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Friday, 2 October 2009

The fitness journey of a 40 year old undergrad - A Review of P90X Phase II

In this second article on a fitness journey, I will be reviewing Phase II of P90X, discussing difficulties and setbacks, and highlighting the overall benefits of the program or healthy lifestyle changes in general. After achieving great results in Phase I, I had some setbacks and encountered difficulties in Phase II right away. The first day of Phase II while I was wrestling with my son, my daughter decided to come to his aid, she dove onto my back as I was lying outstretched on the floor, and landed just below my shoulder blade with both knees. She bruised some ribs and the bruise was visible on the surface for days. It is still bothering me today. However I decided to follow two of Tony Horton's Mantras "Do your best and forget the rest!" and "Modify, Modify and Modify." I continued to push play every day and managed to workout each of the 28 days of Phase II.

Phase II is very similar to Phase I in that the first 3 weeks you do the same workouts and then have a recovery week. Because I began on a Monday my workouts Monday through Sunday for Phase I were: Chest & Back & Ab Ripper X, Plyometrics, Shoulder & Arms & Ab Ripper X, X, leg & Back and Ab Ripper X, Kempo X and X-Stretch or rest. For Phase II The Monday and Wednesday workouts change to Chest & Shoulders & Triceps & Ab Ripper X for Mondays and for Wednesdays Back & Biceps & Ab Ripper X. Then both recovery weeks are  X on Monday and Saturday, Core Syne rgistics on Tuesday and Friday, Kenpo X on Wednesday, X Stretch on Thursday and optional on Sunday. For me personally I find it easier to work out every day. I find if I take a day off, it can easily become two or five or 10. So I always do the stretch routine on Sundays just to get a workout in. In this Phase I had to modify Ab Ripper X. Instead of attempting 25 reps of 11 different exercises, I had to drop out 4 exercises because the starting position was too painful on the ribs. What I did do was focus on adding reps or improving form on the rest of the exercises. By the end of the 3rd workout week I had 25 reps in 9 of the eleven exercises and had started and was up to 8 reps for the last 2. The important thing was I pushed play on the videos each day; I worked through the pain and through a cold in week two. Some days with the cold combined with the ribs, I did not want to workout. What has kept me going was seeing the changes thus far, remembering my long term goals and being accountable to two other guys for working out.
I started P90X with two other guys - my brother in Kingston, and a buddy who is a Grad from UW. Neither of them made it past week 1. But each day after working out I email them and report my workout and some comments, such as the fact that I puked the first time I did core synergistics, or I still suck at stretching , or upped reps or weight on every exercise. That accountability really helped me to push play when I was under the weather. It is a great motivational factor. The other thin g I am finding is the further I get into the program, the more results I see, and the better I feel as I am focusing more on the nutrition side. I find myself reading labels and comparing nutritional information even on protein bars. I find I am less and less willing to cheat and physically feel it more when I do. We went out for dinner with family for my daughter's third birthday. I had about 8 or 10 french fries. It was the first fried food I had had since starting. Later that night I felt terrible. My workout was compromised because of the junk fuel in the system. I could not believe the difference it made. To really achieve optimum results you need to clean up the nutrition as well as exercising more. Now we'll look at Phase II results.
My results in Phase II were better than expected. I did not do any measurements other than the scale during the four weeks. For full results see chart with complete details and comparisons with day 0 and day 28. However in summary, I have gone from 34.7% body fat to 14.2 in 56 days. My resting heart rate has dropped by 11 beats per mi nute. I have reached 10 of 13 goals for the fitness test and 8 of 14 for measurements. I have also dropped from 244lbs to 218lbs in just 56 days. Phase 3 will end on October 25th. The next piece in this series will run the week after that.
The important thing I learned this month was to keep at it; even if I slowed down, to keep exercising daily and keep making wise nutritional choices.
I am feeling better, sleeping better and find my overall quality of life has improved. Those are expected results; what I did not expect was for people to notice as much, and make as many comments. I have about a half dozen friends who picked up the program with plans to start it. I have now worked out 56 days in a row. I am starting to plan ahead for what to do after the program is over. When I started, it was a countdown - a certain number of days left in my 90 day program. I am now counting up 56 days of working out in a row, of being healthy and active the rest of my life.
(Graphic's courtesy Peter N. Trinh.)
(First published in Imprint 2009-09-25 as 'A Fitness Journey: 40 years old and an undergrad".)P90X Articles in order Phase I, Phase II, Gear, Phase III, Fitness Options.
(Disclaimer: I am asked frequently if I am a Beachbody Coach, no I am not, I am just some one who has used their products, P90X, 1on1 with Tony Horton and more and liked them and achieved good results. I am not paid by Beachbody or any of their affiliates. You can see my full disclaimer here.)
Other Fitness Articles:Fall 2011 Programs
Workout program March 2012
My Gear February 2012
Fitness My Retrospective

TRX Articles:
TRX an Introduction
TRX Force

TRX Force Tactical
TRX Essential Flexibility

My P90X Series:
Phase I, Phase II, Gear, Phase III, Fitness Options, P90X at 120 Days Out
Health & Fitness Book Reviews:The Primal Blueprint 21 Day Total Body Transformation - Mark Sisson
The Ten Commandments Of Lifting Weights - Jared Zimmerer
Toadally Primal Smoothies - Todd Dosenberry
Caveman Resurection - Jeff Pickett
40 Days to Optimal Health - Dr. Scott Morris
Eat Stop Eat - Brad Pilon
The Primal Blueprint - Mark Sisson
The New Rules of Lifting - Lou Schuler and Alwyn Cosgrove
Bench Press by: Sven Lindqvist
Sly Moves by: Sylvester Stallone
Fit for Eternal Life: A Christian Approach to Working Out, Eating Right, and Building the Virtues of Fitness in Your Soul by: Dr. Kevin Vost
Body for Life 12 Weeks to Mental and Physical Strenght by: Bill Phillips
Lose Fat Not Faith by Jeremy R. Likeness
Living The Good Life: Your Guide to Health and Success by: David Patchell-Evans
Dump your Trainer by: Ashley Marriott and Marc L. Paulsen

1 comment:

SRMcEvoy said...

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