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Do You Need To Go To The Gym?

Updated: Mar 31, 2023

A year ago I would have said yes. If you wanted to look a certain way, feel a certain way or build your level of fitness. As a self confessed gym bunny I have definitely been procrastinating on talking about this.

It was seeing a video of a friend at the gym doing a colossal deadlift that gave me a short and swift pang of envy... before I remembered how much I've fallen in love with my new routine. Without a gym (or barbell) in sight. The last year has forced me to come to the realisation that the gym isn't necessarily the be all and end all for everyone.

Reliance On The Gym

I had been relying on the gym (Virgin Active, Les Mills, F45... you name it) for so many years, it had become a fully fledged part of my identity. Not being able to go was an incredibly scary prospect. This meant becoming unfit, gaining weight and losing my mind. Surely? But as with most challenges in life, it's how you deal with it that matters.

Building A New Relationship With Fitness

Not being able to get to a gym that I enjoyed meant I had to build a relationship with my body and training that ensured strength, fitness and enjoyment, without the draw of fun friends, loud music, group training or huge amounts of equipment. Feeling almost 'back to normal' after a ridiculous bout of long covid I was surprised that I didn't even want to go back to a gym.

When The Gym Is Good

  • You actively love the feeling

  • You want a community and group training

  • You need the accountability of booking in

  • You want to actively gain muscle

  • You need the support of trainers

So, if you (for any reason) - a move, a change in job, a change in health, new child etc. can't go to the gym anymore - do you need to panic? Not in my opinion. If lockdown had taught us anything, it's that often we don't 'need' half the things we think we do.

What You Can Achieve Without A Gym

- Mental clarity of training alone

- Strength & muscle definition

- Time outdoors

- Fat loss

As Tim Ferris explains in the 4 Hour Body - despite what female specific workout marketing tells us, it is amazing for us girls to build strength, just as much as the bloke who wants 20 inch biceps. The worry for most gym goers of no longer having access to a gym is likely in the loss of strength in certain areas. I've certainly lost size and muscle mass (partly by choice) but strength doesn't have to disappear.

Strength Training Outside Of The Gym

- Walking up hills (with added weights if you like - nature's leg day)

- Incorporating Micro Workouts throughout your day

- Bike rides (also brilliant for building muscle rather than breaking it down - as is broadly considered the case with running)

As always, the best exercise for you is one that you enjoy. If someone decided to open an epic new group training gym in town, I can't promise I'd ignore the fact, but I would certainly have to think twice about giving up my sunshine and hill views

Get in touch on Facebook or Instagram at @amysfitnessandnutrition, drop me a message to 0272 650 350, or check out more at

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