Why You Don’t Need the Gym

Do you go to gym?

Don’t. You need to exercise,but you don’t need to waste your time at the gym to do it.

You’re spending twice as long to get the same workout you could do at home.

The gym is one of those invisible time sucks, a temporal black hole. Don’t believe me? Let’s break it out.

Say you’re gym is located a convenient 10-minute drive from your fine home. That’s twenty minutes in travel alone. Once you get to the gym, you’ve got to change into those badass gym clothes you picked out. There’s another 10 minutes. You’re already up to half an hour and you haven’t gotten one minute of exercise yet. This, my friend is waste. It’s time that’s now gone that has added exactly zero value to your life.

There’s still more waste here. More time spent not doing the one thing you went to the gym to do, exercise.  If you go to the gym during the busier periods, say just before or just after most people get out of work, you’ll probably end up waiting for a machine. Time waiting is time wasted. Between the waiting and the little things like walking to and from your car, you’ve wasted another 10 minutes.

Let’s say your typical workout is 30 minutes. This means you have spent a grand total of and hour and ten minutes to get the value of a 30 minute workout. That’s 40 minutes you didn’t spend improving your fitness and health, forty minutes you didn’t spend with your family or friends, 40 minutes you didn’t spend pursuing your goals or otherwise enjoying life.

What’s the solution?

Work out at home. In 20 to 30 minutes you can get a kickass workout without all the overhead of going to the gym. You don’t need fancy or expensive equipment. Push-ups, sit-ups, body-squats combined with some running or a jump rope will give you 100% of the exercise you need. If you really want some equipment, I recommend kettlebells, which can be used to get a full workout in less than twenty minutes. See the 4 Hour Body for more on that.

Here’s the Optimized Home workout that I do everyday:

1. Wake up at 5 AM.

2. Do 100 push ups, 100 crunches and 100 body squats wearing the boxers I slept in the night before.

3. Hit the showers.

Total time spent working out: 20 minutes, no waste.

You don’t need to go anywhere, or change into gym clothes, and you’ve got to shower before work anyway. As an added bonus you won’t have to wash any dirty gym clothes later.

Next time you’re about to get into your car to go to the gym, don’t. Start working out at home and take back your time.


2 Comments on “Why You Don’t Need the Gym”

  1. Kyo Ong says:

    Totally agree. And worst of all, people have no plans and end up wandering around trying every lil machine available.. time suckers lol

    Body weight training from home is more than sufficient!

  2. Jen says:

    Great article about high intensity circuit training (using one piece of equipment: a chair) here:


    And the New York Times had a great graphic that would be easy to print as a prompt: http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/05/09/the-scientific-7-minute-workout/

    Time cost: about 7-21 minutes.

    And you are so right.

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