P90X Review

I’ll cut straight to the chase; P90X is not for me.

I started doing the workout regimen daily at the end of July last year. I was not crazy enough to believe that I would be able to do it every day with my frequent trips out of town. But save for a weekend here and there, I was on it.

Once I learned to switch off Tony’s incessant chatter, the workouts became a matter of routine. I had chosen the Lean series, because I’m not interested in bulk, and it was nice to mix up the weight lifting with cardio and yoga. For the record, I am a 5’5” female, and my weight before P90X was 125.

At first, I was sore a lot, but the energy levels were fantastic. Soon, I had dropped an inch and a half off my waist, and was feeling stronger than ever. But in my progress photos,  I noticed that I was beginning to look slightly bulky. My biceps were growing, and my stomach, although getting toned, was poking out. And yes, I have years of Pilates experience under my belt, so I know how to tighten my abs when doing any workout. Something wasn’t working as I’d hoped.

Finally, at the beginning of week 9, I injured my back. It took me about two weeks two recover, and then I looked in the mirror. I’m sure some folks enjoy bulky broads with large biceps, but that is not what I was going for. Essentially, I looked like a less toned version of Dreya. As lovely as she is, I was hoping not to out-man my fiance.

So I stopped the regimen, focusing rather on eating well, and low-impact cardio. However, the muscle mass I had gained during the time took me up to 129lbs. It was still more or less flush around my body, but as I got away from the regular workouts, some of the muscle turned fluffy.

This is where my issue lies. Sure, you can go through P90X and get strong, toned, whatever. But you will build quite a bit of muscle. And the moment you stop working out on a consistent basis, which is bound to happen after this seriously intense daily regimen, that muscle starts turning to fat. Sure, it’s not over night, and it takes some time, and luckily you’ll have the muscle to burn it back off once you start working out again, but instead of now worrying about a pound or three of extra weight, I’m back to the same inch ratios I was before P90X, and I now have an extra 4 pounds on top the original few I wanted to shed.

If I had had a lot more weight to lose, this might have been a great way to do it. If I had wanted to be really strong, this would have been my answer. If I could, for infinity, dedicate one hour or more a day to intense exercise, I’d be all over this guy. But this is not the case.

My biceps are now finally starting to look less bloated. My stomach, although still strong, is working on shedding the extra muscle/fluff it acquired.

However, I will say that I still do Kenpo on a regular basis. It is a great, easy cardio workout that truly does get your heart rate up and your muscles moving. I’m thinking of getting Cardio X back in the routine as well. Heck, from time to time, any of the regimens, perhaps shortened a bit, are excellent paths to kick it up a notch.

I just don’t believe everyone needs a kick. So if you are a lady, and you’re looking to keep your lady shape, with curves and long lines, I’m not sure sure this is for you. Pilates, Yoga, and cardio are all much better forms of exercise for those aims,  in my opinion.

And, for the kicker, I loved what P90X did to my fiance’s body. So take that for what it’s worth. If you want, you can find me at my local yoga studio, practicing for the cover of Downward Dog Magazine.



Filed under Health

3 responses to “P90X Review

  1. Not sure what went wrong with the program for you, but I do know that the more muscle you have the more fat you can burn. Also muscle can not turn into fat, they two different tissue types. It could just be fat around that area and it is just more noticable. I am going to try it. I want to lose some fat around my abdomen that I aquired after battling stomach cancer. I sure hope it works for me. Good luck to you and your studies!

  2. Chitra

    Thanks for this post. My boyfriend was really trying to convince me that I was crazy, in that I wasn’t going to look bulky, but I thought that I was. You saved me alot of $$$$.
    So Thanks!

  3. healthhoney

    Roger, I would highly recommend this program for men. However, for women, there’s no guarantee you will look slim. With no actual supervision, how do you know that you’re doing something correctly and not building muscle the right way?

    And Chitra, you’re welcome! I wish that I hadn’t done it and just stuck to spin and pilates, which make me lean and toned. I’m just annoyed that I have to lose weight after working out just to stay fit. :/

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