Ah, the age old question…
Should you work out at home or join a gym?
Truthfully, there’s no one right answer for everyone.
It depends completely on your personality, the kinds of workouts you like to do, and which gyms you have available to join to nearby.
In this article I want to look at one home workout program in particular: Beachbody on Demand?
When it comes to the gym vs Beachbody, which is the better choice for you? Which one is more affordable, a better workout, and better for your long-term results?
If you’re new to working out or maybe getting in shape for the first time in a long time, Beachbody on Demand will give you a complete blueprint to follow. The app tells you exactly what workouts to do on which days, and how to eat to see the best results.
If you’re a little more experienced and you have an idea of what feels good for your own body, you’ll probably enjoy the freedom and variety of working out at a gym with lots of different equipment.
But that’s just the beginning of this comparison.
Let’s go deeper!
Cost of a gym membership vs Beachbody on Demand
Let’s start by breaking down the price difference between the two.
Beachbody on Demand will undoubtedly be a better deal.
The average cost of a gym membership is around $40 per month, or about $500 per year.
That’s not a scientific number, but it’s a very common one. It’s actually around what I pay to go to LA Fitness in Georgia.
Gyms can be WAY cheaper than that… if you’re willing to go to Planet Fitness.
(Or if you’re an excellent negotiator.)
They can also be way more expensive. Life Time, for example, can run you two or three times as much.
The cost of Beachbody on Demand is much clearer.
If you’re willing to lock in a long Beachbody subscription, you can pay as little as $8-9 per month.
For shorter-term subscriptions (and less cost up front), you’ll pay around $13-14 per month.
No matter how you slice it, Beachbody is cheaper than a gym membership.
Of course, gyms come with amenities like childcare, pools, showers, group classes, and more.
But if you want to look at the absolute bottom dollar, you can save a lot of money by doing Beachbody workouts vs going to the gym.
And read my full Beachbody on Demand review here to see a more detailed breakdown.
Effectiveness of going to the gym vs Beachbody on Demand workouts
It’s impossible to say whether a Beachbody or gym workout will work better.
It all depends on how much effort you put in (and how intelligently you train in the gym).
If you’re going to loaf around in the gym, do “whatever you feel like” and skip workouts frequently, you’ll be way better off with Beachbody on Demand.
When you join Beachbody, you’ll start by picking a program you want to follow.
It could be a cardio-based program, a strength program, a yoga program, or anything else.
(You’ll have literally dozens to choose from on-demand.)
You’ll print out a calendar that matches that program, and it’ll tell you EXACTLY what you need to do every single day for as long as you’re on the program:
- What workouts to do, when, and how to do all of the moves
- You’ll follow along with detailed workout videos here
- If it’s a rest day, you’ll rest!
- You’ll also get EXTREMELY detailed nutrition guidelines and meal plans to help you shed fat, build muscle, or both
Like I said before, it’s a complete blueprint.
If you actually follow your BOD program, you’ll get 10x the results you’ll get from half-heartedly jogging on the gym treadmill a few times per week.
You can get absolutely insane results in the gym if you know what you’re doing, or you’re willing to do a little research.
Find a free or paid workout program that offers much of what Beachbody does and bring it to the gym with you.
Here’s the program I used at the gym to shed 15+ pounds of fat and get the lean, toned look I wanted.
If you can find a workout plan for the gym and stick to it, you’ll get results that are just as good as you can get from Beachbody.
Beachbody vs bodybuilding & weight lifting – Which is better for building muscle?
Beachbody on Demand has a few strength-training programs you can follow from home to get strong and build muscle.
(Most use a combination of calisthenics, bodyweight training, and dumbbell work).
At the gym, of course, you’ll have access to serious strength equipment like:
- power racks
- resistance machines
- and more
So which is better if you want to build muscle and get jacked?
While you can definitely get great fat loss results on Beachbody while strengthening your body for a lean, athletic physique, I think barbell work in the gym is much better for anyone who wants to pack on serious muscle.
You’ll build muscle and strength on Beachbody programs, to a point, but to continue packing on size you’ll eventually need to increase the loads you’re lifting.
There’s only so much you can do at home with light dumbbells before you’re strong enough and ready for more.
Don’t get me wrong, I love the Beachbody programs! But if you want bulging pecs and biceps, you’ll need to hit the heavy weights sooner or later.
Treadmill vs Beachbody – Which is a better workout?
This isn’t even a competition.
Yes, hitting the treadmill at the gym is a good way to burn calories and, if you train properly, it can help you increase your overall endurance.
But full-body Beachbody workouts will do FAR more for your athleticism, conditioning, and physique.
You’ll burn calories faster and more effectively during the HIIT-style Beachbody workouts, and you’ll challenge your body in a much more effective way than straight-line running.
The treadmill is a useful tool for fitness and fat loss …
… I like to do incline walking a few times a week just to burn calories and keep my body in a calorie deficit during fat loss or cutting phases.
But for getting in better shape, developing strength and athleticism, and just having more fun?
Beachbody is the better option.
Can you do beachbody workouts at the gym?
This seems to be a question a lot of people have.
They wonder if they can join Beachbody and just do the workouts at their normal gym instead of at home.
Yes, sort of.
You can usually do Beachbody workouts anywhere, as long as you have a small open space to work out in.
Doing it at the gym on a mat somewhere could even be really convenient, as you’ll never have to worry about not having the right equipment!
However, keep in mind that the Beachbody workouts are presented in video-form.
It may be a little awkward to find a place to set your phone down where you can see the video, and you might feel a little weird doing it.
(That shouldn’t stop you, it’s just a consideration.)
If you want workouts that are easy to take to the gym with you, check out the audio-guided workouts on Aaptiv (here’s my review of Aaptiv right here.)
Advantages of Beachbody vs the gym
Let’s start wrapping up.
Beachbody might be a better choice for you if:
- You’re on a tight fitness budget
- You prefer working out at home (or if you have no other choice)
- You need a step-by-step blueprint to follow to stay motivated
- You’re busy and can’t afford long workouts at the gym or extra drive time
Advantages of the gym vs Beachbody
I think highly of Beachbody, but personally I still go to a gym for my own workouts.
- More freedom to switch things up as needed
- Access to more equipment, including heavy weights for strength training
- Unlimited exercise variety
- Access to childcare, pools, saunas, and other amenities
In the end, my recommendation doesn’t really matter, because it’s all about your own preferences.
Beachbody is cheaper than a gym membership and gives you a much easier blueprint to follow. You’ll save time, money, and the stress of not knowing what to do to get in shape. Join up, follow the steps, and you’ll see amazing results.
When you’re a little more advanced, you might like the freedom of the gym, the extra amenities, and the access to more advanced equipment and exercises.
But you know what?
Hope this helps, everyone!