P90X Full Review – From a Woman’s Perspective

So, What is P90X?

P90X is an “extreme home fitness” workout program that is designed to get you in the best shape of your life. It requires a fairly high level of intensity and consists of 12 DVDs which each contain a different workout. Each workout lasts approximately 60 minutes (including the warm-up and cool-down exercises) except for the supplementary Ab Ripper X which lasts for 16 minutes (which is plenty long enough) and Yoga X which lasts for 92 minutes (maybe a bit too long).

The other workouts include Chest and Back, Plyometrics, Shoulders and Arms, Legs and Back, Kenpo X, Core Synergistics, Chest Shoulders and Triceps, Back and Biceps, Cardio X, and X Stretch.

Tony Horton

Tony Horton is the man behind the P90X plan.

The mastermind behind P90X is a guy named Tony Horton. You’ve probably seen his crazy mug plastered all over the infomercials on TV. He turned 50 not too long ago. If you don’t know much about Tony now, that’s OK. That will definitely change if you decide to do the program. In fact, for better or worse, at the end of 90 days Tony Horton will resemble that friend or family member that you just can’t seem to make go away . . .

The main concept behind P90X is the theory of “muscle confusion.” However, this term is used mostly for marketing purposes. Muscles don’t really get confused! Muscles do like variety though, and respond well to it. In fact, what Tony Horton calls “muscle confusion” exercise scientists have called “periodization” for many decades.

The premise behind “muscle confusion” is that the more variety you put into your workouts, the better your results will be. Like the P90X fitness guide explains, “By presenting so many complex and challenging movements, P90X forces you to continually adapt, ensuring new muscle growth and strength gains.”

P90X consists of 3 training blocks that are each 4 weeks long. Within each training block there are also 3 phases: 1. The Adaptive phase, when the body learns how to do the new set of exercises; followed by 2. the Mastery phase, when the body responds to these exercises and experiences changes; and finally 3. the Recovery phase, when muscular healing occurs and your body grows strong, ready to be “confused” again.

Within the P90X program there are also 3 different plans you can follow, including Classic, Lean, and Doubles. Classic is what I would call the “normal” or unmodified version of P90X. The Lean version contains slightly more cardio and less strength training than the Classic plan. And Doubles is the same thing as Classic with the addition of a cardio workout 3-4 times a week.

I would encourage everyone (and women especially) to follow the Classic plan. Personally, I don’t think the Lean plan contains enough strength training to change (transform) your body shape. A lot of women seem to flock to the Lean plan because it sounds well, lean. But I think your time is better spent with the Classic plan. If your ultimate goal is to lose fat, go for Doubles. You can read more about the different plans here: What’s the Difference Between P90X Classic, Doubles, and Lean?

What P90X is Not

Your body composition is a better indicator
of health and fitness rather than weight.

P90X is not a “weight loss” program per se. I look at P90X more like a “fat loss” program. The reason is, depending on your current body composition you might maintain your current weight or even gain weight while doing P90X. This seems to really freak people out, especially women. But muscle weighs more than fat! Lucky for us though, muscle takes up a lot less space than fat does and is more much attractive. It’s safe to assume that most women have some fat on their body they’d like to get rid of. If that’s the case, P90X will definitely help you achieve that goal. The best way to change your body shape is to replace fat with muscle. And guess what, just doing cardio ain’t gonna cut it ladies!

So, can P90X really give you the body of your dreams in just 90 days? That depends. If you look at the before and after photos of the test group participants Beachbody has published on their website and in the fitness guide, you can see that the men and women were already in pretty good shape to start with. I don’t know about you, but that’s not at all what I looked like on Day 1! In fact, Maren S. who appears in Chest and Back, could already do 5 pull-ups and 30 push-ups BEFORE P90X. Yeesh! So it’s no suprise that 90 days into the program her and the others resemble ripped gods and godesses.

P90X is an amazing program, but I would advise anyone starting out to have realistic expectations. Especially if you have a high percentage of body fat. Yes, P90X will definitely get you closer to your ultimate fitness goal(s) but don’t expect to get totally ripped in just 90 days. However, if less than 15 pounds of fat stands between you and greatness, chances are you’re going to be pleasantly surprised by your results just like I was. I still don’t have the body of my dreams, but I’m getting closer to exactly where I want to be.

Yes, if you stick with the program and eat smart, P90X will transform your body. For many people though, it will most likely take more than 90 days.

My P90X Experience

P90X for Women

I followed the Classic plan for the first 60 days and
then did Doubles for the last 30 days.

I’m 33 years old, 5’1″ and two months prior to starting my first round of P90X I weighed a chunky 133 pounds. I’m the kind of person that most people would look at and say, “She doesn’t need to lose weight.” But au contraire!! I just didn’t like how my clothes fit and usually avoided looking at myself in the mirror. Ugh! Who knows, maybe it’s genetic, but during my youth I also developed the notorious “soccer thighs” which always made shopping for pants a huge chore. We ladies blessed with soccer thighs know how it goes . . . either too big for the waist or too small for the thighs. *SIGH* I’ve always been embarassed that I couldn’t touch my toes. And I’ve always wanted to do a pull-up. In fact, that’s the main reason why I finally decided to do P90X. I just wanted to do one pull-up!

I decided to improve my diet and got down to 123 pounds before starting P90X. I followed the Classic plan for the first 60 days and then did Doubles for the last 30 days (Phase 3). I thought I’d be doing pretty good if I got down to 115 after the program. Lo and behold, apparently I really like the number 3 because today I weigh 113 pounds. I still have some body fat to lose, but I think right now I’m pretty close to my ideal body weight, but that will probably change once I get closer to my ideal body composition. Hopefully I know this a little better once I get closer to the 180 day mark.

Like most people I was a bit skeptical of the whole thing just starting out. In fact, I didn’t even want to take BEFORE photos. I didn’t expect big changes. You always see the tagline “Individual results may vary” and interpret it as “This could never happen to you.” However, my husband talked me into taking the BEFORE photos and I’m glad he did. They look a little fuzzy, but I’ll never forget how I felt the day I loaded my AFTER photos onto the computer and set them beside the BEFORE photos. Whoa. I couldn’t believe I actually looked that way 90 days ago. That day, 90 days later, I both looked and felt like a totally different person. It’s a feeling I think every person needs to experience. And if I didn’t have those old photos to look at, I never would have believed it myself.

Of course, after seeing the comparison, I knew I had to do a second round of P90X. On Day 90, I finally had a physique that resembled those from the test group on Day 1! Woot!

My P90X Milestones

I experienced a few different milestones during my first round of P90X that will never be forgotten:

Day 30: Just making it through to the first phase seemed like a major accomplishment. I thought to myself, “Yes, I can do this!”

Day 44: I fit into my skinny jeans.

Day 60: The first time I was able to grab my fingers during the Extended Right Angle Pose and Grab in Yoga X. Whew! That one is still tough!

Day 83: My first unassisted pull-up! I finally accomplished the original goal I set when starting P90X! The skinny jeans also started feeling a little too big in the waist.

Day 88: Instead of doing Kenpo X I decided to go for a run and see how far I could go without stopping. This was the first time I went running since starting P90X. Prior to that, I could only go about 0.5 mile (the end of our road) before walking to rest. That day I made it 4 miles! I took a short break and made it around the rest of the block (for a total of 5 miles) with plenty of lung capacity to spare. I thought to myself, “Geez, if that’s what happens after just 90 days, I wonder what I could do a year from now?”

If you have a lot of time on your hands you can read through my entire 90 day journey here: P90X Round 1

Likes and Dislikes

First, we’ll start out with the positives:

1. The variety of workouts and exercises is definitely a plus with this program. I’ve never been fond of workout DVDs before because after a week or two, you really get bored doing the same thing over and over and over . . . There’s so many different workouts and exercises that you often forget what’s coming next. I just started my second round of P90X and even now, I still have a hard time remembering the sequence of exercises.

2. Really, it’s pretty brainless. All you have to do is show up everyday and press play. Most people need structure and a plan to make progress. So as long as you stick with the plan and don’t decide to “do your own thing” by making up your own program and substituting workouts (for example, swaping out yoga for a cardio workout) you WILL see results.

3. For most people, 90 days won’t be enough. This might seem like a drawback for some, but for me it’s a positive. There are plenty of moves to master in this program and chances are 90 days won’t be enough to conquer them all. To me, this exemplifies the intensity of the program. I got to the end of 90 days and I didn’t want to stop. I wanted to keep going!

4. Tony Horton is the epitome of fitness and he seems like a nice enough guy. I attempted 3 other Beachbody programs before deciding on P90X and couldn’t make it through the first workout because the instructors just seemed too fake and annoying. Sure, Tony definitely has his moments and some people say that some of his comments are conceited, but all in all you can tell that he has a sincere interest in helping people. His cornball sense of humor will have you scratching your head at times, but I can’t imagine P90X without it. However, on those days when listening to Tony just seems a bit too much, there’s always the “mute Tony” option.

And now, here’s some things I thought needed some improvement:

1. The cardio workouts aren’t all that intense, although Plyometrics will definitely give most newbies a run for their money. It certainly kicked my butt into gear! At its very best, Kenpo X will make you sweat, but when Tony recommends everyone check their heartrate monitors you’ll say, “HUH?” My first P90X experience was with Cardio X a few years ago right after my husband purchased the program. At that time I found it difficult to make it through the entire workout. Apparently I was in pathetic shape back then, because now I use Cardio X as a recovery workout.

If you’re coming into the program with a high level of cardio fitness you’ll probably be disappointed with the cardio in P90X. But then again, cardio isn’t the main focus of P90X anyway, so it’s probably not a big deal. That being said, my little 5 mile run was something I could never do before. So apparently, the lack of super-intense cardio didn’t hurt me too much.

For my second round of P90X I’m adding more cardio to my regimen using some Insanity workouts. I might look into the new Turbofire program once it comes out too.

2. Enough with the recovery drink already! I know Beachbody want’s to get their plug in, but GEEZ! I think it’s a little much. The recovery drink doesn’t taste as good as Tony and Dreya make it sound, but it DOES help your muscles recover from a brutal workout. Sometimes I’m OK with a glass of low fat chocolate milk after working out, but on those days when I can tell I’ve worked extra hard the recovery drink does make a difference (especially during the next 2 days!).

3. Certain P90X personalities will begin to wear on your nerves after a while. I’m still not sure how Katie managed to make her way onto the P90X set. Did this girl even pass the fitness test? Every time I do that workout I almost expect her to clunk Tony over the head with a set of dumbbells just so she can be the center of attention and run the show. Hasn’t happened yet though. Maybe next time. You’ll also get tired of hearing how Dreya is GORGEOUS and can “fly through the air with the greatest of ease . . .” Didn’t you know–she’s a world famous gymnast and aerialist? You’ll also hear how Jason and Vanessa are engaged . . . to be married. Yes, all very interesting.

However, to help keep things balanced, there also are some endearing P90X personalities that quietly and confidently make their presence known. My favorites include Maren, Pam the Blam, and both Erics. I like Dominic too, but he’s just a little too springy for my taste.

4. You do need to invest in some equipment in order to do the P90X workouts. Granted, in the long run it’s probably a lot cheaper than a gym membership. At the very least you’ll need a few dumbbells or resistance bands and a pull-up bar. I’d also recommend getting a yoga mat and yoga block. You can probably get away without a pull-up bar if you have something to drape your resistance bands around to do modified pull-ups (they show you how to do this in the videos). But if you really want to get strong enough to do a real pull-up I’d get a real pull-up bar. :-)

5. Ab Ripper X got really monotonous after a while. Yes, this is a tough ab workout but by the time I got to Phase 3, it seemed like my body had somehow adpated to the routine even though I still hadn’t quite mastered all the exercises. You’re required to do this workout 3 times a week on the same day as your strength training workouts. During the last couple weeks of the program I did Tony’s Power 90 Ab Ripper 200 instead just for something different and that seemed to help. For my second round of P90X I’m alternating between Ab Ripper X and Insanity’s Cardio Abs.

6. Tony Horton does a horrible impression of Forrest Gump every time a stretch comes up that involves the glutes or “but-TOCKS.” And that’s all I have to say about that . . .

What to Expect if You Do P90X and Other Words of Wisdom

1. Expect your peak to hit around Week 12. The first couple of weeks will be really exciting as you feel and see your body changing. You won’t notice huge changes, but enough to get you pysched up. For example, at first I noticed a big improvement in my flexibility and I found myself sitting up straighter. I had never been made conscience of my posture before. I just felt stronger. However, during days 30-60 or so, you’ll enter the P90X “doldrums” where it feels like nothing is happening. The excitement is over, and you wonder if all this hard work is worth it. By the time I got to Phase 3 I was really bored with my progress and I decided to start Doubles. By Week 11 those excited feelings and changes started to come back and by the time Day 90 came around I didn’t want it to end!

2. Don’t skip Yoga X or replace it with a different workout. Really, it’s there for a reason. For more information check out this post: P90X Yoga–Stop Whining and Just Do It.

3. Good nutrition is important. In fact, your diet accounts for 80% of your body composition. You can do P90X until the cows come home but it won’t matter if you continue to eat like crap. That being said, I didn’t take any vitamins or supplements or was faithful about drinking a particular recovery drink or protein shake. Did that affect my results? I have no idea. I also didn’t follow the P90X nutrition plan. Did that affect my results too? I have no idea. But I did stick mostly with the foods listed in the nutrition guide and I didn’t throw all caution to the wind. I know some people who say, “Well, I’m working out so I can eat whatever I want.” That, my friend, is the attitude that will get you into trouble!!

4. Just have faith in the program. A lot of people like to get freaked out and analyze every nit-picky thing. Really, all you have to do is follow the schedule and press play. It’s a beautiful thing.

5. Ladies, don’t be afraid to lift heavy weights. Don’t worry, you’re not going to look like a beast. Huge muscles require testosterone and luckily in our bodies that hormone is in short supply. Shoot for 8-12 reps with good form. Seriously. Let’s all ditch the Barbie weights. If you don’t believe me, read this book: The New Rules of Lifting for Women.

6. Ignore the scale! I know this is a difficult one but after while you’ll discover that number really doesn’t mean much. The best indicator of your progress is how you feel, how you look in the mirror, and how your clothes fit. Oh yeah, another good indicator is simply keeping track of your reps and weights! I would dare anyone starting P90X not to look at the scale at all during the entire 90 days. Too many people get frustrated because the scale doesn’t move when in fact their body is making enormous changes.

7. Try not to miss a workout. I know life happens, but one missed workout often leads to two, then three, then four . . . and then your collection of DVDs begins to collect dust on the shelf. Let the momentum work in your favor.

I like what Todd Miller, an associate professor of exercise science at George Washington University, had to say about P90X:

It’s very high-intensity exercises that you’re doing for an hour a day. That’s a lot of freaking exercise. If you do any high-enough-intensity workout and couple it with a healthy diet, you’re probably going to get pretty much the same results. Maybe the videos are well produced, or fun. But the reason the program works is ultimately because people do it.

Yep, that pretty much sums it up!

If you’re ready to give P90X a try I would love to be assigned as your personal coach! Most people achieve a higher success rate with any given workout program when they have someone to turn to when they have questions or run into problems. As your coach, I’ll also share with you some additional tips I learned to help you achieve your fitness goals. All you need to do is purchase P90X using this link, and we can get started right away!

Amanda is a retired Licensed Veterinary Technician who went from the couch to a half-marathon in less than 6 months. She is a self-proclaimed geek and bookworm who has turned her passions for health, fitness, nutrition, cooking, baking, writing and internet marketing into a six-figure online business that now helps others get off the couch and get after their dreams. Proverbs 3:5-6

Comments

  1. Jenn says

    Super helpful review :) I just started the Classic program and will be doing my Day 4 workout tonight (Yoga!). I’m currently 5’4″ and 213 pounds. I had some major soreness the first two days, especially from the ab work. There are a lot of moves that I cannot complete all the way, especially in Plyometrics and Ab Ripper, but I know as time goes on my strength in those areas will come.

    It’s great to find a site like this where there are people who’ve been successful :)

    Thanks!

  2. says

    That’s great Jenn…I know you can totally do it! Just be consistent with your nutrition plan and pushing play. You can’t go wrong! If you ever have any questions about anything just let me know! :-)

  3. says

    This is a great article!
    I know about eating all the crap and doing P90X… I don’t know what triggered me into starting this intense program the day after Halloween. Well, Jan 3rd, I started over & am eating right. At least I am disciplined into waking up at 5:30am to work out. I am doing all the workouts instead of just 4 (I did not do yoga or Kenpo the first go-around.) The workout I do each day is my fav workout of that day!
    Thank you again for this awesome summary. Love it!

  4. Sonia says

    This is a great article! Thank you.
    I am still confused about how much weight should women lift?
    Would you mind sharing how heavy did you lift?
    Thanks

  5. says

    That’s a great question Sonia! I’m actually going to write a blog post about that this weekend and I’ll let you when it’s done! :-)

  6. says

    Someone please email me asap truthseeker_kc@yahoo.com I have just started supreme 90 day wrkout about three weeks in seemes like my thighs are getting bigger? is it possible muscle builds before fat goes? please help I love the workouts nothing is more depressing than busting butt and gaining size i am a woman and want to look like it

  7. Delphine says

    I’ve ordered the P90X program and I’m waiting for it!! I am just afraid not to succeed to do all the workouts at the beginning. Did you take recovery drinks during your schedule and which ones? Thanks for your reply.:)

  8. says

    I absolutely love this program. I hope more people try it out after reading your comprehensive review. And I also struggled with the Yoga in the beginning, but found sticking with it well worth it!

  9. says

    Insanity nearly killed me, but I have gotten fabulous results with P90x and highly recommend it. And you are so right about the Forest Gump thing. Ridiculous.

  10. angela says

    This is a great article and I think I found it right when I needed it! I am also short and around the same weight you were when you started. Ive been a runner for a while and I weighted 112 at one point and I felt great and loved the way my clothes fit. But now…..not so much!

    I am on day 14 of p90x and I was starting to get discouraged for some reason. I know results are not going to show up right away but I guess when I put my jeans on this morning, I wanted them to feel looser. Do you think I should add extra cardio to the program to loose more fat around the butt/thigh area? If so, should I be eating more calories? Also, is it ok to stick with the “fat shredding” diet phase longer than the plan suggests? I have never been a big carb eater, even when I was running alot. Sorry for all the questions! I would truely appreciate any advice you have! Thanks :)

  11. Ashley says

    Hey Guys. I am on day 53 of the P90X and I have gained 7lbs… I am struggling with how many calories I need to eat. I am constantly hungry. I am not following the nutrition plan because with my work hours it is impossible and with all my food allergies, I can’t have milk, nuts, soy or red meat or whey protein. It makes it a little difficult. How many calories should I be eating. At the moment I am netting around 1400 (after workout) is that to little? The book told me 2400 before your workouts, and I am struggling to get that many calories without having my carbs through the roof. I am 5’7 and 160lbs. If anyone could give me a little insight, I would appreciate it.

  12. says

    Hi Angela, you can stay on fat shredder for as long as you want but I wouldn’t go longer than 6 months personally. Adding more cardio will help make you lean, I recommend a mixture of both HIIT and endurance (running) cardio for best results. As far as calories go it really depends on how much you’re eating now and how well you’ve been tracking. Sometimes you need to eat less and sometimes you need to eat more. I hope that helps! If you’d like more one-on-one help I recommend checking out one of my 30-day challenge groups.

  13. says

    Hi Ashley, this is something I help people with one-on-one in my 30-day challenge groups. It’s really hard to answer your questions without knowing what your goals are for doing the program. If you are constantly hungry chances are you aren’t drinking enough water or getting enough calories from high-fiber foods like vegetables. If you make vegetables the main course at every meal/snack you will never be hungry and even with veggies it’s hard to go overboard on carbs. Egg whites and lean meats like fish and chicken are also a great way to increase your protein intake. You can try increasing your calories a bit and tracking your results to see if that helps. And you should be using other tools besides the scale to track progress, that never gives you the whole picture. Measurements, photos, how you look in the mirror, body fat percentage, etc. is a better way to track your progress. Don’t give up on the journey! It’s all a learning process and these things take time.

  14. angela says

    Thanks Amanda, where can I check into one of your 30 day challenge groups? Also, I have been tracking calories and eat between 1400-1500 cals per day. If I want to add an additional cardio workout, would I have to eat more that day? For example, at an hour spinning class, I usually burn about 500-575 cals.

  15. says

    Hi Angela, I will posting more info soon on my next challenge group so stay tuned here and also on my FB page! As long as you have enough energy to get through your workouts you should be ok with those calories.

  16. John says

    Great article and I’m a guy!

    But really? Katie?? I love Katie! she doesn’t seem like an attention-hog at all to me! :)

    I am really enjoying your posts and look forward to more.

    I just read the one you wrote about BB coaching and being on the fence about it, which I am. Very good article!

    Keep it up!

  17. Nicole says

    Hi Amanda,
    Our body types seem similar, I was a gymnast for a long time, and now with any exercise gain muscle weight very, very easily…did you have this problem in the beginning? Being a former athlete as well…? I’m only on day 7, but I’ve already gained 3 pounds. I really hope this isn’t indictative of the next 90 days because that would be horrible. Did you notice yourself gaining weight in the beginning? I’m so discouraged I”m ready to change to the Lean program already. Any advice would be helpful. Thanks!

  18. says

    Hi Nicole, I can almost guarantee that what you are experiencing is completely normal and is most likely water weight (nothing to worry about). Read this article for more information: http://www.coachcalorie.com/working-out-but-gaining-weight/ It’s only been 7 days! You need to trust the process. I also recommend tracking your nutrition on a daily basis so you know where to make changes if needed, otherwise everything you do is just guesswork. Stop giving the scale so much power. It is a very poor indicator of your progress!

  19. says

    Thank you so much for this awesome review! This is exactly what I had been looking for. I started P90X one week ago, and it’s definately been hard. In fact, the hardest part for me is really the nutritional side, since I tend to have a severe sweet tooth and that’s sabotaged my efforts this weekend. :-/ But I’m not quitting, tomorrow is a new day! I just started a blog to blog through my progress and keep me accountable as well. Thank you for the honesty, and sharing your results. Very inspirational for me to keep it going.

  20. Hannah says

    Hey there!

    Such a good review you have going on here and very nice progress :)
    I was just wondering how much weight did you use? I know you must’ve used diff weights for diff exercises but I just want to have an idea for shoulders/tris/biceps and most importantly legs because I feel like you can only lift so much with dumbbells during legs and back and it’s not really enough to tax and grow the legs!

  21. Randi says

    Hi, I’m starting my first day of p90x the lean version tomorrow and I’m very scared about it! I just want to make sure I do things correctly and eat properly. I’m 5″6 and 190 pounds. I’m doing this on my own, do u have any advice u could share with me to keep me motivated?

  22. says

    Randi, why be scared about it? You can use that energy and channel it elsewhere for a more productive purpose. Just set your daily goals and stick with it on a consistent basis. Keep it simple! For extra support and motivation I would encourage you to stay connected via my Facebook page or consider joining one of my 30-day challenge groups!

  23. Katie says

    Great article! Just what I needed to read.

    I’m quite familiar with P90X, as my boyfriend, my roommate, and my brother all did it together last year. I was wondering, however, if you’ve read anything about what happens once you stop the workouts? The 3 guys I know all gained weight afterwards, because they weren’t being as active, and I’m not sure if that will happen to females as well?

    To be fair, they went from working out everyday to hardly doing anything at all (their fault!), and I’m fairly active and plan on staying active afterwards, however I’m worried that I may have similar results.

  24. says

    Hi Katie! Any time you go from being very active to not doing anything at all there is chance you will gain weight. As long as you stay active and don’t use that an excuse to eat whatever you want, you’ll be fine! You should totally do it, I bet you’ll have great results!! Have you considered joining a challenge group?

  25. Lana says

    Hi Amanda,

    Thanks so much for a terrific & detailed overview of P90X. Being 5″3 & weighting 108 for the past several years of my life (I’m 30 now), I’m looking for a workout to get me more lean/tonned but not lose weight. I go running with my labrador retriever about 30 min to an hour every morning but not challenging myself with any other exercise. I don’t like the look of my legs and my stomach that I’ve acquired over the years of being an accountant that often requires sitting in front of a computer the most part of the day. Not complaining but really wondering if you feel that this program would suit me.

    Your advice would be truly appreciated!

    Respectfully,
    Lana

  26. says

    Hi Lana, P90X would be great but remember that your nutrition plan is going to have the biggest affect on your results. ;-)

  27. Marina says

    Hi Amanda,

    I am in week 6 of P90X and to date, I have been following the lean program. Based on your review, I think I may switch to the classic program though – I think it may be more effective for me. I am seeing results but I think I may see faster results with classic. I was so glad to see your perspective based on your own personal experience. I’ve been eating really clean. The only thing I am confused about is the number of calories I should be eating. I know that I need to be certain to eat *enough* – but there seems to be such a fine line between not enough, just the right amount, and waaaay to much. Any advice there?

    Thanks again so much for your great review and feedback.

  28. says

    Hi Marina, are you tracking your nutrition? Daily calories and macronutrients? That’s really the only way to find that sweet spot…that way you can compare what you’re eating with your results (measurements) and adjust from there.

  29. Jenny says

    Hi Amanda,
    I’ve recently purchased p90x I’m quite over weight but getting married next year so thought I’d take the plunge.
    I travel a lot around the world with work & was going to put the DVD on my laptop obviously I can’t take the pull up bars with me wondered if you know of anything different to do?
    Plus I have type 2 Diabeties so will the nutrition given be ok with me doing it?

  30. says

    Hi Jenny, congrats on your upcoming wedding! I would definitely check with a doctor or nutritionist in regards to the nutrition part. Have you ever considered adding Shakeology to your daily routine? It has a certified low glycemic index and has helped a lot of diabetics. You can use resistance bands instead of a bar which are easy to travel with. There is someone using the bands in every DVD for demonstration.

  31. Erika says

    Hi, thanks for having such
    great Info on Your Site. My Husband Has Done P90 and After A Few Months Injured His ElbowGoing From A Standing Move Down To Pushups??? He’s Much Better Now But That Made A Little Concerned That The Program Was Too Intense For Me. I Am 5’10″ And Weigh Around 180. I’m A size ten With Curves. I’m pretty
    Active And I Move A Lot As I’m A new Massage Therapist. I’m Looking To Lose Some Fat, Gain Endurance, Strength And Flexibility And Improve My posture. I Think P90x Would Be Good For Me But I Am Looking For Your Advice On How To not Injure Myself And Once I Get The Results I Desire How Do I maintain Them? Thanks:)

  32. Rose says

    It really is wonderful getting a woman’s perspective on this. Thank you for sharing your experience! I’m finishing up my 2nd week of Phase 1 and after reading your article, I feel much more positive continuing this fitness journey with P90x. When I started I weighed in at 120 and I’m 5’1. My main focus is to lose body fat and not weight, maybe 5 pounds at most. Seems like p90x will help me achieve this goal. I was frequenting the gym regularly before but mostly doing cardio. And you’re right, cardio definitely isn’t enough. I always wanted to tone but was afraid of bulking up so I kept to the weenie 5 lb weights haha. Thanks for shedding some light on this as well. Now I feel more comfortable using heavier weights. There is one concern I still have, I was looking at the calorie intake in phase 2 and 3 and I couldn’t help but freak out a little. 2,400-3,000+ calories seems a bit much. How did you adapt to this? Thanks again for sharing your experience! I think I’ll take before and after pictures now since I failed to do so originally. :)

  33. says

    Hi Rose! You’re right, P90X was never originally intended to be a weight loss program per se…so those calories are a bit high. Everyone is a bit different, but I would recommend starting around 1200-1300 and then adjust from there. I would also recommend the Fat Shredder macros for a month or so if your main focus is to lose body fat. This article might help >> http://www.amandakjones.com/how-many-calories-should-you-eat-for-fat-loss.php And yes, don’t be afraid to use heavy weights…you want to make the most of your time. BRING IT!! :-)

  34. Anna says

    This has been a really interesting read and is really well-written, thank you! I’ve just started week 3 of the lean program and I know I’ve seen results in terms of some loss of love handles and I can feel that my core is already so much stronger. However, I don’t feel that much smaller overall and I think I was a bit brainwashed by a lot of incredible before-and-after pictures I saw online because this should be the extreme fat loss phase, right?

    I also struggle a little with the diet. I don’t stick to it religiously but I try not to eat rubbish. I have IBS so some days my tummy is unnaturally enormous (like 4 months pregnant huge) and other days it’s flatter. I’m not really sure of a way around this because you have to eat so much veg on this plan but that’s what affects my bloating really badly. Every day I’m so hungry first thing in the morning so I eat a load of muesli and I’m concerned the carbs and dairy are sabotaging my fat loss.

    Also, I know that I wasn’t overweight to begin with but I do have fat to lose. I gained about half a stone this last year by moving to Thailand for a while and consuming too much beer, rice and condensed milk! Do you think I should maybe switch to classic after this week? I don’t want to be bulky as I have a naturally small frame but definition and trimmed down fat is the aim. Your advice is very welcome!

  35. says

    Hi Anna, I prefer the classic plan because it has more strength training and building muscle helps you burn fat. It won’t make you bulky. Just keep pressing play and have faith in the program. If you are consistent with your efforts on a daily basis it will pay off. Try not to compare your results to anyone else because we are all different.

  36. Anna says

    Thanks Amanda, I appreciate the boost! I think it’s because I know how small I can be because I’ve achieved it before but only through running and eliminating almost all carbs, which is just unsustainable. Trying to build muscle is new to me, but I actually hate cardio and much prefer weight training so I think I may well switch to Classic. And three weeks isn’t that long…

    BTW did you know Jason and Vanessa are engaged?? ;)

  37. Taavia says

    Hi, I’m just starting the workout. Day one for me, but I’m only 15 pounds away from my goal weight. I eat healthy and avoid processed, overly salty, and sugary foods. I’m 5’0 and weigh 126 pounds. How many times a day do you suggest I do if I wanna loose the weight in 50 days?

  38. says

    I recommend you follow the program as its written. The point is not to lose weight as quickly as possible. If you think you are only 15 pounds away from your goal weight the scale is irrelevant at this point anyway. Focus on improving your strength and everything else will fall into place. There is no need to rush.

  39. Annie says

    Awesome post Amanda!

    I just started the classic P90X yesterday and I’m hoping it will work out! I’ve read some great reviews from other women. I’m 5 foot 8 inches and around 165 pounds. I would like to lose 15 pounds but more than anything I want to have muscle and look healthy, not necessarily skinny! I don’t plan on buying the Shakeology drink or anything like that, as I’m a college student and have 0 money, but do you have any other recommendations for an every day routine? For example, drinking green tea or water, eating 6 small meals a day? Thanks so much!

    -Annie

  40. says

    Water, water, water (no empty calories) and just eat when you feel hungry (but not too much). Fill up on veggies whenever you can esp. dark leafy greens like spinach, collards, arugula, and kale! Just keep it simple and don’t be afraid to give yourself a “treat” every once in while too. :-)

  41. Aramy says

    I liked this review, except in terms of Plyos and other cardio workouts. Not everyone has the same cardiovascular ability! When I first started P90X I struggled a LOT with plyos, but I had always hated cardio, so I’m sure that had an affect. Just try not to make it sound like it’s sooo easy, when for some people it’s quite the opposite. It can be a little discouraging when it seems like you’re not on the same page.

  42. Monse says

    Hi!
    I like this review but I have one big question. Because of my body composition, my main problem is the hips, legs and butt. I saw some of the P90X videos and they didnt give me the impression of working the lower body part. Am I right? Or they work both parts equally?

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