Saturday, February 13, 2010

P90X Thoughts after Week 1

A week ago today I started the famed and often touted P90X workout program. After watching the intro DVD, it appeared to me to be a great way to cross train, increase overall body fitness, and most importantly for me, a way to strengthen my core section and up. As primarily a long distance runner and nothing else, the legs are strong but everything else has been neglected. One downfall to that has been my left adductor injury...a tell-tale sign that I need strength in that area so all the responsibility doesn't fall on one muscle.

The best way I can describe the P90X program (X stands for extreme, by the way) is to say that on each day, a different set of muscle groups are targeted, known as muscle confusion. This leads to great overall building strength and it forces everything to work and grow together. As one area is growing and rebuilding from the workout the day before, an adjacent group is getting beat down.

Day 1 last week (Saturday) was chest and back. In a nutshell, it is pull-ups and every kind of push-up you can imagine. Each session also starts with a warm-up and wraps up with a cool-down...all in all, taking about an hour. By the end of this session, my arms were jell-0. OK, I liked it. It was a great workout and humbled me to no end. I felt like a big 'ol wimp. I also did Ab Ripper X, a 15min workout that's done every other day. WOW! Abs, abs, ABS!!! As Tony Horton says on the DVD, "I hate it....but I love it." Oh yea, bring on the rip! Day 2 brought on plyometrics, or "jump training" as it's known. Now this one is my favorite. I had my heart-rate sky high and was sweating buckets. You are all over the place in this workout and the best part (in my humble opinion) is that the whole thing feels so applicable to trail running. The footwork required on technical running trails is replicated here. Moving in multiple different directions but with very concentrated "lightness," precision, and control. Superb workout and my favorite by a long-shot. Day 3 brought shoulders and arms, another day I liked and similiar, but different, than Day 1 and also another session of Ab Ripper. Oh yea...hated it...but loved it! Day 4...yoga. Ugh. I'm not a big fan of this one. Namaste. Downward Dog. Blah, blah, blah. Sorry to those of you who are big yoga fans...it's just not for me. I really couldn't get into it. I don't doubt it's benefits, but honestly, I'm augmenting future weeks to do more plyometrics in its place and some core synergistics. Day 5 brought on legs and back. OK...careful, careful. All in all, I really liked this workout. However, there is some kicking involved and high leg lifts. If you know where the adductor is, this is risky with a healing muscle. I felt this workout in a negative way the next morning. I'll keep doing this one but I will tread lightly in a few sections. One of my favorite parts of this one was the wall-sit. I love that burn! Day 6 brought Kenpo. Kick-boxing, essentially, and upper-body hand/arm stuff. I actually skipped this. With the soreness I felt this morning, I felt it unwise to stress the adductor again. Rest day...but I did run 7 miles, though. Day 7 was a stretching or rest day. I took the rest day since I'm running 18 this morning with the Trinity Trotters.

So, that's week 1 and also weeks 2 and 3. Week 4 is a down-week but still has workouts, just different ones. I am going to augment out Kenpo and Yoga next week and insert plyometrics twice and also core synergistics. After week 4 which marks the 1 month point, the schedule is repeated and also a 2nd set of pictures is taken.

As I progress, my goal is clear: to increase my endurance and strength for ultra-running and the 100-mile race distance. Whole body fitness and strength thereby translating into greatly increased endurance over the extended distance of ultra-running. So far, so good...with some tweaks. As Tony says..."Bring It!" Here's a short video about the program if I've peaked your curiosity at all:

1 comment:

ultrarunnerbrianphilpot said...

The P90X is a good workout, I have watched some of it on you tube. It will get you into shape. Get that core strong.