If you’re curious about home workouts VS gym you’ve come to the right place. Either people are all for home workouts or completely against them. As a fitness Coach of 10 years, it’s rare that you find someone who likes both. I’m one of those people, though, who do enjoy both. If you’re trying to make some changes to your health, hopefully I will be able to provide some valuable insight on the next step you should take.
Let me share my story quickly. In high school I was a skinny 140 lbs kid (I’m 5’7″) and rarely lifted weights. At home we had a machine that allowed us to do presses, flys, lat pull-downs, and leg extensions, but that’s it. If I did work out, it was a quick 30 minute session and I was clueless about what I was doing. I got a scholarship to play baseball in college and once I got on campus my coaches were determined to beef me up. We had team lifting sessions about 4 times a week. Once I started seeing some results it didn’t take long for me to become addicted to the gym. From that point on I was in the gym at 6 AM just about every day, regardless if my team was there or not. My friends then introduced me to pre and post workout supplements and creatine and I got massive. In just a few years I went from 140 lbs to almost 180 lbs and became strong as an ox. However, I had a real tough time getting as lean as I wanted to get. There were two issues. One, I wasn’t sure what exercises to do and when to do them. I always just did the same things over and over again. Two, my nutrition was terrible. I was used to eating chicken fingers, french fries, and fast food. I was the guy who believed that french fries were healthy because there were made from potatoes.
When I graduated college and got a job I stopped working out. The weight came on quickly because my nutrition was still so poor. I started looking for a solution and contemplated home workouts VS gym. I already knew that I could see some results with the gym, but I also knew that it wasn’t going to take me where I wanted to go. Then I found the king of home workout programs, P90X, and committed myself entirely for it for 90 days. I ended up losing 25 lbs and getting into the best shape of my life. I believe it was because of how the workouts change with each phase and the in depth nutrition plan. That was in 2008 and I have been doing home workout programs ever since then. I’ve also been able to stay incredibly strong and lean throughout that time span. However, I still enjoy going to the gym and getting in a heavy lifting session when I’m traveling, which is quite often for my career.
Home Workouts VS Gym: 5 Things to Think About
(1) Cost. If you’re new to fitness, you will have to get yourself a personal trainer if you go to the gym to teach you what exercises to do and how to do them properly. Personal training sessions can range from $60 – $160. Yes, it’s a wide range, but the fancier your gym, the more it will cost. Membership to the gym itself normally costs anywhere from $30 – $50 per month. So if you get one personal training session each week, you’re looking at around $450+ per month or $5,400+ per year. If you are someone with some basic knowledge of what exercises to do and when to do them, then you might not need a personal trainer. You’ll still be paying the gym membership fee, though. That will come to right around $480+ per year. One thing to think about, too, is the equipment that you will have available at the gym. That means you won’t have to go out and purchase your own. Last, don’t forget the cost to drive to the gym. I’m assuming the gym is somewhat close to you (~15 minutes), so $100 a year in gas would probably cover it if you’re going every day.
Most home workout programs are relatively inexpensive. I have a Beachbody on Demand membership to a library of programs to stream online and get charged just $100 a year (~$8/month). If you want to purchase a program on it’s own (DVDs), you’re looking at around $120 or so. But I just start a new program once I finish with my current program. Most programs are 2-3 months long. With most programs you will need some equipment, mainly just free weights and some resistance bands, which will come with most programs. I have 2 sets of Powerblocks (one set is plenty) here at the house. Powerblocks are adjustable dumbbells. You can get a set of them that go up to 50 lbs for right around $300. If you check your local sports buy-back store, the Facebook marketplace, or Craig’s List, you might be able to get them much cheaper. If you purchase your own weights and get a streaming membership like what I have, you’re looking at right around $400 the first year. Then since you already have the weights, after that you’re just paying the yearly membership fee for access to the programs.
WINNER OF COST: Home Workouts
(2) Time. If you get a gym membership, normally it’s for one that’s relatively close to your house. Again, maybe 10-15 minutes away. If it’s 15 minutes, that takes 30 minutes out of your day driving back and forth. If you work out for an hour, you’re looking at an hour and a half of your day total. With home workout programs, you don’t have to plan for driving time since you will be working out in your basement, living room, or possibly home gym. Most workouts are anywhere from 30-60 minutes long. For those of us that are extremely busy every day, working out from home is always most time efficient.
WINNER OF TIME: Home Workouts
(3) Effectiveness. With home workouts VS gym, determining which is more effective is a tough one because it depends on a number of different factors. If you have excellent knowledge of various exercises, how to switch them up, how to switch up the timing between sets, how to properly switch up rep count, and how to use the proper weight, you will probably get great results at the gym and stay in excellent shape, just as long as your nutrition is on point, which I will talk about here shortly. Most people, though, don’t have that knowledge and want a well designed plan that tells them exactly what to do and when to do it. That’s where home workout programs excel and what I like most about them. I have enough knowledge now to create my own workouts and constantly switch them up, but it’s nice to just open my browser and follow along with the workouts. All of the workouts are so different, too, that I continue to see results.
WINNER OF EFFECTIVENESS: It’s a wash IF you know what you’re doing at the gym!
(4) Nutrition. As a fitness Coach, nutrition is what most people struggle with. It’s what I struggled with in college and why I could never get as lean or strong as I wanted to get. The problem was that I had no knowledge on nutrition. The biggest reason I started P90X was because of the nutrition plan. I knew that was my missing link and I was right. I truly believe that the majority of people out there have the exact same issue as I did when they go to the gym. They might have some basic knowledge on workouts, but they are clueless about nutrition. One of the greatest things about home workout programs now is how simple it is to follow along with the nutrition plans. And every program has an associated nutrition plan to follow. Most of the ones that I do now use container systems. In a nutshell, you are allotted a certain amount of carbs, protein, fats, condiments, etc. per day, as long as it fits in the recommended containers. It’s super simple to follow and has made a HUGE difference with my clients!
WINNER: Home Workouts
(5) Accountability. This is another tough one. Most people enjoy going to the gym because there are others there that can push them. However, unless you are with a friend, those people don’t ever say anything to you. But the motivation alone from seeing so many others pushing hard in the gym is worth it to many. It was for me. That is the one thing I miss about the gym. I enjoy working out with my buddies. When I’m on trips I’m normally with a group of friends that can push me during the workouts. I always get in incredible workouts! With home workouts, you’re normally working out alone, unless your spouse does it with you. But that’s where an online fitness Coach like myself comes into play. I’ve been helping my clients stay motivated and hold them accountable on a daily basis. I’m also there to answer any questions they have and make sure they are staying on track. If you have an online Coach (you can make me your Coach for free), you should have all the accountability you need.
WINNER OF ACCOUNTABILITY: It’s a wash IF you get yourself an online Coach or have someone to work out with you daily while working out at home!
OVERALL WINNER: HOME WORKOUTS!
When you break it all down, home workouts take the crown. It’s just so much more time and cost effective and easier to follow. Like I said, I’ve been doing home workout programs for the past 10 years and have loved every minute of it and gotten absolutely incredible results. The picture you see here is one that I took recently. So if you were contemplating home workouts VS gym, hopefully now you have a better idea on what you should do. If you DO decide that you’re ready for a change and want to do home workouts, FILL OUT THIS FORM and I will get back to you and recommend an entire plan for you. I would love to Coach you through the program and help you get fantastic results like I and my clients have gotten.