Monday, July 28, 2008

Life After P90X


I spent the last few weeks just riding and climbing--no other training at all. Since my training is all to support a myriad of sports I don't have the same issue as many of our members, which is what to do once they've reached their fitness goals. Conversely, I need to shelve my sports when I make a commitment to train, or at least sacrifice doing them at a high level.

Athletes train in order to facilitate their sports. This means that most of their intense training is done in the off-season. Training builds base fitness and increases the capacity for more improvement once their training transitions to entirely sports specific stuff.

Most of our members began training in order to lose weight or gain back fitness that they had in their youth. There is no goal or agenda other than getting their body to look good or, perhaps, become healthier. So what to do once they reach that point is often a quandary. This was an ongoing topic between one of our original success stories once he'd completed two rounds of the X. He was busy, with little interest in finding a sport or hobby that would take more of his time, and was so fit that his improvements were minimal each time he completed a new training cycle. With nothing specific to train for, he was rather sad.

Of course, this is a dream scenario for most of our clients. But if you stay motivated it's one that will happen to almost everyone. It happens in sports, too. After about a decade of full-time climbing I would train an entire year to improve a letter grade, which is something imperceptible to most people observing the sport. It began to seem silly. At some point you can't help but consider the other things in life you're missing. When training is not your job it becomes hard to find rational in continuing in such a devoted manner. There is a lot to do out there in the world. And not all of it is dependant upon having a six pack.

My advice to our members is always to take a break and enjoy life. See what kind of dreams or ambitions get conjured up in your head. It's a different mindset for someone who, say, was told by their doctor prior to beginning an exercise programs that if they didn't change their lifestyle they would die to suddenly realize that they're fitter than most of the population and things that seemed crazy were now possible. With a world of new possibilities, who knows where your idle mind might lead you?

Athletic goals aren't everyone's cup of tea. If they aren't, having your body in peak condition still changes what you can do. You have more stamina and energy to pursue any endeavor of interest. And, a really cool thing, is that it's far easier to keep your body in top shape than it was to get their in the first place. Doing one round on 90X a year with supplemental exercise in between can be enough to ace every test your doctor will give you.

The type of supplemental exercise you do does matter. Using a bit of strategy, you can keep your P90X fitness at a foundation level with only around 30 minutes of exercise a day. This means that you'll keep your body, most of your strength, and will be ready to jump back into another round of X at any time.

Almost any Beachbody program will do this for you, as will a lot of stuff you can do down at the gym. But we've also designed some workouts that will do it better, because they are designed specifically for this purpose.

This is why Tony is in the process of creating a series of workouts called One on One. P90X is what Tony does to get into peak shape. One on One is how he stays this way. Unfortunately, only one has been released, so far. But as these trickle out you'll have just what the doctor ordered: short, intense workouts to fill your quiver that will help ensure you never lose your base fitness no matter what your life situation is. Next out is Tony's Road Warrior workout. This is something you can do away from home using household items for equipment. Down the line will be a shorter yoga workout and probably anything you can think of because we're releasing them based on your input. So speak up if there's something you'd like to see.

10 comments:

Micah said...

Nice to hear your thoughts on this Steve.

Sometimes I sit around and wonder what the hell I'm doing spending hours everyday "training". Like you, and many of the SB climbing community, fitness isn't really the issue. We're all fit, we just like training too much. Those small gains that months/years/decades of hard work deliver are pretty amazing at times, but then.... you wake up one morning and you wonder if you want your crowning life achievment to be climbing 5.xxx. "There's gotta be more to me than this right?"

Surely there is. On the up side, devotion to and completion of long term physical goals can and should have huge benefits to things like work ethic, goal setting (and achievment), self introspection, etc. Hell that's why Brithday Challenges are so rad right? Man, I was "power stoked" for at least a month after mine.

Keep rockin. I'll be at the Tor with the boys training hard for my European adventure, and putting those other life goals off until 2009 I guess.

Micah said...

Oh, and BTW: Checkout my new blog.
www.educatedvegetable.blogspot.com

Anonymous said...

Steve and Micah,

The reason we do what we do, the reason we give a shit, is simply that most people don't want to, don't care to, aren't willing to.

Training is a stupid word. We ride our bikes. We run. We climb. Frankly, it's all pointless (these are end times); but, fuck me, if it doesn't feel good. And what's wrong with that?

Reed and I are drinking Oly, and Rye and a few other things. Why? Because it feels good. Nothing more than that.

Searching for some greater mystery . . looking for god or even GOD in that is just trying to justify why your shit smells. It smells. Deal with it.

You do what you do because goddamnit you want to. Fuck it dude, let's roll.

-Josh

Harold said...

I can tell you why I train. I am a diabetic who wants to avoid being insulin dependent. I have tried to control my diabetes with diet but that didn't work as well as butt kicking exercise. The benefits have far exceeded just eliminating diabetes medication. I am fitter for my wife and kids. Mowing the lawn is no longer a challenge. Being in the southern heat is no longer an exercise in itself.

I like being fit but I think fitness for me means functional fitness. I'll never be a world class athlete but I also won't be that guy that sits behind a desk all week and then does something athletic on Saturday that leaves him having trouble walking until Wednesday.

If I've learned anything from my time in the P90X realm it has been that fitness is a journey not a destination. I am hoping that regular work on fitness will help me to continue moving along the path.

Now, Steve, I like that 30 minutes a day thing. But I also like the spent feeling of accomplishment after an hour of Plyometrics. Youguys keep making the videos - keep'em interesting and I'll keep buying them. Its far cheaper than a gym membership or insulin.
Harold

Steve Edwards said...

I love hearing that. Thanks.

I mention this to people all of the time and it too often falls on deaf (or lazy) ears, and this includes a lot of people in the medical profession. I'm not sure if it's un-PC to tell people that they need to workout or self-serving to keep them lazy and, thus, sick, but I can't believe how slow doctors are to prescribe exercise for diabetes, fibromyalgia, et al. As you have pointed out--perhaps proven is a better word--nothing beats exercise for improving these conditions.

bob said...

I like what Josh said, especially the part about drinking Oly. Bastard!

RE: “With nothing specific to train for, he was rather sad.”

When anyone asked me to train or help them out in the gym I always refused, and this is the primary reason. If looking good [vanity] is your only goal, I won't waste my time. Vanity as a goal simply isn’t good enough for 99% of people. Unfit people might think it’s enough, but it almost never is, certainly not in the long term. Might as well eat/drink/sit around and live with your current self.
You have to want something at the end (marathon, triathlon, B-Day Challenge, whatever), and the way you look should be a result of the lifestyle you choose.

Brad said...

Steve

Well said. I agree with everything. Keep on coming out with new workouts. They have helped me in every single one of the activities I do.

Hassan90X said...

Hello Steve
I know I have asked this question before just in case. I am 13 completed one round of p90x and am currently on my second round with p90x and one on one workouts mixed in I workout about 6 days a week with very high intensity and take half a scoop whey in milk after my workouts, I have gotten great results from this but I heard the p90x recovery formula is good to reduce soreness and give you energy but when I looked at the ingredients I saw it had 500 mg of creatine in it and 500 mg of L Arginine . Even though the number of creatine and L Arginine is relatively small I still did not want to take the risk and I asked. Also since you are a professional could you give me some proof that the amount of creatine and L Arginine in the recovery drink is safe for a teen my age and will not mess up my hormones now I am not saying I don't trust beachbody, I love beachbody they always satisfy their customers but just wanted some proof.
Thanks Hassan.

Steve Edwards said...

It was hard to find this old post when I saw your comment. This is a perfect question for the message boards. Go ask it here:

http://teambeachbody.com/connect/message-boards

In the fitness forum and I'll answer.

Hassan90X said...

What I found on your blog was if you dont have main specific goals to train for try making an insane birthday challenge and training for that. Its something your body can look forward too and you dont have to stay in maintenance mode all the time.