Saturday 10 October 2009

The Gear To Bring it For P90X

What gear do you need to do the workouts for P90X from Beachbody? I am frequently being asked about what equipment it takes to do the fitness program that I have been on now for nearly 3 months. Between the articles I have written, and friends, family, fellow students and co-workers asking me questions about my weight loss, I decided to write this article comparing three equipment lists: the recommended equipment, with what I think is the minimum equipment, and then finish with my gear that I have been using. I hope that this piece will help answer some of those frequent questions and emails and about my fitness journey.

Recommended Equipment:
Chin-Up Bar or Exercise Bands with mount.
Dumbells or Exercise Bands
Heart Rate Monitor
Exercise Mat Mat
Exercise Block Blocks

Body Fat Tester
Powerstands or Pushup Stands
DVD Player

This list is pretty self explanatory, and Beachbody does sell versions of all of this equipment. I have only bought one piece of equipment from them and it was excellent, worth every penny.

Minimum Required Equipment:
Chin-Up Bar or Exercise Bands with mount.
Dumbells or Exercis
e Bands
Exercise Block

DVD Player This is the bare bones list. You could get by without the exercise block if you are already pretty flexible or improvise one from something around the house. Every video, every exercise can be done with the exercise bands, so if you don't have a chin-up bar or dumbbells, you can do eve
ry exercise band with just exercise bands. A while back I was travelling with work and did all my workouts while on the road with my bands and playing the DVDs on my laptop. I dropped the heart rate monitor because even though they can be purchased for around $40, on a student budget that is a little pricy. You can tell if you are working hard; you might not know if you are exactly in your cardio zone but close enough. I do have one, but only because it was given to me a few years ago, and I really only use it for the fitness tests.

My Gear:
Exercise Bands with
Power Block Dumbells
Heart Rate Monitor
Exercise Mat
Exercise Block
DVD Player
I use the exercise bands for all the pull-ups and chin-ups. I use my Powerblocks for all weight exercises; the set I have goes from 2.5lbs to 90lbs a side. I made a mistake and bought the cheapest exercise mat I could find. I regret it. I am already planning on upgrading to a much better one this fall. After phase I of P90X I bought the Powerstands from Beachbody. They are fantastic. My pushups have
better form and greater reps. I have done a few of the workouts with just bands while on the road. The B-Line resistance bands sold by Beachbody look great but I went to a physiotherapist here in town, at Kinetex Rehab on Columbia, and paid about a buck a foot. I would recommend 7 feet, and tie a loop in the ends for handles. The DVDs are $120 on the Beachbody site, and about the same price here in Canada at Wal-Mart or Zellers. But I know a number of people who bought them and gave up; you can probably find a set cheaper to fit the student budget. I do most of the workouts in my den, and have done all of them there. Normally I do Plyometrics,  X and Kenpo X in the living room because of the carpet for extra cushion. But I have done a few of them in a small hotel rom. You can adapt all of these for even the smallest dorm room.

The final tool I use is not equipment but it is equipping, and that is the forms and message boards on There are specific message boards for different start dates, a dedicated Canadian contingent - even a group dedicated to IT junkies. I have posted pretty regularly to 4 specific forms and used some of the advice and support from them to help me get the results I am seeing.

Hopefully that will answer many of the questions from students out there about what you need to have to do these workouts and start making lifestyle changes to get healthier and in better shape. Yet in the end it doesn't really matter what equipment you have if you're not using it, so if you decide to give P90X a try remember what Tony Horton the host of the video says: 'Do your best and forget the rest'. And keep pushing play on the videos and work out every day.

(First Published in Imprint 2009-10-09 as "Gear to Rock the P90X: On the road to a healthier lifestyle".)
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


p90x results said...

I'm not sure if I missed it, but one piece of equipment you need is a Working Attitude. Keep that in mind

SRMcEvoy said...

One of my supports in making changes has been my Coach from Beachbody her has been a source of information and encouragement GetFitInNC. If you go to his site and click Jon you will automatically have him assigned as your coach.