should you set up your home gym in your garage? here's what you need to know
should you buy a peloton? here's how to decide
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I'm Mickie. I run One Strong Southern Girl from Small Town, TN. I love what I do. I want you to remember me because I helped changed your life.
I’m an advocate for exercising wherever and whenever you can.
Some people love going to the gym. In fact, some people must go to a gym to exercise.
Whether it’s the vibe of a gym that gets them in the right mind-space or because they just don’t have room to exercise where they live, it’s a fact of life for a lot of people.
But don’t feel like you have to join a gym to have an amazing fitness program.
An effective exercise program can be done under your own roof. In fact, I’m in better shape today than I was ten years ago, and that’s how long it’s been since I was a gym member.
My point is this, you can create a total body cardio and strength training mind-blowing fitness program in which you never leave your house. How do I know?
I’ve trained for 2 Tough Mudders (and a Spartan Sprint) using a home exercise routine. (And if that’s not proof that you don’t need a gym to get in shape then I don’t know what is.)
Here are 9 reasons I love home exercise…followed by 7 Ways to access incredible home exercise routines every day.
This post may contain Amazon (or other) affiliate links which won’t change your price but will share some commission. You can get more information about that here.
Weather-You can’t predict it! And even if you have an A+ attendance record at your gym it still sucks when you have to trudge through the snow or a downpour to get in your reps.
Traffic-Don’t pretend like the traffic doesn’t bother you. We all know it does. Unless your gym is within walking distance you have to contend with some sort of traffic to get to your gym. And even if you can walk there you’ve still got that weather to deal with.
Time-Who has time to wait for a treadmill or the leg press machine?
Money-Save that gym membership fee to purchase some equipment that will be yours forever!
Weirdos-I don’t know about your gym but every gym I’ve ever been in has at least one person in there that gives me the creeps.
Personal Training-Don’t be fooled to think that you have to go to a gym to get a personal trainer. They will come to your house! Call around.
Schedule-I love group fitness but the classes I wanted to take were always full or at a time I couldn’t seem to get there. I’m about to tell you how to be a part of a group fitness class that starts when you say it does. Score!
Aue de Gym-There’s a real possibility that I’m the only person who cares about the smell of a place but bad odors really bother me. I never knew what kind of aroma I was going to encounter when I was a regular gym member but I did know I’d be out of breath as some point during my workout and sucking in deep breaths of what might or might not be noxious fumes.
Germs-Gyms have come a looooonnngg way when it comes to combating the viruses spread in their facilities but it’s impossible to create a vacuum space of sterilized gym equipment. A cold doesn’t keep a hard core exerciser out of the gym and we’ve all seen people who refuse to clean the equipment after they use it.
So, keep in mind that I could easily come up with 10 reasons why I (used to) love going to a gym. (And still do when I travel.)
But, for this article I’d like to focus on the fact that gym (or no gym) you can have an amazing exercise routine.
So, how do you craft an exercise program that will challenge and change you from home?
On-demand exercise is the solution.
Just like what Netflix has done for movies on demand (movies available to view anytime day or night), exercise on demand is the concept of doing your workouts anytime you want via services that offer streaming live or recorded exercise classes and workouts that you can join/watch/play at any moment of the day.
And thanks to technology, you have a bunch of options when it comes to streaming your exercise.
*All but one (Fitness Blender) of the options below have an app that allows you to access the services from any of your fancy devices.
Let’s get started…
Beachbody on Demand
Cathe on Demand
Body by Simone
That’s your short list.
Now let me break down each option a little bit for you…
Beachbody on Demand (BOD) is a massive library of every workout ever made by Beachbody…and then some.
With a membership to BOD you also get access to several exclusive exercise programs from super trainers like Shaun T and Tony Horton that are only available to BOD members.
Here’s one of my favorites>> Shaun Week (with the awesome Shaun T) on Beachbody on Demand
Beachbody on Demand has every exercise style you could think of (except step aerobics…although Shaun T is about to release a program that utilizes an exercise step) from kickboxing and weight training to dance and yoga.
There’s a workout for every exerciser (beginner to advanced) in a BOD membership.
I’ve been a BOD member for a few years now. The program has gone through a lot of changes but today’s membership (all access) is the best they’ve ever had.
My favorite trainers/programs are Shaun T (any of the Insanity programs) and Core de Force with the amazing Jericho McMatthews.
As of today, a full annual membership is $99 ($108.65 with taxes).
If you’ve ever bought any of the Beachbody programs then you know that price is a steal.
Pro Tip>> If you’ve been thinking about buying P90X, Insanity, Piyo, Core De Force, 80-Day Obsession, etc. then DON’T! Sign up for a BOD membership instead. You’ll get SO MUCH MORE for your money!
Cathe on Demand is the creation of the pro fitness badass Cathe Friedrich.
I can’t stress to you enough how much I love every workout she’s ever made.
There are a few differences between Cathe on Demand and Beachbody on Demand.
Beachbody on Demand has a bunch of different instructors you can try out (Chalene Johnson, Shaun T, Tony Horton, Autumn Calabrese, Sagi Kalev, etc.).
Cathe on Demand features one instructor—Cathe Friedrich.
This is NOT a bad thing, my friend.
She is incredible.
Cathe’s on demand membership includes tons of different styles of workouts that feature everything from strength training and step aerobics to hiiT workouts and kickboxing.
She also has cycling workouts but I’ve never done any of them because I don’t have a stationery bike.
Her workouts vary in length and difficulty (just like the BOD options) but the majority of her programs are advanced (but can be modified for whatever fitness level you’re at).
There are 2 membership options with Cathe on Demand:
Cathe Live only (these are live workouts every Thursday from her studio in New Jersey) for $9.97/month.
Cathe Live PLUS Cathe on Demand (this includes every workout from every video she’s ever made PLUS access to all of her live workouts) for $19.97/month
*Each membership option has a different app
I recommend that you sign up for a Cathe Live + On Demand membership for a few months and try it out. You can cancel at any time.
Pro Tip>> If you don’t own any home exercise equipment (and don’t plan to ever purchase anything) then you’ll like a Beachbody on Demand membership better. There are more workout options that don’t use any equipment.
Daily Burn is an exercise on-demand membership just like Beachbody on Demand and Cathe on Demand.
The difference with Daily Burn is that while memberships to BOD and Cathe on Demand give you full access to all of the programs ever created (and sold individually) by Beachbody and Cathe Friedrich, Daily Burn is more like signing up for a gym membership.
A membership to Daily Burn allows you access to all of their exercise classes (none of which are sold individually).
The Daily Burn website is modern and sleek with a TON of workouts to choose from. The Dashboard of their site and app is very user-friendly with nice graphics and easy navigation.
I love that the filters on the site and app allow you to sort through workouts by difficulty, type, instructor, equipment and length.
I feel like the sweet spot for Daily Burn is having a ton of bite-sized workouts to choose from (30 minutes or less).
I like that feature because it means you can piece together a longer workout that fits your mood and focuses on the things you want to zone in on for the day. (You could do a 10-minute core routine and then find a 20-minute hiit workout to do, for example.)
Daily Burn has a lot more workouts for the beginner/intermediate exerciser than BOD and Cathe on Demand.
And because there are so many types of workouts to choose from (with so many different instructors) you’ll never get bored with your workout.
There are 2 membership options:
If you choose annual billing then you’ll save some money.
The difference between the 2 memberships is exclusive access to audio workouts and the entire library of live routines (which they stream every week).
I definitely recommend adding Daily Burn to your short list of on-demand exercise options to try out.
The Body by Simone studio is the creation of Simone De La Rue, a former classical dance/ballet professional with over 20 years of experience.
She has studios in New York and LA and has become famous as a Hollywood exercise trainer and expanded on that by creating Body by Simone TV and the Body by Simone app to reach audiences outside of NY and LA.
The workouts in Body by Simone include cardio and targeted strength-training exercises.
There are 2 membership options with Body by Simone:
Body by Simone TV is $14.99/month and gives you access to pre-recorded short (10-20 minute workouts) with one instructor (not Simone herself).
These workouts are meant to supplement the DVD’s she sells and/or be pieced together to create a longer routine.
The Body by Simone App has a free version that allows you to do 10-minute workouts (with Simone).
The paid version ($19.95/month) has a nutrition plan and access to her live studio workouts that are longer.
The app is beautiful and you can immediately see the Hollywood vibe and appeal.
Simone is friendly and her workouts are more for the beginner/intermediate exerciser, in my opinion.
If you’re looking for hardcore workouts that will really challenge your abilities then I’d start with BOD, Cathe on Demand or Daily Burn before Body by Simone.
BUT definitely do your research first. I can see why some people might love Body by Simone, and it’s all about finding what YOU love.
Body by Simone workouts are definitely fun and I love the setting (with the white brick wall backdrop) of her 10-minute workouts that you get with the free app.
I’d recommend you try the free app first. Do all of the 10-minute workouts (there are 5) and see what you think. If you love it then try the paid version for a month.
AAptiv is an app that gives you the ability to stream live audio workouts using your device.
The difference with Aaptiv is that you can’t SEE the workouts. You LISTEN to them.
An audio fitness app is completely different than apps like Cathe on Demand or Daily Burn, but can give you the same results.
I didn’t think I’d have any use for an audio app AND a membership to on-demand exercise but I was wrong.
You have to try this app out to understand its value.
The app has a pro trainer that will walk you through every workout style you can think of but where they shine is with their running routines.
Since doing my first Aaptiv workout on the treadmill (they have a category just for treadmill runs) I’ve been hooked.
There’s just something extremely helpful about having a trainer in my ear prompting me to keep my head up and my stride a certain way that makes every run better.
The app allows you to filter by workout style, length and trainer.
I love doing a run followed by a stretch and/or core workout using Aaptiv.
At first, I was skeptical that I could do a core or strength-training workout with only voice prompts but it works.
There are workouts for every exercise level and style and the music and trainers are incredible.
There’s a free trial and then one payment of $99.96 or $14.99/month.
The Fitness Blender site is an internet exercise business featuring husband and wife team (and fitness experts), Kelli and Daniel Segars.
Fitness Blender is completely free!
The website has nutrition advice and a huge community of faithful followers as well as tons of workouts.
There’s no app to download for Fitness Blender but that’s not a problem.
Just navigate directly to the website from your mobile browser and sign in and you’ll find all the content. The site is mobile friendly and easy to use.
All of the workouts are done by Kelli or Daniel and are for every exerciser but especially the beginner/intermediate.
There are filters for length, difficulty, workout type and equipment.
Some of the workouts use equipment but there are a ton of workouts to choose from that don’t require any equipment at all.
It’s hard to believe this duo has been cranking out content and maintaining all of the nuts and bolts of this site for 9 years all by themselves. Well done!
You have no reason not to look into Fitness Blender. It’s free and easy to access.
You’ve probably run across articles by Popsugar. They put out short, fun lifestyle articles on their site and have a huge presence across all social platforms.
The Popsugar Fitness branch focuses on all aspects of exercise and health. The blog has daily articles that are fun and interesting.
The workouts are the best part of Popsugar Fitness.
Like the other apps you can filter the workouts by difficulty, length and type. There’s a workout here for every taste and style.
Some of the workouts are written and come with a printable but there are a ton of recorded videos to try out.
They often have well-known instructors (like Simone De La Rue from Body by Simone) and incorporate a theme (Mother’s Day workout) or sponsored product.
Like Fitness Blender there’s no reason not to try out this home workout option.
*There are several Popsugar apps. Use the link above to get you to the right one.
Thanks for reading!
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