T Nation

Cold Basement!!


I workout in my basement...but my house has electric heat, so it's FRICKIN' COLD down there. No boiler/furnace = no warmth. I've tried all the portable electric heaters, but they work like crap. Aside from finishing the basement, does anyone have any ideas on how I could keep the place a little warmer in the winter? I suck it up on most days, but when it's real cold it's hard to get down there - I just can't stay warmed up.


I work out in my garage. At the start of my work out I am cold but by the end I usually have to pull up my shirt a few times to cool off. It is hard to get started knowing what is facing you. Especially first thing in the morning.


Before you leave for work in the AM put a big fan at the top of the basement stairs. That will blow some warm air down into the basement. You could also put on a bunch of layers, jump rope or do some kind of warm up upstairs then go downstairs and lift. Take the layers off as you need to.
Another thing, you make us Massholes look like real panzy-asses when you piss about how cold your basement is. Nice set-up by the way.


hang some heavy sheets from that pole to both walls, that should increase the effectiveness of the space heaters.


If you get a good space heater, they usually do pretty well. Not telling you anything you don't know, but you'll just have to suck it up and lift in sweats probably.

Also, I wear knee sleves to keep my knees warmed up between sets - pretty effective.


Thanks for all good ideas. Actually, I tried separating the workout area using curtains, but it didn't help...

I've been a "masshole" my whole life, but I still HATE THE FRICKIN' COLD.


a space heater and a heavy sweatsuit. my basement is finished and its still freezing down there.


I'm not trying to be a jerk with this, but, suck it up. Dress warm and get your ass down there.


buy a cheap propane heater


Depending on how the walls are finished you could hang sheets of that aluminum foil backed air-bubble insulation. It's cheap and easy to install. Get rolls of it any Home Depot.


Sup Masshole,

Nice setup, but stop being such a wuss. Try wearing longjohns or spandex pants under your workout gear. Wearing a hat that will wick away sweat will also help a great deal. As far as the space heater's go, be careful where you point them because certain objects may be quite flammable/combustable and you may want to look at commercial space heaters.

Good luck


He had to suck it up:


When Arnold was around 16 or so he would secretly work out in the basement or something similar to a wine celler. He claims it was very cold.He worked out down there because his parents forbid him from going to the gym more then 3 times per week.


Propane heaters work best. Also insultation. Lots of extra would help.
Thank God I live in the south. I hate cold fuckin' weather. It's too cold in GA for my taste. Bring on global warming!


I had a similiar problem. Try this:

Tomorrow morning, take shoes and work out clothes to the bathroom with you. Take a long hot shower, to the point where you start to sweat. Dress in the steamy bathroom. Go directly to the basement: without rest do a circuit of bodyweight squats, push-ups, abs (crunches, leg raises, whatever you usually do). Go through the circuit twice. Get right to work with your workout. This is easier if you're doing a total body type of thing, but pretty much eliminate rest periods and go from squats, to bench press, to chin-ups. You'll stay hot. Works for me.


I agree with the above poster that recommended getting bubble wrap from Home Depot and insulating the walls. The bubble wrap stuff is pretty easy to work with, and insulates as efficient as the thick fiberglass stuff. I thought it was kind of expensive personally though.

The only way to warm the place up is insulation, and efficient heating.


I have an electric heater in my [finished] basement at home and it works like a charm. Even though my basement is finished, it still gets cold. I plug this heater in, turn it up to 85, and has the basement bearable in 10 minutes.

If by next weekend, you dont have a solution, PM me and I'll give you the name of the brand of the heater. It should do the trick if you leave it down there overnight.


Thanks for the ideas everyone, I appreciate it. I'll look into the propane heaters and insulation. Truth is, the future Mrs. and I aren't planning on being here much longer - maybe a year or 2 (it's a townhouse) - so I don't really want to dump too much cash into fixing up the basement... I was curious if anyone had a quick fix.

Sucks cuz along with the cold, I've been battling a bout of bad elbow tendinitis so it's been mentally tough to hit the weights knowing I'm going to freeze and be in pain. I've decided to take a week off and pop some anti-inflammatorys 3x per day to see if it will go away...and then get some wrist WRAPS and an elbow sleeve when I get back to it. Man, it sucks gettin' old (I'm 38).
Thanks again.




Hey, I have the heater above. It gets hot, but its really loud.

I workout in the basement too, its unfinished and looks really similar to yours. Its been brutally cold this winter.

Would you by chance have a heating duct from the dryer running threw there. Thats what mine has. I just yanked the duct out of the hole leading outside, plugged that hole up so the cold would stay out, then turned the dryer on and let the heat pump into the basement. Gets hot really fast.

Just an idea.