Tuesday, February 23, 2010

P90X - "phase 1" results

No one is as surprised as I am that I've stuck with this "extreme home fitness" program through the 30 days of  "Phase 1." I am not naturally inclined toward anything extreme, but hubbie was filled with enthusiasm, so I figured I'd give it a try, dislike it intensely, and return to more girly workouts by the end of the first week. But turns out I like it.

Not that I've followed the program ("lean" version,) exactly. For one thing, I hated (hated!) the "Kenpo X" (kickboxing) workout. Really, completely, loathed every minute of it. I slogged through it once, distracting myself from the so-not-my-type-of-thing awfulness by pondering what I would need to be paid to keep it in the rotation. Conclusion: $125/workout, or $500-$600 a month. No generous benefactor has materialized, so I have replaced it in my rotation with the oldie-but-still-goodie original "Firm Total Body Workout" that's been kicking my butt since the mid 80s.

Two other workout schedule adjustments:

1) "Core synergistics" is okay, but relies far too much on push-up, plank, and chatturanga variations for me; past reconstructive surgery limits my ability to do much of certain upper-body moves, so I'm doing Jillian Michael's "30-Day Shred," also a proven butt-kicker, instead.

2) "Cardio X": a fine workout, but the tougher option, "Plyometrics," is more fun, so I'm doing that one instead. I might, possibly, by day 90, be fit enough to get through the entire Plyo routine; in the meantime, it's fun panting and stumbling through as much of it as I can.

Best pleasant surprises:
-- "Ab Ripper X" (tough, but more fun than endless crunches, and it works!)
-- "Plyometrics" (even though I'm so wimpy at it still)
-- "Yoga X": this I did not expect to like. Yoga, I figured, should be taught by yoga instructors. But whaddayaknow... it's a VERY good (tough!) power yoga routine. I hesitate to describe a yoga workout as "brutal" as that language is so un-yoga-y, but wow, does this one kick yoga butt.
-- "X Stretch": the best hour of stretching I have ever done. Not sure yet how I'm going to fit it in more frequently, but I want to, 'cause it feels so good.

RESULTS from 30 days of upping the workout intensity six days a week:
Weight:  2.5 pounds down; had hoped for 3-5, but 2.5 is okay given noticeable improvements in strength overall
Waist and abs: each 1" smaller
Upper arms: each 1/2" smaller, and noticeably firmer

I regret to say that hip and thigh measurements have not budged since day 1, but things are definitely firmer down there, though not yet smaller. I have hopes for slimmer results by the end of Phases 2 & 3.

That's all WITHOUT DIETING (!). The program comes with a nutrition and menu plan, but I'd rather chew nails than weigh all my food and track nutrient ratios and calories. Pleh. Been there, done that, and just don't want to. I have nudged my eating, in general, SLIGHTLY towards fewer carbs/fat and more protein, but haven't changed much: less cheese and chocolate, wine on weekends only, that's about it.

What have I been eating?
Breakfast (post workout): banana-berry smoothie with a little yogurt and a scoop of vanilla whey protein
Lunch: turkey or bison burger on a whole wheat bun, maybe a small salad on the side if I'm feeling virtuous
Snack: small apple and some tamari almonds or a spoonful of peanut butter
Dinner: chicken or fish (sauteed with a little olive oil and spices 'cause it's quick and easy that way); lots of steamed fresh organic veggies; brown rice or quinoa; salad

I have not blogged about any of that because,well, it's chicken or fish, veggies, a grain, a salad. Not the sort of thing I use (or record) a recipe for.

Desserts, although limited to Sunday night only, have not completely vanished from the menu. I've got a post or two coming up about that, but this one seems plenty long enough, so I'll stop here.

Bring on "Phase 2"!