Fitness junkies are familiar with the dream - a home-based, 24/7 workout kingdom, with high-end equipment and no limits to achieving fitness goals. Sounds great, but does it really pay off (not only moneywise) to set up an entire gym at home?
Here are some pros and cons of switching from membership payment to basement workouts.
With all the equipment investments and space adapting, in the beginning, it may seem like an endless money pit, but in the long run, all the gear you buy or make stays in your possession and if you make smart choices, those can last for a long time. Not to mention the expensive membership fees, commuting expenses and additional amenities and services (some of them you’ve probably never even used) you can gladly say goodbye to.
One of the greatest perks of being your own gym master is not having to worry about commuting anymore. Everything is on a 30-second walk to your basement, attic, or a room in your own house. No more parking headaches, time management, and money spent on gas.
Another advantage of home-based gyms is that you can use it literally anytime. If you’re a midnight owl and like to exercise late, you can do it without judgment or having to travel in the middle of the night. You can work out before sunrise, or you can have your practice session while doing some chores or catching up on school or work, it’s your choice. When there’s no time limit, there are fewer excuses to cling to before cracking down to real business.
Setting up an entire gym from scratch is a lot of work, but with the right attitude and knowledge, it can turn into a fun project. There are endless ways you can design your gym and smartly use free space.
You don’t have to spend too much in order to create an authentic gym experience.
There are multi-purpose compact gyms, folding bikes and smaller (but efficient) machines that do the job just fine but are less expensive and take up less space. Buy a mirror, put in some towels, water bottles, yoga mats, throw in some old speakers and play loud music to make you feel motivated and pumped. It’s all about the attitude and will.
Last but not least - sweet freedom! This point kind of rounds up everything above said and it means not being conditioned by anyone or anything. In your own gym, there are no distractions or judgemental looks, you can scream or pant as much as you like, you don’t have to worry about rude spotters, inappropriate music, and poor hygiene. You can finally avoid those crowded days when your gym becomes a sweaty and stuffy chamber, not a very motivating space for a workout.
A downside of investing in a gym is finding the needed space for bulky and large machines and equipment. If you do happen to have a completely free garage at your disposal, it’s very time-consuming finding everything you need immediately. Moreover, good-quality cardio machines, dumbbells, and lifting equipment tend to be very expensive. In order to set everything up, you’ll probably need to make something on your own which requires some knowledge, skill and time.
Being your own boss also comes with a price. Professional gyms are always packed with spotters and fitness instructors at your service, who are professionally trained to assist, educate, push and motivate you at any time. Lifting weights and operating expensive and heavy machines can be very dangerous and by no means should anyone try to use them without any kind of training. Also, it’s not easy getting into your workout gear knowing there won’t be anyone to give you the stare or monitor your progress.
There’s more to setting up a gym than bringing in some machines and adding final touches. You need to keep it clean, take care of the machines and do the repairs when needed. If you set up a gym in the garage, be aware of the temperature variations, since it can get very cold or extremely hot in there. Not so much of a motivational boost for working on your toughness, is it?
Analyze these advantages and downfalls and draw a conclusion about what’s best for you. In the end, everything has it’s good and bad sides, but the most important thing is to find what drives you to exercise, whether at home or somewhere else.