Discover the best type of gym for your personality
I think for most of us, finding the place where we fit in, whether it be in school, work, or play, is one of the hardest things we must do. Throw in introvert personality traits like I have and it can be pretty difficult to find a good fit. Finances can play a big role in where you decide to go, as well. I have tried all but two of the different types in this blog post and I have learned over the years what is best for me and why. I hope some of my experiences will help you in your quest (if you are on one) in finding the perfect fit for you.
Open 24-hour gym
- Cheap. These are usually around $20 a month
- Open all hours of the day and night
- It’s up to you to write your own workouts (this could also be a con)
- You don’t have to talk to anyone
- It’s up to you to write your own workouts
- You have to motivate yourself
- You have to already have some idea of correct movements and exercises
- It can get lonely with no friends to talk to
- It can sometimes be crowded
- Most of these are “bro” gyms and being a woman in one of these can be intimidating
My most recent gym has been one of these. I chose this type of gym after my schedule changed and I had to be at work at 6:30 am. I thought I could try to get a workout in at 4 am. Unfortunately for me, it was always crowded and I was usually the only woman there. With my personality, I just like to go in, get my workout in, and leave. I don’t want to talk to anyone, I don’t want to have to wait on a machine or weights, and I don’t want to feel like “I’m just a girl”.
If I had unlimited money, I would open up a “bro” gym for women only. The struggle is real.
Crossfit or Bootcamp
- You will experience a camaraderie like no other
- The workouts are challenging and already made for you
- There will be experts there to teach you and watch your form
- You will make friends and they will hold you accountable
- It can be expensive, but I feel like you get your money’s worth
- There are certain times for classes that may not fit in with your schedule
- Some may not have a bathroom/shower area if you need to shower before work
- It will not be specific to what you may want to accomplish; it is geared for overall fitness, not unique goals
I was a part of a Crossfit community and loved it so much. I made many many friendships and learned so much about weightlifting and proper form. My husband and children eventually joined, too. It was a family affair! But my schedule changed and I could no longer attend the class times that were available.
Larger gyms that also offer classes
- You will have a wide variety of options for getting your sweat on
- Childcare is usually available
- Nice bathrooms/showers available
- Classes offer even more variety and camaraderie
- Some can be expensive
- The hours may not work with your schedule
- Sometimes the large size may be overwhelming
I have also been a member of a local SportsClub and found it very overwhelming and the hours the classes were available didn’t work for my schedule.
- Informed instructors
- Class camaraderie
- Can be costly
- Hours may not work with your schedule
This is the one gym I have not been a part of, not because I didn’t want to, but because I couldn’t afford it and it didn’t fit into my schedule.
On the Trail
- Very inexpensive. If you are running, all you need is a good pair of running shoes. If you are biking, all you need is a bicycle.
- You get outside! Fresh air does a body good.
- You can go anytime you want to!
- It can get monotonous if you don’t have a variety of places to go.
- It can be lonely or dangerous if you are by yourself.
- You have to be a self-motivator to make this work.
This is how I first discovered running. Money was tight, so I bought a pair of running shoes and the rest was history. I was quickly addicted and loved getting outside and doing it on my own time. When we moved I couldn’t find anyone to run with or anywhere good to run and slowly lost interest.
This is a kickboxing themed fitness routine. It is 9 rounds of 3 minutes each for a 30-minute workout.
- There are no class schedules. A new circuit starts every 3 minutes.
- You have a personal trainer to take you through the moves
- It can be costly
- Hours may vary since it is a franchise.
I personally have never been to 9 Rounds but I’ve heard great things about them from friends. I looked into it, but it was more than I wanted to spend and they didn’t open early enough for me.
At home gym
- It’s open all hours
- You don’t have to wait for equipment to be available
- You don’t have to get chatted up
- It can be expensive to get started, but it doesn’t have to be. A bench and some weights are all you really need. You could also try to purchase used equipment.
- You will need to create your own workouts. This could also be a pro if you are trying to achieve a specific, personal goal. But it will definitely require some of your personal time.
- Space. Finding room for a home gym may be tough.
This is what I’m working towards now. I have some pretty great equipment, but I can’t get to it right now. It’s in my garage, along with everything else!! We have purchased another shed to hopefully allow us to convert our garage into a gym. I have found I do best on my own, at home or on the trail. I’m too much of an introvert and tightwad to make it work anywhere else. I can’t wait to get my gym up and running!