So you’ve decided to start an exercise program. Now what? There are probably 10 fitness centers within a five-mile radius of your home. But which one will be the best fit? Is it better to just exercise at home and not bother with trendy fitness programs?
What are the benefits of home workouts vs. the gym?
Take a look at the list below to determine the best direction for you to achieve your fitness goals. Just do whatever keeps you moving!
Five Reasons to work out at home:
- You’re self conscious. If you haven’t worked out for a while, heading to a gym with wall-to-wall mirrors, sweaty gym rats with six-pack abs and intimidating equipment might completely freak you out. Maybe stay home and try out a few moves until you feel comfortable in a gym environment.
- Much cheaper. Gym memberships can be as little as $10 a month, up to hundreds of dollars. But a home workout is free. You can download workout videos or borrow fitness books from the library to create a cheap exercise program.
- Add some zen. There are really no quiet places in the gym. There’s loud music, people talking and exercise machines being used all the time. By staying home, you can take a few minutes at the end of your workout to meditate or do some gentle yoga poses to quiet the mind.
- Wear whatever you’d like. Don’t feel like investing in expensive, name-brand exercise clothes? Well, guess what? You don’t have to. Just workout in whatever’s comfortable without worrying about keeping up with the latest workout fashions.
- Break it up. Because you’re at home, you can use what’s around the house to create an all-day workout. Take five minutes to run up and down the stairs. Do walking lunges down the hall. Be creative.
Five reasons to workout at the gym
- You need motivation. If you know the chances of doing a home workout are virtually nil, enroll in a group class like spinning or boot camp that can keep you motivated and accountable.
- Fewer distractions. There’s always something at home that needs your attention. Maybe it’s the laundry, paying bills or Facebook, those distractions keep you from your goals. But in a gym, you’re only there to exercise.
- Different equipment. The more you mix things up, the better your fitness level will be. Maybe one day you’ll do kickboxing and the next day you’ll work on the elliptical. Keeping the body guessing is easier to do when there are lots of exercise options to choose from.
- Make the time count. When you set time aside to go to the gym, you go there and workout. It’s even better if you go with a plan. For instance, focusing on strength training one day, cardio the next. If you set aside time at home, you don’t always get around to it.
- Make new friends. Gyms can be very social places where you can make new connections with like-minded people. If you need to get out and interact with people, the gym is a great place to go.