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Do YOU go to the gym? Gym vs Home

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It seems that everyone I know are going to the gym...

In the beginning of the year I did a 1 month free trial at a local gym and I loved it! I NEVER sweat when I exercise outside the gym but when I went, I started sweating on the treadmill etc, and it felt really good!

But...I'm a college student and I can't afford the gym on top of everything I have to pay for. If I join my local gym I would probably only use the treadmill, elliptical machine and the rowing basically everything but the weights.

So, I wanted to just hear your thoughts on whether the gym is necessary, whether you go the gym and if it helped you a lot...or if you like working out at home :)

If I do exercise at home, I'm thinking of doing Jump rope 30mins, yoga 45mins, walking/running 50mins, and Jillian's 30day shred (for strength training), all on alternating days of course, depending on what fits my schedule.

Oh, and another question: What's a good strength training workout to do at home? (for females) I want to rev up my metabolism and start eating more!

Thanks in advance :)


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Gym only for me.  I have had a home gym before but it could never do what I wanted.  I love the competitive nature of lifting in a gym.  I'm all for people who prefer to train at home, but it's not my thing.

I rarely exercise at home.

I run outside, cycle outside, go to a olympic pool and a gym with a power rack.

I do a mix.

I do my heavy bag workouts at home. I do my lifting and conditioning at the gym. I could technically lift from home because I have a full free weight set up. However, my squat rack doesn't have safety rails like a power cage does and I never squat heavy unless I am in the cage. So for safety purposes, I lift at the gym.

 I really like the days where I workout at home though because it is great just being able to finish, have my post workout drink, and then hop in the shower and relax. No driving.

If you can invest in some free weights and work out at home that would be optimal.  If you are looking for metabolism boosting weight lifting is the best and I highly recommend The Female Body Breakthrough to achieve that goal, however New Rules of Lifting for women is also an excellent starter program.  


I lift at home. In our 100-sq ft basement, we have: a squat rack (which has a bar for pullups and straps for inverse rows), barbell, adjustable dumbells, a bench, and an exercise ball - pretty much everything we need for both strength training and cardio.

If I want more cardio, I can do sprints up the hill by my house or carry sandbags around my back yard.

The only limitation is that the ceiling is low, so my husband can't do standing shoulder presses (he sits on the ball or bench), and for things like db snatches, we have to bring the db's upstairs to avoid banging the ceiling. There are a few exercises (cables) that we have to do alternatives for, but we make do.

A small price to pay for convenience. He helps me lift, then I can get started with dinner while he lifts. Plus, it payed for itself within two months of no gym fees (at least in our area).

I'm a college student too and I take advantage of the free gym membership I get to use at my school's gym. But now that it's summer, I don't go to my school gym and I also cannot afford a membership to 24 Hour Fitness where all my friends go to. So I work out at home. And I LOVE IT. Honestly I don't have to worry about what I'm wearing, driving to the gym, putting my stuff in a locker, etc. etc. If I wanna do cardio, I live near my high school and they keep the track open so I run that and my favorite? The bleachers. What a workout! I have several weights at home, I have a stepping machine that you can find cheap at Sears or something, I have resistance bands and a stability ball and that's really all I need for a GREAT workout. Sometimes, I exercise in my underwear while watching my favorite shows/movies. And that's another good thing about working out at home: I get to choose what I wanna watch haha. I like the gym but staying at home is so much more convenient and cheap!

What I usually do:
-a little bit of cardio to warm up 5-10 mins
-abs (planks, exercises on the stability ball, crunches, etc.)
-weight lifting (I alternate doing upper and lower body)
-high intensity interval training (my favorite thing to do are burpees until I pass out haha)

If you are happing doing what you stated: Jump rope, roga, walking/running, Julian's 30 day dhred, etc, and there isn't anything else you specifically want to do, then why bother with a gym? It is really handy if you are able to exercise without a gym membership.

I'd also reccomend getting some adjustable free weights. I've got two dumbells that can hold up to 10-12kg and I love them.

I've been home-gym only for almost four years.  The nearest gym is 10 miles away, and with small kids and a husband who coaches basketball in the winter, it was impossible to get there.  So with the money I would have spent on a membership, I bought an elliptical.  Now we also have a weight bench, free weights/plates, rowing machine, exercise ball and bands, pretty much anything I want to do.... and sounds like our basement ceiling's a little higher than amethystgirl's!  I've been doing New Rules of Lifting for Women at home with only a few slight modifications (no cable machine or squat rack).

OP, your home workout sounds good for your goals for now.  But if you want to start strength training, body-weight exercises will only get you so far -- you're going to need weights.

Do you have Netflix? I get just as good a workout doing a 50-minute Netflix exercise video as I do going to the gym!

All you need are a computer, Internet, and some hand weights. You can even get the hand weights used and they'll be super cheap! If you're in Canada or the States, Play It Again Sports is a great place to check out.

I do the 10 Minute Solutions series, and every time my thighs and bum get shredded from all the lunges! With heavy enough hand weights I can do a good job on my arms, too. The Kickbox Bootcamp is my absolute favorite!

I like to go to the gym for the variety, people watching, and air conditioning, but I can get just as good a workout at home with videos, hand weights, body weight exercises, and running.

Good luck to you!

-Maddy M

PS: You can also check out exercise DVDs from the library for free!

Original Post by amethystgirl:

I lift at home. In our 100-sq ft basement, we have: a squat rack (which has a bar for pullups and straps for inverse rows), barbell, adjustable dumbells, a bench, and an exercise ball - pretty much everything we need for both strength training and cardio.

100 sq-ft? like an 8x12 bathroom? That is hard core! One misstep, and the bar end goes through the wall.

The main area is ~7.5' x ~11' (so actually less than 100 sq ft) - the bar only fits in one direction - but when oriented right, there's enough room on both sides, and there are a few nooks and crannies that give us a little more wiggle room. For instance, the half flight of stairs that is off the main rectangle - that's where I do step ups.

Good job for making do!!  I've so often heard the excuse "we just don't have the room." I hope that plenty of other people see your post.

My job this summer is 7h a day running around with kids at a local playground, playing games, doing crafts etc. I get decent cardio. I also play soccer 2-3 times per week.

I try to do yoga or pilates everyday now, sometimes twice a day. I find that using my own body weight as resistance works me out WAY better than trying to work out with artificial weights. 

Typically I do yoga for 1-1.5h in the morning, work outside with the kids all day, go to yoga or pilates for another 1-1.5h and then come home. I am terrible at working out at home - it's more of my "relax" and "do nothing" place. I like to keep it that way.

I prefer to to home/outdoor workouts in the warmer weather.  I have a gym membership but have not been since May as it cannot compete with the allure of doing all my running outside!  I started weight training at home in the evenings three days a week as well.

However, once it gets cold/dark again, I'll probably go back to my early morning trips to the gym. 


I only workout at home.  I have free access to the company fitness center with brand new LifeFitness weight, elliptical and treadmill equipment, but working out is a personal and private thing for me.  I don't want to do it in front of other people.

My workouts at home get pretty intense, so there's a lot of grimacing and grunting going on, that I could never be comfortable doing in public.  I would have to tone down my workouts if I were in public.

I also can't say enough for the convenience of just walking to the other side of the house to workout instead of getting in the car and driving to the gym or work fitness center.  The workout place that does the most good is the one that actually gets used.


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Hi, everyone, I was browsing the net and found this site by accident. I decided to join after reading some of the posts.

I like working out at home for several reasons. First, I cannot afford a gym membership. Second, I can't afford the extra gas it would to take to get to the gym. Third, I have a wife and children to get home to, so I'm always rushing to get out of there and cut my workout short anyway. 

You don't even need tons of expensive equipment to accomplish this goal either. Someone on one of the other threads asked if anyone has tried Chalean Extreme. I haven't done that one, but I HAVE done other workouts from the company that produced it, which is called Team Beachbody. So far I have done 10 Minute Trainer, P90X, Insanity, and Rev Abs. Actually I just started the last one. When I'm done with that, I want to do a P90X/Insanity hybrid. Some people might complain the DVD sets are expensive, but in the long run it is cheaper than going to the gym and/or getting a personal trainer.

I personally work out mostly at the gym. I've had a membership for years and I worked at a gym near my house (free membership!). However, there are definitely great options and work-outs for home. 

Just on another note, about gyms - Before I had a gym membership I found great motivation in getting week/month gym membership trials. Since they were trials, I usually found myself taking full-advantage of them; going every day and trying out new classes. I know a lot of gyms have these promotional offers (Especially in the summer), so if you have any friends with memberships ask them about it! Before I had my regular membership I got 2 full summers of going to different gyms around my area for free. (:

I do both, though my "gym" is a basement area with a few machines (eliptical, bike, treadmill, weight station) at my place of work.  Luckily I live only a few blocks from work so I can go there at any time of the day without much hassle.

What's kept me motivated though is a few products that I've bought over the past year to work out at home on a moments notice.  They include an Iron Gym pullup bar, some Perfect Pullup Ab Straps, and a set of Perfect Pushups.  I have the pullup bar permanently up between my bedroom and walk-in closet.  Since it's up and visible, it's always a good reminder to get a few reps in.  Between the pullups, pushups and modified situps, I have a good "bodyweight" exercise routine that I can do whenever I have a few minutes.

I workout in a gym. I don't like being surrounded by walls and a ceiling, people watching TV instead of using the treadmill, but I have no other choice, I can't go jogging outside because I'm 16, my parents don't want me alone, we live in a not-so-safe city. 

Anyway, my gym membership costs the equivalent of $33 for a month, 6 days/week. There's good equipment over there, I do cardio everyday, strength training on top of it 3x a week. Yoga once a week. I hope they get an aerobics teacher too! It's a lot cheaper than having to buy my own equipment, and the apartment I live in is too small anyway!

I go to the gym most of the time because I feel more motivated. There's nothing to distract me and there are no excuses to bail out of an exercise. Also, the equipment is great and I don't have a treadmill or elliptical at my house. Even though my "serious" workouts are at the gym, I am still active throughout the day when I'm at hone or outside. 

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