If you’re wondering whether or not to build a home gym, this post is for you.
There’re a few different levels you can have for a home gym. you can go full out and buy machines, squat racks and all the free weights you could need to build muscle. You can just buy the necessities, a squat rack, bench and one barbell and some weight variable dumbells. Or you can have the minimum amount of equipment needed maybe on top of a cheap gym membership. Or anywhere inbetween these 3 stages
The Advantages of a Home Gym:
Convenience: This is probably the main reason for having a home gym, wake up and it’s only a small walk into the basement or wherever you choose to place your gym, it can really help your motivation if you don’t have much time or if you struggle making the effort to drive, park and get changed in a public gym.
Privacy: You don’t need to compete with anyone in a home gym, many beginners might get anxious and try to lift more than they can with people around. You also get all the weights to yourself and maybe one training partner.
Cost: If you find the right deals and maybe pitch in with a few friends, you can get a home gym that’s cheaper than a 3-month gym membership, and you get all the benefits. You have to keep going to make it worth the cost though.
Babysitting: You might have kids and struggle to find time to workout, that’s no problem with a home gym and you can get your kids into bodyweight exercises at almost any age, I think you can start weight training earlier than the recommended 16 but that’ll be a different blog post.
Focus: You won’t have to wait for your machine or weights to become free and you won’t get caught up in conversation with anyone else in your gym, this way you can stick to your recommended rest time and boost your muscle gains.
Comfort: You can play whatever music makes you feel best, have the room at whichever temperature you want and wear whatever you want, lift barefoot if you like to just don’t drop the weights onto your feet.
Noise: You can scream, listen to music and drop weights however much you like. Maybe not at 5am though
TV: This is a controversial one, I would only watch TV doing boring cardio, not in between sets while lifting weights, it’s easy to get distracted and rest longer than you should.
Parking: No more would you have to do that freezing cold walk to the gym early in the morning or late at night, you also won’t have to fight for any parking spaces or pay any extra parking fees on top of your gym membership.
Making Gains and Braking Plateaus: By using a home gym, you can workout without competition, you can film yourself and get your technique perfect, and take a step back if you need too. You’re able to eat instantly after finishing your workout. Using all these techniques you might just break that plateau and build more muscle.
Although having a home gym would be beneficial to most people there are a few cons to building muscle at home.
Disadvantages of a Home Gym:
You might not be as motivated, some people make the most of their gym session when they have to go outside their home and make the effort to get there, it depends on the type of person you are.
You might not have heating in your basement, it might be a bit cold making it harder to warm up and also making you less motivated to go to the gym
You can’t find a spotter, If you don’t have a friend to go to the gym with, you might have to miss out on certain exercises (barbell bench press), or you’ll have to pay extra to get bars on your squat/bench rack as support.
Lack of equipment, to start with you might not be able to get a squat rack, or heavy enough weights for a deadlift, this means you might have to compromise and do one legged squats with a dumbell to make it harder.
If my gym membership wasn’t so cheap I’d consider trying to buy a barbell to bench press, squat and deadlift with. Then I could do a whole workout at home with a couple of extra dumbells and pullup/dip bars.
Be careful, lots of people think that getting a home gym will automatically give them motivation to go to the gym, but really if you can’t make the effort to get to your current gym, a home gym probably won’t change much. Although once you get the gym momentum going, you’re less likely to fall off the wagon due to the convenience.