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My P90X Review (Regaining My Life Balance)

November 23, 2010 –

I am writing this review based on my first 90 days with P90x, which was  almost a year ago. I started in late December 2009.

One of the biggest challenges of starting P90x is making it a priority in your life. It takes time and energy. How do I fit this into my life? How do I ensure I don’t let other things interfere? After all, life does not stop. We still need to go to work. Some of us still have travel for work. There are birthday parties with cake. There are family parties with that cheeseburgers and hotdogs.  There is church on Sundays. There are late nights out with friends. There are still family responsibilities. Its all still there. How do you regain your life balance when life does not stop?

To help me ease me into this, I started during 2 weeks I had taken vacation during  the end of the year. Give yourself enough time as you start P90x. The core workouts clock in just under 60 minutes, with YogaX clocking in at 90 minutes. And on your (3) resistance days, you need to tack on another 17 minutes for Ab Ripper X. So when you first start doing the workouts, give yourself 2 hours. For those who haven’t been working out, dedicating 2 hours seems hard to fathom.  But I guarantee you will need to pause during the workouts. They move fast. You are writing your reps/weights down, getting ready for the next exercise, and trying to catch your breath.

In the beginning, I would suggest flipping through the video the night before. That way you can start to formulate your game plan. The other thing I do is lay out everything I need, the night before: Weights, pull up bar, push up stands, bench, HRM, putting the DVDs in the machine. This takes 10 minutes alone. It makes a difference when you wake up early in the morning and you don’t have to setup. You will have to put it all away, so this is enough for the day you are working out on.  It also commits you to working out and eliminates one more excuse.

I loved the structure of the program. It is very prescriptive, which is what I needed. I also really liked the variety. I enjoyed the variety in not just the resistance days, but the non-resistance days were a welcome change. Yoga, Kenpo, and Plyometrics really switch things up. The resistance days are not normal lifting as you may have done in the past. You are sweating and moving. Gone are the days of 8-10 reps, resting for 60 seconds, doing another set, resting for 60 seconds, and doing a final set. This is how I was taught to lift. There are no 3 sets x 10 reps exercises. And if you think he moves fast through the exercises fast in, wait until P90x Plus, but more on that in that review.

As I said in My Story, I was travelling Internationally a lot and hence needed to use my day off when it made sense with the restrictions on being on a plane for 18 hours some times. I carried my bands with me everywhere and kept pushing play.

I also enjoyed that Tony and his workout buddies would show different variations of the exercises. This really gives the program great breath and lets both beginners and advanced P90xers use the program. Remember, it’s okay to modify.  Swallow your pride. These people are in great shape. Injuring will leave you sidelined and that does not help anyone.

I need to come clean that I did not write down my food intake during my first 90 days. I wish I had, but I was just trying to get the workouts right. However, I did still do a lot to my diet. Now that I am tracking my food intake, I realize that I did a pretty good job. Read the Nutrition Guide and educate yourself. I would also suggest using Beachbody’s Meal Planner. (….)This is what I use today. It caters the program to your needs and what you want to accomplish. For my first 90 days, I did the following:

–       Stopped all carbonated beverages. Water, water, water. And I used various flavor packets, like Crystal Light or Propel.

–       Stop the fast food runs. Subway is the standby if I need to grab something

–       Eat Breakfast. I never used to and it is critical to kickstart your metabolism in the morning. Egg Whites were my favorite.

–       Eat 5 times a day. This is key! I used to starve myself and then gorge myself at dinner.

–       Crank your protein intake. Whey Protein is your new best friend.

Read more on my Nutritional Tips section on what I eat and how to change your eating habits.

So did P90x deliver? I lost 16 lbs and went from 193 to 177. I haven’t been <180 lbs since college and was playing Water Polo everyday. Did I get ripped? No, but to me this was not about getting ripped. This was about changing my life and feeling good about myself again. It was about regaining my life balance of mind, body, and spirit. I was a lot stronger and durable. Most surprisingly to me was how much my flexibility improved. Yoga has a lot to do with this. Flexibility is so critical to avoiding injury.

I am a passionate follower of the program and have learned a lot since that 1st 90 days. See my blog posts on the different things I have done that will hopefully help you if you are just starting the program.

You can download all the worksheet here.

Here are some other proof points on P90x!

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One Response to “My P90X Review (Regaining My Life Balance)”

  1. […] was a bonus disc when I bought the program and I really enjoyed it. It was very different from P90x resistance routines in that it was cardio in nature and my heart rate was much […]

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