Our four story-split-level home had an extra bedroom on the entry level floor. It was staged as an office when we toured the home initially. We didn’t have the need to use it as a bedroom, so I envisioned turning it into a combined office and home gym, but quickly realized we wouldn’t have the space for both uses of the room.
For us, an office was a “nice to have” rather than a “must have.” As a nurse, I don’t have much of a need for one. Josh works from home a couple times a month, but he’s able to sit in the porch or even at the kitchen island for the time being. We’re thinking we will create a little office space in the basement when we renovate that in the future.
We were always gym-goers, but obviously that changed during the pandemic. In September 2020, we decided to buy a Peloton Bike+ and were instantly hooked. We are total Kool-Aid drinkers and not embarrassed about it, ha! It gets a bit of a bad rap in the media and honestly I don’t know why… haters gonna hate, I guess! It is truly an amazing platform- it gets me EXCITED to work out which is something that I haven’t experienced in a verrry long time. I love the huge variety of class options, from instructors to class length to type to music genres. Josh was skeptical that he’d enjoy classes, but he will unabashedly admit his love for the whole platform now too.
After a year of working out with our Bike (we use it for rides as well as strength, stretching, and yoga classes!), we realized we were officially committed to working out at home. With that in mind, we knew it would be nice to have another option for cardio equipment. After tossing around some options, we decided on a treadmill. Honestly I wasn’t sold on the Peloton Tread initially- I thought it was too expensive. After a lot of research though, I realized it made the most sense for us and decided to buy it while it was on sale during Black Friday.
We kept the Bike in the basement, which isn’t exactly the most inviting- or functional- workout environment. (It’s on our to-renovate list for sometime in the next year or so). We would have to push the coffee table out of the way to do floor work, while also freezing in the winter because there are just cheap plastic windows down there currently. The basement isn’t large, so adding a treadmill down there would have been a little too much. We eventually want to have another functional living room in the basement, plus are considering adding a desk and built in bar area with storage.
When we (mostly) finished the main floor renovation and it was time to focus more on the entryway level, we realized that now was the best time to renovate the spare bedroom. Knowing that we’d have a treadmill and a bike to fit into the spare room, plus floor space for strength and floor workouts, I got to work trying to create as functional of a workout room as possible. The room is about 9′ x 12′, and the bike and treadmill require about half of that space, so we knew we wouldn’t have room for any other stationary equipment. The other half of the room would be dedicated floor workout space.
The Process & Details
Demo & Skimcoating
I removed all the trim and doors, carpet, light fixture, outlets, and switch. The ceiling was originally textured and painted over, so we couldn’t scrape it and had to skimcoat. It took 3 coats of mud plus a lot of sanding to finish that up! (I shared all of that process on my Instagram account, so if you’re not already following along there, be sure to do so!)
I’ve loved dark ceilings for awhile now, but didn’t have a great space to try it out in this house yet. I figured the gym would be perfect! I went with Onyx by Pittsburgh Paints on the ceiling in a satin finish. In hindsight I should have gone with a flat finish to hide the imperfections of the skimcoated ceiling, but I love the extra drama that the satin finish provides. The walls are painted White Snow by Sherwin Williams in eg-shel finish, which is the same color that we have throughout the rest of the house. We also added crown moulding for some extra detail, plus the fact that it meant less work when skimcoating, ha! All of the trim is painted Pure White by Sherwin Williams in satin finish, which is the same as the rest of the house.
I think the carpet must have been recently replaced, but it wasn’t very high quality and just wasn’t a great idea for a gym. We replaced it with LVP that looks very similar to the engineered hardwood that is on our main floor. LVP just provides a bit more durability for a gym and is a little more cost efficient too. It was easy to install and looks (and feels) shockingly realistic!
We moved the light fixture from our bedroom down to the gym (we replaced the fixture in our bedroom with a ceiling fan!). A small lamp and my custom neon sign provide enough extra light, so we don’t really need to use the overhead light. The neon sign says “Yes You Can”, which is something that many Peloton instructors say (Jess Sims and Robin Arzon, looking at you!). It’s totally cheesy, but also inspiring and adds a fun touch in the gym.
Windows & Shades
We also have two large windows that provide awesome natural light. One of them was replaced, because we had replaced the rest of the windows on that wall of the house with the main floor renovation. The other window is original, and I just painted it Pure White. It will eventually be replaced, but we didn’t want to shell out the money for that just yet. I purchased pleated linen shades for them both, and the shades happen to match the shade on the ceiling light almost perfectly. (If you’re interested in shopping them, our color is Woven Reed from the Dunes family)
Closet & Weight Storage
The room has a closet with a pocket door, and we replaced that with a more modern door, plus re-organized the shelving to add a bit more storage. I just painted the original shelves and re-installed them with IKEA brackets. For now, we’re just keeping the kettlebells and dumbbells on the floor in the closet- they fit perfectly! Resistance bands hang on a peg rack, while other accessories are stored in baskets (from Target’s dollar spot).
A huge floor mat provides a durable and comfortable space for strength training, yoga, and stretching. For now, we’re storing yoga mats and foam rollers in a rattan basket (previously owned). I also re-purposed a mirror that was hanging in our original dining room (pre-demo!) by adding a frame and turning it into a floor mirror. A bench and step tuck nicely underneath the window.
Behind the Bike
A large canvas mural (which we had in the bedroom of our previous home) fit perfectly on the wall behind the bike, and I installed an IKEA floating shelf below. Our bike shoes are easily accessible underneath that, hanging on J-hooks!
We still have to install the new door, and I will update this post when that happens. But other than that, our home gym is COMPLETE! We are so excited to have a dedicated space to working out at home. No more pushing furniture around!
Want to try out Peloton?
We are proud Peloton members and would highly recommend it to anyone. This is not sponsored (I wish, ha!)! I just have a genuine love for the platform and the positive energy it creates in its members. If you’re interested in trying it out, you can use this code for a 60 day free trial of the app. My personal code Q52JC8 will save you $100 off of your purchase of accessories when you purchase an equipment piece. Full disclosure- it will also get me a credit towards the Peloton Apparel shop so I can look cute when I work out 😉 Feel free to ask any questions about below about our experience with Peloton if you’re on the fence! I am happy to persuade you to join the club 🙂