Monday, September 3, 2007

P90X Week 2 Review

Well I made it through week 2. I'm pretty happy about this for a couple of reasons. One is because of the difficulty of the P90X routines, most of the blogs I read talked a lot about the soreness and fatigue that comes along with starting this program. Honestly, I only had one problem coming out of week 1 and that was that my calves were pretty strained after the first leg workout. They would have been OK if I hadn't decided to do a 6 mile walk the next day. That probably was a bit much considering the leg workout I'd done the day before. Going into week 2 I replaced the Plyometric workout with an hour technique swim and the StretchX workout instead to give my legs some more time to heal. This turned out to be a good move. I was able to run for 45 minutes as my prelude to the next day's Shoulders, Biceps, Triceps workout. Ultimately by the time the YogaX and the Legs/Back workouts rolled around again my calves had recovered.

The next reason I found to be happy was that I was able to reintegrate my triathlon training back into the P90X routine without any apparent additional fatigue or soreness. I will say again right here there are probably some reasons for my doing this and being successful that I will go into now. As I mentioned before, I normally workout anywhere from 9-14 hours a week depending on the time of year. The P90X workouts total somewhere between 7 and 8 hours if you do them daily. My body is accustomed to working out daily for around 2 to 3 hours given appropriate recovery time. The P90X workouts while targeting strength are still highly aerobic which is my largest training focus. I also had been doing body weight workouts for almost 6 months prior to starting my P90X odyssey. Just not as hard core. I looked at the BeachBody web site and saw what people where able to do in the way of pushups. When they started a lot of the guys were doing about 50 in the beginning. And that's a really good starting point. When I started I knew I could do at least that many because I was already doing them several times a week. With P90X I only have to do an intense session for a body part one time each week. The rest of the week is sort of active recovery while focusing the workload on other muscle groups. I did the P90X workouts exclusively for a week to gauge my fatigue levels and recovery speed before reinserting sessions of swimming, biking and running. This gave me an idea how much and what intensity levels I could handle.

An unexpected bonus from adding these workouts back into my training has been the ability to see what effect P90X has on my performance at this early stage. With swimming, I am now slower in the pool. But this is to be expected. Because swimming speed is gained more from technique than strength, I find that increase strength will initially slow me down in the water until I have time to integrate the power effectively. Running and cycling I saw almost immediate improvement as far as the speed I could handle comfortably. What was most noticeable on the bike was the ability to tolerate larger gears for longer periods of time without fatigue. In the weeks to come I anticipate I should see this added tolerance translate to a higher average power output on the bike.

All in all I will say I am satisfied with the progress I saw during week 2. And who knows, maybe by the time this is all over I might just be able to "stomach" Ab RipperX.


Fatbiker said...

How has it helped you cycling. I have been cycling for years and have stayed around 260lbs. This past winter I got up 275lbs. I have dropped about 24lbs since the beginngin of march. So do you see yourself getting stronger.

ace said...

There are two ways the P90X program had a dramatic and immediate effect on my cycling. The most obvious was simple endurance. P90X requires you to move for almost the entire hour for each workout during the week. Over time because you work on both endurance and muscularity/strength, you have a much larger capacity for hard work. This translates into speed and how long you can maintain it.

The other reason for the difference is that P90X is very, very core intensive. In fact I can't think of an exercise in the program that doesn't involve the core on some level. This focus allows you to integrate this new core strength into your cycling. Where you notice this most is the hip flexor and connective muscles of the trunk. When these muscles come into play the ability to generate power through more of the pedal cycle is apparent.

squirrelpsu said...

So then it is OK to substitute cycling into the cardio days (plyo, kenpo, yoga). I don't have the time to do both cycling and the P90x cardio. I am into my 3rd week so far. I did chest and back yesterday and will do cycling today for an hour and a half. Are you doing the P90x program plus your tri routine???