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gym or workout @home/in nature?

by (20)
Updated about 3 hours ago
Created November 15, 2012 at 7:05 PM

I am a newbie and have really been enjoying the food aspect of Paleo. I cannot believe I am not jonesing for sugar; that is a major accomplishment! Ready to move onto integrations of exercise. I have been a slacker for a year or more, walking once a week and thinking my busy life is exercise enough.

There is a really good deal at the gym in my town currently and I am considering joining, however I wonder if working out at home and tackling the hills hiking would be a better idea. There are no crossfit gyms anywhere near me, so this is a 'standard' gym with a good weight scene and cardio machines.

???

8b9c2dcd3dfc929a0428d3d6dac4918e
60 · February 26, 2014 at 4:14 AM

More jogging? And the claim that machines only train one muscle? Agreed that for functional strength, free movements, preferable unweildy natural objects would be better....but is it better for health? Arguably its worse for you health, more risk of injury...

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60 · February 26, 2014 at 4:12 AM

Jogging? Steady state cardio? Come on!

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60 · February 26, 2014 at 4:10 AM

HIT strength training is good. Or sprinting. Or slow moving (walking, hiking) Check out 'body by science". Just avoid "aerobic exercise", like cycling or jogging - strength training is just as good for your aerobic system, and all that does is lower the fat burnt, and the muscle fibers worked (and increases the time spent doing it, muscle loss, and stress on the bones etc)

8b9c2dcd3dfc929a0428d3d6dac4918e
60 · February 26, 2014 at 4:10 AM

HIT strength training is good. Or sprinting. Or slow moving (walking, hiking) Check out 'body by science". Just avoid "aerobic exercise", like cycling or jogging - strength training is just as good for your aerobic system, and all that does is lower the fat burnt, and the muscle fibers worked (and increases the time spent doing it, muscle loss, and stress on the bones)

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0 · January 03, 2014 at 11:53 PM

If you are looking to get bigger than you need free weights not a gym. You can pick up a bench, squat rack, barbell and 300lbs of plates on Craigslist less then the average cost of 1 year's gym membership

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20 · November 16, 2012 at 4:09 AM

Thanks JayJay for the link. My yard would benefit from the yard work, that's for sure! Vanity muscles would be nice but at this point in my life, I just want to be FIT.

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20 · November 16, 2012 at 4:08 AM

Thanks DAvid...walking my errands around town is a good idea...

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20 · November 16, 2012 at 4:06 AM

Thanks Joanna, even though it was a good deal to join, I have decided to go it 'in the wild'...walking and challenging myself at home. It's easier to not drive and enjoy the neighborhood for exercise. I will consider investing in a pull up bar. I had a punching bag as a kid, i loved it. Thanks for that reminder.

B82233e1bb20c911371dedac5e20cdbc
20 · November 16, 2012 at 4:04 AM

Congrats on your 50#! From Mark's Daily Apple: "You don’t need to work out in nature to get good results, but it definitely helps. Research shows that exercising outdoors is superior for improvements in mood, self-esteem, stress reduction, and mental health. Though the research doesn’t show any difference between strength gained or stamina accumulated – the most common barometers for fitness progression – we do know that reducing our stress load will improve our response to training and improving our mood will help us be more consistent with our workouts. Try taking your workouts outdoors."

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18 · November 15, 2012 at 11:33 PM

Also, make the effort to walk to work (if within ~30min). That could give you about 1h of walking per day, 5h/week.

977d98d9ee4a3edba0141c0b3aa018a7
243 · November 15, 2012 at 10:00 PM

I picked up "You Are Your Own Gym" http://www.amazon.ca/You-Are-Your-Own-Gym/dp/0971407614 I haven't gone through it yet so I can't give any actual feedback, but the book description is basically about using your body and everyday things around you to train - nothing more paleo than that!

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1365 · November 15, 2012 at 7:56 PM

I agree that the correct answer is "both." I can never seem to keep myself motivated to workout when I don't belong to the gym. "Bodyweight and stuff around the house" becomes just one more episode on Netflix, whereas when I belong to a gym I can just assign myself times to go there and once I'm there the motivation takes care of itsself.

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19 Answers

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18635 · November 15, 2012 at 7:58 PM

Depends on your goals. If you want longevity and fitness to just live then you don't need a gym. Body weight resistance training and plenty of walking and just increasing your daily energy output with yard work and such will do.

If you want vanity muscles, or find that you do better with group activity or have other very specific strength goals associated with sport then you may need to do the gym bit. Shouldn't call them vanity muscles I suppose (heck I go to a gym occasionally in the winter...). I just mean hypertrophy isn't exactly necessary.

At your level I would just get the PB fitness e-book http://www.marksdailyapple.com/subscribe-to-blog/#axzz2CIpEZkJg and follow it for a couple months. You can build a fitness base there. After you have that base you can decide on what the next step for you is.

B82233e1bb20c911371dedac5e20cdbc
20 · November 16, 2012 at 4:09 AM

Thanks JayJay for the link. My yard would benefit from the yard work, that's for sure! Vanity muscles would be nice but at this point in my life, I just want to be FIT.

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60 · February 26, 2014 at 4:26 AM

Some advantages of pulley type machines at the gym, seeing as everyone is arguing the other way :P

One - less risk of injury

Two - easier to do high intensity strength training without being crushed

Advantanges of in nature - Movnat has a really cool functional fitness program, that will improve useable strength, agility, balance etc, and nature is soothing to the soul. Sadly, the risks need managing with lifting unweildy objects etc, and you'd have to get to their training program, unless your just going to keep it low level.

Probably the ultimate would be a combination of HIT strength, and movnat, and a little sprinting. A little like what primal blueprint suggests, but from a health POV, I see no reason to avoid the gym.

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0 · February 26, 2014 at 2:57 AM

Get a kettle bell and do swings. They are the perfect exercise in my opinion from the research ive done.

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0 · February 25, 2014 at 5:52 PM

No reason you can't do both. Personally, I would combine strength training/HIIT on workout days with hiking on my off-days. It's up to you

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1169 · January 25, 2014 at 8:01 PM

I am not keen on gyms and you have to pay for them. I am a member and my 3 sons go but I only use it for the sauna and steam room. I prefer to cycle and lift heaving boxes and things at home as part of normal life. The only formal exercise I've ever liked they don't do at my gym which is bikram yoga unfortunately.

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0 · January 25, 2014 at 4:29 PM

I like lifting weights but dislike other sweaty people so I got myself a home gym. Power rack, bar, bench, and a ton of weights. Cost like $500 but this is my gym for life and I love it! I think in the end its a pretty personal decision. Do you like the gym atmosphere? Will you still be motivated at home? I love Marks fitness book too, for when I'm out of town and cant use my gym. Give it a try for a little while, see if you are still tempted by the local gym.

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787 · January 25, 2014 at 9:38 AM

I pretty much only exercise in forests, i really don't get how people go jogging around busy city streets with cars everywhere pumping out poison, the way i see it is when i've sprinted or lifted and my body is taking in very deep breaths trying to get oxygen i want the air to be as clean as possible. I might workout more at home in winter but i'm always trying to get as much forest time as possible to counter the city life. Apart from walking/sprints i also lift weights in a forest, a kettlebell is quite portable (if you have a car), take a yoga mat, do pushups, pullups on a suitable tree, i also go swimming a few times a week, but i always wish it was in an outdoor lake surrounded by trees, i can dream...

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612 · January 24, 2014 at 8:36 PM

A floor is all you need. Push-ups, squats, sit-ups, crunches, leg lifts, lunges, sprinting, jogging, walking, and jumping (no rope necessary) only require a floor and work out just about everything. Save yourself some money.

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60 · February 26, 2014 at 4:12 AM

Jogging? Steady state cardio? Come on!

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0 · January 24, 2014 at 5:02 AM

This topic is something that I have been looking into for a while now and your insight is exceptional. Thanks for sharing this information.

women fitness center

469e56db8362728e8d3e0175eb4194e6
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0 · January 24, 2014 at 5:01 AM

This topic is something that I have been looking into for a while now and your insight is exceptional. Thanks for sharing this information.

women fitness center

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0 · January 03, 2014 at 4:29 PM

Theres a few reasons why you may want to go to a gym instead. For me personally, I find that going to a gym motivates me to work for a longer period of time with a more regimented workout (I have a home gym as well but I cannot bring myself to put forth the same effort).

If youre looking to get bigger, you need a gym. Theres no way around it, you need to lift heavy things.

73405829e4cd62de86d52ef5c557dc42
0 · January 03, 2014 at 11:53 PM

If you are looking to get bigger than you need free weights not a gym. You can pick up a bench, squat rack, barbell and 300lbs of plates on Craigslist less then the average cost of 1 year's gym membership

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0 · January 03, 2014 at 5:54 AM

I'm personally not fond of gyms with all the sweaty, dirty people around. They're almost always too hot for my liking, and way, way, WAY too expensive!

I do everything at home (or in my back yard) or in a local park. I bought a second-hand elliptical machine off of Craigslist, have a couple of dumbbells, a medicine ball, a resistance band, and one of those big, blow up exercise balls. I can pretty much do any type of exercise using any of those or a combination of. All together, including the elliptical I may have spent $200 over a couple of year's time.

The only thing(s) I miss about the gym is access to a pool and the steam room/sauna.

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-10 · January 02, 2014 at 8:28 PM

I do both. I don't have a car, so I walk everywhere, and carry my shopping back from the supermarket! I used to jog on a path which went past fields and meadows, very bucolic... until you get a whiff of whatever the farmer is spraying on his crops! Not quite as bad as in 'North by North West' (when Cary Grant is fleeing from the plane), but still a bit worrying!

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0 · November 30, 2013 at 9:33 AM

Gym workout in home or nature, this is the interesting topic and has made me to think over it. gym for womenhttp://www.contoursexpress.com.sg/

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0 · November 26, 2013 at 6:09 PM

I made my own gym in the garage... a pull bar secured tight with ropes. Couple of dumbells and a barbell.. some extra weights, i made a jumping platform out of a firm deep bucket filled with sand. But you could also make your own out of plywood. You can also make your own sandbags... cut a log. Buy a worn tractor tire. Hang up rings. However I did spend time in the gym for a year, and getting instructions about correct form. But for now this is all I need. Currently doing the 300 workout.

Yes in general you could say free weights are better then cables are better then fixed machines. But they serve different purposes. Fixed machines are good for fine tuning certain muscle groups... and with cables/dumbles you damage more muscles (the stability muscles) and with certain excersises also more muscle groups... the big key is having a good work-out program according to your goals. I change from muscle strength to mass occasionally.

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0 · November 26, 2013 at 5:23 AM

I am going through this post and thinking of it’s theme and trying to understand what is this post about. At last I can have found something from this post which feels pretty good.

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1097 · November 15, 2012 at 11:23 PM

I've lost a total 50 lbs since june and all I've done is walk in and out of town for 1-2 hours a day at 2.5 - 3 mph. Any strength stuff has been pure body-weight resistance. I suggest mark's book as well. I think he's got it pretty well on the mark.

B82233e1bb20c911371dedac5e20cdbc
20 · November 16, 2012 at 4:04 AM

Congrats on your 50#! From Mark's Daily Apple: "You don’t need to work out in nature to get good results, but it definitely helps. Research shows that exercising outdoors is superior for improvements in mood, self-esteem, stress reduction, and mental health. Though the research doesn’t show any difference between strength gained or stamina accumulated – the most common barometers for fitness progression – we do know that reducing our stress load will improve our response to training and improving our mood will help us be more consistent with our workouts. Try taking your workouts outdoors."

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5650 · November 15, 2012 at 8:42 PM

i think gyms are a waste of money. you can easily get in great shape at home by doing jayjay's suggestions of walking and strength training. i do have a lot of stuff in my home gym like a pull-up bar, punching bag (just for fun), and various weights, but i use chairs for a dip station.

B82233e1bb20c911371dedac5e20cdbc
20 · November 16, 2012 at 4:06 AM

Thanks Joanna, even though it was a good deal to join, I have decided to go it 'in the wild'...walking and challenging myself at home. It's easier to not drive and enjoy the neighborhood for exercise. I will consider investing in a pull up bar. I had a punching bag as a kid, i loved it. Thanks for that reminder.

977d98d9ee4a3edba0141c0b3aa018a7
243 · November 15, 2012 at 10:00 PM

I picked up "You Are Your Own Gym" http://www.amazon.ca/You-Are-Your-Own-Gym/dp/0971407614 I haven't gone through it yet so I can't give any actual feedback, but the book description is basically about using your body and everyday things around you to train - nothing more paleo than that!

6554fd49a0ca08456adbbe75c99d8a01
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18 · November 15, 2012 at 7:38 PM

Combine outdoor activities (such as hiking or jogging) with gym.

At the gym, make use of free weights; don't be intimidated by the big muscle junkies. Ask the gym instructor for advice on correct usage of weights. Otherwise I recommend this book here (affiliate link). It gives detailed explanations on many exercises and muscle groups.

Please avoid fixed range machines. They train only on muscle each and are rubbish. Free weights train big muscle groups in concert, improve muscle coordination to maintain balance and more closely resemble every-day actions (such as picking up heavy objects). They are more "natural" and thus paleo, as it were.

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1365 · November 15, 2012 at 7:56 PM

I agree that the correct answer is "both." I can never seem to keep myself motivated to workout when I don't belong to the gym. "Bodyweight and stuff around the house" becomes just one more episode on Netflix, whereas when I belong to a gym I can just assign myself times to go there and once I'm there the motivation takes care of itsself.

6554fd49a0ca08456adbbe75c99d8a01
18 · November 15, 2012 at 11:33 PM

Also, make the effort to walk to work (if within ~30min). That could give you about 1h of walking per day, 5h/week.

B82233e1bb20c911371dedac5e20cdbc
20 · November 16, 2012 at 4:08 AM

Thanks DAvid...walking my errands around town is a good idea...

8b9c2dcd3dfc929a0428d3d6dac4918e
60 · February 26, 2014 at 4:14 AM

More jogging? And the claim that machines only train one muscle? Agreed that for functional strength, free movements, preferable unweildy natural objects would be better....but is it better for health? Arguably its worse for you health, more risk of injury...

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