To Gym Or Not To Gym

There are many people who question whether they really need an expensive gym membership to achieve their fitness goals. Well, in the end, it really does depend on what those fitness goals are. I can tell you one thing, which is that many people can become fit without the gym. At the same time, I personally love going to the gym. But even more than that I love being able to workout both at the gym and at home (even outdoors). Let’s go over the pros and cons of each, and see if we can figure what is best for you!

What The Gym Has To Offer

Pros

What I love about the gym, especially a more premium and fully equipped gym, is they are just that. FULLY EQUIPPED. Although no gym is perfect, the really pricey and premium gyms usually have almost everything you need. That is for ANY type of fitness goal(s) you may have. Now athletes such as track stars, football players, basketball players, boxers, etc. definitely have to do a lot of extra work outside the gym, but when it comes to strength and muscle building, most gyms have them covered. For most of us like you and I, we can get everything we need from a high-quality gym. Whether that be high-intensity interval training, weight lifting, body building, cardio, etc. we can get it all from the gym as well. It is truly convenient in that you can go to one place and have everything you need to workout, get your sweat on, and improve your performance and physique.

Cons

Now with everything, there is a give and take. The gym can actually be stressful. As convenient as it is, you have to deal with monthly payments, waiting on others (machines/weights/etc.), and sometimes lugging a bunch of gear to and from the gym. When you workout from home, you probably don’t have to bring a gym bag with a change of clothes, different shoes, etc. We will dive into that more here in a bit. Also, there are some of us who just feel much more comfortable working out alone, or away from so much visibility from others. Other cons include the time and energy it takes to go to and from the gym, especially depending on life and work situations, proximity, and other variables.

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What Working Out At Home Has To Offer

Now we all have different sized homes and different financial situations. For some, an at home gym could actually be very similar to a premium membership gym. I’m sure Lebron James has a home gym nicer than some of the gyms you and I have been to. For today’s post though I’ll be talking about the average home gym. The regular Joes like you and may just have a treadmill at home or a do-it-all single machine, a few free weights and maybe a workout bench. More so some of y’all may have a bench press and even a squat rack, or a nice home garage setup.

Pros

It is pretty nice to be able to workout from home whenever you please. Whether it is because you prefer a certain time of day, or because work and life puts restraints on your time, being able to workout from the convenience of your own home is quite calming to know. You don’t have to drive anywhere, you don’t have to wait on people and you aren’t paying a gym membership which usually gets more expensive as each year passes. When working out from home you can get your workout on, get in, get out, and go. Bottom line it saves money and time.

Cons

Working out from home can be limiting in terms of achieving certain fitness goals. You aren’t going to become a professional body builder or athlete working out only from home. Also, though it is nice to work out in the privacy of one’s own home, it is equally nice to get out to a public gym and socialize and be inspired by seeing other people. Working out from home, there’s no one there to give you advice, tell you if you’re performing a certain move or lift wrong, or even to simply encourage you with what you’re doing. It can also become expensive in a different way than a gym membership can be. If you are buying a lot of equipment to fill out your home gym, it will cost you more initially, where as at the gym you can pay as you go.

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What Do I Do

I personally do the majority of my fitness routines at my local gym. That is where I do my major compound movements, i.e. bench press, squats, etc. Actually, I do a lot of body building/weight lifting at the gym. Perhaps I’ll do a lighter or resistance band version of what I did earlier in the week for the same muscle group(s). Or I’ll workout muscles groups that I don’t have time to do at the gym, such as abs and forearms. Most importantly I do extra work on stubborn muscle groups, such as my calves. I work them out hard at the gym and hard at home (6 days a week). And of course, when I can’t get out to the gym, it’s nice to be able to still get a workout on at home.

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What’s Best For You

So I wanted to end this side by side comparison of working out at the gym as opposed to working out at home with a few tips on what is best for you. It really is all about preference and where you find you are able to push yourself the hardest. Actually, it is about knowing yourself, your body type, and what your body needs at the moment. If you are looking to just get a nice sweat on every day, or 4 to 5 days a week, just to be toned and looking and feeling good, all you need is to work out from home. Quite frankly I see a lot of people at the gym, doing things that they could be doing at home, a lot more effectively. At the same time, if you’re very social, or you enjoy having a place to go to, to spend time, then the gym is right for you. Now athletes in training, need to be working out at the gym, outside, and in special facilities based around their specific sport. And finally, if you are really trying to be in the upper echelon of physique, aesthetics, and/or strength, you need to put in time at the gym, at least a few days a week.

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Final Thoughts

So in the end, the home gym is great for ANYONE. Whether it is going to be your primary workout space or the place you do extra work outside of the public gym you’re a member of, it’s always nice to have that convenience. A few necessary items I believe every fitness person should have at home are some dumbbells, a workout bench, and some resistance bands. I also believe a jump rope is one of the best fitness accessories anyone can have. Other than that, check out the rest of this site to see all the different ways you can Customize Your Home Gym. And let us all know in the comments below how you get your fitness on, at home, at the gym, or wherever it may be!

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Fitness Equipment To Consider

I'm a certified health and wellness coach, blogger, and fitness enthusiast. I created At Home Gym Review to provide consumers with the most valuable information possible before making a purchase.

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