Saturday, August 29, 2009

P90X Round 2 - Day 90 / Completed

I finished P90X Classic last week for the second time.

I'd given it a lot of thought throughout my entire experience with P90X and it has set up an excellent foundation for my fitness and nutritional needs. If we look back a few years, let's say pre-2007, I could easily indulge in cookies, fast foods, and everything in between those. I had no remorse. I never looked as food as body energy. Food was food. When you got hungry, you ate. Nobody ever taught me about calories and sugars or how your body reacts and processes these foods. I'd stopped going to the gym and working out since high school. Forget about running. I had also reached the highest weight in my life and it was all fat. Face it. I have fat relatives on my dad's side. My dad grew up fat and so was I. His father and himself grew up with obesity, high blood pressure, and diabetes in their bloodline. It was only natural that it would be passed down to me.

Early on in 2007, I was given a wonderful opportunity to work in the fitness and fitness apparel industry. All the people around me were always so fit and healthy. This started the psychological basis of changing my entire process in life. I started eating fruits. I didn't even like fruits, but I was buying bags of them and eating them all the time. I lived with my roommate who used to eat similarly to my old habits. Pasta with 800mg of sodium per serving. 3 frozen hamburgers as a late night snack. Ice cream all the time. I didn't know how it was possible. I was eating really healthy because of this. I didn't want to turn back to my old habits. I just needed a third person perspective of what I was doing to myself. From 2007 to 2008 I slimmed down from eating healthy, but I had just ended up turning quite scrawny as well.

2009 was a turning point. January 6th, 2009, I weighed in at 138 lbs. One of my co-workers suggested that we try a group P90X. I had all sorts of excuses as to why I wouldn't try it. Lack of time, options, space, and equipment. It was sort of a running gag that we would all put money into a pot and whoever lost the most weight in 90 days would win it. But I ran with it. I was eating so clean, cutting out any extra fats, alcohol, sugars, sodium, you name it.

Suddenly I began noticing changes. I was more tone. I started growing muscles where there were no muscles before. Or maybe they were, but you could never see them. The most surprising thing I saw was my abdominal muscles. I had actually lowered my body fat percentage enough so that I could see them. I was so happy. There was no way in stopping.

To this day, I have P90X, P90X+, and the One on One series. Don't get me wrong. The combination of these workouts have launched me to 150 lbs of lean muscle to this day. But I want more. Two rounds of P90X is 6 months. By month 2, I knew I had plateaued. I needed even more of a challenge. I knew I wasn't going to do anything drastic until I revamped my fitness goals. These goals include things that you just cannot do at home.

This is why in the last week I have gone out and joined a gym. It's also why I feel a soreness that P90X just can't quite reach, like say... leg pressing 520 lbs for instance, and using a squat machine. That first day at the gym, I destroyed my legs. I could barely walk afterwards. And I loved it. I also feel soreness especially in my lats that P90X never could hit. Maybe I was doing some of the exercises wrong, but it's hard to say.

I am officially taking a break from P90X. I have not given up on it forever. I'm sure I'll come back to it 3 or 6 months once I reach a plateau at the gym. But for now, I'm taking an X break.

I brought it twice. Those of you who are still at it, do me a favor and crush play.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

P90X Round 2 - Day 84

Time flies when you're having fun.

I can't believe it is the start of week 13. Again! This is the rest week to end my second round of the X. I've been on vacation for the last two weeks. What I haven't accomplished at work (where I usually do my P90X workouts) I've done at home. Plus, I've managed to go to an actual gym and I am much stronger on top of being more tone since the last time I went. During my vacation I went for walks, I ran, I swam a little. I even biked today near the beach. I got a wicked sunburn, but it will turn into a great tan soon enough (I hope). It's great to be able to do a little bit of everything and sleep in until 10 o clock!

Tomorrow it's back to work, reverting to my early morning schedule. I'm still a little unsure if there will be a round 3 of the classic P90X. I've read a lot of blogs, done a bit of research, and listened to a lot of people about fitness and what their current program is. During my vacation, I've decided for the start of my next program that it must be modified slightly to match my fitness goals.

The last 8 months have been outstanding. When the phrase "best shape of your life" comes to mind, I can honestly say that I am there now. But I can do so much more. I started P90X because I wanted to get in shape. And I've done that. Yes, everything is more tone, and yes I am stronger than I was before, but I never needed to lose weight like most. What I've learned is that I need to modify the existing program so that I can gain weight. To be honest, I plateaued with my weight about 8 weeks into the first round. It's stuck between 145 and 148 and at 5'8", that is an okay weight, but I still appear (and feel) very scrawny. I've followed the nutrition and the workouts to a tee. I've put my body through the X, the Plus, One on One, and even a little bit of Insanity to try and confuse it as best as possible. But it's not enough. P90X will only help me maintain my current lean physique.

I will have to modify the workouts slightly by changing the order of and adding One on One workouts, concentrating more on the lifting days and less cardio. I'll have to eat big to grow big and fuel my body enough so that it can repair and recover so caloric intake needs to increase. Obviously I won't be eating cheeseburgers and ice cream every night (it would be nice though), but focusing on the good calories, the whole grains, and fruits/veggies. I guess you could say this would be more of a hybrid round than a classic or a doubles round. I hope that I could use the theory of muscle confusion, work hard, but recover fast enough so that I will gain 5 to 10 pounds by the end of the next round of the X. I am really glad that I purchased the One on One Volume 1 DVD's. I'm not disliking the current program at all, it's just that I need to have that variety there. That's what makes every workout fresh and exciting! P90X Round 3 is going to be fun!