A few months ago I started my “get back in shape/lose weight” plan using old-school weights, cardio equipment, running, and diet. The old-school plan brought me from 210 pounds to 199 pounds. Dropping below the 200 pound mark was my first goal. In fact, it’s the first time in three years that I’ve been below 200 pounds so this is good.
I’ve noticed that I’ve already plateaued on the old-school weights. I’m not motivated or fired up about them enough to switch up training, get a partner, or do any of the half-dozen things that I’d have to do to make them productive. In fact, to be honest, they are starting to bore me. Also, by the time it’s over and I’m home, the gym part of my weekly workouts eat up almost 2 hours of my time.
Running is the other issue. The good news is that I got myself back up to running two miles. The bad news is that my lower back, knees, and hip muscles (aka side kick muscles) have this burny sort of ache. That cant’ be good?
While at the conference I ran into someone I had not seen in years. I did not recognize him because he had lost a LOT of weight (estimate 35 lbs). He also looked quite fit and toned. He told me that he got there (mostly) through diet and doing the original P90X. Chatting with him I told him that the workouts sounded long and grueling — i.e., I doubted that I was that motivated to make that kind of time and money commitment. Solution? He suggested that I look into P90X-3, which is a scaled down and amped up 30 minute version of the longer P90X programs.
Long story short: I bit.
I had planned to start this hair-brained plan after returning from the conference, however, Mr. Flu put that idea in the ditch. I officially started the program this past Saturday. The program rotates from 16 workouts that are 30 minutes long. It rotates them in weekly blocks and does so for 90 days. At the end of the 90 days it promises that you will hit your target weight loss and fitness goals that you set at the beginning of the program. Keeping it simple, I’ve set my target weight at 185 pounds. That means I have another 15 pounds to drop.
I’ll blog more about the workouts but for now know that the block rotation of 16 workouts is supposed to do two things: 1) Makes it so you don’t get bored and 2) Is designed to confuse your body and your muscles so you continue to makes gains.
The workouts use minimal equipment and rely mostly on body weight:
- Resistance bands
- Chin-up bar
- Yoga mat
I have a cornucopia of bands from the taekwondo days and have a yoga mat. The only things I added were some heavier dumbbells and a chin-up bar. Aside from the cost of the program this was a minimal investment.
One weekly block consists of six different workouts and one day off. I’m three workouts into this and sore in places that are new to me. Saturday’s workout was a total body workout, Sunday was a leg shredder, and today was yoga. Ranking them in order of suffering:
- Total body
So far I’d rank yoga as the least of the three but the darn yoga workout still had me grunting, groaning, and sweating! Tomorrow it looks like 30 minutes of push-up and pull-up variations. Thursday is day 6 so over the weekend I’ll blog about how week 1 went and check in with my weight. The bad news is that we are going on vacation for a week so I’ll have a 1 week interruption in the 90 day program. I do, however, have a vacation maintenance plan that will consist of push-ups, sit-ups, and a couple of runs. We are also doing a lot of hiking over the break so I’ll be okay.
There are other program variations within the P90x-3 base program. If I make it to 90 days, hit my weight loss goal, and improve muscle tone I may just cancel my gym membership.
We’ll see what the end of September brings. Oh, and yes: I’m becoming a goddamn infomercial…