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P90x: Week 2

14 Aug 2011

Week 2 done: so far so good. Sore, but getting used to it!

Best lesson learned this week: the P90x program workout order is effectively and soundly designed. If you’re on the P90x classic program, miss a workout, and think you can double up on another day to make it up, think again. Early this week, I missed plyometrics on Monday, did it on Tuesday, and planned a double session with Kenpo X and Legs & Back for Friday. But my legs were done after Kenpo X, and still sore from Yoga X the day before. Note to self, no doubling up.

If you’ve given up on an exercise program before because of boredom, P90x may be right for you. For the first month, you’ll do three resistance training workouts, one yoga, one martial-arts inspired routine, and one plyometrics session. If you’ve been curious about yoga or a martial arts discipline, P90x can be a good introduction to those activities.

I realize I’m saying this on week 2. Time will tell if I’ll think the same on week 7.

Right now, in terms of effectiveness and workout quality, P90x passes the test for you if you have some experience with exercise. If you are a beginner, you should work with a personal trainer for a session or two to get a good idea of your fitness level and what intensity level is appropriate for you. P90x has a fitness test you can take, but there is no substitute for personalized feedback and recommendations from a fitness professional, especially if you are a beginner.

Efficiency – P90x workouts take too long for the exerciser that’s reluctant to get back into a program again. For most of the routines, you’ll have to set aside at least an hour a day 6 days a week. The Yoga X workout is 90 minutes, probably the longest one of them all. When people cite lack of time as a barrier to exercising, asking them to set aside at least an hour a day 6 days a week is unreasonable. At that rate, you can get in great shape devoting to other forms of physical activity for 3 months.

Would it be possible to shorten the workouts so that it takes a max of 45-50 minutes a day and still get the same results? That and including a reasonable and sound nutrition program would be my ultimate test for an excellent fitness program.

Since P90x isn’t designed with these parameters in mind, I’ll have to take it as it is.

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