Is P90X The Best Workout For You?

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P90X workout program review

On today’s episode of Live Lean TV, I’m doing a P90X review and answering the question, is P90X the best workout for you and your goals?

This Freestyle Friday topic comes from a viewer question that I have been asked over and over again.

A lot of you want to hear my thoughts and review of P90X, Insanity, and all the other Beachbody workout programs.

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So is P90X the best workout for you and your goals?

Lets find out.

If you’re into fitness, I’m sure you’ve heard of the P90X workout program.

I say this because it is probably one of the most marketed products online and on TV infomercials.

So from a marketing perspective, P90X, and all the other Beachbody programs, are doing it right.

But the real question that you want answered is this.

Is P90X the best workout for you to be following for your specific goals?

P90X was created by Tony Horton, who I have a tremendous amount of respect for.

I mean, just look at the guy.

I hope I look as good as he does when I’m 60 years old.

Is P90X The Best Workout For You?

But even though I have all the respect in the world for Tony, do I think the P90X is the best workout program for you?

Well first, I have to be upfront

I have never completed the P90X workout program.

Therefore I may not be the best person to do a P90X review.

But someone did send me the P90X workout program to look at and review it from a programming perspective.

After reviewing the program, I tell you what, P90X looks tough.

P90x Workout Is It Right For Your Goals

So the initial question that came to mind was this.

Is the general population, who are looking to get in shape, ready for this intense of a workout program?

The simple answer is no.

P90x is not designed for everyone, and it wasn’t intended to be either.

So this is your first takeaway.

Ask yourself this before starting a workout program

When you’re looking to start a workout program, one of the first questions you should be asking yourself is:

Is this workout program suitable for my current fitness level?

I give P90X props since they do provide a baseline fit test.

In this fit test, they say up front, if you can’t successfully pass the fit test, you’re not ready for the P90X program.

For example, here are some of P90X’s fit test standards.

P90X pull up fit test standard:

There are a lot of pull ups in the P90X program.

PULL UP

Here are the male and female P90X fit test criteria for pull ups.

In other words, if you can’t do this, the P90X program is too advanced for you.

P90X push up fit test standard:

Another fit test criteria for starting the P90X program is based on push ups.

PUSH UP

Here are the male and female P90X fit test criteria for push ups.

P90X wall squat fit test standard:

Wall Squat

Another fit test criteria for starting the P90X program is based on the wall squat.

If you’re not familiar with the wall squat, this is where you hold a squat against the wall, with your knees bent at a 90 degree angle.

Here are the male and female P90X fit test criteria for the wall squat.

  • Male: if you can’t hold the wall squat for at least 1 minute, you’re not ready for the P90X program.
  • Female: if you can’t hold the wall squat for at least 1 minute, you’re not ready for the P90X program.

P90X bicep curl fit test standard:

Another fit test criteria for starting the P90X program is based on the bicep curl.

Bicep Curl

Here are the male and female P90X fit test criteria for the standing dumbbell bicep curl.

  • Male: if you can’t complete at least 10 dumbbell bicep curls with 20 pounds, you’re not ready for the P90X program.
  • Female: if you can’t complete at least 10 dumbbell bicep curls with 8 pounds, you’re not ready for the P90X program.

There are a few other fit tests included in the P90X program, but those are the main ones.

If you feel like you can’t hit those fit test numbers, then the P90X program is probably too advanced for you.

But don’t be ashamed as from what I’ve seen from other people doing P90x, this is an intense program.

If you can hit these fit test numbers, is P90X the best program for you?

It really depends on what your goals are.

So this leads me to another question you should ask before starting a new workout program.

Is this program designed to help you accomplish your specific goals?

Based on the program design, P90X seems to be a workout program that is designed for fat burning.

So if you’re an ectomorph, and your goal is to add more muscle mass, P90X may not be the best program for your specific goals.

I would recommend you follow a gym based workout program, specifically designed for muscle building.

Do this if you’re looking to build muscle

Sure you can still build muscle at home, but the most effective place for muscle building is in the gym.

This is simply due to the fact that gyms are equipped with heavier weight and a wide assortment of equipment.

Our best selling Live Lean MASS 2.0 muscle building program teaches our trainees how overload the muscle with proven muscle building techniques.

Yes, it’s important to lift heavier weights, with good form, in the muscle building rep range.

However, Live Lean MASS 2.0 also focuses on other muscle building mechanisms such as time under tension.

In contrast to this, the P90X workout program is designed more for muscle endurance, by extending sets for longer durations.

This may keep your heart rate elevated, thus increasing calorie burning, but if you’re looking at building muscle mass, the primary goal is not about burning calories.

Again, one of the main mechanisms of muscle building is progressive overload.

This can be done using heavier weight or increasing the time under tension.

So with all that said, is P90X the best workout for you?

It really depends on your goals.

I highly recommend you go take our Live Lean Body Quiz to find the best program for you, based on your:

  • fitness goals
  • current fitness level
  • access to equipment

Regardless of which workout program is best for you, to get results, you must commit, and stick to the program guidelines.

Remember the world’s best workout program is only the best if:

  • you can actually complete it
  • you can be consistent and stick to it
  • the workouts are designed for your specific goals

Again, since I’ve never completed the P90X program, I don’t claim to be a P90X expert.

However, when people see me training at the gym, they often ask if I am a P90X guy.

This reason is, depending on my phase of training, I’m usually moving quickly from exercise to exercise, in circuit format training.

Typically I love to keep my heart rate going and I love to sweat at the gym.

Do you enjoy this P90x workout review?

I hope this gave you clarity on is P90X the best workout for you, your goals, and current fitness level.

If you enjoyed this episode, please click the social media buttons to share it with your friends.

Also subscribe to our Live Lean TV YouTube channel and leave a comment below with any questions that you may have.

I’ll be back with another cooking show recipe soon.

If you’re looking for workouts that quickly burn fat, check out more of my 4 minute Tabata Workouts here.


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4 responses to “Is P90X The Best Workout For You?

  1. I have been asking my self for months which would be better for me, if i should just hit the gym or do the p90x program… I am 6’4″ about 210lbs.. i play basketball alot but recovering from a knee injury now.
    Which would you think would be better for me hitting the gym or p90x??

    1. If you’re looking to add size and enjoy variety…go with the gym.
      If you’re looking to lose fat, can be motivated to workout from home, and like a strict program to follow…go with P90x

  2. Brad –

    Really appreciate the time and energy you commit to the fitness community. I very much enjoy published material.

    Regarding P90X . . . I’m a graduate, as is my wife (who couldn’t do one pull-up, by the way) . . . and we’re both big fans of the program. Your remarks about needing to commit to the program are definitely accurate. I’d say the same for anything in life however. One typically gets what one commits. P90X is no different . . . and the same would apply to any other routine/program.

    As for my experience within . . . I can say I definitely leaned down (sub 5% body fat) and put on over 10 lbs of muscle. One can absolutely bulk up using P90X.

    Not bad in my book. And my wife netted similarly impressive results, but I don’t dare post her pictures without permission! 😉 Both of us have since gone on to P90X2 (our favorite), Asylum, and now Body Beast.

    I’d be happy to address specific questions you . . . or any others . . . may have regarding P90X or any other Beachbody fitness routine named above.

    Stay the course, Brad! Again, I really enjoy your material.

    1. Hey Coach…thanks for the comment and awesome results from the program. As I’ve said, I’ve seen incredible results from people committing to the program. You were definitely one of them.

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