P90X Workout Secrets
Picture courtesy of BeachBody
Got Tony Horton’s P90X fitness DVD’s and having a hard time making it through the workouts? When Tony’s cheerfully counting out the reps and everybody on the screen is smiling and following right along with no problem, are you flat on your back gasping for air? Well, you’re not the only one that’s wondered how in the world anyone can possibly make it through 60 minutes of P90X without suffering a stroke.
Although this is my 4th time through the program, I still struggle. I hate it when Tony’s doing bicep curls with 45 pound weights and pumping them out counting 1-2-3-4 like a military Drill Sergeant. Meanwhile, I’ve got half the weight and slowly counting ooonnnnneeee, gasp, gasp, ttttwwwwwoooo, gasp, gasp, and so on.
There’s no doubt that this is a tough workout – but then you knew this going in. So let me share some of the workout “secrets” that allow me to make it through an entire P90X workout without passing out.
Secret # 1. Take Mini-Breaks. When you first start out, it’s critical that you pace yourself and take as many 30 sec to 1 minute breaks as you need in between the exercises. Many of the workouts, especially those with weights, consist of 4-5 exercises that you repeat making a total of 8-10 sets before Tony calls a break for anywhere from 30 seconds to a full minute. That’s not enough when you’re first starting out because you haven’t built up your cardio yet. If you’re “bringing the intensity” like Tony wants you to, you need to hit the “Pause” button and take what he calls “mini-breaks” after each set. As you build your cardio, you’ll be able to reduce the number and length of your mini-breaks.
When I started, it usually took me an extra 15-20 minutes to finish a routine because of all the extra breaks I had to take. But here’s the real secret – don’t let your breaks last more than 1 minute because you’ll start to cool down. Your break should last just long enough for you to catch your breath before you hit “Play” and jump right back in – which brings me to the next point.
Secret # 2. Breathe. The P90X workouts are as much cardio workouts as strength workouts so make sure you don’t hold your breath through any of the exercises. Take deep, full breaths in order to completely fill your lungs with the oxygen your muscles need to keep going as well as to fully expel the waste gases (mainly CO2) from your body.
The key to taking a deep breath is to maintain a straight posture. When you’re tired, it’s natural to want to slump over. However when you do this, your lungs are compressed resulting in shallow breaths. Your lungs can’t get rid of all the CO2 and bring in enough fresh air to feed your muscles if you’re taking shallow breaths. So stop, straighten your spine, and take as many full, deep breaths as you can during your workout.
Secret # 3. Stay hydrated. The P90X workouts are designed to be non-stop, cardio-pounding, strength building workouts. If you’re bringing the intensity, you should be dripping with sweat within the first 10 minutes. As a result, it’s important that you keep your body hydrated. Here’s the key – take small but frequent sips of water throughout your workout. Don’t wait until Tony calls a break and then try gulping your water all at once. If you do, you’ll soon be throwing it back up. Keep your water bottle close by as you exercise and take small sips frequently during the entire workout.
My Workout Calendar
Secret # 4. Keep track. This is perhaps one of the best “workout secrets” ever – and it’s built in to the P90X program. In every workout, Tony is constantly telling you to “write it down.” How much weight did you use? Was it too much or not enough? How many reps did you do? As Tony says, “How can you know what to do if you don’t know what you did?” Use the P90X worksheets for every session that has them.
Secondly, keep of your progress overall. One of the things that motivates me is tracking my workout sessions on a “scoreboard” that I can see from across the room. I went down to the local office supply store and bought a desk calendar. You can get the store brand (in my case, from Office Depot) for about $4. I then hung it on the wall right next to my “workout corner.”
As you can see from the picture on the right, I just completed Week 6 of the program (I did Kenpo X on Saturday). Every time I complete a workout, I take a marker and place a big red check on that day. It really motivates me to keep going and fill up the entire month with red checks.
If you do this, there’s no lying to yourself. Note that I missed the first 3 days in February (no check marks) but then tried to do 3 workouts on Saturday. That didn’t work out well and is not recommended. Also, I missed a workout on Friday the 10th but made it up by doing 2 workouts on Saturday. Not ideal but I was fighting to get on track and work out out every single day. My scoreboard tells me that I finally accomplished my goal of working out every single day on Week 5.
Secret # 5. Stay with it. To get the results you want, you’ve got to be consistent. You’ve got to work out every single day. As Tony says, “keep showing up.” Keep popping in the DVD to your video player and pressing “Play.”
Went on vacation and missed a week? No problem. Pop in a DVD and start back in. Sick with the flu and got set back a couple of days? No problem. Jump back in when you’re feeling better. Totally slacked off and haven’t worked out in a couple of months? Do what I did and buy yourself a desk calendar – write down the routines on each day – number the weeks – and then start over at the beginning.
No matter where you are, keep going. No matter where you left off or what the reason was, jump back in. Keep pressing “Play.” Keep pressing “Play.” Keep pressing “Play.”
The real “secret” to success in ANYTHING is to keep working at it. If you really want to lose the fat and build the muscle, then stay with it. The P90X program works – but only if you work it. These workout “secrets” will help get you there.
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You can get the P90X Fitness Program from a number of places including Amazon.com. Shop around for the best price or for a place that offers free shipping.
- Get lean, bulk up, or grow stronger, with an endless variety of mix-and-match routines to keep you motivated
- Muscle Confusion technique accelerates the results process by constantly introducing new moves and routines so your body never plateaus
- Collection of 12 highly diverse and intense DVD workouts
- Also includes comprehensive three-phase nutrition plan, specially designed supplement options
- Personal trainer Tony Horton will keep you engaged every step of the way
P90X is a revolutionary system of 12 highly intense workouts, designed to transform your body. * Chest and Back * Plyometrics * Shoulders and Arms * Yoga X * Legs and Back * Kenpo X * X Stretch * Core Synergistics * Chest, Shoulders and Triceps * Back and Biceps * Ab Ripper X * Cardio X Extra DVD for a quick overview of the complete P90X Extreme Home Fitness training system is included. To get you started, you will also receive a comprehensive 3-phase nutrition plan, specially designed to help you lose fat; a detailed fitness guide, packed with valuable fitness information to help you get the most out of your program; and a calendar to set your workout goals, track your progress, and stay motivated.Tired of ineffective workouts that sound great but produce less-than-optimal results? Turn to the P90X Extreme Home Fitness system, a bundle of 12 sweat-inducing, muscle-pumping workouts designed to transform your body from regular to ripped in just 90 days. Hosted by personal trainer Tony Horton, the series of DVDs will help you get lean, bulk up, or grow stronger, with an endless variety of mix-and-match routines to keep you motivated. The secret behind the P90X system is an advanced training technique called "muscle confusion," which accelerates the fitness process by constantly introducing new moves and routines so that your body never plateaus and you never get bored. The more you confuse the muscle, the harder your body has to work to keep up. And the more variety you put into your workout, the better and faster your results will be. By breaking old routines and opening new doors, secondary and tertiary muscles are constantly being activated and developed.
In addition to the 12 DVD workouts, the P90X comes with a comprehensive three-phase nutrition plan, specially designed supplement options, a detailed fitness guide packed with valuable information on how to get the most from your program, a How to Bring It
DVD that provides a quick overview of the system, a calendar to track your progress, online peer support, and much more.
The DVD Workouts
Each of the 12 highly diverse and intense DVD workouts focuses on either a specific set of muscle groups or a unique training technique.
- Workout One: Chest & Back. This superset chest-and-back-blasting workout emphasizes two classic upper-body exercises--push-ups and pull-ups--to build strength and develop shape. The combination of these two push and pull movements will help you burn loads of calories while simultaneously attacking, strengthening, and developing multiple muscle groups.
- Workout Two: Plyometrics. Get ready to go airborne. Offering more 30 explosive jumping moves, this intense cardio routine will keep you in the air most of the time. Plyometrics, also known as jump training, has been proven to dramatically improve athletic performance. If your sport involves a ring, rink, field, court, or track, this training will give you the edge. Just be prepared to "bring it" for a full hour when you leap into this workout, because there is no letting up.
- Workout Three: Shoulders & Arms. Nothing rounds out the perfect physique like a pair of well-defined arms and shoulders, and with its potent combination of pressing, curling, and fly movements, this routine will leave you feeling stronger and looking sexier. Whether you want to build muscle mass or just slim and tighten what you've already got, these targeted shoulder and arm exercises will give you the results you want.
- Workout Four: Yoga X. Yoga is a vital part of any fitness regimen, and is an absolute must for an extreme program like P90X. This routine combines strength, balance, coordination, flexibility, and breath work to enhance your physique and calm your mind. Yoga X will leave you feeling energized, invigorated, and maybe even a little enlightened.
- Workout Five: Legs & Back. Get ready to squat, lunge, and pull for a total-body workout like no other. While the main focus of this workout lies in strengthening and developing the leg muscles (quads, hamstrings, glutes, and calves), there are also a handful of great pull-up exercises to give your legs a quick breather while you work the upper body.
- Workout Six: Kenpo X. Kenpo X was created to give P90X users a high-intensity cardiovascular workout packed with lots of punching and kicking combinations to improve balance, endurance, flexibility, and coordination. During this workout you'll learn some of the most effective ways to defend yourself, while at the same time getting your body in peak condition.
- Workout Seven: X Stretch. Stretching is the one thing that will help you achieve a higher level of athleticism over a longer period of time. The X Stretch routine is an integral part of the program, as it helps prevent injuries and avoid plateaus. The extensive full-body stretches that make up this routine use disciplines from Kenpo karate, hatha yoga, and various sports to ensure that your body is fully prepared to meet all P90X challenges head-on.
- Workout Eight: Core Synergistics. Each and every exercise in the Core Synergistics workout recruits multiple muscle groups to build and support the core (lumbar spine and trunk muscles), while at the same time conditioning your body from head to toe. Loaded with a variety of fun, unique, and challenging exercises, this routine will get you moving in all directions to maximize your P90X results.
- Workout Nine: Chest, Shoulders, & Triceps. Packed with an array of moves that target both large and small muscles, this workout will do wonders for your upper body. In just one full sequence you'll get a healthy dose of presses, flys, and extensions to push you to the brink. The results will be a stronger, leaner, and highly defined upper torso that will leave you looking awesome, with or without a shirt.
- Workout 10: Back & Biceps. With a host of curls and pull-ups, this routine will make it fun to flex those powerful biceps. But don't worry, ladies--by using lighter weight, you can focus on toning and tightening these showcase arm muscles without adding the size that most guys covet. Additionally, this workout also provides some great back definition that everyone can appreciate. Regardless of your goals, you will achieve them in dramatic fashion if you dig in and max out your reps.
- Workout 11: Cardio X. This low-impact cardio routine can be used in a variety of ways to meet your P90X goals. Use it in addition to your standard P90X workload when you want to burn some extra calories, or as a substitute if your body needs a break from the program's high-impact workouts. Whatever your reason for using Cardio X, you'll find it a fun, full-throttle, fat-burning workout that will leave you feeling lean and mean.
- Workout 12: Ab Ripper X. The combination and sequence of movements in this unique workout taps into not only abdominal strength, but true core strength as well. Master these 11 highly effective exercises and you will achieve vital abdominal muscle strength to benefit your overall health and physical performance. You'll also develop that highly coveted six-pack as you take Ab Ripper X to full throttle. It's extreme work that's better than any machine in any club.
P90X Fitness Guide
This is your road map and your plan of attack for using P90X. Learn guidelines for getting started and essential tips for how to make the most of the program. The fitness guide provides you tips to reduce your chance of injury; a fit test; recommended supplements and equipment; detailed instructions for stretching, warming up, and performing exercises; and guidelines to help you select which P90X phase to complete, whether Classic, Doubles, or Lean.
The Nutrition Plan
Following the P90X nutrition plan is just as vital to your overall success as any of the extreme workouts in this program. Specifically designed to work in tandem with the P90X workout routines, this three-phase eating plan recommends the perfect combination of foods to satisfy your body's energy needs every step of the way. P90X is not about quick fixes or miracle diets. It's about selecting the healthy foods that you want to eat, and determining the portion amounts that will provide your body with the right amount of fuel to excel during exercise. The P90X nutrition plan offers three phases. Phase 1 is the Fat Shredder, a high-protein-based diet designed to help you strengthen your muscles while simultaneously and rapidly shedding fat from your body. Phase 2 is the Energy Booster, a balanced mix of carbohydrates and proteins with a lower amount of fat to achieve additional energy for performance. And Phase 3 is the Endurance Maximizer, an athletic diet of complex carbohydrates, lean proteins, and lower fat, with the emphasis on more carbohydrates. You'll need this combination of foods as fuel to get the most out of your final few weeks and truly be in the best shape of your life.
Tools to Keep You Motivated
- P90X Calendar to set your workout goals, track your progress, and stay motivated.
- Free Online Support Tools for access to fitness experts, peer support, and motivation.
What's in the Box?
12 DVD workouts, nutrition plan, fitness guide How to Bring It DVD, a calendar to track your progress
List Price: $ 139.80
Price: $ 139.80