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Jason Khalipa. If you’re a CrossFit enthusiast (or don’t live under a rock), you’ll probably know who he is. The 2008 CrossFit Games champion and founder of NCFIT is a close friend of Garage Gym Reviews Founder and Director Coop Mitchell––and an extremely knowledgeable fitness professional.

Recently, Coop invited Jason to come to the Garage Gym Reviews headquarters in Missouri to hang out, lift heavy weights, and chat about all things home gym and home fitness. Sounds like a knucklehead’s dream, as someone playfully commented on the GGR YouTube channel about the duo.  

Jason Khalipa looking at camera standing next to coop

Plus, while the two were together, they compiled a list of the top 10 home gym mistakes Khalipa (and Coop) frequently see. Even if you think you’re doing everything home gym-related 100% right, some tips from a pro can’t hurt, right?  

P.S. You’re probably guilty of at least one of these common mistakes…. 

1. Not Warming Up

Whether you’re trying to max out on back squats or are going for a run on your treadmill, warming up beforehand is key to getting your body and mind aligned for your workout. Not sure where to start? Consider doing 5-10 minutes of lower-intensity movements and stretching or foam rolling anything that feels tight or sore. 

“Even when it’s hot outside, it’s still important to properly warm up,” Khalipa explains.

Jason Khalipa doing warm up plank

2. Lack of Open Floor Space

Even if you’re tight on space (or ceiling height) in your home or garage gym, it’s important to give yourself lots of working room—just like you’d see in a commercial gym.

Khalipa suggests loading up the perimeter of your space with gym equipment (kettlebells, free weights, resistance bands, etc.), but keeping the middle open.

Make sure to consider your space limitations and plan your fitness equipment layout accordingly. This could look like purchasing foldable and portable cardio machines, or high quality adjustable dumbbells that can be stored away while not in use.

Related: Check out the Best Home Gym Flooring 

Jason Khalipa barbell

3. Not Giving Your Best Effort

While your fitness goals may change month to month or year to year, your best effort can change from day to day. If the baby was up all last night and you only got an hour of sleep, your best will look a lot different than what it would typically. Try to give yourself grace on the days you aren’t 100%, but still give your best, whatever that looks like for you. 

Khalipa Tip: Race against a variable by doing things like EMOMs or AMRAPs to keep yourself accountable.

Jason Khalipa talking with coop

4. No Gym Timer

A timer is one of the most important pieces of equipment for a home gym! Especially for busy individuals, home gym timers are a great way to figure out how much time has elapsed––without having to constantly pick up your phone to check. This can eliminate potential distractions and help you keep an eagle eye on a timed workout.

Check out Jason Khalipa’s favorite Rogue Gym Timer below!

Jason Khalipa every minute on the minute

5. Bad Form and Positioning

There’s no shame in getting things wrong, but as the great Maya Angelou once said, “Once you know better, do better.” Wanna find out if your positioning and form is on par? Check out an expert in the field––cough, cough, Jason Khalipa. Film yourself doing your usual lifts and compare your movement to theirs—fix poor form in a snap this way, even without a personal trainer keeping watch

Khalipa Tip: Go lighter than you think is needed while perfecting movements.

6. Going Too Hard, Too Fast

Jason Khalipa weights

Whether you’re a seasoned powerlifter or a fitness beginner, giving your best effort is important. But don’t immediately jump into the one-rep max of something without first doing some reps that are lighter. You don’t need to injure yourself by going all out as soon as you get into your home gym. Work up in weight—starting with bodyweight—to help ensure your home workout stays injury-free.

7. Not Utilizing Tempo

Adding tempo into your workouts is frequently underutilized because it requires more thinking than you may be used to while lifting. For example, when back squatting, focus on varying the isometric, eccentric, and concentric phases of your movement. That might look like going down in your barbell squat for a count of three and then quickly up for a count of one. 

“This is a good way to connect your brain with your body in order to check in with yourself,” Khalipa explains.

Jason Khalipa using dumbells

8. Making it Overly Serious

Fitness should be fun! Add to the atmosphere with a killer playlist, colorful lighting, amusing banners or other DIY touches. You want your home gym to feel like the best place in the world to go, and adding things that make you happy will make working out feel like less of a chore. 

Jason Khalipa film still

9. Only Training Alone

For a lot of people, their home gym brings a lot of solaces. However, including equally competitive friends or family members in your workouts can help you stay accountable and consistent. 

RELATED: Partner Workouts

10. “All or Nothing” Mindset

Life isn’t black or white, but sometimes we act like fitness is. Even if you only have 10 minutes of your day available, it’s worth it to get in a quick sweat. You don’t have to beat yourself up over having limited time because something is better than nothing when it comes to fitness. It’s all about being consistent, not who works out for four hours each day.

“You’re in fitness for life,” Khalipa said. “This isn’t a temporary fix.” 

Shop Jason Khalipa’s Home Gym

NCFIT
NCFIT App
NCFIT App

The NCFIT app is a tool you can use for at-home workout programming. With it, you can choose from on-demand classes and daily workouts, as well as get access to an extensive library of exercises. There are four workout tracks to choose from:NCMETCON is high intensity interval training that combines aspects of fitness like conditioning, weightlifting and gymnastics.NCGO is strength and conditioning work that combines traditional strength training with a metcon.NCX is a track that uses dumbbells and bodyweight movements.NCCOMP is a "competitors' track" meant for people who want to compete.Jason Khalipa, CrossFit Games champion and elite athlete, designed NCFIT programming with the intention of helping people build healthy lifestyles. Every class via NCFIT is led by a top-level coach with years of experience in the field. Anyone at any fitness level can work with NCFIT.The app is available for iOS.

Khalipa Tip: Use code GARAGE to save 15% off and get a free 7-day trial on NCFIT.

4.33
Rogue Home Timer
Rogue Echo Two Sided Timer
Rogue Echo Two Sided Timer

The Two-Sided version of the Rogue Echo Gym Timer can be paired with an Echo Floor Stand to create nearly 360 degrees of clear visibility in the center of a training space. This versatile device features a pair of crystal clear LED displays, convenient remote control access, and dozens of pre-set and programmable interval settings for a truly customized experience. If you prefer a traditional wall-mounted timer, a single-sided version of the Echo Gym Timer is also available.Measuring 25 1/4" x 8", the Echo Gym Timer's display screens shows the time in red and the number of rounds in green, with bright 4” high numbers that can be seen from several hundred meters away. This makes it easy for a coach, trainer, or gym owner to program the timer for large groups of athletes to use simultaneously.You can save up to 10 custom programs on the timer at any given time, and the included remote control allows individuals to pause, mute or reprogram the device right from their work station. Change the number of rounds, length of rest, and length of work as you see fit, or adjust from a countdown to a count-up option. There are even several unique preset modes available to jump right into, including the Tabata Timer and “Fight Gone Bad” Timer.Please Note: The Two-Sided Timer and Echo Floor Stand can be ordered individually or together as a set.Specifications:2 LED Clock Displays with 4” High Red/Green Numbers Remote Control for convenient pausing/re-programming Easily create and save Custom Intervals (up to 10 at a time) Choose popular pre-set timer modes like Tabata and FGB Stopwatch can be set to 1/100 seconds In-depth programming instruction provided Input: AC100-240V / Output: 12V Color: Black 2 Year Warranty Mounts to Echo Floor Stand to allow athletes easier visibility from both sides of a gym Multi-Country adapters included Tripod height is adjustable from 40" - 65" (Not including height of timer) *Included power cord (not pictured) is required for use

4.67
Rogue Hex Dumbbells
Rogue Dumbbells
Rogue Dumbbells

Rogue Dumbbells are sold in pairs and available in weights ranging from 2.5LB to 125LB. This standard rubber hex design is a great, budget-priced option that still delivers on quality, performance, and longevity. The heavy-duty, rubber-encased heads minimize noise and limit wear and tear (to both the bells and your flooring), while the chrome-plated handle is ergonomically designed for a firm but comfortable feel in any grip style.All smaller Rogue Dumbbells up to 10LB feature a 25MM diameter handle, while those 12.5LB and up have a larger 35MM diameter handle.Dumbbell training has stood the test of time for good reason. Along with the versatility in weight choices for multiple athletes, a good set of bells can be used to duplicate nearly all types of barbell exercises, while also offering a wider range of single-arm, rehab-specific, and explosive movements in virtually any sized space–something not possible with bars or most weight room machines.Specifications:Weight range: 2.5LB to 125LB Tolerance: +/- 3% Handle Diameter: 25MM up to 10LB, 35MM for 12.5LB and above Heavy-duty Rubber Encased Heads: minimize noise, floor damage, and wear and tear on the dumbbells themselves. Easy-grip, ergonomic Chrome-Plated Handle Proprietary head to handle construction ensures the head does not come loose

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