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The Key to Working Out at Home and Still Getting in Great Shape

By Shannon Cole on Apr 5, 2024 9:00:00 AM
5 Minutes Reading Time


There seems to be a misconception that you can’t work out at home and get in great shape. Sure, your local gym probably has a lot of fancy equipment, but it all means nothing if the consistency and proper programming aren’t there.

You’ve probably seen the same people at your gym not coming in regularly, doing workouts that don’t make sense, and doing exercises incorrectly. So, is having a gym membership really necessary?

Working out at home may take some creativity, and you may want to purchase a few things here and there, but for the most part, you can still get into great shape.

Here are a few things to consider when working out at home. 

Your Workouts Need to Be Challenging

Eliminate as many distractions as possible, and be in the mindset to work out when you’re exercising.

If you’re just going through the motions, doing laundry in between sets, or walking away from a workout not feeling empowered or more energized, then the intensity is probably not there.

To initiate any sort of body composition change, workouts need to be challenging. This means there needs to be a surge in heart rate, and frankly, you just need to be WORKING.

Your Workout Time Is Precious

This goes along with my previous point that you need to treat your workouts as YOU time, almost like a mandatory appointment. It can be beneficial to work out at home because it is so convenient, but sometimes it can backfire. It can seem so easy to justify delaying at-home workouts when they can always be done later, right? I don’t know about you, but it almost never seems to work out that way!

As with a typical gym routine, establish an at-home workout routine as well. Whether it’s early in the morning before the rest of the house wakes up, or during your lunch break if you work from home, you need to establish a routine.

Once it’s established—which can take up to a month to really feel like a normal part of the week’s schedule—it makes it much harder to delay or cancel workouts. In fact, you’ll hate doing that because it becomes such a natural part of the routine.

Invest In Some Equipment

You don’t need to spend an arm and a leg on the latest and greatest equipment. You can get quality, high-resistance bands that come with various attachments to make exercise selection really easy (without burning a hole in your wallet).

I’d also recommend looking into garage sales and online marketplaces–you can find some excellent deals, with some things in nearly brand-new condition.

If you are really wanting to create a workout oasis with the best-of-the-best equipment, you should check out one of our partners, PRX Performance.

Workouts Need to Be Structured

As I mentioned, at-home workouts can require some creativity, but it doesn’t mean you shouldn’t put some thought into how you want to program your exercises.

This all depends on your goals, current fitness level, and the amount of time you have, but workouts can be designed in various ways. 

  • Calisthenics: Exercises can be done at a slow tempo, isometrically, or at a quicker pace if improving aerobic conditioning is your main goal.
  • Yoga and Pilates: Yoga is great for off-days and improving flexibility, while Pilates can enhance your core strength, which can help reduce your risk of injury.
  • HIIT: If you think you are relatively advanced, HIIT is an excellent cardio-based option to help get your heart rate up!
  • Resistance Training: With resistance bands, adjustable dumbbells, suspension trainers, kettlebells, sandbags, etc., there are so many options to help add loads to certain exercises so you can really build muscle!

Once you have decided how you will work out at home, go into your workouts with something planned that outlines the exercises, sets, reps, and if applicable, resistance, so that time isn’t wasted on fumbling with exercises that don’t align with your goals.

If designing your workouts still seems confusing, check out MAPS Anywhere for a structured program you can do, well, anywhere!

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Shannon Cole

Shannon Cole is an ISSA certified personal trainer and lives in the Dallas area. She is a certified nutrition coach through NASM and NCI, and is currently pursuing her M.S. in Sports Science and Rehabilitation. After obtaining her B.A. in Journalism and Mass Communication she eventually gravitated to personal training, and hasn't turned back since. Her passion for athletics and fitness initially stemmed from her high school years playing golf, and her love for the sport still hasn't faded; her career goal is to obtain her Titleist Performance Institute (TPI) certification and develop strength and conditioning programs for golfers. You can usually find her working out in her garage gym, or training for the next Spartan Race with her husband.

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