Not only are we fresh into a new year, but we’re also in a brand new decade! It’s that time of year where we tend to get our acts together, or at the very least we want to.
Were not going to lie, sometimes that’s easier said than done. However, if you have willpower and motivation to make some changes to your life then good for you!
With the knowledge that the most popular New Year’s Resolutions are to exercise more and to lose weight, we thought we’d take a look into the best places to work out.
Is it at home? Or is it in the gym? You decide!
So you’ve decided to work out more
It’s easy to make the decision that you’re going to exercise but it’s not always easy to know where is best for you to do it. There are numerous arguments about where is better to work out. In the comfort of your own home? Or in the environment that is specifically designed for exercise. I.e. The gym.
In this post, we’re looking at the advantages and disadvantages of home workouts and gym workouts.
So you have decided to make a positive change in 2020. You’re going to work out and become a fitter version of yourself. Congratulations! Now to decide where you’re going to do it.
These days joining a gym can be done with a few clicks of a button and there are a variety of membership options from pay as you gym to yearly contracts. However, it’s just as easy to pay for membership without stepping foot in the gym.
If you want to up your home gym game, then there is a range of exercise equipment available on Amazon that won’t cost the earth. But, it’s also just as easy to find a million and one excuses or things to do aside from working out at home.
There are advantages and disadvantages for both gym and home workouts. Whichever option you decide, the important thing is to find the setting that most fits your needs while also keeping your motivation strong.
Work out at home? Advantages
Home workouts won’t cost a penny unless you wish to buy equipment. There is a wealth of work out routines that you can do at home. These are available online for free to give you inspiration for well-rounded full-body workouts and to ensure your form is correct.
Should you wish to purchase home gym equipment, it will be a one-time expenditure and solid investment, rather than an ongoing monthly cost.
If you’re highly self-conscious, working out at home means you won’t be shamed or scrutinized. You can sweat and jiggle as much as you need to without the fear of perfectly formed specimens looking at you from across the gym.
This is your personal domain, there’s no socialisation and you have absolutely nothing to hide. You won’t have to wait to use any equipment and you control the playlist.
You can also grunt, swear or cry without fear of onlookers judging you from a distance.
Your home gym is open all day every day. You are able to work out any time you like and for as long as you like. This is particularly good for anyone with a busy schedule that requires a high level of flexibility.
Work out at home? Disadvantages
Home workout equipment may be relatively inexpensive and is a longer-term investment. However, it is possible that once the novelty has worn off; the equipment will not be used. It will gather dust and remain a constant reminder of wasted money.
Lack of Community
If you are a social bee and enjoy the company of a workout buddy, then working out at home may not be for you unless you can convince a friend or family member to join you.
Fit Body HQ have discussed the benefits of having a workout partner. These include helping to achieve your workout goals, extra motivation and trying new workouts.
It can be easy to get stuck in a rut doing the same workouts because there is no sense of competition or variety in your routine. Over time this can result in reaching a plateau.
We have had success with gym workouts and also working out at home. The biggest factor in that success has been the motivation to exercise.
When motivation has been low to non-existent there are always a thousand more urgent things to do around the house to avoid working out.
Having limited space can be a challenge with home workouts. Not everyone will have the luxury of a spare room or garage to devote to a home gym. This, in turn, can limit the types of workouts that can be done at home.
Advantages of Gym workouts
Typically the atmosphere in a gym is very energetic. People are there for a reason – to exercise. This type of atmosphere can be motivational; There are other people around putting their all into their workout and you feel the need to do the same.
It’s also likely that you’ll find people there with your goal physique which can motivate you to keep going past what you think is your stopping point.
The extra minute on the treadmill or extra rep on the weights can make a difference and push your boundaries.
Value for money
Although the cost of gym memberships may seem quite a lot, there is a range of equipment available that you would not be able to purchase for use at home. Nor would you have the space to store such equipment.
There are also usually a lot of extras included in the membership fee that you would not have access to at home. This can include extra classes, access to PTs or additional leisure facilities in some cases.
We touched on this point in the section above but I think it merits its own mention.
One major bonus of working out in a gym is the variety of equipment that is made available. There is a range of cardio machines, machines for every muscle imaginable and of course the free weights too.
Again, on top of that, is the additional leisure facilities that some gyms include such as swimming pools, along with saunas and steam rooms that can be good to relax your muscles after a workout.
In addition, it’s not uncommon for gyms to include access to a variety of classes as part of their membership. Classes can include anything from yoga, spin and CrossFit, to targeted workout classes or beginner classes for newbies.
The sense of community in a gym can be a great motivating factor and can help you reach your fitness goals.
It’s also possible to form new friendships by participating in workout classes or even spotting for someone who needs a little help.
The personal approach
If you’re new to working out and feel like you’d benefit from a little extra help you will be able to find reliable personal trainers who know the gym and equipment inside out.
In fact, although some may look pretty buff, they’ve all had to start somewhere. They will understand your starting point, gain an understanding of your current lifestyle habits and be able to suggest the best fitness regime and meal plan to get you to where you want to be.
Although they will charge for their time and guidance, their advice can be priceless.
Disadvantages of gym workouts
Although it is nice to have a little socialisation at the gym, it can easily become an opportunity to chit chat with other gym members. Before you know it an hour has passed and you haven’t even come close to breaking a sweat.
The waiting game
The gym can have busy periods whether it’s certain times of the day or days of the week. Or even the inevitable influx of New Years Resolutioners in January.
There really is nothing more infuriating than waiting for someone to get off a machine that you’d like to use. Especially when the person hogging the machine has spent the last fifteen minutes on their phone rather than working out.
Unfortunately, not everyone is lucky enough to have a gym at the corner of their street. Sometimes the closest gym to you could be up to thirty minutes drive away. This isn’t convenient and can certainly hinder your motivation to work out.
For the most part, gyms are pretty clean. The equipment is regularly disinfected by staff. However, there is always at least one beefcake who doesn’t feel like it’s his responsibility to wipe his sweat off the bench when he’s finished bench pressing. We’ve all been there. It’s gross.
Where does this leave us?
Well having analysed the list of advantages and disadvantages it’s really hard to say what’s the better option for you personally and only you can decide this.
If money or time is tight for you then home workouts would probably be the better option. You can save money by following one of the many free workouts available online and workout anytime you want to.
If you find that a sense of community will enable you to stay motivated on your goal or that you would benefit from a broad range of equipment then you may wish to consider joining a gym.
Overall, the takeaway of this is that you need to be sure to make careful considerations for all options and choose the outcome that suits your lifestyle best.
Which option do you think is best? Let us know in the comments.