How Successful Home Workouts Work: Real Tips from Real People

Working out at a gym can already be a challenge, but working out at home – boy, that’s a whole new set of issues.

As a member of a gym, your biggest obstacle is just getting there. However, when you’re already home the biggest obstacle is just moving to another room and starting. Sounds simple enough. You don’t have to put your make up on (good news boys! ha!) and you don’t have to even change out of your PJs if you don’t want to. You don’t have to pack your gym bag and you don’t even have to put on your tennis shoes. So if it is that easy, why is it so hard?

People struggle because of all the same reasons. Packing a gym bag and getting ready for the gym is part of the process that gets us mentally prepared to train. So when working out just means closing the lap top and starting to sweat, the transition can be a struggle. A gym offers a certain type of atmosphere, along with people buzzing around, getting their pump on, which is very energizing. Yet, at home, the washer and dryer may be going, the phone is ringing, and kids are wanting your attention. There’s nobody inspiring you. Without hot girls and guys at the gym to look at, you can forget what fitness can do to your physique if you really stay disciplined. All in all, it can just plain suck.

With that said, there are still millions of people working out at home – or trying. While working out at home is not for everyone, it may be an important start, like Jenny Venn from Wyoming, who’s lost 70lbs on her own at home. Or a home gym maybe more convenient for those who’s office is at home like Christopher and Dawn Borders from Utah. Or, maybe you don’t workout at home, but you squeeze in a workout on your lunch break at work like Bradley Grinnen has done before. On the other hand, you may prefer to workout in a gym, but you travel a lot for work or you’re on facing a vacation like Nadine Armstrong or Robin Sullivan. For gym goers who’ve experienced great progress, a vacation is stressful unless you can find a way to turn your hotel room in to your gym while you’re out of town so they don’t feel like they are backsliding.

Whatever the case, there is a massive need for tips to help people get their workout in, where they are, with what they have. There’s an desperate need for motivation and encouragement. So, last night in our FitStudio tweet chat I asked the home gym pros – the people who’ve made working out at home a success. Here are their experiences and personal tips they shared with us last night through their tweets.

Q1: What did you do to prepare for your home routine?
Home Gym Pros Say Preparation is Key

Jenni ‏@JenniBfit: I changed mu spare bedroom into a workout room! And devoted a certain time of day everyday to working out!
Christopher Borders ‏@cborders: A little homework to pick a program that will provide support and feedback.
Patty ‏@girlfromsocal: I dedicated a spare room as my workout studio & stocked it w/ equipment!
alice s ‏@happilymaintain: think about what i can use and plan. ex, on stairs, you can do hops, run, or bear crawl up. so many options!
Christopher Borders ‏@cborders Commit to a program! It’s SO important that you stick to it!
Jenny Venn ‏@jenvenn I created a dedicated space, set everything up so that it was easy access, and committed to a schedule.

Q2: What was your 1st week like – good & bad?
Home Gym Pros Say it was challenging, but rewarding.

Patty ‏@girlfromsocal: realizing week 1 of BCX that I wasn’t working hard enough (before the program)
Dawn Borders ‏@dawnborders: It was painful, but I felt like I accomplished something great
Christopher Borders ‏@cborders: I modified many of the exercises because of back issues and fitness level. As I continued, I was able to do the exercises
Dawn Borders ‏@dawnborders: Had knee pain, and #FitStudio experts Bonnie and Steve were able to tell me how to modify made a big difference
@cborders: I modified many of the exercises because of back issues and fitness level. As I continued, I was able to do more
Jenny Venn ‏@jenvenn The first week challenged me in ways I didn’t know we’re possible! By the end of the week I was empowered though!

Q3: How do you get psyched up for your home workouts?
Home Gym Pros say music is a must. 

Jenny Venn ‏@jenvenn: music is key! I always had a playlist picked out the night before so that I had something to look forward to
Patty ‏@girlfromsocal Music! Since you don’t have a roon full of people, I have tons of playlists geared to various workouts:) 
alice s ‏@happilymaintain best trick: PUMP UP THE MUSIC! when i do that, my family knows i’m either cleaning or getting my sweat on!
Jennifer Giordano ‏@jenlgiordano stay connected to other fitness people. We motivate each other
@boutdrz Online accountability is awesome & key! facebook groups, tweetchats, fitstudio forums…
Jenni ‏@JenniBfit watched the videos!! Very motivational! Prepared a killer play list

Q4: What fitness tools do you have? What was your favorite?
Home Gym Pros say their workouts don’t require many tools, but they all had their favs.

Jennifer Giordano ‏@jenlgiordano Must admit my fab “tool” is my music
Christopher Borders ‏@cborders Over time, we have accumulated many fitness toys. Started with our body. So that is my favorite
Jenny Venn ‏@jenvenn My iPad. Made BCx videos easy to watch and was ultra portable when working with my bands and weights!
alice s ‏@happilymaintain: the floor! good 4 jump squats & suicides & etc. but my fave is punching bag. can do so many things with it!
Christy Wilson ‏@ChristysChomp: Agree, that music is a huge motivator! Keeps me going & distracted, esp during early morning workouts.
Nick Collins ‏@CoachFitNick Music is my requirement when working out.
Patty ‏@girlfromsocal plyo box, bodylastics and kettle bells…best!
ENERGYbits ‏@ENERGYbits gotta say free weights and medicine balls. You can do SO much with them. Workouts are never boring
@ENERGYbits medicine balls are fun! especially if you have a workout partner 🙂 
Gene @boutdrz bands, some dumbells, and music. and outdoors.

Q5: What has been the key to your home fitness success?
Home Gym Pros say it’s all about accountability.

Christopher Borders ‏@cborders Surrounding myself with like minded friends on facebook, twitter etc. The more I talk about fitness the easier it is to be fit… and a little friendly competition between spouses never hurts! 🙂
Dawn Borders ‏@dawnborders accountability to other friends on line,support from #fitstudio with the pfeisters, and the will do get healthier
 Kim Kirchherr: starting day with it. Workout in morning equals always time for it, home makes it easy that early. 
Nick Collins ‏@CoachFitNick  #Accountability, The #DoBCx crew, and The Pfiesters. 😉
Jennifer Giordano ‏@jenlgiordano Seeing the results and all of the positive feedback I am getting. Dropped 60 lbs so it has made a huge difference 
Gene : my wife. hands down. she allows me the opportunity to work out, and encourages me to keep going! 

Q6: A6 What is the hardest part of working out at home & how do you overcome it?
Home Gym Pros say they all have obstacles, but they’ve found ways around them.

Dawn Borders ‏@dawnborders no one to push me when I am ready to quit! Pictures of great bodies and written goals keeps me pushing, we all struggle got to see it to keep moving! It’s worthit!
alice s ‏@happilymaintain VARIETY is key to workouts at home. it not only makes it fun for you but also challenges the body so it won’t adapt! 
Jenny Venn ‏@jenvenn: Pushing yourself past your own personal best! Telling yourself to WORK HARDER!
alice s ‏@happilymaintain:working w/ no equipment. there’s only so many body exercises u can do so i use water bottles,pillows,chairs,etc
Christopher Borders ‏@cborders pushing yourself can be challenging. But you have to! Compete with yourself to do more reps or more weight etc.

Q7: What is one tip you’d give newbies to help them succeed?
Home Gym Pros found success and so can you if you follow their lead.

 @cborders: My #1 tip is to treat it like your job. You work out or you get fired! It IS THAT important.
Patty ‏@girlfromsocal Ihave found a great number of inspiring people on Pinterest. Great motivating phrases, pix, and community.
Jenny Venn ‏@jenvenn Set small weekly goals that culminate into huge changes. Yes! The pain & sacrafice is SOOO worth it! 
@cborders: Blogging about your progress, sharing with friends family can help and motivate others too.
Jenni ‏@JenniBfit throw away the scale! Take pics and measurements instead and stick with it!
@dawnborders: Dont give up keep at it! It will Hirt you will be sore KEEP GOING! …there is lots of support at @FitStudio
@UnnaturalMother: Keep at it, progress not perfection, get up when you stumble..
Jennifer Giordano ‏@jenlgiordano Each day try to do just 1 more until you rock that workout!
Jenny Venn ‏@jenvenn: Never focus on the climb – only on the view from the top!

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About Bonnie Pfiester

Fitness Columnist and Lifestyle Coach, Resident Trainer for Designer Whey, Fitness Advisor for FitStudio, powered by Sears, FitFluential Ambassador and Owner of Max Fitness Club, home of BCx Boot Camp in Vero Beach, Florida.

Posted on July 26, 2012, in Exercise & Training, PFIT TIPS and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 3 Comments.

  1. This is a great post and right on the money. I choose to workout at home and haven’t been back to the gym in 5 years. Time savings driving to the gym and home so I find it easier to pop in my p90x or insanity asylum dvds, do what they say for the 30-45 minutes than to remember what I need to do at a gym. You’re right though, the toughest part is actually making yourself push play and START, the start is what stops most people.

  2. Nice and informative information shared by your blog. I really appreciate it.
    Commercial Fitness Equipment

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