Club OTB

December 8, 2007

It’s now early December and the freezing weather has finally hit New Jersey, and that’s made the prospect of outdoor exercise now within the domain of the hardcore weather lovers or what I like to call “Crazy People”. Personally, I prefer to do my exercise in moderate temperature environments, and I like having the convenience of being able to do it all in my home without having to join health clubs.

For the last nine months or so, my basement — which includes the two offices that Rachel and I use for work — has been completely unusable. During the heavy rains of the April 2007 “Once in a hundred years” Nor’easter storm, the basement was flooded with six inches of water. Certainly, as damage goes, its nothing when compared with entire houses that were destroyed by Katrina, or the other houses in nearby towns that got several feet of raw sewage overflow, but it did suck big time. Our insurance didn’t cover it and we found ourselves having to take out a decent size loan and have a very expensive waterproofing system installed, and then having the basement refinished again. Its only been in the last week or so that we’ve had our washers and dryer back online, and that we’ve been able to move things back into our offices.

I had originally planned to put a nice home theater system down in the basement after it had been fixed, but plans change — I decided to turn it into a gym instead. A very close friend of mine wanted to offload several thousand dollars worth of health-club quality equipment that he had bought two years before sit and collect dust — a Parabody GS6 system with optional leg press and extra accessories, plus a dumbbell rack with a full set of weights. I was very happy to take it off his hands, for less than half the price he paid for it.

Here is the basement space, with plastic vapor barrier material that we bought from Home Depot being put into place, which sits between the concrete floor and interlocking padded flooring material which we bought on sale at Amazon. The padded floor will be a base for the gym set — and provides impact cushioning when walking and doing exercises on the floor.

Here’s the equipment all set up, with the padded interlocking flooring material in place, although we haven’t cut the material that will flush with the wall yet. I’m planning on mounting a LCD flat panel TV set on the back wall, so we can watch it when we are using the treadmill (which up to now has been collecting dust for about 12 years).