a position I too have been in before. Believe it or not, the biggest problem with being an ex-rower at times is eating like a rower, but not doing the 2+ hours of training a day that used to go with it!

Anyway, I am going to summarise key pieces of equipment that are in my opinion essential for long term health and fitness, which should be considered along with any weight loss plan. I am dividing them into four categories:

  • Cardio Fitness
  • Strength
  • Mobility
  • Flexibility


Best Equipment for Weight Loss – Cardio

So this really depends on what your situation is. If you have access to a gym, or to the outdoors then you really need to mix it up. Running, Cycling etc. However, if you are looking to get a single piece of equipment for your home then there is only one choice that works all major muscle groups whilst being low impact on the joints. The rowing machine.

Rowing Machine

As seen in this article I have previously written, there are many types of rowing machines. I would personally always choose a Concept2 over any competitor, but there are other options that might fit a tighter budget. Rowers are quite simply the fittest athletes on the plant, and typically have low bloody pressure 

Rowing machines can be used for both HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) and LISS (Low Intensity Steady State) which need to be combined for the most effective results.

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Heart Rate (HR) Monitor

If you are doing any form of training with a goal in mind, I think it is crazy to be doing so without knowing what your heart is doing. Training can be made much more efficient and effective if you train in certain heart rate zones. For this reason, a heart rate monitor is one of the best pieces of equipment for weight loss.

Again, I have done a bit of a run down on models available here – my personal favourite comes in quite low cost in the masses of HR watches available. The Polar FT80. It does exactly what you need it to do and is a very well trusted brand. You can always upgrade to a fancier one once you have shifted some of that gut!

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Best Equipment For Weight Loss – Strength

Kettle Bell

Different approaches work for different people, and completely depends on your starting point and ability. Building lean muscle is a great long term approach for weight loss as in short, when you build more muscle your body burns more calories at rest. Doing this at home is tricky as there are so many specific exercises for different muscle groups. If this is your plan, you either need a very big space for multiple pieces of equipment or a very specific routine to uses just a couple of pieces.

However, for the newcomer to weight loss, just working the right muscles in an easy manner to build a routine is most important. For this, I think the humble kettlebell can be utilized to work almost any muscle group. You can buy them in varying sizes, or just get one and work out your sets & reps ranges around that. This range of cast iron kettlebells from CAP are the ones I would personally go for.

Even with a gym membership, I have a kettlebell at home to be used for the odd morning or evening when I don’t have time to gym but can fit in a quick 10-15 minute workout.

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Resistance Bands

As mentioned in a prior article, there are a number of new sets of resistance bands being released into the market, all with different focuses. I love the look of this set as the resistance is enough that you can get a good strength workout in using just this single piece of equipment that costs the price of one meal!

This set from Black Mountain looks great, but there are others on amazon that meet the same criteria. With this all you need is to scour youtube for people filming 10-15 minute workouts using these bands. Perfect to fit into any schedule or into a suitcase if you travel with work.

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Best Equipment For Weight Loss – Mobility

Resistance Bands

On a similar theme to above, resistance bands are becoming huge now – and for good reason. In my opinion, if you are trying to get into a new regime of health and fitness, mobility is essential to work on as like most of us who are desk bound day in day out, there are massive gains to be made.

For the purpose of mobility, I don’t think you need to go to extravagant on bands to use for this. I personally use the set from Limm here. See my article previously published on the subject for some more ideas about this. 

Improving mobility can be addictive, and for me I look at it like this – every joint effects those north of it on the body. So if you have had hips, your ankles are probably impacting them. If you have a bad lower back, your hips and ankles are contributing. Etc.

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Best Equipment for Weight Loss – Flexibility

Foam Roller

This is my final recommendation, and again I think this is a key item for any portfolio of home equipment. If you are moving into a new workout routine, recovery is key. In the past, simply stretching was the only option available however advances in technology mean you can now get equipment that is much better at this.

I take my foam roller on any trip abroad I do either with my rowing team or with my bike. It is great for releasing tension and massaging muscles. There are a number of different types. I personally use this model by Trigger Point, but as a newbie there are entry level versions which are still effective. the best foam roller

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So, in short – if you are setting up to lose weight from home, these are the pieces of equipment you should be looking to get into your armoury.

  • Rowing Machine
  • HR Monitor
  • Kettle Bell
  • Resistance Bands
  • Foam Roller

If you get all of this, you really are making a great investment into long term health and fitness. Now – check out some of my other posts that will be helpful.

  1. So you’ve bought a rowing machine – what next?
  2. Rowing Machine Workouts
  3. Which muscles does a rowing machine use?


Until next time.



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