P90X3 Review – The Approach, 5 Steps To Starting P90X3
P90X3 Review – The X-Gains Approach
As I find myself 2 days away from finishing, and reviewing, Block 1 of P90X3 I have decided to write a bit about the approach I decided to take as I embarked on my P90X3 journey.
I decided to take, as is custom nowadays, a stepped approach – a 5-Step Approach to be exact. And, because I am pretty much next to Awesome, I have decided to share the 5 Steps To Starting P90X3 below. So, please be sure to check them out and then make double sure to check back for the Block 1 Review which is coming….very soon.
For a review of where, why, and how I “prepared” for this P90X3’s Test Run be sure to check out “It’s Almost Time – P90X3!” for all the gory details (including some pics).
STEP 1 | THE DIET
LeanGains Is Back…and, man, how I missed it!
As many of you may all know by now, I typically follow a modified LeanGains approach to Intermittent Fasting.
For nearly two years now I have been fasting 5 days a week from 9 pm at night until 3 pm the next day and fasting a full day 2 days a week (it’s really more like a 22-23 hour fast…but that’s pretty close to 24…so cut me some slack Holmes).
But, for the few months leading up to starting P90X3 I found myself, for a number of reasons, not really sticking to LeanGains. Instead of LeanGains I was following The Spartan Diet’s approach to Intermittent Fasting instead and, though the Spartan Diet kept me at a stable weight, it kept me at a stable weight that was about 6 pounds over my regular LeanGains weight.
So, long(er) story short, I got back on my personal LeanGains approach starting Day 1 of P90X3 and can honestly say I am feeling AMAZING AGAIN.
From my energy level to my weight loss, LeanGains is the sh….uhm…lets just go with…bomb!
The Calorie Approach
As I’ve mentioned a number of times on this site, if you find yourself wanting to maintain weight via LeanGains, and you maintain the same level of activity you are doing while at your desired weight plateau, then there is no need to calorie count while on LeanGains.
AGAIN – NO CALORIE COUNTING ONLY APPLIES IF YOU HAVE PLATEAUED AND YOU WANT TO MAINTAIN, NOT LOSE OR GAIN, WEIGHT AND YOU ARE MAINTAINING YOUR CURRENT EXERCISE REGIMEN WHILE AT YOUR CONSTANT WEIGHT.
But, being that I wanted to lose weight, 16 lbs. to be exact, while Testing P90X3 I needed to reduce my caloric intake to spur on the desired weight loss.
And, as many of you may have already read, when you restrict calories WHILE following the LeanGains approach to Intermittent Fasting the weight seems to just melt away…especially with a little cardio thrown in the mix.
So, as I do anytime I am trying to keep count of calories (be it for weight loss or weight gain), I turned to MyFitnessPal.
Being that I had not used MyFitnessPal since reaching my desired weight (nearly 2 years ago now), I had to re-setup a few user profile items.
My weight loss goal to 1.5 pounds per week,
My “Activity Level” to “Sedentary” (since I work from a desk about 6-7 days a week for at least 8 hours),
My starting weight to 181 pounds, and
MyFitnessPal set my caloric intake “Goal” to 1,410 calories per day.
1,410 Calories Is A Lot More Than You Think
Yeah, going from 2,500 – 3,000 calories per day to 1,410 is a pretty big drop…but remember I CALORIE CYCLE!
You may be thinking, “So what if you calorie cycle?”
Well, as noted on this site before, by calorie cycling I am able to eat more on certain days if I just eat a bit less on other.
So, if I want, I can have that doughnut (or two…or three) without sacrificing my week’s goal.
You see, IT’S ALL ABOUT CALORIE CYCLING!
To maintain my goal of losing 1.5 pounds a week I don’t need to eat 1,410 calories every single day.
To lose the weight I JUST NEED TO AVERAGE 1,410 calories for the entire week.
So, if I want to go out for Mexican and tear up that cheese dip and Coke on Friday nights I just need to make sure I eat less calories on Saturday…make sense?
FYI: I WILL BE SHARING A FULL REPORT OF MY BLOCK 1 MEALS WHEN THE BLOCK 1 REVIEW IS POSTED.
STEP 2 | THE PROGRAM
P90X3 – Classic
P90X3 Has Four Different Program approaches each of which are tailored for different goals.
- Classic – to gain lean mass while cutting weight.
- Lean – to tone up via greater weight loss and a bit less focus on gaining mass.
- Mass – to gain mass and worry a bit less about losing weight.
- Doubles – for ‘dem crazy folks that still want to workout an hour a day
As I did for both P90X and P90X2, and to keep all other variables in this P90X3 experiment constant, I selected the Classic Program to test out P90X3.
STEP 3 | THE CARDIO
As I did with the original P90X, I have been running at least 2 miles 4-5 days a week in addition to the P90X3 workouts.
I know a lot of folks out there in the body-building world think running/cardio on strength-training days actually deters muscle growth, but I don’t believe it.
I believe instead that not running, specifically in my case, encourages fat growth – and nobody really wants that.
So, because I have personally seen no muscle mass deterioration when running on the same days as I do strength training (which I have done for over 10 years now), and because I am trying to lean up, I am running 4-5 days a week after doing the scheduled 90X3 workout for that day.
STEP 4 | THE AB DECISION
It is important to note that the basic P90X3 Program/Package does not include an Ab Routine.
So, instead of ordering the X3 Ab Ripper, I have decided to work in Ab Ripper X and X2 Ab Ripper on alternating weeks 3 days a week.
I know that this is not technically following the basic P90X3 program to a “T,” but I spent the last 2 years trying to do just one complete round of Ab Ripper X, and, though I still cannot complete an entire session without taking at least two breaks, I was too scared of having my progress fade and so I made a conscious decision to include the old Ab Rippers into the mix.
At first I did think adding X and X2 Ab Rippers would be a bit of a cheat, but the truth is P90X3 DOES include an X3 Ab Ripper…so it’s not really cheating.
STEP 5 | ROADBLOCKS
We all have roadblocks along the way of achieving almost any goal. But roadblocks don’t have to block us form reaching our goals.
Instead of thinking of them as roadblocks think of any setbacks that a arise as bumps…bumps that cause a slight hiccup in your plan…but if your plan has built-in shocks then you’re good.
Do Doubles If You Have To
I have personally planned (more like committed) to complete P90X3 in exactly 90 days.
Now, because I know I will be out of town a few times during the next 90 days and that I will most likely get sick, I have already decided that if I miss a day I will do doubles (or workout on planned rest days) to make up for lost workouts.