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Gym vs. Home Workout: Which is Better for You?

By Jason
March 8, 2023
7 minutes

Exercising comes with many benefits such as better metabolism, improved immunity, and better mental health. However, it is daunting to choose between working out at the gym or at home. This article looks at the gym and home workouts, exploring their benefits and disadvantages, so you can choose the one that meets your needs.

Benefits of gym workout

gym 1 As you’d expect, working out at the gym comes with a lot of advantages. Let’s look at them.

  • Access to equipment

Unlike home workouts, exercising at the gym allows you to access a wide array of equipment. The best part? There is equipment for different fitness levels. Whether you are a beginner or a seasoned gym goer, you’ll find equipment that meets your needs.

  • Access to help

At the gym, there’s an instructor to help you with everything. For example, if you don’t know how to perform a certain exercise or to use certain equipment, the instructor will be ready to help. Besides, you can always ask your gym mates. This is unlike home workout that requires you to watch tutorials and read manuals before using specific equipment.

  • Socializing

gym socializing

If you don’t want to work out alone, consider joining a local gym. Most gyms will put you in groups depending on your fitness levels. Exercising as a group is not only motivating but also fun. Besides, you can join different group classes. For example, you can start with cardio and then branch off to weight lifting.

  • Helps improve your lifestyle

It is no doubt that most gym goers often change their lifestyles for the better. Not only will you get fitter, but also meet like-minded people. This can help advance your career and improve your social and emotional health.

  • Customization

Most premium gyms have personal trainers that can help you meet your fitness goals. They help choose the best workouts, diet, and training schedule, bolstering your motivation and confidence significantly.

Disadvantages of joining a gym

Here are reasons why gym workouts might not be fit for you.

  • Diet disruption

gym 2 Working out in the gym often involves lifting heavy weights and doing intense cardio exercises. This often leads to an increase in your desire to consume food, since your metabolism increases significantly. As you’d guess, it is hard to control the urge to consume food.

Unfortunately, most people will consume junk food. This leads to diet imbalance as most exercise enthusiasts lean towards a certain food type, particularly proteins.

  • Can be a waste of money

Well, you will not always feel inclined to go to the gym. The hype and motivation to work out die down after a few weeks. As such, one will not take gym workouts seriously a month down the line. This can often lead to money wastage since you are not attending sessions you paid for.

  • Can lead to serious injuries

Working out at the gym exposes you to fatal injuries especially if you are a beginner. As you’d guess, gyms often require you to push beyond your limits which can often lead to bodily injuries such as broken legs and arms. It’s not uncommon for periodic gym goers to undergo back or knee surgeries.

  • Can lead to life-threatening illnesses

As mentioned, working out at the gym will see you perform stramineous exercises. These exercises can lead to heart damage, unfortunately. Studies show that extensive cardio can cause damage to your heart. It is therefore prudent to check your heart rate when exercising.

  • It can make you feel inadequate

An often-overlooked disadvantage of joining a gym is Body Dysmorphic Disorder (BDD). A person suffering from this disorder will always find flaws in their body. As such, they will strive to achieve a “perfect” body, which is impossible to achieve. Most will therefore strive to do strenuous exercises which unfortunately makes them susceptible to heart problems and bodily injuries.

Safety tips for gym workouts

workout equipment Now that you know the benefits and disadvantages of joining a gym, let’s look at ways to maximize the gym.

  • Stay hydrated

To ensure a smooth and safe gym experience, you should stay hydrated. You need water to replenish what you sweat out. Besides, most gyms have inadequate ventilation. It would be of help to arm yourself with a few liters of water.

  • Stay in good form

Most, if not all gyms, emphasize form before lifting weights. When in perfect form, you can lift weights and gain maximum results. If you are out of form, you’ll expose yourself to injuries.

  • Use a towel

Using a towel helps improve your overall general health. You can use it to wipe yourself down and place any equipment will be using. This also improves the gym’s hygiene making it safer for other members. Ensure to disinfect any equipment before handing it over to others.

  • Always warm up

While you should not warm up for hours, you need to acclimate your body to what you’ll be taking it through. If you are performing cardio, start slow and increase the intensity gradually. If weight lifting, start with light weights and increase the weight gradually.

Other notable tips are to take your time, ask for help, and use a gym partner. With these tips, you’ll have a safe and fulfilling gym experience.

Benefits of home workouts

If joining a gym is not your thing, exercising at home might be your best bet. Here are some benefits.

  • Saves your time

home workout 1 Unlike exercising at a gym where you have to travel, home workouts require you to have a smaller space than a gym. As such, you can fit workouts into a tight schedule. With home workouts, there’s no commuting or packing equipment, just find an ideal spot and you are good to go.

  • It is flexible

With home workouts, you are not tied to a schedule. You can exercise anytime you feel like it. Besides, you can choose which exercises to perform at that time. And if the workouts are not bringing desired results, you can easily switch to another routine. The best part? There are hundreds of apps that can help tailor a routine based on your fitness goals. As you’d guess, most are free.

  • You are in full control

In your home gym, you choose the equipment, décor, temperature, ventilation, and more. Here, you can choose which songs to listen to when exercising. Besides, you can place motivating art or quotes on the wall.

Unlike gyms where you need to dress in a specific way, a home gym allows you to choose what to wear. Whether you want to exercise in shorts, leggings, or messy hair, you are answerable to no one.

  • Workout at your own pace

With home workouts, you choose your start and end time plus when to take breaks. You don’t have to keep up with a schedule or those around you. You can take as many breaks as you want and still meet your fitness goals. This mitigates instances of rushing through workouts, which exposes you to injuries.

  • Improved privacy

home workout 2 When working out at home, you don’t have to worry about other people. Besides, you won’t compare yourself to others, mitigating the risk of Body Dysmorphic Disorder (BDD). You learn to perform exercises without fear. All you need is to stay focused on your goals.

  • It saves money

As you’d expect, paying for a gym membership is not cheap. Besides, the membership fee, there are expenses such as parking and other miscellaneous expenses. Working out at home saves you such expenses. And if you have to buy gym equipment, you don’t need to break the bank.

With affordable resistance bands, exercise mats, dumbbells, and barbels, you are good to go. The internet is awash with free apps and video tutorials to kick-start your fitness journey, eliminating the need for a paid personal trainer.

Disadvantages of home workouts

Working at home comes with its downsides, let’s look at them.

  • Limited access to equipment

home workout 3 This is arguably the chief disadvantage of a home gym. Limited access to equipment can hinder you from achieving your fitness goals. As you’d expect, a home gym has basic equipment such as dumbbells and barbells. Such equipment is not suitable for advanced exercises, which can help achieve your goals.

  • Limited workouts

As mentioned, exercising at home limits you to certain types of workouts. A home gym is not suitable for advanced exercises. As such, most people will opt to join fitness centers that are better equipped.

  • Lack of specialized equipment

It’s no doubt that a home gym allows you to work out when it’s most convenient. However, one major drawback is a lack of specialized equipment. This can limit the type of exercise you can perform.

  • Fitness plateau

As mentioned, working out at home allows you to perform specific workouts. As such, you won’t improve your fitness levels since you are not incorporating a variety of exercises.

  • Lack of motivation

Let’s face it, there’s a lack of accountability and motivation when working out at home. Most people find it daunting to push through their routine. And since there’s no one offering feedback, one is unable to track their progress.

Safety tips for home gyms

  • Always keep the room to yourself when working out.
  • Ensure there’s ample space to avoid hurting yourself.
  • Use proper equipment and wear appropriate gear.
  • Always warm up before a workout.

Gym vs. Home Workout: Which is Better for You?

Well, if you like exercising around people or require supervision, a gym might be your safest bet. At the gym, you will have a trainer to help you and members to motivate you. You also get to perform different advanced exercises.

If you are privacy conscious or on a budget, home workouts might be your perfect bet. At home, there are no preying eyes, comparisons, or competition. You work out at your own pace.

Whichever option you choose, ensure to stay hydrated, wear appropriate gear, and warm up before exercising. This will prevent bodily injuries.

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