P90X is organized into training blocks. The beauty (or insanity) of this program is that its emphasis is on muscle confusion. So, every block is constantly changing the muscles efforts. Each block is 4 weeks long (3 weeks of varying, but preset order of programs, followed by one week of recovery). The recovery week focuses on cardio, core strength, balance and flexibility...just not intense strength training.
These are simply not a bunch of workout videos thrown together. 12 videos total includes:
- Chest & Back
- Shoulders & Arms
- Yoga X
- Legs & Back
- Kenpo X
- X Stretch
- Core Synergistics
- Chest, Shoulder & Triceps
- Back & Biceps
- Cardio X
- Ab Ripper X
- Pull-Up Bar
- Resistance Bands and/or Free Weights
- Push-Up Stands (not required, but more effective for a deeper push-up
There is a method to the madness. Just as a synopsis, there are three modifications to the routine. All 3 plans last for 90 days (13 weeks) and require at least six days/week (the 7th day is always a rest day). Almost all videos are around 60 minutes, but Yoga X is 90 minutes and Ab Ripper X is 16 minutes. The 3 plans are the:
- "Classic" is muscle intensive. The only video not used is the Cardio X. Of course, you can always include the Cardio X sporadically, in addition to the required videos if you desire :) If you do this, be sure to include Cardio X on the days when you are doing your strength training workouts, or if you over indulge on dinner!
- "Lean" is more cardio intense and less strength building than "Classic". If someone isn't ready for the muscle burn of the "Classic" or simply is doing this program to lose excess fat, this may be perfect for them. Do not be swayed into thinking that the "Lean" program is not intense though, even if you do not utilize the Plyometrics, and Legs & Back videos.
- "Doubles" adds another cardio workout to the "Classic" plan 3-4 days a week. Other than that, a large chunk of the program is similar to the "Classic" plan. This is designed for people who want more cardio, presumably for weight loss. This is intense...some days you are working out in the morning and the evening, so definitely purchase additional workout clothes, unless you want to do laundry more often!
As I get closer to starting this workout, I'll touch base on additional things to consider before starting it, why I'm doing it, my personal goals, and also the individual videos associated with the program. Surprisingly, while weight loss is my primary objective overall, I'm leaning towards the "Classic", as I think the running will get me to where I want to be with cardio.