Have you ever considered ditching that expensive gym membership and setting up your own gym at home?
Owning a home gym comes with some real and significant benefits, especially if your time is precious and squeezing in a workout down at your local gym is becoming more and more difficult to fit in with your busy day. So if you’re tired of having to continually pack your gym bag, travel across town, queue for bits of equipment, listen to bad music blaring through the gym speakers because you forgot your headphones, or being forced to continually hand over your hard-earned money in monthly membership fees, then you don’t have to suffer any longer – you have a way out!
Let me break down just some of the benefits of a home gym and why, perhaps, it could be the answer you’ve been looking for to get back some of that lost motivation and kick-start your fitness regime.
Looking for a reason to create a home gym?
Here are six great ones that could help make up your mind
If you have your own home gym set-up you make your own rules! It’s all about your fitness choices based on your need, not what might be available on the off-chance when you find time to get down to the local gym.
There’s nothing more frustrating when you’re pushed for time and you find that piece of equipment you really want to use is unavailable! With your own gym space you have the flexibility to work out when you want, using equipment available just for you and no one to share with. Also, how often have most of us skipped a session because ‘something came up’? Sometimes life gets in the way and tries to slow you down and interrupt the routines of even the most organised and time efficient amongst us.
But wouldn’t it be great to reduce that struggle? With your own home gym you are gifted the ability to adjust to your day and suddenly fitting in that workout becomes all the more possible. Have a meeting early morning? Don’t worry, you can work out in the evening. Awake early whilst everyone is sleeping but you can’t? Go have a session and start your day with increased energy and focus. Basically if you have a home gym you have zero excuses because of the sheer convenience of having one that’s just a room or flight of stairs away.
We’re all busy people right? So we have to pick and choose how to spend our time and flex around whatever our weekly schedule looks like, taking into account the added curve balls that life might throw our way.
Wouldn’t it be great though if you didn’t have to pack your gym bag, drive to the gym, queue for equipment, and then, when you’re finally done have to share the changing rooms and showers with a bunch of sweaty strangers? This all adds up to a fairly substantial amount of time – time that could be better spent actually working out, focusing on increasing your strength and physical endurance and getting fitter.
With the time it takes for you to drive to the gym and back you could add an extra ten or twenty minutes onto your current session, or use the time to relax – do some stretches or yoga or meditate or spend some added time on you. Having a home gym eliminates all the time-sapping activities you have to do just to get there and back, and all the irritating waiting around you have to do when you’re there, allowing you to focus on what really matters – training and getting on with the important stuff in your day.
A home gym creates both a comfortable and private training environment. You have the freedom to take your time, learn the proper form and technique and decide what routine and pace is right for your needs and goals without feeling judged.
You’re free to wear (or not wear) what you want, there are no restrictions and the rules are your own. You can be yourself without feeling like people are looking at you and judging you, and instead focus on getting the most out of your workout with no interruptions, small talk or feelings of embarrassment.
And then there’s the gym rules – don’t drop the weights, don’t stay on one piece of equipment for more than five minutes if the gym’s busy, don’t use chalk, no curling in the squat rack, etc. True some are legit and there to make working out less of a chore for everyone, but some are also ridiculous and can even limit your training style, dampen your personal expression and even impact your performance. With a home gym you’re in complete control. After all, how much harder might you train when the rules are your own and you know there’s no one else looking?
Money doesn’t buy you happiness, but it sure as hell buys some nice equipment for your home gym!
Even if your space and/or budget is limited, you can have a really great workout with just a weight bench and a good set of dumbbells.
Let’s think about this though – you’re going to be saving money just by not having a gym membership which is, let’s say roughly $60 / £45 a month (being conservative). If you split that out over a year you could be saving in the region of $700 / £550 – and that could buy you a decent set of kit over time. For many home gym users, equipment is accumulated over time, so an idea could be to re-divert that monthly gym subscription to gradually filling up your home gym. Then, once your gym space is set up and equipped how you like it, put that money to good use in other parts of your life – a vacation, a down payment on a car, your retirement savings….the choice is yours! When all is considered, you’re left with more money in your pocket to spend how you want to spend it!
Whilst I’ve been lucky enough to work out in gyms that have been treated to an antibacterial wipe and a vacuum at the very least, some are worse than others and all, no matter how clean they are kept, are a breeding ground for germs.
Think about it. Most public gyms have hundreds if not thousands of members, each leaving their mark on everything they come into contact with. How many people use the same set of dumbbells as you every day, or how many sweaty torsos rest on those weight benches and gym mats? Yes many gyms offer something to wipe the equipment down with, it’s just a shame that many people don’t use them.
I’ve never personally seen anyone wiping down the dumbbell handles after use, or cleaning the cable attachments – all of which are actually the most commonly used pieces of equipment in the gym. And then you have the changing room showers, sinks and toilets – how many people with athletes foot, verrucas or flaky skin walk the same floors and use the same cubicles as you? I’m not a huge germophobe but it does make you think. At least with a home gym the germs are limited to yours and no one else’s!
It’s actually fun to build your own home gym. Being able to pick your own equipment, set it up as you like and generally seeing the space come to life is pretty great. Everything from the decision to build your own gym space to the gradual and constant evolution of that space and the equipment you fill it with, is fun, and there’s a certain sense of pride that comes with it, especially when you’re able to show it off to visitors.
You’ll be the envy of people you know who are still paying high membership fees and trading time and money to get to and from the public gym each week, and they’ll be practically breaking down your door to see yours and asking it they can work out with you.
Aside from building it, perhaps the best part is actually using it. There’s not much else like enjoying something you have personally created – whether that’s restoring a classic car, baking a prize batch of cookies or even finally finishing that 5000 piece jigsaw puzzle – it’s a great feeling to create something off of your own vision and effort – and that feeling’s hard to beat!
So, is a home gym for you?
Are you now convinced that a home gym is the right option for you?
If I have managed to persuade you then I urge you to take that first step to creating a home gym tailored just for you. And remember it doesn’t have to be a room full of the latest, flashiest equipment – it doesn’t even have to be a room! Depending on your budget and the space you have available you can start small with just a decent set of dumbbells and a gym mat and add to it over time. Use that money you’d otherwise be spending on an expensive gym membership to build yourself a home gym set-up – in whatever shape or form that suits you – and reap the benefits, and pride, of something you’ve created, just for you and no one else.
If you’d like some more tips and advice on how to create a home gym then, depending on the space you have available and your budget, you may find the following articles helpful:
Do you have a home gym set-up, or are you thinking about one? Have I swayed you or will you be forever faithful to your local gym? I’d love to know and have a discussion with you – so please drop a comment below and let’s talk!