Operation Skinny Jeans: At home vs in gym workouts

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

At home vs in gym workouts

I am by no means an expert, but having worked out both ways, I thought I would weigh in on the subject.

I used to be anti-at home workouts. Like very anti. I knew it worked for some people, but I knew it wouldn't work for me. I had tried Jillian Michael's 30 Day Shred like 30 times and I knew that 1. I got bored easily, and 2. My couch was WAY more enticing than working out was. And 3. I kinda hated Jillian.

I was okay being a cardio drone, spending an hour on the dreadmill plugging away. I lifted weights, but not really heavy, and never on a bar. I had a trainer for a few months which helped, but we never got into weights. So after a while, the gym became a chore for me. Not going, but planning what I was going to do. There were only so many bicep curls I could do and keep my sanity. I wasn't seeing any progress, and I was getting frustrated. But when I tried 30 Day Shred again, to see if I could make working out at home a thing, I effing hated it. I even told my coach Jackie that I would never work out at home because I hated it.

Fast Forward a few months. Still so bored at the gym, I decided to re-think the whole working out at home thing. That was right around the time P90X3 was coming out. I had watched hours of infomercials for beachbody products (yes I was one of those people) and P90X always intrigued me. But I knew I wouldn't do it for a full hour. That was my one draw to the 30 day shred- it was just 30 minutes. So when I saw that they had condensed P90X into 30 minutes, my interest was piqued.

I was pretty fed up with the gym, and the cold weather was not making me any more excited to have to walk the half a mile to go workout. (I am a wimp). And my friend (who is also a coach) Josh was living proof of some pretty amazing Beachbody results, so I decided to take the plunge, and I will never look back.

SO I thought I would do the 5 differences between working out at a gym, and working out at home.

1. The Crowd. 
When I started out, I was pretty self conscious about my body. Even tho I am sure I have never actually been judged at a gym, my insecurities made me feel otherwise. I felt uncomfortable and like people were staring at me (they weren't) so I didn't feel at home. And I felt uncomfortable waiting for a machine, like someone was going to judge me for standing there waiting lol. Who knows.

At home I feel more comfortable. I rarely wear a shirt while working out (just a sports bra and compression pants) unless I am filming it, and I know if I need to take a rest for a second, I can do that without feeling like "the fat girl who can't keep up with Zumba" (fun fact- I have walked out of more than one Zumba class for that reason.)

2. The Commute.
I am not going to go out and say that I am "lazy", but I am certainly less motivated to go work out if I have to put on a parka and walk through snow for 10 minutes to do it. Even when I had to drive to the gym, the amount of planning and pep talking it took to get me to go was probably a sign that I wasn't the best gym goer.

I have to say that the commute from my bed to the living room is way more manageable.

3. The Equipment. 
Not even a competition, the gym has more equipment. Cardio machines, weight machines, barbells, etc. I can't even compare.

But for living in an apartment, my home gym collection is growing nicely. I now have 4 resistance bands, a pull up bar and 3 different sized weights. My goal is to have a complete home gym when we buy a house. I fantasize about it lol #fitgirlfantasies

4. The View.
Sure, the gym has better views. I can't even tell you how many times I would walk on the treadmill while watching buff men do pull ups. I am not even ashamed.

But being at home, I get to see my husband do pull ups, which is even sexier because I can touch him without getting a restraining order.

5. The Trainers.
My trainer was kind of eh. He taught middle school football, and I am not sure he ever actually trained a woman before. This resulted in obscenely strong peck muscles from doing ALL THE PUSH UPS, but little progress anywhere else. I did enjoy training with someone tho, he pushed me further than I would push myself. But also $$

Tony and Autumn (P90X3 and 21 Day Fix respectively) have been amazing. I was worried I would want to punch Autumn in the face (like I wanted to do with Jillian) but I don't! I love her! I hope I get to meet her! And Tony is the trainer I always wanted. He is funny and smart and knows what to say. It is no wonder that he sells a shit ton of DVDs. The man is good. And I follow Shaun T on facebook and even tho he isn't on any of my DVDs (yet) his posts motivate me to do my best. I am not sure how they do it, but they manage to jump off the tv and feel like actual trainers.

So as you can see, each has their advantages. Not saying that either are better than the other, but I think for right now in my life working out at home is going awesome. But I do think that is REALLY dependent on the program you choose. My favorite thing about P90X3 and 21 Day Fix (as well as other beachbody programs) is that they are a complete program, that works all of your body. It's not a dvd you do the same thing every day for a week then want to chuck the dvd while you eat ice cream on your couch as you say mean mean things to Jillian on the TV. Just me?

Which one do you prefer? Have you done both? Want to try the other? 

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  1. Restraining order---lmbo!!! Great comparison--and pretty spot on! I don't have a great track record of buying a membership to a gym and consistently going, So for now, I'll zumba, walk/run, or use the weights at home!

  2. I've done both and still do both. We have a gym at the office so I go at lunch for 30 minutes of cadio, a couple times per week. I have been doing P90X3, although I kind of fell of the workout wagon. But I'm back on the horse. I do prefer working out at home and I have a lot of equipment - elliptical, treadmill, weight machine, free weights (3, 5, 8), resistance bands, pull-up bar, stability ball, P90X3 and now 21 Day Fix plus a few Jillian Michael's DVDs (I agree with you on Jillian) - I have a bit of a problem. Lol. Now, the challenge for me is to use this stuff and use it consistently. That being said, I had the best results going to boot camp, 3 days per week. I think it was the peer pressure of showing up coupled with the fact that my company was paying for it so I HAD to go. But then when my potential clients (hence why my co paid for it) all quit, I could not justify the expense to my boss and it was a little spendy for me ($250 for 6 wks). I re-started C25K yet again yesterday. Really bites to start over but I am the cause of that! See - consistency! If I had kept up with running, I would absolutely be ready to run at least a 10K, maybe a half. As it is, I can't even run a mile right now. I am going to start the 21 Day Fix on March 24th and I AM going to be consistent and successful.

  3. I spit out my drink when I read the restraining order part. Thanks, lol. I'm finally embracing the home gym idea. I was always a gym girl in the past, which lead to lots of cardio and nothing else because I was too embarrassed/shy to do anything else. 've built a pretty decent home gym up so Yay!
    But I do still go to the gym. I work from home so heading to the gym to do my cardio gives me something to do, gets me outta the house and I have a wider range of machines to use. :)

  4. Oh my gosh you crack me up. The restraining order comment made me die!

    I am an avid at home worker-outter. Reason being- I am the most uncoordinated person I know. I don't need an audience for my antics. I'll fool like a fool by myself in my basement thankyouverymuch.

  5. Haa restraining orders always put a damper on things. I was a at home work out person for a long time then I won a 3 month membership to a gym thts open 24/7. I loved it and love that I can do it anytime, especially after the girls go to bed, and its not far for me to drive so I may have just converted since I extended my membership.

  6. OMG....I totally spit out my water when reading the restraining order comment. LOL..I'm glad I'm not alone. I've done both actually, and I've had success with both. Working out at home requires a little more planning than the gym did but that's ok. I'm saving money. woohooo...

  7. I have never been able to work out at a gym on a regular basis, so working out at home is what I do. I like having the variety of DVDs to do to give me moves and such. If I had to come up with them on my own at the gym I wouldn't do that well I am sure!

  8. I haven't worked out at a gym since I was on the varsity swim team in high school, so the idea terrifies me. I like the 21 day fix at home because it goes so quick but is so intense. And while my fat is flying around or I have to do a modified exercise the only thing looking at me is my dog!

  9. I like doing it at home. I hate wearing a bra and my melons definitely need one in public. At home they can just fly free :-) Oh, and I'm poor! :-)

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  11. I love your analysis! The commute to and from the gym gets me, but when I think about paying for the membership, plus how much more effective my bar method classes and pilates classes are (as opposed to always getting on the treadmill at home), I manage to get there!

  12. I have always preferred the gym. But here lately, since I have gained MORE weight, I don't want to be seen. Its like I am ashamed to show my face around all the buff people! lol. I would love to get home equipment. Doing the elipitical in front of a tv, passes the time so quickly. Some home weights would be awesome as well. I REALLY need to invest. Where did you get your equipment?

  13. LOL I love this post! I have done both, at home and at the gym, even with a trainer which was ALOT of money I didn't get the progress cause I was always bored. I workout at home now and I love it, I've been doing it since April 2013, lost 60 ish lbs since than with at home workouts and running outside. Anyways, I have Turbo Fire/Jam and also T25 & Insanity, let me tell you Shaun T is the greatest sometimes I hate him cause he pushes me but than when he says under 5 mins left I like him again LOL♥

  14. I was always a gym rat for most of my life… and then when I was was in my "I am only going to eat and never exercise and gain a million pounds period" obviously, the gym became a huge source of anxiety. I tried SOOO many times to do work outs at home, watching youtube videos, DVDs, I got the WiiFit, but something about being at home just didn't motivate me. So after a looooonnnnnggg time, I'm back with the gym. I love my gym, I have an excellent personal trainer and I've even joined the cult that is spinning! But I also completely see the drawbacks. It is so expensive and working in the commute makes the entire experience of working out into a minimum 3 hour process. I need options of good at home workouts that I can do when I can't make it to the gym! So far I haven't found anything, but it seems like what you are doing has been really amazing for you so perhaps I shall try again :-)

  15. So I wrote a long comment, but I think it disappeared.

    Anyway- I like both. I find that in the mornings I have not yet been able to convince myself that I should go to the gym. I'd rather follow a DVD, wearing my pjs, in the comfort of my own home and just get it done. But, I do like variety. I joined a bootcamp style class last year and now take part in a class 3 times a week. I also recently added swimming so I go to the gym for the 1 hour class on Sunday, monday, and Wednesday and swim at the gym for an hour on Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday and will be starting p90x3 monday :) I plan on taking all of Friday as a rest day, regardless of the p90x3 schedule

  16. I HATE working out at home. I'm the type that will grab ice cream and watch the exercise video from the couch. Unfortunately, lately, I haven't had much more motivation to make it to the gym.

  17. I go back and forth between what works best for me. Right now I'm super into yoga and running, and I can do both of those at home really easily since I have a yoga download membership and a treadmill/nature. However, there are times when I need the motivation and the support that comes from the gym. Because once you're there, you feel like you need to put in some quality work to make the commute and the cost worth it.

  18. I know I feel more motivated getting out of my house. I feel like out in public I work harder because even though I don't pay attention to WHO is looking at me, you know people are when you're working out. Everyone looks at everyone else. I work harder when people are watching me. Gotta look like a beast! I will slack off at home.


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