Where you train is just as important as how you train. The best routines can atrophy if they take place in a vacuum where it’s hard to stay motivated and focused. With so many people working from home now, it’s tempting to start a home gym as well. The question is, does working out at home… really work? Even if you can maintain your physical activity, what about your mental state?
How working from home benefits mental health
A home gym can be both a blessing and a curse. For one thing, working out at home is convenient. It costs a decent amount of money to get a good setup, but once you invest, you start saving on the long-term costs of a gym membership. You also reduce the time spent packing and traveling to and from your gym.
However, there are also some concerns worth considering. For example, a home gym can make it difficult to keep track of your fitness routine. The proximity of your workout space to the rest of your life can make it easier to form bad habits and mentally slow behaviors.
Ways to effect positive change
It’s strange, but the simple fact of packing your bag and leaving your house can be motivating, even if it is also a disadvantage. By training at home, you run the risk of becoming lazy about your workout routines. You also lose the motivation that comes naturally from being in a space with other people who share your fitness goals. A gym is full of like-minded individuals who quietly push each other to do their best every day.
This mental battle can make it difficult to maintain a healthy state of mind when working out at home. Isolation and flexible schedules can completely derail your pace. That said, if you can continue your fitness activities at home, it’s still possible to benefit both physically and mentally. You can still enjoy the benefits that come from exercise, such as improving your mood, reducing stress, and managing anxiety.
In many ways, it’s akin to remote work. Many people thrive in a remote work environment, but that often comes from specific behaviors tailored to their situation.
The same can be said for home workouts. If you plan to train at home, you will need to take certain steps to ensure that your psychological state is helped, rather than hurt, by the experience.
Tips for successful training at home
Here are some of the best tips to help you get the most out of working out at home, mentally speaking.
If you exercise in the same spaces where you eat and rest, chances are your workouts won’t last long in that environment. The problem is that if you’re relaxing and exercising in the same space, it can be hard to clear your head and focus.
Instead, invest in creating a clearly defined training area in your home with equipment, technology for applications and other fitness equipment to train at home. Ideally this will be separate, such as a room in your garage or basement or even an unused bedroom or office.
If you don’t have extra space to spare, you can let your exercise space overlap with other living spaces, but try to do something to make it unique. For example, practice in your living room, but move the furniture around, turn on the lights, and give the room a decidedly different vibe.
It’s good to train indoors. In fact, if you have a lot of gear, you’ll probably want to keep it indoors so it won’t be affected by the weather.
Even so, if you want to pay attention to your mental health, it’s a good idea to do your fitness routine outside once in a while. Use your backyard to lift free weights. Take a jog on a local trail. Skipping rope in the driveway.
Whatever you do, find a way out. The sun increases your vitamin D intake. Fresh air is good for productivity. The outdoors is a well-known creativity booster. When you train at home Exercising outdoors is the perfect way to take care of your body and mind at the same time.
3. Stick to a rock-solid routine
Anyone who enjoys working out knows the importance of a good routine. If you’re not up to speed, it’s hard to get up early in the morning to go to the gym. Once you’re in a good routine, the activity can go on autopilot.
When you train at home, it’s easy to blur the lines between activities and slowly lose momentum. The same goes for remote work. Keeping a routine in place is an essential part of psychological health for those working from home – and the same can be said for working out.
If you decide to commit to a home workout scenario, you definitely need to maintain a routine. Don’t just freely adapt your gym routine to your home, either. Start from scratch and think about what kind of routine can help you stay on track every day in your particular situation.
If you train at home, you will be isolated no matter how successful you are. With that in mind, be sure to set up lifelines that connect to other humans that you can contact when struggling.
You can do this by simply finding a group on social media or creating a text stream with sports friends. These are great ways to keep the conversation going.
However, you should also take it a step further by finding a responsible partner or two. It’s not something you should do lightly. Instead, think seriously about the people you know who can help you stay on track by:
- Offer encouragement;
- Don’t be judgmental;
- Push you when you need it.
There are many places you can find a good accountability partner, whether it’s asking a friend or finding someone in an online fitness group or even an old acquaintance at your local gym. .
There are many ways to stay fit at home, both physically and mentally. However, all of these options require commitment. You can’t trust your normal gym mentality to keep you on track at home.
Instead, stay accountable, designate workout spaces, create a solid routine, and get outside when you work out once in a while. It can do wonders not only for your body but also for your mind, allowing you to tap into the positive psychological elements that come from working out at home.