Sunday, April 3, 2011

Bring It! My P90x Review

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If you have been following the blog, you know that hubby and I started the P90x program at the beginning of the year. 

Most of you know P90x from infomercials etc. but basically it is an at-home exercise program designed to prevent hitting a plateau in your training through "muscle confusion". It is a set of DVDs that you purchase which incorporates cardio, strength training, yoga, flexibility and stretches throughout the workouts. The program has 3 different options or "rotations": Classic, 
Lean and Doubles.

Classic version - Default way of doing P90x. It is designed to promote maximum muscle growth and strength.

Doubles version - Basically the same as Classic except you add a second workout during phase 2 and 3 of the program.

Lean version - Probably the easiest of the 3 and concentrates less on strength and includes more cardio for maximum weight loss.

We chose to do the Lean version.

The workouts are *intense* but certainly modifiable for beginners. Most are 50-60 minutes in length and done 6 days out of the week. I had a harder time with strength training (i.e. Ab Ripper, Shoulders/Push ups) than I did the cardio portion (which was NOT a surprise to me). Mind you, I was doing the P90x program in addition to my regular workouts at the gym (Body Step, Body Attack, Body Pump, Zumba). I specifically enjoyed the Yoga but felt that it could have been shorter. It's a full 90 minute session which I did for the most part, but at times I had to cut it to 45 minutes.

The program also came with a nutritional guide which we DID NOT follow in the sense that I considered our diet to be semi-healthy, sensible and for the most part, balanced already. We still indulged in our "junk food" every now and then....the key is moderation (OK...for the most was in moderation). I don't believe in depriving yourself of anything because when everything is said and done, you still want to enjoy life, give yourself a break and enjoy the ride. At the end of my program (which was technically 76 days), I don't think that my stamina improved per se, but my overall strength did.

The program did start to become monotonous at I knew instinctively what Tony Horton was going to say next (Tony Horton-isms). Such as,  "Push pause if you need to, but don't go hit the fridge". At first he was engaging and funny but after seeing the DVDs over and over again, he started becoming obnoxious (sorry Tony lovers). Don't get me wrong, Tony is an excellent trainer, very motivating and always stresses good form and technique as well as making sure warm ups and cool downs are done to prevent injuries.

We did NOT complete the full 90 day program....we were about 14 days short. Our plan was to start training for the upcoming Bloomsday race and half-marathon that follows (sans my right back injury ~ not related).

Go HERE to see my final 90 (?) day results with photo comparisons.

Other things to consider:
Cost of program: 
  • $140 includes S/H OR Free if you can borrow the set from someone you know (*wink*)
  • Has a 90-day money back guarantee
Equipments needed: 
  • Resistance bands - I bought mine at TJ Maxx for about $10
  • Chin up bar - about $20
  • Dumbbells - we already had a set at home, I used a set of 5 lbs. and 10 lbs.
You can always complete the rotation of your choice then switch to another one to challenge yourself even more. You can also throw together a custom round for yourself based on your goals and to add some variety to your workout.

Overall, I liked the program because it DID give me that variety I was  looking for BUT personally, I prefer to have the comraderie and motivation I get from friends at the gym (I'm more of a "social" kind of a workout person). But if you can't make it to the gym or if you're traveling, the DVDs are handy and useful ~ no gym membership required.

I would do a whole different series again or maybe just a DVD or two (if I need me some Tony butt-kicking).

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