How to Decide Where to Exercise: Gym, Home or Outside

where to exerciseExercising on a consistent basis is important for your heart health. Where you exercise can have a big impact on your ability to stay on track and get your workout in to your schedule.

Everyone has a location that is perfect for them (and this may change as your life changes), the key is finding your perfect location.  Some of the options include:

  • The gym – great for having many options for exercising and you don’t have to purchase equipment.  However it does cost money and you have to get up and head to the gym, which can take up extra time.
  • Home – great if you don’t have extra time to be heading to the gym.  Yet you need to purchase all the equipment you need and be disciplined enough to actually exercise.
  • Outside –You can do so many great physical activities outside.  From running to rowing and even body weight exercises.  The only cost is your clothing and like working out at home, you simply step out the door and get going so no extra transportation time.

The key to picking your perfect place is to determine what factors will distract you from exercising and then select a location that eliminates that distraction.

Here are some ideas for different distractions that might help you figure out where to exercise.

New to Exercise: I Have No Clue Where to Start

If you are new to exercise and have no idea what you are doing or what you might even like then you should experiment.  Get a temporary membership at the gym and try that out.  Purchase some small dumbbells and an at home video to see if you can be disciplined to exercise at home.  Or just lace up your shoes and head out for a walk.

Give each item some time to figure out if it will work for you.  A week at the gym might leave you excited and feel like you’re on track.  Yet after a few months you may tire of it.  Try something new then to compare it, don’t give up just because you have not found the right place right away.

I Don’t have Time to Get to the Gym

If you find that you are always running out of time and just can’t seem to get your exercise in, then you are probably going to want to consider finding something you can do at home or outside.  Unless the gym is right across the street from you it takes time to load everything up and get to the gym.  It is much easier to wake up and hit play on the DVD player than it is to get out the door.

I used to be exclusively a “gym rat” but once I had my son I found that the extra time needed to get to the gym was a deterrent.  I then switched to working out at the house but struggled because I did not have the right program.  Once I did find the right program for the house I have been good to go.  Experimenting and being flexible is the key if you are going to exercise at home, so give yourself time to adjust.

I Hate Exercise Equipment

If you skip your cardio because you hate equipment it might be time to head outside or into a gym class.  Outside there are many options including running, biking or even outdoor boot camps.  Inside at a gym you also get many options for cardio in a class setting.  This gets you off the equipment plus gives you variety and you don’t have to worry about the weather.

The most important thing for you to keep in mind is that it might not be that you hate exercising but instead hate exercising where you are.  Keep trying to find the perfect combination of your favorite exercise and favorite location to keep you going.  Eventually you will find the perfect combination for your cardiovascular health!

Picture Courtesy of Elvert Barnes


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