Exercise: P90X?

23 Jul

Now that I’ve given my body a bit of time to recover from whatever the hell it was that made my heart feel like it was being stabbed with a knitting needle, I’m thinking of looking into a few exercise programs to see what might be the best one for me.

Now, in the past, my exercise programs have consisted of pull-ups, push-ups, sit-ups and long, slow runs. It must not have been too bad, considering the weight loss. But I’m nothing if not open to new ideas and experiences, and truth be told, I’m a sucker for a good infomercial. Not that I buy any of the products from television, but I love to watch the pitch.

For those not in the know, P90x burst onto the television screen a few years ago, and has since suckered over two million people out of about a hundred and twenty bucks apiece for the system of DVDs and the nutrition guide that promise to completely reshape your body in 90 days.

This is where I differ from the average skeptic. Most people scoff and ask, really, what kind of change can you possibly hope to accomplish in just three months? Well, having lost 80 pounds in just over a year, I would say a lot can change in three months. But the key to this program – or any program, for that matter – is following it.

That might sound obvious, but it’s not. Programs like P90x come with a diet plan for a reason. Those exercises on the DVD might be hard, but the diet is even harder. Say goodbye to all of your favorite foods, and say goodbye to caffeine and alcohol. Say hello to energy bars, shakes, and a lot of greens and vegetables. The whole point is to burn the fat you already have stored on your body – and you can’t do that if you’re replacing it with fresh sources of fat, now can you?

But changing diet isn’t what is keeping me from leaping into the P90x world. I have made drastic changes to my diet before. I have cut caffeine for the last few weeks; I have gone weeks without having any booze; and I have eaten healthy but somewhat restricted and boring foods for prolonged periods of time.

No, what’s holding me back is the fear of becoming a little too obsessive about my weight and appearance. Right now, I am in decent shape. Sure, my muscles could be bigger and more defined, and I don’t have a six-pack of rock hard abs. But I’m okay with that. Because it means that, should I miss a workout, it’s not the end of the world for me. If I decide to have a hot dog and a beer some time, I won’t have wasted weeks of effort in a few short bites and gulps. No, where I am at right now, I have flexibility, and it’s a tough thing to decide to surrender that, in the name of a beach body (hell, I don’t even live near any open bodies of water or beaches).

But… that is one helluva good infomercial. If you readers have any input or previous experience with the P90x system, I’d love to hear it. Next time, I’ll talk about another form of exercise I’m considering to stay in shape – but one that’s less about muscles and more about balance.

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