I’ve had pretty good instincts about timing this year, I think. I ordered a barbell and some bumper plates in March, the day before my county announced that gyms would be closing. I told you at the end of March that this whole thing isn’t going to end soon. And two weeks ago, just before cases began to really spike, I pointed out that it’s gonna get worse.
Being a meathead at heart, I have one key recommendation, and my track history suggests you should trust it: Right now (depending on your location) is the time to buy home gym equipment.
Remember when all the kettlebells disappeared at the beginning of March as thousands of people realised they would be working out at home for the foreseeable future? If gyms in your area have begun to open, some of those folks are probably ready to let go of their equipment. And you, if you’re smart, will keep working out at home a bit longer.
A caveat on timing: If your city’s gyms are not yet open, your window of opportunity is coming soon. If gyms in your area have already opened and then closed again, it may be too late. (I’d still keep checking Craigslist just in case.)
New equipment is coming back into stock at some suppliers, but I’ve always been a fan of buying used. For dumbbells, barbells and iron plates, a good budget buy in the Before Times would have been 50 cents per kilo, with $1-2 per kilo still being a reasonable purchase. (Specialty or high-quality items, like bumper plates or competition-style kettlebells, are always more.) During quarantine, weights in my area were often $3 per kilo if you could get them at all; as of today, they’re back down to $1.
If COVID cases in your area go up and gyms close again, you’ll be glad you snagged some stuff before prices shoot up again. And if I’m wrong, and the gym stays open, your buys will still allow you to work out at home anyway, helpful if somebody in your life is sick or needs to quarantine. We’ve got a lot of pandemic still to get through.