Are Home Workouts Just As Effective As The Gym?

Just as many of us have made the transition to working from home in the past year, we’ve also been seeing a rise the number of people who are choosing to work out from their own space. 

It can get you wondering, though: are home workouts just as effective as going to the gym? 

Unless you have all the equipment that you would normally be using at your regular gym, your workouts are probably going to look a little different. However, this isn’t necessarily a bad thing. 

Let’s break down the things you should know about home workouts and how they can still help you achieve your fitness goals, no gym membership required.

Can You Really Get Fit Without A Gym?

Luckily, the answer is yes! You can absolutely achieve your fitness goals from home, although you may have to make some adjustments to your scheduling and workout routine to make sure that you’re staying consistent. 

Obviously, you’ll have less equipment to work with than you would at the gym, so planning out your routine will be essential here!

Pros And Cons Of Working Out At Home

Fit man doing plank exercise at home

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The Pros

  • It’s cheaper. You’ll be saving yourself the monthly cost of your gym membership fee, and even if you do end up investing in more expensive workout equipment, they pay off very quickly in comparison. 
  • It’s convenient. You don’t have to worry about planning your day around your gym trip and commuting when you work out from home. You’ll be able to work out in the space you designate for your home gym easily and whenever you feel like it.

  • It’s your own space. You won’t have to wait your turn or fight over the last pair of dumbbells if you’re doing your workout from home, which can give you a lot of control and keep your calorie burn high.

The Cons

  • You have less equipment to work out with. The most obvious con of working out at home is that you don’t have the same wide range of equipment that you would have in a commercial gym. This can limit the muscles that you work and how challenging the workout itself can be. You can, of course, buy workout equipment for yourself, but you’ll probably have to do a lot more bodyweight work.

  • There’s no social aspect with at-home workouts. This is probably a good thing most of the time, but working out in a social environment at the gym can actually give you a pretty good motivation boost sometimes.

Can Home Workouts Without Equipment Help Build Muscle?

Man with muscles taking a break from working out

There are plenty of home workouts that are conducive to helping you build more muscle and get stronger. Bodyweight training can be an incredibly challenging workout, especially if you get creative and find ways to up the ante. 

You can also find free weights like dumbbells and kettlebells at a decent price if you want to challenge yourself further.

Tips for building muscle at home:

  • If you don’t have the space or budget to buy a lot of equipment, consider using small and adjustable versions of your most essential pieces like dumbbells and barbells. This way, you’ll get more out of one piece of equipment! 

  • To keep your bodyweight training challenging, figure out variations that will make you work harder. For example, if you master the pushup and reach a point where you can do quite a few of them easily, try adding some incline, shoulder touches, Spiderman push-ups, or one-handed variations to keep your muscles challenged.

What Are The Most Effective Home Workouts For Building Muscle?

Some of the best home workouts for building muscle include: 

  • Push-ups 
  • Pull-ups 
  • Squats 
  • Dips 
  • Lunges 

Start with three sets of ten repetitions and gauge your fitness level. From there, you can adjust to make the workout challenging but doable. 

Remember, continuing to make gains is all about staying challenged, so once those workouts start to feel easy, add variations or buy some weights if you want to keep growing.

Are Home Workouts Effective For Weight Loss?

Fit women with flat stomach. Weight loss illustration

Weight loss happens when you burn more calories than you take in. This causes your body to burn your fat stores for energy, leading to fat loss. When it comes to exercise, a mixture of both cardiovascular and resistance training are key to this process – and luckily, there are plenty of ways that you can get an adequate calorie burn from home! 

High-intensity interval training (HIIT) is a form of cardiovascular training that involves doing high-intensity workouts in circuits with brief pauses in between. It‘s been shown to be a fantastic way to get your body burning calories, and luckily enough, you can do plenty of HIIT workouts without any equipment at all! There are several moves you can incorporate into your training like burpees, jump tucks, and push ups that can really challenge your heart and get it racing. 

As an added bonus, the bodyweight workouts that you do in HIIT-style training will also help you to gain some lean muscle mass. Because muscle burns more calories than fat, it’s actually beneficial to build muscle if you want to get a lean body composition! 

You can also do more traditional forms of cardio at home if you have the right equipment. For example, if you have a treadmill or bike, you can use those to work your heart rate up to a moderately high, but sustainable pace, to burn calories.

Tips for losing weight at home:

  • Make sure that you have good flooring. You can do a bodyweight HIIT circuit in as little space as it would take to unroll a yoga mat, but you’ll definitely want to make sure you have that mat or some other gym-suitable flooring like rubber to keep you stabilized and prevent any slipping or accidents. 

  • Nutrition, nutrition, nutrition. Having the right nutrition is absolutely key if you’re looking to lose weight. It’s very easy to think that you can eat whatever you want after a workout, since you burned calories, but if you’re eating highly-processed or low-quality foods, you may find that you’re canceling out the progress you made in your workout. 

  • Don’t forget to rest. Resting is crucial for recovery, especially with high-intensity activities. Aim to do about three sessions a week so you can give your body time to recuperate and eventually show the results.

What Are The Most Effective Home Workouts For Weight Loss?

These bodyweight workouts are a common way to get your cardio workout without any equipment. 

Remember, HIIT-style training has proven to be a great way to get your heart rate burning and fat melting, so try doing these exercises in circuits (for example, thirty seconds for one exercise, resting for ten seconds, then the next exercise for thirty seconds). 

  • Burpees 
  • Jump Tucks
  • Jumping Jacks 
  • Squat Jumps 
  • Walking Lunges 
  • Mountain Climbers 
  • Ski Jumps 

You’ll definitely be breaking a sweat, and you won’t even need any equipment to do it!

Takeaway!

Working out at home is definitely a different kind of experience than working out from the gym, but all you need is a little creativity, a little room, and a dedication to staying consistent to increase your fitness level and get stronger and/or leaner!