This past Saturday I started the p90x-3 fitness program. If you want to get caught up please see this post.
After the conference and illness I gained a pound and was back up to 200 lbs. As of yesterday PM I weighed in at 197.2. So after one week of p90x-3 and a sensible diet I dropped almost 3 lbs. I was averaging about 1.5 pounds per week on my old-school plan so I’m not sure if this was an anomaly or the pace I can expect from x-3.
Keeping this simple: sensible portions, lean meat, veggies, and small amounts of carbs (i.e. rice or pasta). Three main meals each day along with a protein snack. Total protein intake is 60-65 grams daily. I’ve scaled back my cheat day but still allow for one each week.
There are four schedules to choose from. I’ll talk about two. I’m on “the classic” schedule: martial arts readers think “balance.” It combines muscle/endurance gains, with movement and weight loss. If I make it through the first 90 days and like the program I’ll probably try the mass program. This program is designed to add body weight through muscle growth. It also has a diet element that includes more calorie and protein intake.
Not for fatty beginners!
There I said it. In fact, the folks at Beachbody say it nicer on EVERY DVD and in the manual than I just did. If you are overweight and have done zero exercise this program is not for you. Tip: you probably need to have at least two months of light weights/circuit training and cardio under your belt before trying this program. You’ll also want to check in with your doctor because the program specifically warns off folks with a history of back or knee problems! My 3+ months of old-school weights and running really helped to get me ready to try this. FYI that Beachbody does have other less intense programs including a 10-minute trainer program.
The blocks and exercises:
For the first three weeks I have to rotate through a six-day schedule of “block one” exercises. Here’s a quick summary that I’ll list in order of exercise difficulty.
- Agility X – This is the leg-shredder day and for me it was the hardest of the six. It is a full body routine but I’d say 70% of the focus is on your legs. It combines aerobic and anaerobic routines — along with a little core and upper-body.
- The Challenge – 30 minutes of push-up and pull-up variations. I was sore for three days after doing this routine! With push-ups I can start normally but soon end up doing many on my knees. My pull-ups are ugly and I’m totally assisted by a chair. My goal is to see if I can do 8 body weight pull-ups at the end of 90 days.
- Total Synergistics – total body workout that integrates light weights, resistance, and the pull-up bar. This one is supposed to play with your metabolism and testosterone.
- The Warrior – full body workout that’s done without equipment. This one splits the body into three zones: upper, mid-section, and lower. It rotates through all of these during the 30 minutes.
- CVX – I’d probably tie this one in difficulty with The Warrior. This a cardio workout that mixes in resistance training with interval training.
- X3 Yoga – IMO the easiest day but it still had me sweating and groaning. 30 minutes of yoga that targets upper, middle, and lower body. Once I made it to the end I felt really good!
Observations & Thoughts
- The above routines are spread over six days and in a different order than I listed. They have the order set up to allow certain muscles to recover.
- Every day has exercises that target your core. Almost every day will hit chest, back, and legs. Arms and calves are peppered in weekly.
- There’s an ab-shredder workout but I won’t see that for a few weeks.
- “Get it done in 30 minutes?” Definitely! It’s more intense than my gym routine and more comprehensive. It’s also comparable to the warm-ups we did in kung fu and chin na classes — only longer by 10 minutes and more scientific. I think that the similarity to something I’ve done before is helping keep me interested (so far).
- God bless “the modifier!” On each workout ol’ Tony will have his peeps demonstrate at least three different versions of a given exercise. “The modifier” is his demo person who does things for us out-of-shape folks. e.g., using exercise bands instead of the pull-up bar, push-ups from the knees, etc. It’s a nice bridge option that keeps you moving without killing you. In theory it will help you build up to doing the normal or extreme version of a given exercise.
- Too much weight loss? We shall see… During my black belt run in taekwondo I actually lost too much weight — partially due to trying to be “aerial” for the testimg. I got down to an unhealthy 165 lbs. I have a thin frame but given that I’m over 6 ft. tall that weight was not good. I’ve set my x-3 weight loss goal at 185 lbs. Anything below that and I’ll add in a daily smoothie-type protein shake to my diet. All I do know is that my all-time fatty high of 210 lbs is way too fat for me!
- My blood pressure: I’ve been “borderline” for four years now. The doc thought that if I dropped at least 20 lbs I might stave off pills. I do have a genetic factor here and my job is also stressful. File this one under “maybe.”
Today is day 7 of x-3: either rest or what sounds like a kicked-up stretching routine. For now I plan on day 7 as rest. I’m also on vacation so I’ll be missing a full week. I plan to do the two hardest (for me) programs on Saturday and Sunday: The Challenge and Agility X. After that some basic calisthenics, light runs, and hiking throughout the week. My diet will likely go in the ditch this week so I’m hoping that an active vacation will keep me even.
I still have to blog about the new kung fu plan so stay tuned.