Why I bought a Power Rack!
I considered titling this article, “Why I bought a Power Rack and Why You Should Too” but the fact is you don’t need a power rack to get a good workout in or to reach your fitness goals. The fact is that after several years of working out and many hours of research I chose to invest in one so I could further increase my efficiency and ability to perform certain exercises while maintaining a safer lifting environment.
While I hope this article might help some of you who might be considering the purchase of a power rack, it’s primary purpose is to share my own unique situation and insight into obtaining a tool to further my own health and fitness goals.
A few months ago I made one of the biggest financial investments into my health and fitness lifestyle that I’ve made in a long time. I bought an Elite FTS Professional Power Rack R3 which came with lots of extras. In total I got $3,900 worth of equipment for $1,500. I wish I could say that it was a hard decision, but with a little research it quickly became a no brainer for many reasons and I’ll tell you why.
It’s an investment
Do I need a commercial grade power rack? Hell no. But am I glad I bought one? Hell yes!
There are many types of racks on the market, many of which are a lot cheaper than the one I purchased. That being said when the opportunity to buy something at such a discounted rate came along; I didn’t let it pass me by. I also didn’t buy on a whim. I was in the market for a power rack, found what looked like a good deal and proceeded to do several hours of research before I even started to negotiate with the seller.
Here is a comprehensive list of everything I got for the $1,500 and what it costs retail:
|Power Rack||$ 2,124.00|
|Step Up Attachment||Included|
|Bands (New/Unused)||$ 150.00|
|Barbell Pad X 3||$ 30.00|
|Quick Adjust Safety Pins||$ 119.00|
|Ab Straps||$ 40.00|
|Bench with Seat||$ 319.00|
|Crunch Attachment||$ 69.00|
|Hyper Core Attachment||$ 175.00|
|Leg Attachment||$ 129.00|
|Weights and Barbell||$ 584.00|
|Stall Mats X 4||$ 160.00|
Not a bad deal right? What’s that, $1,500 is still a ton of money? Your right, it is. But let’s consider a few things.
- I don’t pay for a gym membership. Looking around my area, the cheapest option for a gym membership is a 24 Hour Fitness Sport about a mile away. Total cost for a 1 year membership is $350.72 or $29.23/month (paid up front, it’s higher if you pay monthly). At this rate it would take about 4.3 years for the equipment to pay for itself. When you start looking at memberships to LA Fitness or Lifetime Fitness the memberships cost are easily in the $500-$700 range. “What about a $10 / month membership to Fitness Unlimited!?” While I have nothing against them and there’s even one close to me they actually don’t have power racks, and there selection of free weights is pretty limited.
- I don’t have to spend time driving there, checking in, or competing for equipment. Living in Houston Texas, traffic is a fairly big factor. Just going a mile down the street can easily take 15-20 minutes. If it’s rush hour you might as well just run there and back which is what I used to do. Don’t even get me started on people who hog equipment and stand around like it’s a social club chatting. I’m sure you’ve also heard about the newbie who has to get his six-to-eight sets of bench presses done and can’t let you squeeze a set in while he’s taking a 3-5 minute break. Guess what? That guys real, he exists, and there’s more than one of him.
- I own the power rack and all the equipment outright and can sell it at any time. Based on my research I could easily re-sell this equipment for as much as I paid for it. If I sell the equipment individually I could probably make even more money than I spent on it. How’s that for an investment?
- Most of the equipment will last for several lifetimes. Without making this a product review (something I might do later on), the rack I bought is commercial grade and is so damn durable I have no doubt my grandchildren’s children will be using it if there so inclined.
- I don’t include tax which would be another $322.00 or shipping which is easily $200 + if I purchased it retail.
Growing out of my current weightlifting equipment
Since I started exercising my collection of workout equipment has increased and in a sense, I’ve outgrown some of it. I already had a good bench, an Olympic barbell, a set of Powerblocks (adjustable dumbbells) and even a decent all in one home gym.
Over the course of about two and a half years, I was able to achieve a pretty shredded natural physique with this setup.
However, I was missing the ability to do some of the most basic and important lifts such as the barbell bench press and barbell squats.
I knew that in order to get the most return out of the time I spent lifting that I needed the ability to actually do the type of heavy compound lifts that make up the core of any good weightlifting routine (Squats, Bench Press, and Deadlifts).
Having the Space
I’ve been lifting in a home gym since I started back in 2013. As bodybuilding grew from a hobby to a passion and then finally a lifestyle, so to did the space and equipment I wanted to optimize my time spent lifting.
Don’t get me wrong here; anyone can get a shredded physique with a pair of dumbbells and a workout bench. But when it comes to optimizing your time spent working out, having the right setup can save you a lot of time and help you achieve your goals a little bit quicker, safer and can be done without breaking the bank.
That’s why in 2015 when I bought my first house I dedicated an entire room to working out. Finally now in 2017 I have moved into an even bigger room and now have the space for a power rack.
I’ve always lifted by myself. Not always by choice, but generally speaking the more controlled my workout environment is the more consistent I am and the better results I have.
The ability to be able to go into my home gym whenever I want and get work done is a beautiful thing.
When it comes to safety, the problem is most of the time there’s no one around to help me if I get in a jam while performing certain lifts.
With a good power rack and good form you don’t need to worry as much when you hit failure on a set of heavy ass weights. You can simply work to failure and if necessary let the barbell down to the safety bars.
Practicing how to fail correctly and how to properly dump the weight only serves to further my safety and ultimately helps prevent injury.
You don’t need a power rack or big, expensive, and complex setups to obtain your health and fitness goals. That being said, having a power rack can certainly help by increasing efficiency, safety, and by increasing the range of exercises you can perform.
Always do your research, don’t buy on a whim because you think your getting a good deal, buy when you know your getting a good deal. Google and Craigslist are your friends.
Be patient and disciplined. If you only give yourself a week as opposed to 2-3 months to find a good deal your probably not going to find one.
Plan ahead. If you buy a power rack now, will you have space for it in 1, 2, or 5 years down the road? Nothing sucks more than having to give up shit you paid for because you can’t fit it into your new place.
Having a power rack wont make you lift with good form. Sure if you hit failure you can dump the weight and it makes getting that last rep in a little safer. However, if you have poor form your still going to jack up your body through unnecessary wear and tear or you will take a trip to snap city.
As always, I appreciate your comments and feedback so don’t be shy about dropping me a few lines in the comments sections below! Also, if you liked this article please feel free to share it on Facebook, Twitter, etc. Cheers!