Can you get fit at home? Why, of course you can!
Whilst going to the gym hosts a multitude of benefits, you can get fit at home. Ever have those days where you just don’t want to see anyone, or you ran out of petrol for the drive to the gym, or you can’t leave your children? We’ve got the answer, home workouts.
With home workouts, you are your gym. Using your bodyweight can be a great way of getting fitter, leaner and stronger.
Benefits of Exercising at Home
Money is one of the biggest factors when it comes to choosing a gym membership and prices can be anywhere from £20- £100 a month, that's £1,200 a year. Save your money and train at home, if you need more kit, the chances are it’s still going to work out cheaper.
Time is another major factor when it comes to training. Whilst having no time to go to the gym may seem like a valid excuse, everyone has time to go home. Training at home means you can fit exercise into your regime as and when the opportunity arrives, even if it's broken into multiple smaller workouts.
No waiting for kit
Queuing for kit at the gym can be frustrating and a busy gym can leave your heart rate dropping whilst you feel frustrated and unmotivated waiting for the machine you need next. Training at home guarantees no-one can slip in front of you onto your kit and your heart rate stays elevated throughout your training, as you switch from one move to the next seamlessly.
No watchful eyes
Sometimes going to the gym can get you more motivated, as you don’t want to be seen putting in a poor performance. Other times people can just be frankly, annoying. Whether it’s awkward moments where you catch someone's eye doing hip thrusters, or someone who just seems to be more interested in staring at you than in their own workout. Avoid all the annoying people and workout at home.
Fueling your motor a) isn't cheap and b) isn’t great for the environment, so kill two birds with one stone and train at home instead. You can spend the extra time you saved driving throwing in a few extra sets to your workout instead.
If your gym doesn’t have a creche it can be hard to find someone to watch your children while you go workout. Working at home means you can workout and still play parent, granted you may have to stop every now and then, but it’s worth it. Your children seeing you staying active also encourages them to join in and move more, with obesity being such a huge risk in the UK it's great to encourage your kids and set the right example.
It's You vs You
We hear this all the time in gym motivational talks, but when it boils down to training at home, it really is you vs you. There’s no-one but you to answer to, so it’s time to really go for it. No one will see how sweaty you get so you can push that extra bit harder, knowing your showers only around the corner.
Training at home is more hygienic, providing your not a real mucky pup. Despite gyms being cleaned, the gym environment breeds germs. The perfect environment for bacteria to spread is the warm moist environment of the gym. The list of bacteria most gyms carry is longer than my arm, so we’re not going to go into it with too much detail. Just the sheer volume of people handling the same kit you are can lead to spreading bacteria. Even if your house is messy, at least it’s your mess.
Downsides to working out at home
Lack of Equipment
Its nice to have the variety of different equipment and when you first start you may not have much kit. Technically, most of it isn’t really needed, but it’s nice to shake things up every now and again. After training at home for a while, most people will find their collection grows and what started as a set of resistance bands soon becomes a set of resistance bands, a dumbbell tree, a chin up bar, a punchbag, a TRX ….
No One to motivate you
Some days even the best athletes lack motivation, it happens. Getting yourself to the gym can often be the hardest part, but once you're there you’ve got to do something with yourself or you’ll look lazy and the PT’s will soon be over to give you an extra earful of motivation. When your at home, there’s no-one but you and maybe the voice on a DVD to motivate you so it can be hard to get in the right mindset.
No spotter or trainer
Without a trainer or a spotter you are more susceptible to injury, from either executing the move wrong or lifting heavier than you can handle on your own. Having people around you can be really beneficial from a safety perspective, especially if you're lifting.
Lacks social aspect
We’re social creatures and training at home lacks the social aspect of going to the gym. If when you go to the gym you spend more time exercising your mouth than other muscles however, this could be a good thing!
Tips for working out at home
Working out at time is one of the biggest culprits for getting distracted during your workout. Zone in. From telephone calls to the front door to pets or children, home workouts are at risk of interruption. Your best bet is to remove all the distractions before you work out. Switch your phone to do not disturb, put your pets in another room and remove your children. Kidding. Just warn them what mummy/daddy is getting up to so that they know you’re busy, give them something which will keep them occupied for long enough for you to work out or let them join in.
Create adequate space
When you're short on time it can be easy to just try and get your workout in without clearing the room you actually need to move. If you can, try to dedicate a space as specifically your workout zone, this will make it more official, as well as avoid you kicking and breaking something. Make sure any equipment you have and might need is stored here. The last thing you want is to be hunting around for kit at the crucial moment.
Try to schedule your workout into the day, be more specific than just “when I get home from work”. Try more “I get home at 6, so I’m going to do some chores and then workout at 6.30pm”. Set an alarm for this time, so whatever you’re doing, you’ll get a reminder and be more likely to keep your workout date.
Just because you’re at home, doesn’t mean you should be working out in your PJs, especially if you're a woman. Training without support for your breasts can damage tissue. Wearing the right activewear supports your training and will enhance your efforts. Check out the Sundried collection.
Consistency is key
As with any form of training, the key to success is consistency. One home workout routine won’t make a difference, nor will one healthy meal. In order to get fit, you need to be consistent with your training, whether that’s at home or the gym. We are what we repeatedly do, so try to incorporate your workout into your routine so it becomes a natural habit.
Plan your workout in advance
Plan your workout in advance so you know what’s coming and aren't left guessing what to do next. Whether you're following a written routine, dvd or app make sure you know what moves are on the agenda so you don’t waste any time wondering, what’s next?
Comes at a price: Motivation. With the fridge, your tv and sofa all within walking distance, it can be hard to find the motivation to really go for it. You have to stay motivated or your gym equipment will gather dust and become nothing more than extra clutter in your home.