Turn Your Garage into a Home Gym: 4 Steps for a Perfect Make-Over

Have you ever set a goal of losing weight, only to have that goal go up in flames along with the gym membership you purchased? If you’re lucky, you used the gym membership once or twice.

If this is something you’ve done, you are not alone. Thousands of people go through this same dead-end circle each year with the same goal in mind.

What if you could spend the same amount as four or five-yearly gym memberships and get a lifetime of quality workouts? If you converted your garage into a gym, that’s exactly what you’d get.

How Big of a Gym?

Garages are large spaces, and most likely you have a considerable number of items stored in yours.

Install an elliptical trainer in your garage? What a great idea!

Install an elliptical trainer in your garage? What a great idea!

The best thing you can do is go through all of your items and throw away what you’re not using. The remainder of the items should be stored efficiently. You’re going to want all the available floor space you can get.

A vertical bike rack or some durable shelves should be able to make the whole floor available for your gym.

Don’t pull the trigger on your fitness equipment yet. Take a few careful things into consideration.

Do You Have Water Hookups in the Garage, Or a Bathroom Already?

If you have plumbing hookups, you can make a bathroom or shower area. Alternatively, you can prepare an area for using a sauna.

Let’s go with the sauna idea.

The Vision: Start Putting the Design on Paper and Getting Prepared

This picture shared by BoxJunkies shows an in-garage gym. the owners decided to had a TV and other commodities.

This picture shared by BoxJunkies shows an in-garage gym. The owner decided to install a TV and other conveniences.

This is where all the magic comes together. You need to plan exactly what elements you want in the gym.

We said we would install a sauna.

If you have a water source already (which you probably do) then you can make this installation yourself.

A small portable sauna just needs a basic water source for the steam. Usually, these can be connected directly to a sink.

Anything else that needs to be done should be fairly easy and can make for a fun project.

You can paint and choose your color theme for the gym. Hang your favorite sports teams or boxing pictures for a cool effect.

This blog by BLACK+DECKER explains how to install storage units into your ceiling. These can be used for extra gym equipment, or even to double as a makeshift locker area.


Your gym needs a durable floor. It also needs a level of comfort.

An epoxy garage floor. Picture by AllGarageFloors.

An epoxy garage floor. Picture by AllGarageFloors.

The floor is already made from concrete. This is a great time to think about adding some backup durability to your floor. With a simple coating or refinishing, it’s not impossible to add an extra twenty years to the life of your floor.

There are other options if you don’t want exposed concrete. Simple floor coverings made from foam or rubber will add a level of safety to your gym floor.

Let’s go over some potential options.

  1. Epoxy or polyurea

    A professional could install epoxy or polyurea coating, but you can also do it yourself. Both of these are waterproof, which is important for your gym floor. You’ll want a surface that can withstand constant mopping and take the punishment of the equipment. The coating on this type of finish is brilliant and you have color options.

    Regardless of what type of cosmetic element you choose, you want something waterproof. The gym will be a hot area already, so standing water won’t be the only problem. Moisture generated from humidity can be a problem if the floor isn’t waterproof.

  2. Roll-Out Padding

    This would be a very cost-effective idea. You can go to your local floor suppliers and usually they sell remnant pieces of padding. Ask if they have any high-grade rubber padding leftover from old jobs.

    If they don’t have discounted leftovers available, price a section that will cover 75% of the floor. This padding is excellent for cushion, and it will protect the floor as well. 75% is large enough to cover most of the floor while leaving space for the outside perimeter near the doors.

    The Best Flooring Options for Your Home Gym by Men’s Health has a ton of gym floor ideas you can draw on for inspiration.

  3. Carpet

    You can use carpet as an option if you choose industrial-style commercial carpets. This is the thin carpet with no padding that you generally see in schools or office buildings.

    There is no padding underneath this carpet because it is glued down. Prepare for the floor to be very unforgiving in case of a fall.

    The good news is this type of carpet is cheap and extremely durable. It won’t be affected much by the gym equipment. It will also do its job in the winter by covering your cold concrete floors.

    You can also purchase some smaller gym mats for areas that need an extra cushion for workouts. Yoga mats also work great for this purpose.

Equipment can weigh a ton. You need to have solid flooring if you don't want to break it after only a month.

Equipment can weigh a ton. You need to have solid flooring if you don't want to break it after only a month.


When you’re training hard and it's summer or spring, you want good airflow and a way to remove humidity.

Get something quiet like this garage ventilation system from Humidex. This tiny unit improves air quality, lowers humidity levels, and reduces the chance of mold growth.

Humidity removal is especially important if you have a laundry area in the garage. The heat from the dryer mixed with the dampness the washer puts out can cause humid conditions. Combine this with the heat and humidity built up from the workout area, and you’ll quickly understand why a dehumidifier is ventilation system is needed.

When winter hits, a small space-heater should be efficient enough to heat the garage.


Start with the garage door when you’ve gotten to the insulation portion of your garage makeover. This large door is where most of the rooms hot or cold air will escape. If the insulation isn’t efficient for this spot, you’re wasting your time by moving forward with the rest of the garage.

You also want a garage door that has a good R-value. This rating is used to determine the quality of insulation. You know how much insulation your roof has, right?

A roof has an R-value of R-40. The walls in your home are between R-13 and R-21.

Garage doors usually have options of no insulation, an R-12 design, or R-16 for a higher insulated model. We recommend R-16 for the best results possible.

You need a door that is energy efficient. The installation quality of your door and weatherstripping are very important. Quality gaskets, seals, the type of weatherstripping, and other elements will all make a huge difference in the insulation and energy rating of your garage.

To reduce your electricity and heating bills, it’s imperative you go with high-quality weatherstripping. Check out these different types of weatherstripping. Those are just some of the options you have. These are the most common types of weatherstripping.

Bottom seals. The bottom seal is the weatherstripping on the bottom of your garage door. This rubber piece makes contact with the garage floor, molding to fit the shape of the threshold area. This keeps out cold air, mice, and other debris.

Vinyl weatherstripping is for the area around the garage door. This type of weatherstripping provides quality insulation and beautiful cosmetic elements at the same time. The vinyl panels are installed on the sides and top of the garage door.

U-shaped weatherstripping is a rubber piece that forms around the sides and bottom of the door frame. When the door closes, it enters this rubber piece, which acts as a track for the door, creating a tight seal.

The InterLokTM joint, which is made by Garaga, is weatherstripping designed to go between each door panel. This joint makes the door completely sealed against cold winds, among other things. Normally if a door sustains water damage or wind damage it’s over. The door is ruined because the inside takes on too much water. However, these joints can help save the door.

Storm Shield threshold can be installed as an insulation alternative. These weatherstripping pieces run from one end of your garage door to the other, completely covering the threshold. The threshold covers work by filling in chipped concrete pieces, eliminating any draft or entry point that could be created. They’re also efficient at keeping water from entering the garage.

This garage door is a Vog design, 9' x 7', Black color, with a window layout: Left-side Harmony.

Do you like this garage door design? This is a Vog an exclusive design, 9' x 7', Black, with a window layout: Left-side Harmony.


Let’s not forget the windows of your garage/gym. We recommend using windows that allow as much natural light as possible. This can help with heating bills and also brighten the mood when you’re working out.

Sunlight is a natural mental and physical booster. It’s also free, so your electric bill will become lower along with the heating bill in the wintertime.

You're going to need options for the types of windows you want to be installed. A gym area should also have extra privacy. You don’t want the entire neighborhood seeing you and your guests work out. Windows with high privacy levels can be installed that still offer natural light to enter the room. The glass is tempered on one side to eliminate see-through effects.

See this article about adding windows to an existing garage door. If you are happy with the garage door you currently have, you can add windows to garage doors that don’t previously have installed.

Maybe you have a new garage door with great weatherstripping you don’t want to lose. However, there are no windows, and you want natural light to enter your gym. Adding windows to the garage door can be the perfect option.

Want a new garage door to complete the look?

Here at Upper Level Doors, we have many styles and designs available for you to make your home gym come to life. Our Design Centre showcases all the options we have available that you might not see on the floor. This awesome tool allows you to build your design online to get a preview of what the final product looks like.

You can ask for a free quote by email when you’ve decided on something from the Design Centre.

This garage door is a Classic CC design, 9' x 7', Ice White color, with 4 lite Orion windows.

You prefer more traditional designs? This garage door is a Classic CC design, one of our most popular designs, in 9' x 7', Ice White color, with 4 lite Orion windows.

Contact us.

Kingston: 613-547-4566

Belleville: 613-966-5655

Our experts will be more than happy to help you if you’re a bit overwhelmed and need some guidance to decide where to start.

We can’t wait to help finish your home gym so you can invite us over for a workout session!

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