Times are hard and according to the “experts”, things are likely to get even worse before they get any better. Of course these are the same “experts” that completely failed to spot, or do anything to avoid, the financial storm that has engulfed the world. But whether you believe the “experts”, or not, there is no denying, we’re in a bit of a pickle. With inflation rising, unemployment soaring and real term wages falling, we’re all having to tighten our belts.
Often one of the first things we cut back on when things get tough, is our gym membership. This may be because for some reason many of us put a lower priority on our health and fitness than we do on things like satellite tv.
But going without your gym membership need not confine you to your armchair every night, having your brain slowly deadened by reality tv. As you don’t actually have to use a gym, or spend vast amounts of money on expensive fitness equipment, to achieve your fitness goals. In fact all you really need, to achieve fantastic results, is a set of dumbbells and a little know how.
So if you’re struggling to pay your gym membership, or simply looking to save some money, why not ditch the gym and start exercising at home instead?
Here are several good reasons why, in my opinion, exercising at home beats using commercial gyms any day:
1). Exercising at home saves you money. Typically gym memberships are in the region of £40+ per month and last for at least a year, usually with no cancellation clause. Meaning you have to pay whether you use the gym or not and you cannot cancel mid-year. So if you train at home you’ll be saving yourself in the region of £480 per year! A decent set of dumbbells costs a fraction of this amount and will last you a lifetime.
2). No travelling. Many people find travelling to and from the gym a real hassle. Having to travel across town in heavy traffic can be a drag. In fact, this is one of the main things that stops many people from going to the gym in the first place. So exercising at home saves you time and hassle in this regard.
3). Exercising at home saves you time. As well as saving time on travelling, you will also spend less time actually training, as you will not have to queue to use equipment. Every gym has it’s ego-lifters, who hog equipment whilst they perform endless sets of some pointless exercise they’ve read about in a fitness magazine, using weights that are far too heavy for them! Not having to hang around waiting for these morons, will mean you’ll get through your workouts in less time.
4). The only sweat on the equipment will be yours. There is nothing worse than having to clean someone else’s sweat off a piece of equipment before you use it, especially if it’s with your own towel! Exercising at home means you will no longer have to clean up after inconsiderate half-wits that can’t be bothered to clean up their own mess.
5). You can listen to your own music. No more having to listen to the droning noise that some gym owners seem to think qualifies as music. You can play whatever you want, as loudly, or as quietly as you want.
There are numerous other benefits to exercising at home, but for me, these are the main ones. I have been exercising at home for several years now and have never once wished I still had my gym membership. So if any of the above sound familiar to you, perhaps you should consider exercising from home from now on?
All you need to get started is:
- a set of dumbbells
- an adjustable bench (optional, unless your goal is to build muscle)
- a clear space of at least 7′ x 7
Your first priority when training at home, ought to be safety. You need to make sure you have enough space to exercise. You need an area at least 7′ x 7′, that is clear of furniture and clutter. The last thing you want to do, is smash a dumbbell through the screen of your plasma TV!
Concrete floors are best when using dumbbells. Which is one of the reasons why many people choose to exercise in their garage. However, if the space you’re exercising in has a wooden floor, take special care not to drop your dumbbells. Especially if you’re upstairs and there are people sitting in the room below you. Dropping heavy weights onto a wooden floor, can damage your floor and the ceiling below (if there is one). It’s also a good idea to use some kind of protective covering, to protect floors and your dumbbells. You can buy rubber mats for this purpose, but these are quite expensive. I find that a cheap carpet remnant is usually sufficient.
Make sure you have good ventilation in your exercise space. If you’re exercising indoors you will get very hot, particularly during the summer months. Also your room will get very smelly, unless you have a window, or a fan.
That’s about it. You’re ready to go. Good luck with it!
For more information, including over 100 dumbbell exercises and free dumbbell workout routines, visit: http://www.dumbbell-exercises.co.uk
I am a fitness enthusiast and amateur bodybuilder. My passion for exercise and bodybuilding began in 1985. Over the years I have experimented with many techniques and have also developed a number of my own ideas, which have helped me to build an impressive muscular physique and achieve many of my personal fitness goals.
By Lewis Day
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