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FitEquip: Mats to Make Your Home Workout a Little More Comfy

home-gym-floorI have a mini home gym in my basement. It’s nothing elaborate—a few dumbbells here, a stability ball and kettlebell there. But when I don’t feel like getting out or am too rushed to make it to the Fit Pit, I hit the lowest level of my house to pop in a killer workout DVD or hit the weights for my own circuit-training routine. But with a 1960s linoleum floor and old-basement smell, my workout room has never been very, ahem, inspiring. A yoga mat on the floor has always been uncomfortable for crunches, and no matter how hard I scrub that darn floor, it always just seems dirty. Enter the sample of Silver Series Interlocking Mats that Shock Athletic sent me and workouts in the basement became a little more comfortable—and productive.

No longer focused on why that stain (that darn stain!) wouldn’t come up, these firm yet cushioned mats covered my workout space, did away with my need for a yoga mat during crunches and push-ups and allowed me to hone in on what I was down there to really do: Get my workout on! A six-pack package of the tiles (shown left) can be interlocked to cover a full 24 square feet of space, giving you not a huge area, but a decent-enough sized area for you to work out to your heart’s content (as long as you’re not doing an elaborate dance workout DVD that needs lots of space). I lift weights on them, do jumping jacks on them (the cushion helps reduce impact on the floor and the joints), get in all my core work on them and stretch on them.

While the ability to transform my basement into a more legit home gym alone would be enough for me to recommend the flooring, the tiles have the added benefit of antimicrobial-zinc technology, meaning that they inhibit the growth of mold, mildew, and stain- and odor-causing bacteria. Not bad for less than $40. Oh, heck yes. I may still work out in a basement at home, but now it’s one that’s just a little more inviting. —Jenn

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