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I work a distance from home and find it difficult to commit to getting to the gym after work, which I'm trying to do because I want to build more muscle. I was thinking that a good, strong resistance band looped over my chair leg could let me work my biceps here in the office after hours, when most have gone home. This way I can do 30mins training and then go straight home. Can anybody tell me what I should look for in a good, strong resistance band? Or any known durable brands? I was gonna order some online. To give you an idea of resistance level I currently use a barbell to bicep curl 45kg, so I'm guessing something equivalent to 15-20kg would be good.

EDIT: To answer Moses' question, the problem with getting to the gym after work is the time of night I get there. Between the office and home there is often a lot of traffic, so I get to work early and I don't leave until late to avoid sitting in queues. So I usually leave at almost 7pm. Get to the gym at 8pm, do a workout for an hour, return home and cook, sleep... back up early to return to the office.

My thinking is that I can do some bicep curls or similar here in the office while I wait for the traffic to clear. It is not ideal and I'd rather be using the gym equipment, but it is not possible every night of the week.

  • I am having a hard time accepting this premise. If you have 30 minutes free time after work, then what's stopping you from going to the gym on the way home? If there is no gym in the area, then what about building a home gym and working out there? I can see no reason why you should be limiting yourself to working out in a cubicle when better options exist. Once you allow yourself to workout from home, your options open up tremendously so you no longer have to limit yourself to just bands. – Moses Nov 19 '14 at 20:38
  • Because he can. I really think that going to any gym is a waste of money, a waste of time, and, frankly, a waste of life. – Dakatine Dec 2 '14 at 21:26
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Here's my experience. I bought bodylastics and cheap bands from Decathlon and I used them quite a lot especially while traveling.

  • Bands can indeed provide a lot of resistance. The best would be if you were able to try them out before buying - but, any brand will do. You can of course pull several bands at once to increase the resistance.
  • Having handles and ankle straps really makes a big difference. If you don't use them, most of your effort will be focused on your grip; which couldn't be what you may actually want to focus to, and you will suffer from pain and discomfort caused by the band pulling on your skin. This does not mean that you have to buy bands with handles, you can easily DIY and add them to any system
  • what is really important is not the band itself (I really think that any will do, seriously) but the anchor. I was able to crash a wall clothes hanger - that hit my head badly. So really ensure that the chair you are going to use or any anchor is more than adequate to the load you are going to apply on it; because it may be designed to resist a big load a certain way (you sit on it) and not another (you pull one of its legs). This is important both for the equipment and most important for your safety.
  • brand doesn't necessarily mean quality. I like bodylastics' handles and straps; and their colors as well. But two of the carabiners were broken out of the box, and this wasn't nice.

Based from my experience I would now buy unbranded bands and build custom handles. If you can find cheap bands with handles of course just go for it. Enjoy!

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I understand your dilemma completely. I would recommend the TRX suspension training straps along with one of their general fitness videos.

While these are not stretchy "resistance" bands, they do allow you to have a time-effective and complete body workout - provided that you can find a place in your office from which to suspend them.

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    Also consider one of the TRX-knock-offs. You can get them for $30. – Eric Dec 3 '14 at 14:45
  • @EricKaufman. Do you have any recommendations of brands that you feel are still good quality? – klsoren Dec 3 '14 at 14:57
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    the WOSS 3000 is a safe bet. The "equalizer" kit has the door anchor and some other accessory goodies in there, still coming in under $40. that and other doo-dads like a $10 ab wheel can really make a decent little workout. I use mine a lot when I travel because of the deplorable hotel "gyms" that are found in most even nice establishments. – Eric Dec 3 '14 at 18:48

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