Saturday, March 28, 2009

My take on P90x

I have had a lot of people ask me about P90x. I will have to admit that Nikki and I purchased the p90x and did the workouts for about 60 days. This was well before we were introduced to RKC style of kettlebell training.

If you have not heard about p90x, it is a set of 12 DVDs that contains strength training, yoga, and plyometric workouts. It comes with a diet & workout plan. The plan is pretty well thought out and the exercises are pretty good. You use tubing or dumbbells for the training DVDs. Right now to purchase the DVD set it is around 150 dollars including shipping.

My thoughts on the P90X.
  • The P90x plan is 150 dollars but there are more costs involved, we ended up buying a pull up bar, 2 sets of powerblock dumbbells, tubing, yoga mats and ended up making a subscription to team beachbody (they suckered us in and then tried to keep charging us a quarterly fee for it, which we had to call them about 4 times to get them to stop taking money out of our account). All in all it cost us closer to $500 dollars.

    Power Blocks

  • The DVD's themselves are good, you get a great workout. The sessions can last from 50 minutes to 90 minutes! That is a long time to find to workout. Most people don't have that kind of time in a pinch so they will just ditch the workout in all.
  • Some people are imbalanced and this type of training can put what Gray Cook calls "fitness on top of dysfunction". This means that if you are imbalanced you will be doing the exercises with the wrong set of muscles, this leads to micro trauma, and that leads to injury.
  • It got too easy for us to not do our workouts. I got tired of the same person cracking the same jokes by about week 4 of the series. I got bored and I will admit lazy.
  • I did not see the results I wanted. I did not lose any weight from the program although the workouts stated that I was burning around 800 calories per workout.
It wasn't until about 5 months after trying P90X that I went to the Functional Movement Screen Seminar hosted by Gray Cook and Lee Burton. Gray spoke about the functionality of the kettlebell and how well they helped to clean up movement/muscular imbalances. Someone thankfully asked the best way to get started and he stated to look into the Russian Kettlebell Challenge by Pavel Tsatsouline.

Now Nikki and I had trained with kettlebells in the past and I really didn't see the advantages of them very much. We went to target and got the Iron Core kettlebells/Go Fit (I am ashamed to say that I got a 15 pound one for myself and Nikki got the 10 lb.) We worked out with them now and again but did not use them very much.

This time I researched and was blessed to find out that I was so fortunate to have a Senior Kettlebell Instructor (RKC) here in Nashville named David Whitley (who is also familiar with FMS). When we first met he told us we were using way to light of a weight and bumped us up almost immediately. The reason for this was a point reflected by David and Gray that if you use too light of a weight you will not get the correct muscular firing pattern. The body will "cheat" sort of speaking.

Since last October 2008, I have had my eyes widely opened to the Hard Style method to training. We love it.

Kettlebell Training the RKC method advantages
  • Cost-for the cost of one set of my power blocks, Nikki and I got a 12kg (about 25 lbs) and a 16kg (about 35 lbs). That was all we needed to practice and get a terrific workout at home. Also for the price of buying the P90x we worked out for one month, 3 times a week under the direction of a Senior RKC.
  • The dragon door kettlebell has an offset center of gravity and a thick handle. This requires you to use the correct movement patterns to build strength. The kettlebell actually speaks to me on what movements I am doing incorrectly. I was shocked when I could feel the difference, it was amazing. Ask anyone who has trained with kettlebells, if you want an example. Check out this blog from Mike the Machine Bruce.
  • Time - Nikki and I can get a terrific workout in any type of time frame. Whether it be 10 minutes or 50 minutes. You will be amazed with what type of workout you can get in 10 minutes.
  • I was still getting in the 800 calorie burns like I saw with P90x, but we did it in less time and I was getting so much stronger and felt way more cardiovascular benefit from the interval training I was exposing myself to.
  • Results - Since beginning the Kettlebell bootcamp and working out with Nikki at home with our set I have lost almost 20 pounds of fat. I began around 207ish and am now 189. I am way stronger than I ever had been before. I began bootcamp doing a turkish getup with a 16kg kettlebell and a few weeks ago was able to do a turkish get up with a 40kg kettlebell (that is around 88-89lbs).

My attempt at a turkish get up with the 108 lb. kettlebell. David Whitley, Senior RKC spotting.

So there you have it. All in all I would like to say that any workout is a good workout rather than sitting on the couch, but would that be the case if you began a workout with a movement imbalance and then ended up with an injury? Then you would end up back on the couch and in pain....??????

My suggestion is to find a personal trainer or RKC that can screen you correctly, train your movement patterns and teach you how to perform workouts correctly so that you can do them at home. I am not much of a DVD workouter per se. I would rather pay a little more money and see someone in person. More variety in the workouts, I push myself harder when an actual human being is telling me what to do.

If you really want to workout at home then that is fine by me, but at least get screened (doesn't cost much) and meet with a qualified personal trainer or RKC once per month to make sure you stay on track. I would really suggest you attend an RKC workshop, they are such a benefit. The last workshop I attended I realized that my swings weren't as crisp as I thought (even after doing them for 5 months). Another gentleman that drove over 6 hours to attend the workshop and only did kettlebell training to DVDs went from a beginner to a well rehearsed individual in the foundational kettlebell exercises.

Let me know your thoughts! What do you think of this post good or bad?

1 comment:

  1. Just so you know, my CK-FMS requirements are complete. I am certifed in the Functional Movement Screen


Kettlebell Training in the Nashville News