Why I Quit The Gym

August 15, 2012 · 35 comments

Have you noticed zero mentions of my gym, trainers, group fitness classes, and treadmill runs?

That’s because there haven’t been any since March.

It’s true. My account is frozen, and I haven’t stepped foot into my old gym since before I had my surgery.

And I don’t miss it.

To be honest, I started realizing how much I dreaded going to the gym every day. While I used to hate running outside because I could find more distractions on the treadmill (television, magazines, people watching, etc.), I grew to hate the treadmill (who am I?). Driving over to the gym after work to fight for machines became the hardest part of my day, and for me, fitness needs to be something I enjoy.

Once I began fitmixer boot camp, I realized how much fun I was having working out at home. Not only did I love the fact that I could do my workout any time I wanted, I could play the music I want, I could watch anything on T.V., and I didn’t have to keep my poor Chloe locked up in her cage. I could sprint around the block, do half my boot camp workout, complete another neighborhood loop, and finish the exercises. I suddenly had so much freedom and flexibility; it was as if I was suddenly my own boss. And I loved it. It wasn’t about the money, but saving $55 a month is definitely nice, too.

This is part of why I love fitmixer boot camp. I can do the workouts on my own time, in my own space, and I don’t need anything but my yoga mat sometimes for extra padding. I haven’t picked up my dumbbells in forever, yet some of my muscles are more toned than ever before. I loved the X-spin class at my gym, but the fitmixer exercises are more varied and give me just as good a workout. I have the freedom to do what I want, when I want, where I want to do it.

And we all know how much I like that.

So, my exercise routine as of late? This session of boot camp just ended, so I’ve been recycling old fitmixer boot camp workouts. I’ve been running. I’ve been taking days off. It’s been really, really nice becoming more relaxed in my approach to fitness, and I’m enjoying myself a whole lot more.

Gimme that freedom.

Have you ever drastically changed up your fitness routine? Contemplated quitting the gym?

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{ 35 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Tiff @ Love Sweat and Beers August 15, 2012 at 12:52 pm

Yup. My summer hours at work have drastically changed my workout routine, but I’ll be back to normal in Sept. It has been quite refreshing though – I only have time for 25 min at-home boot camps or neighborhood runs every M-Th. It’s amazing what you can do in 20 min when pressed for time!
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2 Alyssa @ Life of bLyss August 15, 2012 at 1:49 pm

it’s so true. it’s amazing how sometimes a 20 minute workout can sometimes be even more productive than an hour one.

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3 Kristen McGrath August 15, 2012 at 12:57 pm

So glad you posted this! I’ve been dreading going to the gym lately too. The only reason I want to go is for this amazing yoga class. I might as well go to a yoga studio then. This fit mixer boot camp sounds awesome too!! Thanks Al!!

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4 Alyssa @ Life of bLyss August 15, 2012 at 1:48 pm

do it, Kris! we’ll be fitmixer buddies. ;)

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5 Sana August 15, 2012 at 1:06 pm

I am going to get kicked off of my family gym plan when I turn 24 so I guess I am going to have to make my own gym at home :)

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6 Lindsay @ Fit with Farrar August 15, 2012 at 1:15 pm

Was previously a gym rat – then about 2 years ago, I started to full 90-day workout programs from Beachbody…haven’t looked back! Definitely no gym necessary!!

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7 Claire @ Live and Love to Eat August 15, 2012 at 1:25 pm

I’ve thought about it, since I like doing yoga at studios instead of the gym and running or doing circuits at home or outside, but I would miss spin class too much!
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8 Kristy Doyle August 15, 2012 at 1:38 pm

That’s funny, while I used to dread the treadmill with every fiber of my being, I’ve recently learned to love it. I still love running outside, but where I used to basically think I would die of boredom after ten minutes on the ‘dreadmill’ as I used to call it, I’ve recently started liking it!
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9 Alyssa @ Life of bLyss August 15, 2012 at 1:49 pm

we went in opposite directions!

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10 alyssa - fashion fitness foodie August 15, 2012 at 1:42 pm

Same…and it saves me $100 a month! Can’t beat that.
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11 Danielle @ Dish'n'Dash August 15, 2012 at 2:05 pm

Good for you for changing things up and doing what works best for you and is the most fun! I know so many people who dread running but do it because they think they “have” to. My response is always to stop running and find something they love.
I started going to the gym in January because it was too bloody cold to go running outside (running in -25C weather is NOT fun) and knew that if I tried to stick to an at-home workout schedule, I would end up sitting on my ass most of the time.
I will be changing things up again over the next month, including cancelling my gym membership, because I am planning a move to Peru! It is going to be interesting to keep a workout routine going when I’m just going to want to eat all the time (the food is amazeballs). Running will also be a huge challenge since I’ll be at more than 3000m above sea level; my lungs are going to hate me for the first while. Going to be fun, though!

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12 Erica @ Love the Leap August 15, 2012 at 2:06 pm

Love this post!! I have been using so many Beachbody programs lately that I don’t even want/need to go to the gym anymore. I love working out at home and the flexibility it provides. Right now I’m doing Insanity: The Asylum and while it’s kicking my butt, I’m having a blast and definitely not bored! There is a small part of me that wants to keep my membership in case there is a rainy day and I feel like a run, but right now, I’m totally content without it!
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13 Julie @ Sweetly Balanced August 15, 2012 at 2:21 pm

Yes!! I had to quit the gym on numerous occasions.. I have a tendency to join because I want to get into shape, but then realize that I don’t even like the gym and prefer to run outside, so my membership goes unused. Trying to remember this for the next time I get the urge to join another gym!
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14 Alyssa @ Life of bLyss August 15, 2012 at 4:10 pm

maybe look up some awesome at-home workouts next time you’re feeling the itch? ;)

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15 Parita August 15, 2012 at 2:47 pm

Good for you! I see something about Tabata sets in that last picture – can you do a post on your favorite ones? Thanks!

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16 Colleen @ The Lunchbox Diaries August 15, 2012 at 3:00 pm

Not even joking, I have been so good about getting in good workouts, but being more relaxed about my approach to it all. I’ve been stressed this week, and today I skipped the gym (no excuse, pure laziness) and now I’m beating myself up over it. That’s how I know I’m stressed – when I freak out over one missed “exercise day.”
I was literally looking around online for at-home workouts when I popped over here because I saw a new post was up – and when I read “I now have a more relaxed approach about fitness and I’m enjoying myself a whole lot more” the Crazy Girl pressure I’m putting on myself went away. It’s OKAY!! to skip days. Thanks, friend. I needed the reminder. <3
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17 Alyssa @ Life of bLyss August 15, 2012 at 4:06 pm

aw, that makes me so happy. and if it makes you feel better, I didn’t work out yesterday. ;)

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18 Amber K August 15, 2012 at 3:22 pm

I think I would quit the gym if I didn’t live in a top floor apartment. I have an exercise bike, a mini-trampoline and a ton of exercise DVDs. But our apartments are not very sound resistant and I don’t need my downstairs neighbors to hate me!
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19 Heather (Heather's Dish) August 15, 2012 at 4:52 pm

sigh.

i’m with you girl! that the whole driving to and from the gym, parking, finding a locker, fighting for equipment and spots in classes…yeah, i don’t miss that. at all. plus i like having my own private shower without a bajillion random naked women swarming around!
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20 Alyssa @ Life of bLyss August 16, 2012 at 9:44 am

Exactly! And your sweet little boy appreciates it, I’m sure. :)

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21 Heather @Run Eat Play August 15, 2012 at 6:07 pm

Going to the gym is my alone time! But I also have two kids and a husband.

I belonged to one gym for 5 years and switched to a gym that offered bodypump classes.
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22 Alyssa @ Life of bLyss August 16, 2012 at 9:44 am

Ah, see, if I needed to get out of the house, I’d probably be the same way. :)

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23 Gina @ Health, Love, and Chocolate August 15, 2012 at 9:31 pm

I think it’s great to mix it up when the gym gets boring. I recently transitioned from almost all my workouts being at the gym to about half being outside doing various circuits and such. I love it!

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24 Sarah B. August 15, 2012 at 10:55 pm

My gym visits definitely go in phases. Lately, I’ve been on an outdoor phase! I’m trying to explore my neighborhood (even though it’s not all that new). I also wanna take advantage of the nice weather before it gets super cool.

On the other hand, sometimes I like the gym because the community aspect motivates me and I like the cardio theatre.
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25 Alyssa @ Life of bLyss August 16, 2012 at 9:43 am

I’ve STILL never been in a cardio theatre! I do want to experience that and see how I like it.

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26 Annie August 16, 2012 at 2:57 am

I’m currently facing the dilemma: my gym membership expires and of august and I’m not sure whether I want to renew it or not. I used to go pretty often but then i discovered running & now I much prefer to run outside than to use the cardio machines. Plus, my schedule is going to change drastically and my hours are going to be all over the place.

The thing is, i’ve always felt like exercise dvds aren’t “real” workouts, I’m probably going to be kicked for saying this and I have no idea with this thought came from but there you go. Maybe I need to be reassured that at home workouts are as effective as gym workouts?? x

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27 Alyssa @ Life of bLyss August 16, 2012 at 9:41 am

I completely understand what you mean. Maybe it’s because in “at home” workouts, you are the only person holding you accountable. No one will know if you skip a set. You can stop whenever you want. I will honestly say there are probably only two DVDs I’ve ever tried which actually give me a good workout, and I even have to spread those pretty far apart in my routine. I rarely use them.

That’s partially why I was so pleasantly surprised by my boot camp love/success. The program gives participants tough, varied workouts. I loved ‘em!

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28 @pluvk August 16, 2012 at 4:06 am

I quit the gym a couple of years ago, and noticed a BIG difference in my workouts. I go harder than before… I was thinner when I went to the gym, but definitely not as muscular (which I like!) But I miss the people-watching. Seeing others go faster or lift heavier motivates me! But the extra money and workout variety is nice, too! :-)

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29 Alyssa August 16, 2012 at 9:33 am

I completely agree…I have noticed that I am more energetic and driven to workout or run when I am doing so at home, and I don’t feel as focused on time while I am working out. It’s definitely more fun!
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30 Emily @ Perfection Isn't Happy August 16, 2012 at 12:39 pm

Good for you! I love the fitness classes at my gym, but I feel like I utilize them more often in the winter, when I don’t want to go for a run or walk outside. Right now I’m training for a half marathon, so I feel like I might spend a little less time at the gym for the next 12 weeks!
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31 Sam @ Better With Sprinkles August 16, 2012 at 3:05 pm

My gym membership is up when I move at the end of the month, so I’m debating finding something else to try for a little while. I enjoy the gym but I don’t want to burn out on it!
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32 Michelle @ Blogitness August 16, 2012 at 3:14 pm

I quit the gym too…honestly I feel I am so much more productive working out at home. I’ll occasionally hit up a yoga studio though.
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33 Megan @ Fiterature August 17, 2012 at 10:25 am

Thanks for this post – sometimes I feel GUILTY if I work out at home with weights instead of the gym. As if the weights WEIGHT more at the gym or are more legit than the ones at home. Or like, if no one witnesses me workout, it doesn’t count!!! So. Not. True.
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34 Alysha @Shesontherun August 17, 2012 at 12:37 pm

I could never entirely quit the gym. I actually really enjoy going!

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35 Meghan@CleanEatsFastFeets August 20, 2012 at 6:43 pm

I think whatever your workout routine is, it will eventually feel like a rut unless you mix it up. Good for you for shaking things up.
While I switch things up, I will always workout in some shape or form because I do it as much, if not more, for stress release than physical results.

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