Which is Better, A Gym or Home Workout?

Which is Better, A Gym or Home Workout?

One of the upcoming health trends for 2020 is more people jumping on the home workout routine. Whether spinning, lifting, banding, rowing, or other capable remote setups, the in-home gym is experiencing a consumer surge. 

Before trendy gym memberships became a thing, a home gym was found in most suburban garages and now they’re back, but way beyond your older sister’s weight bench. Today, the gym industry is competing with in-home workout gadgets that make never leaving your home a reality. Therefore, gym owners are offering more gadgets as well as reduced memberships to keep the customers coming. 

Now, if you could just figure out which is better, a gym or home workout?

Pros and Cons of a Gym and In-Home Workout

Sometimes certain activities are geared toward certain individuals. Evaluating the pros and cons of both gym and in-home workouts you will lean toward one or the other. Whichever you connect to more, that would be your choice. 

Pros of exercising in a gym:

Variety – Having many choices to get your body going makes for a workout you can switch up and never get bored with. From cardio to classes a gym workout offers a wide variety of choices that enable you to adjust to current needs such as muscle toning, full body cardio, and even recovering from an injury. 

Amenities – In addition to machine, free-weight, and class variety, some gyms offer significant amenities such as high end toiletries, massage chairs, free or reduced price protein and hydration food and beverages, as well as private trainers, events, a pool, hot tub, steam room, sauna, and other spa services. 

Socialization & Motivation – Working out at a gym forces you to be amongst living people. Even if you are plugged into your headphones just seeing people in real time increases mood and, when viewing or trying to impress others, even may motivate you to have a better workout.

In a study published in Europe’s Journal of Psychology (EJOP) it was stated that,

“…gym participants over 65 years old tend to come to the gym not only for physical training but also to form social bonds that exceed the boundaries of the fitness locale.”

Cons of exercising at a gym: 

High Cost – If you need a gym beyond $10 per month cardio and weightlifting machine access then you might be spending a monthly fee that is upwards of $100, $200 or more. These are high end gyms that look more like a hotel than a workout room. 

Inconvenience – Leaving your home, rushing to your gym carrying a water bottle, gym bag, lock, etc. can be a hassle. This adds to your workout time which can be extended when adding travel and preparation time. 

The Masses – Exercising in a gym means being around other people. This can involve sweat on equipment, germs, loud cell phone talkers and other annoyances as well as unwanted exposure like seeing your neighbor in a compromising outfit.

Pros of exercising at home:

Reduced Cost – Working out at home can be much less expensive. All you need is some bands, a ball, maybe a barbell or two and you’re good to go. YouTube has excellent free tutorials. If you choose, you can purchase expensive equipment up front and if you stick with it, the equipment should pay for itself over time. You have no membership fee, travel costs, or even workout clothes to buy.

Time Management – Having the convenience to exercise any time of day or night means many more options to not miss a workout. This time management can mesh with your family or job responsibilities rather than having them dictate your workout. 

Mix It Up – With the convenience and time management of exercising at home, if you are more of an impulsive person you can integrate a variety of options. You could avoid having to sign up for a special gym class and follow classes recorded on YouTube at home instead. One day can be an online class, the next a weightlifting app, the next a run in the park. Working out at home allows you to mix it up and enjoy more freedom.

Cons of exercising at a home: 

Motivation – Sometimes the hardest thing to do is motivate yourself at home. If you are the type that has a hard time getting off the couch or is distracted by family activity, chances are no matter how much exercise equipment you stock, it will probably be used to hang-dry your laundry instead. 

Lack of Interest – Working out at a gym offers a variety of visual stimulation. Everyone is energetic and engaged. If you thrive on your surrounding being chock full of all kinds of people then working out at home may make you lose interest fast.

Cost and Space – As mentioned, working out at home could be the most inexpensive exercise routine ever. That is unless you get pulled into the high end gadget consumption so many are using today. Luxury stationary bikes or holographic mirrors in the $3000 range along with a monthly $30-$50 subscription fee can certainly surpass some gym memberships. There is also the subject of space. If you are jammed into a small space to workout you could get frustrated and unmotivated in no time.

When it comes to your health, specifically knowing what works for you is essential. Don’t go purchasing expensive in-home workout tech if you cannot envision a daily workout reality. It’s easy to follow friends and family advice, walk into an in-home gym equipment store and put yourself in debt. However, the draw of a luxury gym with its beautiful clientele and variety of options can be just as enticing. 

Be realistic and make sure your exercise routine is full of work and sweat not bells and whistles. Either way, eat a plant-based dominant diet and get moving the best way you know how for optimal results.