P90X: Review

Alright, so I’ve completed two weeks of the famous P90X workout DVD set. I feel like I’m going to puke. This is one really hard workout let me tell you. I’m sweating all over my macbook as I type this, but I can already feel myself getting stronger. P90X is not really anything new or groundbreaking. It’s back to basics exercising: get the heart rate up and flex those muscles. But the way it’s done makes it interesting, and certain workouts are even fun.

P90X consists of 13 DVD’s. Each DVD is one workout and they run from 60 to 90 minutes each. The whole set is broken up into phases, and each phase is broken up into weeks where the exercises change every so often. These workouts include strength training, but also some great cardio workouts and even some yoga. This does several things; It keeps the body guessing utilizing a concept called muscle confusion. The theory goes that if you do anything over and over again, the body will adapt, so by mixing it up, you keep the body working harder. I think this also gives you a more well rounded physique and keeps you from getting strong arms and skinny legs. Lastly, it makes the program more interesting.

The workouts themselves are dynamite. I had been going to the gym three times a week for the past few years and really had not seen any improvement. I wasn’t really getting fatter, but not really getting any more fit. I think when you are a slave to workout machines, you kind of get used to doing certain things and so you go on cruise control after a while. The P90X workout really made me realize how little effort I’d been putting in. These workouts are strenuous! But the good thing is that you can tailor them to meet your fitness level, and they give you something to shoot for. The day that I can follow the DVD to the letter without an extra break or a altered movement is the day I’ll know I’ve accomplished my goals.

One of the great things about this workout too is that you don’t need a lot of gear. I bought a chin up bar and some weight bands from a local sporting goods store and that’s all I’ve needed. Most of the exercises use your own weight against you and honestly I think that gives you a better perspective on your fitness level. It’s easy to put a certain weight on a machine and feel good about pushing it around, but try and do a pull up or 20 push ups, and suddenly you realize how out of shape you are. If there’s one thing we should all be able to do is carry our own weight right? So I think the industry has made a lot of money off of gym memberships and whatnot, but Jack Lalaine was right. All we really need is a chair, a few hand weights and some motivation.

That motivation comes from a guy named Tony Horton. Horton is annoying as heck at first and comes off as some genetically perfect psychopath bent on turning you into a pile of mush. However, after doing two weeks of P90X I’m actually starting to admire the guy. He was in his mid 40’s at the time of the making of P90X and he’s in dynamite shape. I also get the feeling that he’s a genuinely nice guy. He motivates without sounding like a drill sergeant and constantly reminds you to go ahead and take a break if you need it. “Do your best and forget the rest” is repeated constantly during the workouts which gives me the urge to push, but doesn’t make me feel like a total loser in these early weeks.

So I give the P90X workout 5 stars. It’s a great workout and you can do it in your own home without buying a bunch of gear. It’s still too early in my plan to say what the results are going to be, but I do feel much stronger already. I’m able to get further into the ab workout without taking a break, and I’ve noticed my coordination and balance have improved a lot in the Yoga and Kenpo workouts in just these two weeks. I expect to start seeing noticeable fat loss and muscle growth in the coming 2 to 4 weeks. I’ll be sure to post here as the program continues.

Check out the P90X workout at the following website. The workout alone is around $100 which compared to a gym membership is pretty affordable. They also sell packages if you need a chin up bar, etc., but I found that you can get the equipment for much cheaper by shopping around.