P90X Challenge: Product Overview
I have been asked to review the program, but in order to fully do that, I feel I have the take the full-onP90X challenge, and do the program in its entirety.
I make that sound like work, but in actuality, I have been dying to do this program for the longest time, so I was really excited to have this opportunity.
Since the program is so long and involved, I am going to be doing weekly posts on my progress, as well as my thoughts. Its going to be sort of a two pronged approach: I will review it as a participant, and as a fitness professional, for safety, effectiveness, enjoyment, intensity, maintenance and so on.
If you are not familiar with P90X, you must not watch Saturday morning TV, because the infomercial for it is on constantly, showing ripped abs and toned arms of the P90x-ers who have lived through the program. It’s a 3 phase, 90 day fitness program comprised of 12 workout DVDs. What sets P90X apart, and why I wanted to try it so bad in the first place, is because its hard. The company tells you over and over it is not easy, you are going to sweat and hurt and workout A LOT, but if you push yourself and make it through, you will receive amazing results.
The program lasts for 12 weeks and is split into 3 phases. Each phase consists of 3 weeks of hard workouts, followed by one week of recovery workouts so your body can rest. The next month starts over again, but with different DVDs in a different order. The workouts are 6 days a week, with one rest day, or do the stretching DVD.
There are also 3 programs you can choose from depending on the results you want: P90X Classic, which is recommended for most users, and is the one I am doing, P90X Lean, which has more of a cardio focus, and P90X Doubles, designed for athletes or the clinically insane, where you double up and workout both morning and night.
In the Classic workout, there is an extra DVD, Cardio X, that is not used in the program, but encouraged to add. I am going to do this DVD one time a week in addition to the programmed DVDs, except on the recovery weeks.
According to the site, P90X is so effective because it uses an “advanced training technique called Muscle Confusion™, which accelerates the results process by constantly introducing new moves and routines so your body never plateaus, and you never get bored!”
The P90X program costs about $140.00 and includes:
- 12 workout DVDs + 2 bonus workouts
- The introductory How to Bring it DVD
- Nutrition Program
- Fitness Guide
- Wall Calendar
NOTE: I will not be following the nutrition program, as I have certain dietary restrictions due to a medical issue. Because of this issue, however, I eat a very healthy diet, so I do not expect it to affect my progress at all.
In addition to the included products, you will need to have a pull up bar and dumbbells, or a resistance band. I cannot use a pull up bar in my apartment, so I am using a resistance band, but I have dumbbells for the other exercises. I would highly recommend using a pull-up bar if you can, even if you aren’t anywhere near being able to do a pull up (there are modifications.) Optional equipment is a mat, yoga blocks and heart rate monitor, all available at the P90X site. I am using a heart rate monitor to track my intensity, and will give you the average HR and peak HR of each workout.
There is an online community you can sign up for as well, at www.beachbody.com, where others are starting their P90X challenge, too, so you can ask questions, share ideas, tips, track progress, etc.
I will be working out Monday-Saturday, resting on Sundays, but performing the stretching DVD.
I completed the assessment in the Fitness Guide so I can accurately track my progress and set goals. Here were my results:
Body Fat %: 14.9 (Healthy)
Resting Heart Rate: 74 bpm
Exercising Heart Rate: 98 bpm
Pull-ups: 1/4 (yeaaaah, you can tell that’s going to be one of my goals)
Push-ups (full, on toes): 24
Sit and Reach: +5″
Wall sit: 2 minutes 5 seconds
Bicep Curls: 16 (with 15 lb dumbbells)
In and Outs (abs): 47
Before Picture: above
I’m not really looking to lose any weight, although I suspect some will drop, and my body fat is on the lower end of the healthy range already anyway, so my goals are going to be more performance based.
I would, however, like to lose about an inch in my hips and a half inch in each thigh. I would like to be able to do 3 full pull-ups by the end of the program, and lower my resting heart rate.
I’m going to be posting weekly about my progress, and review each workout more in depth. I am sure you guys are going to have tons of questions along the way, so feel free to leave them in the comments section- anything from the music, to missing workouts, to time commitment, to injury modifications- and I’ll answer them in the next week’s post.
Alright, wish me luck!