Satan lives…and he lives in the form of Tony Horton and his P90X workout series. My brother gave me the P90X set when I visited him in California at the end of July in support of my Best Body Ever goal. I let the DVDs sit for quite awhile and then I watched one here and there to pick up new exercises, but last week I started the P90X regimen in earnest which is what has led me to share with you the realization that Tony Horton is indeed Satan – a very ripped and attractive Satan – but Satan nonetheless.
Today marks two months in on my Best Body Ever goal. I have seen steady progress toward my goal, but truth be told – all my summer gallivanting cut into the time I had to dedicate to my workouts (and we won’t even speak of all the liquid calories I consumed in July and August). I must say though even with all the slacking and a gluttony of consumption my good old tried and true workout routine/regimen that I have fallen back on for years when I wanted to spot tone has served me well.
Alas, I want and expect more now of myself than I have in the past – it’s that whole Ever part…this effort has to be my ultimate effort – hence, P90X. Now, don’t kid yourself, I can’t do the entirety of the P90X offerings. Right now I only use 6 of the workouts and I acknowledge I am far from breezing through them – hence my realization that Tony Horton is Satan. P90X is Hell and Horton is the king of Hell.
Honestly, I ultimately just want to incorporate my favorite P90X exercises into my own mix of exercises – but I am presently defiant and refuse to let the video series defeat me. So I struggle forward and some days – the days after – walking and moving is truly a challenge, but I won’t be defeated by the likes of Horton. My stubborn streak serves me well (if only my new forty body would be as openly defiant and transform itself that much more quickly just to spite Horton).
I do not recommend P90X as a starting point. Instead I strongly recommend Joyce Vedral’s Bottoms Up workout. I have used variations of this workout for years and love how well it can help re-shape a woman’s body. I strongly urge those just taking up working with weights to start with that workout.
Also, I encourage those who use Bottoms Up to take it slow – don’t try and do it all at the outset. I have encouraged many friends to try this workout over the years, but they often try and do the whole workout the first day and want to die the next day. Every step you take forward is positive – start slow and build…it will come and you will be amazed at how much you advance over time.
I have the Bottoms Up book of exercises, but I understand you can also now get a DVD if that is what works best for you. The workout uses three sets of the same exercises with three different sets of weights. I use 3, 5 and 10 pound weights in my workouts (both Bottoms Up and P90X) to tone and create what I call cute girl muscles. If you are looking to build bigger muscles you may want to use more weight (on that front consult with the exercise experts).
Folks ask me if I have any practical tips for them in regard to working out and I absolutely do – here they are:
1) As much as is practicable watch yourself in the mirror when exercising. It is very helpful in both ensuring good technique and in motivating you. Seeing the muscles that you are working on actually responding to your movement will help keep you motivated.
2) Wear a tank top or sleeveless top when you work out. The efforts from upper body workouts will begin to become apparent early on and being able to see that development is in-and-of-itself motivating.
3) Listen to music while exercising – especially music with a good beat that makes you want to dance around a bit. Music makes the time pass more quickly and it just makes the whole experience more enjoyable. Exercise is really more mindset than anything else and music helps with the mindset part.
4) Don’t stop just because you miss a day or two or even a week and don’t belittle yourself if you can only get through half a workout. Remember, every effort is better than no effort and fitness is a lifetime commitment…just keep moving forward.
5) Don’t be defined by others’ expectations. Set your own expectations and measure your expectations of yourself weekly. For me that means taking a realistic look at my progress (or lack thereof) each week. You won’t always be able to see strides forward, but you will on occasion and it is those strides that will keep you going. If your body is just being introduced to this lifestyle it may take some time, but I assure you – it will come.
6) Think about what you put into your body. I am not too religious about my diet, but I have made some significant changes over the years that have helped me to maintain a decent level of control. The bottom line is you need to properly fuel your body and burn the calories you consume. My nephew Paul does mixed martial arts which burns 1,000 calories an hour – he can eat more based on his activity than I can from working my weight bag. The real challenge once you get into a regular exercise pattern is understanding how the additional effort affects your calorie burn. While you are looking to lose weight you are going to want a deficit so less really is more.
7) Last, but certainly not least – in every day activities increase your activity. If that means walking across the office complex three times a day instead of two or climbing the stairs instead of taking the elevator – whatever – make the extra little efforts as they really do add up. One thing that saved me in all my summer gallivanting was the fact that I walked extensively in the places I visited – much more than I would normally do when I am at home.
As for the actual exercise you do be it a regular regimen or just increasing your regular activity and movement – just start and I promise you that once you realize how capable you are you will be unstoppable. And when you become unstoppable, try P90X and let me know if you agree with me about Tony Horton.
Day four hundred and twenty-six of the new forty – obla di obla da