Finally, this is the last of all of my P90X reviews of the Beachbody Program by Tony Horton. I have a lot to say and I’m going to make this as comprehensive as possible so that if you haven’t been keeping up to date with all of the posts (I believe 24 posts + this one), you’ll get all that you need here. So, bare with the length of this post. It is very long.
Does P90X Work? Yes, but no differently than any good workout program. Here are a couple of points:
Compared to Other Workouts: It works just as well as any well designed workout program that incorporates strength training, cardio and flexibility. If you are doing all three today and workout regularly, then you are not going to see any real difference in the results from the workouts alone.
P90X Nutrition Plan: P90X results are dependent on both the workouts AND the P90X Nutrition Plan. Well, actually, ANY nutrition plan that is healthy. What you put into your body is just as important as what you DO with your body. If you eat McDonald’s, drink a lot of alcohol, indulge your sweet tooth regularly, or eat lots of junk on a regular basis, you won’t see great results. Again, this applies to a any workout program. It doesn’t matter what you do fitness wise, you have to eat well.
What Don’t I Like about P90X?
Beachbody: Although I’m all for individuals having a support network to help one another get into shape, I’ve recently learned that P90X is a multi-level marketing program. I’ve been approached by numerous BeachBody “Coaches” to try new products. They want you to be a “coach” so that you can be on their “team.” They talk about how they love making money helping other people. I have no doubt that people make money, but frankly, I get turned off when people are pushing more products on me and trying to get me to become part of their sales team so they can benefit. It doesn’t feel right and I don’t want to make my money that way.
Time: Due to Tony Horton and his chat-time, some of the workouts are longer than they need to be. I recommend learning the workouts and doing them without the DVDs or using the guide book instead.
Cardio: Although the Plyometrics workout get’s your heart rate up, Kenpo and Cardio X are not really great cardio workouts if you are in good cardiovascular shape. I’ve missed the steady 30 minutes of heart pumping cardio that I get from going for a run or using the Arc Trainer.
Boredom: Even though you have 12 workouts, the program still requires that you repeat them. At some point, it feels good to break up the monotony and do something different.
Rigidity: P90X doesn’t build in “freestyle” days. Taking a Zumba class, going hiking, skiing for the day, taking a bike ride, etc. are just not part of the program. If you want to follow the program strictly, there is very little room for doing things you enjoy. I don’t like the idea that I’m locked into a specific workout every day, I want to have the freedom to do something new once in awhile. Further, if your schedule changes frequently and you don’t always have the ability to do the workouts because of space, equipment, etc., the program can be very restrictive and limiting.
Will I Personally Continue with P90X? Not entirely. Don’t get me wrong, all in all, this is a good workout program, however, I don’t like all of the workouts or aspects of the workouts. Look at the below to get more of an understanding of whether or not I will continue to do a workout, and with what frequency and modifications I’ll do them moving forward.
– Little to No Modifications
– Although this is a good cardio workout, I struggle with how much it engages your leg muscles. In order to keep legs leaner, I’d prefer alternating this workout with the elliptical, Arc Trainer or running
– I’ll take yoga at my yoga studio, thank you very much. Tony Horton is the last person I want teaching me yoga. He gets half of the position names wrong, calls out “Namaste” every chance he gets, and isn’t symmetrical on how much time positions are held on each side of the body. Lastly, this 90 minute workout spends 45 minutes on “Moving Asanas.” I prefer a much more balanced approach to Yoga
– I might switch out some back exercises for those that repeat. Also, there are quite a number of Leg exercises that I like to do that are not part of this workout, so I’d probably want to incorporate my own
– Although this is a great workout for legs and back, doing this weekly means doing two back workouts in a week. I’m not sure that is entirely necessary
– I’d modify this workout a lot. would swap out a good number of them to do bench presses, flys and other chest exercises that aren’t only push-ups
– It has so many push-up exercises and as you know, I’m not a big fan of push-ups
– Little to No Modifications
– I like this workout quite a bit. It has some interesting back moves that I think are fun (Corn-Cob Pull-up).
– Unless it is 10 degrees out and I have no access to any cardio equipment, this workout is relatively useless in my book. It doesn’t get your heart rate up nearly as high as it could. It sort of feels like a cardio class for people very new to fitness.
– I think that this workout leaves out a LOT of abdominal exercises that are challenging and well-rounded. There are hundreds of abdominal exercises that work and I hate having to do the same ones over and over again. I’ll probably do my own ab workout that mixes things up a lot more.
My Final Results: My results were okay. Again, I wasn’t coming from an extraordinarily unhealthy or unfit place, so I didn’t have a lot of change that I could make. That said, all of my results were completely dependent on my changing my diet in the last month. It was a diet that most of you would probably find extreme and limiting. I limited myself to only two alcoholic drinks on a Friday and/or Saturday. I ate very strictly Sunday – Friday night. I rarely had dessert except for a piece or two of 88% Cocoa Dark Chocolate at night.
All in all, I lost 7 pounds and 4.75 inches across my body. Here are the detailed P90X results that I saw over the course of the program:
Who Should Use P90X? Prior to P90x, I did weights 3 – 4 days a week and cardio 3 days a week. In general, if you are in good shape, and incorporate strength training, cardio and flexibility training into a regular workout program and eat right, P90X is not going to do anything that different for you. I think the Beachbody program is good for individuals in any and all of the following categories:
Those who are not regimented on their own to exercise
Those who travel and have spotty fitness options on the road
Those who do not understand how to exercise or need major pointers
Those who do not want to go to the gym and would like a challenging home program
Those who are bored by what they are doing currently
New moms who can’t leave the house too much to exercise
Final Thoughts: In general, I advocate that people move. It doesn’t matter what you do as long as you are getting regular activity into your lifestyle. If Tony Horton and P90X motivates you, then I say go for it. If, however, you are motivated by other forms of activity, then do that.