November 23rd, 2008
Finally the first recovery period has come and boy is it a relief. Well, sort of. Even though it’s called a recovery week the only difference between this week and any other week is the lack of muscle building exercise. In its place it’s business as usual with cardio each day. And, if you recall, the yoga workouts are quite the ass-kickers.
The purpose of the recovery periods is give your body a rest and let the muscles build. A couple positives of the P90X recovery weeks is the multiple times you get to do stretching, which I’ve missed the last couple of weeks. I’m big fan of stretching because of it’s importance to overall health.
As I’ve stated — and will keep saying — the yoga part of P90X is a killer. For someone that has had great balance and flexibility for most of his life I’m constantly surprised at just how much of that I’ve lost over the past few years. Recovery week is an opportunity to improve that by offering it up as two of the workouts this week.
At the end of the week I ran into a little hiccup, late Thursday night/Friday morning I experienced intense stomach pain. Three days later I’m still working it out but it’s been a bit of hinderance in my being able to finish off the week’s workouts.
There’s not much else to say about this week. Everything has been going great to this point, with that one exception. Improvements in my strength, balance, flexibility, and appearance are constantly happening. I’m excited. Progress pics are due this weekend but I’m still undecided as to when I’ll take them (you know, the whole bloated, icky stomach thing). I’ll take them if I’m feeling better later.
November 16th, 2008
Three weeks have passed since I started using P90X and I’m coming up on the first recovery period. This last few weeks have been quite the eye-opener. In a good way of course. The first week was killer and here’s a quick breakdown of the last couple weeks.
Oh boy. Not only was I still somewhat sore from the first week, but during the second week I got to compound the soreness by starting all over again. The positive side was the soreness didn’t last nearly as long this go ’round.
I decided to increase the weight I was using on some exercises but still found that sweet spot of feeling the burn and getting enough reps in. Using weight bands for the pull up exercises is challenging but I decided to order a door jam pull up bar. Something about wanting to be able to push myself even more.
Unfortunately my flexibility and balance are still pretty poor — as evidenced by the yoga and stretching parts of P90X. There is some improvement but it’s minimal right now. My coordination is much better on the second time with the kenpo work though, and that makes me happy.
It’s amazing just how much a person’s body can change and adapt to in a short period of time. Even though I’m not following the meal guide — I haven’t even read it yet to be honest — my body is getting trimmer and more toned all over.
Having skipped Sunday last week, I was really looking forward to getting started on week 3. I’m feeling a little tired from the toll all this exercise is taking but every day I’m pushing as hard as I can and doing my best to maintain the best form possible.
All the various push ups are starting to get a little easier and I’m happy that I can get through more than one rotation without having to do knee pushups. Well, for most of it at least. I did kind of dog it a little bit during this week’s plyometrics though. It’s a lot of jumping and apparently I wake the downstairs neighbours.
Finally there is some improvement in my balance, flexibility, and coordination that I can see. Yoga is killer but in a completely different way than plyometrics. Looks like I’ll have to hit up Sports Basement and grab some heavier weights soon.
Preparing for the next phase
For all the back work it seems that the exercise bands are getting a little too easy. So I got the P90X chin up bar and will be using that from this point on. I have a feeling I’ll only be able to do a max of five or so the first few times but it’s a great challenge to give myself.
Next week is a recovery week so I’m looking forward to a slight change of pace. Guess that means it will soon be time to take some progress pictures. Can’t believe it’s been three weeks already. Time sure flies.
November 6th, 2008
The hype behind P90X and it’s difficulty is not overdone. This program is hard. It will kick your butt every day. Fortunately on each video Tony states, repeatedly, that if you’re not at the same level as the demonstrators you don’t have to keep up with them. Take breaks. Easier ways to perform each exercise is usually shown for anyone that is having troubles.
And now for a little day-to-day breakdown.
Today was a muscle building day. I haven’t been to a gym or lifted weights for several weeks now and today hurt. I bought some small weights and exercise bands because I didn’t know what exercises I’d be doing and how difficult they were going to be. I’m glad I did.
The reps were really low today but I’m looking forward to seeing how they evolve over time.
And my first experience with plyometrics was one for the books. After yesterday I knew I was in for a shock with P90X, and today really put me in my place. In the end I suppose I shouldn’t be surprised given my lack of exercise but wow. I was totally knackered at the end and actually felt like I wanted to puke a couple times.
Oh yeah, and the soreness started kicking in from yesterday’s workout too. Doing cardio is not necessarily easy when your abs are too tired and sore to work properly.
Another muscle building day today. It was a little more focused and I took it pretty easy because yesterday totally obliterated my legs. I powered through as much as I could but my legs were definitely some sort of factor in taking it easier instead of pushing as hard as I could.
Seriously, I can’t believe how sore my legs are.
Back at it with the cardio today. This time it was yoga. I haven’t done yoga ever in my life to this point so this was another interesting experience. Back in the day I used to have really good balance but not so much any more. I’m surprised at just how tiring it was.
My flexibility obviously needs some work as well. Looking forward to doing this again and seeing my improvement. Legs are still super sore today.
Time to build those muscles again. My still sore legs definitely affected today’s performance. I made sure to push to the point where I just couldn’t physically do any more. It was another day where I felt like puking after finishing up.
Oh, and there was the whole I-worked-out-after-four-hours-of-sleep-because-I’m-travelling-today thing as well. :-/
Because of my travel yesterday and today I wasn’t able to get today’s cardio in until the evening. It was a good workout and I got a nice sweat going by the end of it. It was a little more complex today and there were a bunch of times I was mixing up the movements. Hopefully the movements get easier so I can focus on the intensity.
I opted to go ahead and do a workout today. Well, it’s not really a workout, it’s stretching but it’s still doing some physical activity. Again, I can see just how bad my flexibility has become and hope it gets better over time.
Closing thoughts for week 1
I’m feeling better already. I’m sleeping better at night and I’m waking up easier and earlier each morning. Even after one week I feel a little stronger and — I may be projecting a little bit here but — I’m already seeing some changes.
Getting P90X is one of the best things I’ve done in recent history. I’d been considering a Bowflex home gym because I was getting fed up with going to the gym and P90X is much, much cheaper. I’m really excited to see how it goes over the next few weeks and looking forward to starting week two.