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Closet Make-under PLUS Hiding a Treadmill

Remember when I gleefully revealed that I lost 10 lbs. in Hungary last August?  Some of the sneaky buggers found me.  They were especially adept at finding me over the holidays.

I FEEL the difference – my “comfy” pants now hurt me because they are so tight.

That’s why recent blog photos of me have been kind of stealthily shot.  Exhibit A (a different version was used in this post & this post):

It might not seem like a huge change, but I feel it.  And someone else might feel it too if a button rockets from my too-tight pants and knocks out an eye.

Solution?  Like many others, I decided to get my fitness on.  I have a really bad track record when it comes to fitness plans, including unused gym memberships – plural, I didn’t learn the first time – and dust-collecting fitness equipment.  But I love to walk so when Canadian Tire had a good quality, foldable treadmill on sale for $549.99 (more than 65% off) I decided to spring for it. 

But where to put this beastly treadmill? 

Not the main floor (too “in your face”) and not the basement (too gloomy).  I chose the guest bedroom, a sunny and convenient space.  If I have to walk by this baby every day, I figure I’ll be motivated to use it.  But I don’t ordinarily spend a lot of time in there so it doesn’t feel like it’s totally cramping my style.  I’m actually excited to use this room which was exclusively set up for guests to sleep and read.  Now I get to actually make use of the space myself (and Hubby’s been walking, too).

But where to put this beastly treadmill when we have guests?

The new treadmill folds up and just fits into the mini walk-in closet (the dimensions of the treadmill are: 44″ x 35″ x 61″).  But we had to switch around the closet fittings first.  I lost some closet space so the weekend was spent condensing, sorting, tidying and saying good-bye to things we store but never need/want/look at (I posted some ads on kijiji over the weekend but also donated many items).  The closet needed a good tidy anyway:

So shameful.

After we emptied the contents into the room (which was exceptionally awkward because I hadn’t unpacked yet), we moved the closet shelving from the side to the back:

(We plan to switch the closet back when we go to sell the house, so ignore the holes and lack of trim)

We added a shortened bar and shelf for the teeniest bit of hanging storage, moved the ironing board holster to a different wall and got our “go-bags” off the floor by hanging two very high, sturdy hooks.  Additional hooks tucked to the right of the shoe rack added purse storage.

With shelf (to left of shelving unit) added:

How I made the most of the space to accommodate the treadmill:

  • I de-cluttered, selling and donating what we have moved from home to home only to store
  • I sorted & condensed what I kept, labeling boxes and bins so I know what’s where
  • I made use of vertical space, prioritizing shelving over hanging space & adding lots of hooks
  • I hung the ironing board & iron (something I did before, too)
  • I made use of nooks I hadn’t thought to use before (like to the right of the shoes – perfect for more purses!)

And now the treadmill can fit into the closet.  It’s not something we could do every day (it’s mildly dangerous) but here’s Hubby valiantly putting the treadmill into the closet to demonstrate.  It needs to be tilted to rock onto it’s wheels and then awkwardly rolled into place, with Hubby balancing the weight.  It’s especially hard to set it down because it wants to just thunk down (on our DIY hardwood floors – yikes).  But, it’s doable.  They sure do gloss over this bit in the video for this treadmill though.

Check out the magic show: 

Best part:

And no guest will know it’s in there, unless they go snooping.

It sure is a beast, though.  It weighs 200 lbs. and I thought we were going to die bringing it up the stairs.  How many calories did I burn hauling it up the stairs with Hubby, I wonder?

Do you have any fitness plans for 2012?  What are your tricks for getting your fitness plan to fit your life and your home?



  1. Designwali
    January 23, 2012 / 3:11 pm

    wow! looks great. I hear you on the fitness goals…i just can't keep on track either.

    • Tanya from Dans le Townhouse
      January 23, 2012 / 3:48 pm

      Thanks!I love knowing that I'm not alone. Here's hoping we can do it this year 🙂

  2. Sheila @SZInteriors
    January 23, 2012 / 5:11 pm

    Tanya, this is FAB.U.LOUS!!! I love the pop of green in your guest room, and the artwork – is it your work? And what you have done to integrate the treadmill is incredible. Great job!My fitness plan is to get at some yoga in the mornings, and what I have to do is overhaul the coat closet to make a handy spot for my mat, an exercise ball and small weights. Can I just say they're all still in their packages… have been for the last 8 months!You have inspired me with this post! Thank you 🙂

  3. Nette @ This Dusty House
    January 23, 2012 / 5:12 pm

    I would love my own treadmill… The husband and I got gym memberships back in November and, up until last week, I could proudly say that I hadn't missed a week… which only meant I made it out one night a week, every week. Useful? Not so much. :S This week, I'm trying something new: a 5:45 wake-up time and 45 minutes at the gym before getting on the bus to work. We'll see how this works out…Good luck with your fitness goals!

    • Tanya from Dans le Townhouse
      January 23, 2012 / 5:16 pm

      Hey, once a week a better than no times per week. Good luck with your new goal. I'm sure it will work out for you because you eased yourself into it by going once a week. Regular gym-going won't be such a shock to your system 🙂

  4. Carol@TheDesignPages
    January 23, 2012 / 5:19 pm

    Oh you make me laugh girl. Those pesky pounds somehow found me again during the holidays and I am up 8 pounds. When you're only 5'3" that really does make a difference and my buttons are ready to pop as well. I'm just finishing my 3rd week on P90X so I'm here to motivate you to keep going:) Love your new fitness centre!

    • Tanya from Dans le Townhouse
      January 23, 2012 / 5:47 pm

      Wow, Carol, you are weeks ahead of me! Thanks for the motivation. Your determination is inspiring!!P.S. You still look fabulous, I'm sure!

  5. Suzanne
    January 23, 2012 / 6:07 pm

    Love the "Lonely Sock" label! We have a giant treadmill that is currently languishing in our damp basement. Too yucky to work out down there so I think putting it in a guest room is a great idea. I think once I've renovated our second guest room I'll put it in there so I see the darn thing every morning! thanks for the inspiration.

    • Tanya from Dans le Townhouse
      January 23, 2012 / 7:29 pm

      Happy to help!

  6. Vintage Market Place
    January 23, 2012 / 6:33 pm

    wow I was just thinking last night that I need to get a treadmill but have no where to store it either.this gives me something to think about :)Good luck with getting back into your comfy pants.Amy

    • Tanya from Dans le Townhouse
      January 23, 2012 / 7:29 pm

      Thanks Amy!!

  7. melissamevans
    January 23, 2012 / 6:53 pm

    What an AMAZING job!! Congrats! What a huge difference….I love the last couple of pics…when the doors are closed! It's all organized in the closet, but the best part is…the doors closed and you don't see anything! Again, AWESOME job!

  8. Ashley@AttemptsAtDomestication
    January 23, 2012 / 7:37 pm

    We plan on getting a fold away elliptical when we move to the new house, so hopefully that will motivate me to exercise more too!

  9. Dora
    January 23, 2012 / 7:56 pm

    I actually have a free gym downstairs in my building and I always say I will go work out but I never get around to do it 😛 I have to get more motivated 🙂

  10. Amelia @ House Pretty
    January 23, 2012 / 8:42 pm

    Great idea! We've been wanting to purchase a treadmill, since it wouldn't take long for it to be cheaper than a gym membership, but haven't because of the issue of where to put it. Genius!

  11. Jayca
    January 24, 2012 / 12:18 am

    New things for me to be insanely jealous of?a) Your dress in the first pictureb) Your exceedingly helpful hubbyc) Dear word, I HAVE no words for the awesomeness that is that revamped closetI wish you joy on that there treadmill – I go to the gym for my workouts because I require the ability to people-watch, listen to music on the ol' earbuds AND watch TV while I'm running. Anything to distract me from the fact that I'm running:) Also, you make me wish I posted more pictures of humans. Humans make for interesting posts. Noted:)

    • Tanya from Dans le Townhouse
      January 24, 2012 / 12:57 am

      Awww, you makin' me blush.a) Dress is from a store in Hungary. $20-ish.b) Hubby is awesome, thanks for noticingc) Many hours later, I feel pretty darn good about the closet.But I'm jealous of:a) Your ability to take fabulous photos everydayb) That you've been going to the GYMc) That you have animal life in your home to blog about

  12. Faith Pike
    January 24, 2012 / 2:31 am

    The closet looks great! Such an interesting layout. Love that you can for the treadmill right in there. And it doesn't block your shoes. You have a lot of shoes! Jealous 🙂 Really liked seeing a picture of you and the hubs. Very sweet couple 🙂

    • Tanya from Dans le Townhouse
      January 24, 2012 / 4:01 am

      Thanks for the kind words. If you look closely at the shoe rack, some belong to the Hubs and waaaay too many are $4.00 flip flops. For someone who lives where it is winter for half of the year, I have a lot of flip flops. Hope springs eternal.

  13. Aubrey {All Things Bright and Beautiful}
    January 25, 2012 / 12:22 am

    Wow, girl! I'm so impressed by, well, ALL OF IT! Congrats on the 10lbs, it is definitely not easy to drop weight and that is a big accomplishment! I know what you mean about being able to feel it, too…and pretty soon people will start asking you about it as well (c; And the closet makeover is amazing! What a difference!!!

    • Tanya from Dans le Townhouse
      January 25, 2012 / 1:00 am

      Sadly, I re-gained some of it, hence the treadmill. But I'm working on losing it again. Happy my weight gain isn't super evident 🙂

  14. Cassie @ Primitive & Proper
    January 25, 2012 / 11:31 pm

    tanya- i am sure you will lose whatever was gained back quickly! we all gain a little over the holidays i think!and the closet looks AH-mazing!

  15. Anonymous
    November 5, 2013 / 2:24 pm

    but where do guests hang their clothes?

    • Tanya from Dans le Townhouse
      November 5, 2013 / 7:10 pm

      Guests have three armoire drawers for their use and a hook on the back of the door for a few hanging items. I leave a few hangers there. Rarely does anyone hang anything when they visit. Frankly, our guests only tend to stay for a few days.

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