AkaWesley's P90X Blog Index

So I am documenting for all time, whether success or miserable failure, AkaWesley's attempt to complete the 90 days of the P90X program. Wish me luck!

I've started to become a fan of setting up an index. Since I don't know all the fancy database stuff to build a dynamic index, I just build a fixed one. It saves me and you from having to read through every entry to find something specific. I also copied some blog entries useful for people just starting P90X into this index page. Here you go!:

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20
21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30
31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40
41 42 43 44 45 46 47 48 49 50
51 52 53 54 55 56 57 58 59 60
61 62 63 64 65 66 67 68 69 70
71 72 73 74 75 76 77 78 79 80
81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90

ALL PICS: Before and After
081129: DAY (-2) How Much Body Fat?!?
081129: DAY 15 My Two Week Progress
081228: DAY 28 I'm Finished Phase 1
090111: DAY 42 Done 2 Weeks of Phase 2
090125: DAY 56 End of Phase 2
090228: DAY 90 Do You Have Tickets for the Show?!?

081125: DAY (-6) Preparing for P90X
081129: DAY (-2) How Much Body Fat?!?
081130: DAY (-1) The Last Supper
090228: DAY 91 Final Impressions of P90X

What I Bought For P90X
090121: DAY 52 The Problems with the Polar F11

081122: DAY 22 Getting Sick of Egg Whites
090104: DAY 35 Cheapest Protein Sources
090130: DAY 61 I Love the Phase 3 Diet

081201: DAY 1 Pushups and Pullups Galore
081208: DAY 8 Am I Getting Weaker?
081215: DAY 15 I Am Definitely Doggin It
090126: DAY 57 Turning Narcoleptic
090209: DAY 71 In Like a Lamb, Out Like a Lamb

081202: DAY 2 Unending Squats
081209: DAY 9 Plyometrics Bites!
081216: DAY 16 Plyometrics is Definitely a Night Thing
081230: DAY 30 Plyometrics and My Polar F11
090106: DAY 37 Calories Burnt on Each Workout
090113: DAY 44 I Found the Culprit
090127: DAY 58 Stomping on the Neighbours
090205: DAY 67 The Universe is Punishing Me
090217: DAY 79 Never Again...

081203: DAY 3 Lifting a Toaster
> 081226: UPDATE Solved the Powerblock Problem
081210: DAY 10 I Just Want to Add 2.5lbs!
090128: DAY 59 Head in the Clouds
090211: DAY 73 I Can See the Light

081204: DAY 4 Namaste--My First Yoga
081212: DAY 12 Ommmmm...
081218: DAY 18 I ♥ Daniel Haas
081227: DAY 27 Yoga With the Kids
090101: DAY 32 Crappy New Year!
090108: DAY 39 I'm Hitting the Wall
090115: DAY 46 Stopped After the Vinyasas
090119: DAY 50 Holy Shit, I Brought It!
090124: DAY 55 One Minute Crane
090129: DAY 60 Google Analytics on my P90X Blog
090207: DAY 69 My Yoga DVD Is Screwing Up
090212: DAY 74 P90X and My LASIK Surgery
090220: DAY 82 P90X Without the DVDs
090223: DAY 85 Why Blog?
090226: DAY 88 I'm Really Enjoying Yoga

081205: DAY 5 Oh My Aching Legs
081211: DAY 11 How To Know When You Really "Brought It"
081220: DAY 20 Deja Vu
090102: DAY 33 Good Enough for the Army Now
090109: DAY 40 Maybe I'm a P40X Sort of Guy...
090117: DAY 48 We All Have Choices
090131: DAY 62 Pain is Fleeting, But Nausea Lingers
090206: DAY 68 I Broke 1000 Pull Ups Today!
090214: DAY 76 Tips on Getting Through Legs & Back
090221: DAY 83 Bringin Lots of Hurt

081206: DAY 6 Kickin Some Imaginary Ass
081214: DAY 14 Kenpo with a Hangover
090103: DAY 34 Burning Calories Like Crazy
090110: DAY 41 Increasing My Intensity in Kenpo
090118: DAY 49 Wrist Weights Let Me Down
090201: DAY 63 The Cat Does Yoga, The Dog Does Kenpo
090222: DAY 84 "Wesley Only Bleeds on the Inside"
090225: DAY 87 Like a Hamster in a Wheel

081207: DAY 7 A Well-Earned Rest Day
081213: DAY 13 Relaxing in Austin
081219: DAY 19 The 7 Days of P90X
090213: DAY 75 I Did It! I Did It! Woohoo!

081223: DAY 23 My Muscles are Officially "Confused"
081226: DAY 26 How to Know When You Really "Brought It" (Part 2)
090120: DAY 51 Chaturanga This
090120: DAY 54 I've Given This Workout a New Name
090224: DAY 86 Shaken to the Core
090227: DAY 89 Party's Almost Over, What a Bummer!

081229: DAY 29 My Arms Felt Like Twigs
090105: DAY 36 Down to My Knees
090112: DAY 43 P90X Saved My Life!
090202: DAY 64 Have You Actually Seen This One?
090216: DAY 78 I Didn't Do It! I Didn't Do It! Boohoo!

081231: DAY 31 I Could Barely Do a Pull Up By the End
090105: DAY 38 Always Faithful
090114: DAY 45 Woah, We're Halfway There!
090204: DAY 66 They're Falling Like Flies
090218: DAY 80 Maxed Out on the Powerblocks

090116: DAY 47 Some Thoughts on AbRipper
090219: DAY 81 ..Ab...Ripper....X

090210: DAY 72 I Owe Dom an Apology


STATS: Before and After

- body fat: 19% (24% at gym)
- weight: 159lb
- chest: 38"
- waist: 32.5"
- hips: 34"
- right thigh: 19.5"
- left thigh: 19.25"
- right arm: 13.5"
- left arm: 13"
Fit Test:
- resting heart rate: 64
- chinups: 10
- push ups: 35
- toe touch: +3"
- wall squat: 75s@159lbs
- bicep curls: R 11@60lbs / L 10@60lbs
- in & outs: 46
- heart rate maximizer
> after 2 minutes of jacks: 130
> after 1 minute: 104
> after 2 minute: 74
> after 3 minute: 70
> after 4 minute: 66
- body fat: 18%(-1%)
- weight: 159lb (+0 lbs)
- chest: 39" (+1")
- waist: 31" (-1.5")
- hips: 35" (+1")
- right thigh: 20.5" (+1")
- left thigh: 20.25" (+1")
- right arm: 14" (+0.5")
- left arm: 13.5" (+0.5")
Fit Test:
- resting heart rate: 60 (-4)
- chinups: 15 (+5)
- push ups: 46 (+11)
- toe touch: +9" (+6")
- wall squat: 105s@159lbs (+30s)
- bicep curls: R 11@60lbs / L 10@60lbs (+0)
- in & outs: 86 (+40)
- heart rate maximizer
> after 2 minutes of jacks: 158
> after 1 minute: 140
> after 2 minute: 128
> after 3 minute: 120
> after 4 minute: 116
VO score: 40

VO Score: 43
Total pushups done: 1864
Total pullups done: 1335


What I Bought For P90X

Over the next little while I'm sure I'll be accumulating some things to help on my quest. I thought I'd keep track of it all in one place. I'll also rate its usefulness from 1 to 10, updating as I go.




(1) P90X Program


11 (!!)

(2) Power Trainer Pro Chin Up Bar



(3) Energetics Push Up Stands



(4) Resistance Band



(5) Nike Yoga Mat



(6) Powerblock 9.0 Series 1



(7) Polar F11 Heart Rate Monitor



(8) Energetics Wrist / Ankle Weights



(9) Harbinger Workout Gloves $30 8


(1) Don't pirate this off the internet. It's a great program, and it's worth every penny that you spend. They really deserve the kudos and profit for this awesome product.

(2) Indespensible. But it might be hard to find a place to put it--especially if you live in an apartment and don't have the luxury of deep door frames and wooden studs.

(3) Great for the all those push-ups. It takes some of the pressure of off the wrists and helps you get deeper into the pushup.

(4) Haven't used this too much yet. If I didn't have weights, they would be useful. Although they seem like they would be unwieldy during some of the exercises. And it seems to require an extra door attachment to replace the chin-up bar. Could also see myself using them when I travel, but I would need to get a stronger band. They're also effective for Core Synergistics.

(5) I've been working out on the rug, so the mat has been more of a hassle. I find my hands slowly slide while in downward dog while on the mat anyways. But I could see myself using it if I was in a hotel or on hardwood floors.

(6) Awesome, awesome. You need to change weights quickly in the program, and these adjustable dumbbells do the trick without filling up my entire apartment.

(7) I love my heart rate monitor. It reminds me that I have a heart. Worst part about it is the upload tool--it screeches some noises that your microphone needs to pick up. Also, if I put the watch right beside me on the floor, it stops registering a heart rate if it goes past arm's length. So it's kind of a hassle for people who don't want to wear the monitor as a watch. It actually started feel liberating to work out without the monitor after a while.

(8) I tried using these for Kenpo to increase my intensity but I think they actually detracted from the work out. They add extra inertia to your punches that actually made me burn less calories than without them. The Energetics brand was the only set I could find that went up to a whopping 5 lbs per wrist / ankle. But it was difficult to actually use them as wrist weights because the band was difficult to squeeze to wrist size.

(9) By about week 7, the callouses building up on my hands from all the pull-ups began to really hurt. I'm a desk person, and my hands haven't seen an honest day's work. But once I put my handy workout gloves on, I was pumping out those pull-ups like crazy.


Jan 4 - Cheapest Protein Sources

During Phase 1 and 2 of the program, protein is king. Now I don't really want to spend $35 a night eating steaks at the Keg--although it would be heaven. So I figured out the best bang for the buck in terms of grams of protein (g):

  Price ¢ / g cal / g
Iso Mass Xtreme Gainer (GNC Sale) $43.00 2.2 10.00
Naturegg Simply Egg Whites $2.79 5.0 4.29
Iso Mass Xtreme Gainer (Popeyes) $100.00 5.1 10.00
Western Pressed Cottage Cheese $5.29 5.3 4.55
Old Style Turkey Kielbasa $3.99 5.4 6.67
PC Frozen Cajun Chicken Breasts $15.99 8.3 4.58
Pecos Bill Jumbo Teriyaki Beef Jerky $10.00 9.5 5.38
Precision IsoProtein Bars $2.92 9.7 9.33
P90X Protein Bar $29.50 13.7 14.44
P90X Recovery Drink Powder $54.00 21.6 22.00
The Keg 12 oz sirloin steak + sides $33.00 47.9 11.13

So as you can see, the Keg is definitely not the cheapest place to get the protein...but it sure tastes good. The best deal was the buy-one-get-one-half-price deal I got with the Iso Mass at the GNC in Austin, Texas--protein powder is shockingly cheap in the US compared to Canada! I picked this protein powder because it seemed similar to the P90X recovery drink--although it's about 3 times more concentrated, so I only use 1 or 2 scoops a day. It also has the creatine component (and more of it) and tastes pretty good.

The P90X supplements are more expensive. And if you start comparing labels, the P90X stuff seems pretty inferior. Lots of sugar--I also ranked them in terms of calories per gram of protein, and the P90X stuff is higher in calories compared to all the rest. I guess Tony and his friends have to make money somehow--but they should make their product more competitive with what else is available out there. Until they do that, I'll take my splurge money over to the Keg. mmm...steak...


Jan 6 - Calories Burnt on Each Workout

The last time I did Plyometrics, I thought I might have screwed up the reading when I took it off for a few minutes. Well, it seems that the result for this session was the same. I ranked all the workouts according to the calories burnt, and Legs & Back actually comes in first. I wonder if that's normal, or if it's because I'm lifting more weight there?

I know one thing--the calories burnt isn't necessarily indicative of how difficult a workout feels. Back & biceps was tough, but it barely registered anything--probably because I'm still lifting pretty light.

I'll update this table as I get more readings. Or see HERE for more readings, including P90X Plus & Budokon Yoga.

CALORIES BURNT Average Doggin' It Bringin' It

Legs & Back


524 656



481 580



510 572

Core Synergistics


442 567

Shoulders & Arms


468 497

Chest, Shoulders, & Triceps


431 503



386 563

- Vinyasas Only






Back & Biceps


350 379

Chest & Back


255 355

AbRipper (separate workout)




Mar 1 - Final Impressions of P90X

This was an awesome program. It got me out there working to exhaustion. It got me motivated and gave me a path to success. I am 100% satisfied with the program and the results I've gotten.

The nutrition program was really interesting. I've never really closely watched what I ate. In phase 1, it was fascinating seeing how my body reacted to the high protein diet--I was losing fat quickly, getting more muscle, but I was constantly tired. And it was really expensive to eat all that meat. The phase 3 diet was a bit dangerous because it had so much carbs. I felt like I put back on a bit of the fat near the end, but was also getting more muscle at the same time. And I loved all the fruit that you can eat in the third phase. Yummy.

But it definitely makes you realize that the food you put in your body can affect how you feel and operate every day.

The workouts were grueling. And there were many times when I was lying on the floor, coughing and dry heaving, wondering what I got myself into. A couple of times I even felt like crying halfway through the workout--thank god I could cry in the comfort of my own home.

The hardest of all the workouts was definitely Legs & Back. Even near the end of the 90 days, I still couldn't finish that workout without pausing the dvd at least once.

The least fun workout is Plyometrics, but I think that was due to my bad knee. Lots of people seem to love this session. I can't say that I have a favourite, they were all great to do and they all pushed me to my limits.

The hardest single move is the one-arm pushup near the end of a brutal workout. Still couldn't do it by the end.

The hardest period psychologically was probably around day 40. I got to a point where I was happy with how much I had achieved and wondered if it was worth the extra sweat and pain to finish the second half of the program. And I'm not the only one--my blog has gotten a lot of searches for "P40X" if you can believe it.

Who would I suggest this program for? Not everyone. It's geared towards people who are already in okay shape. The fat people see the most improvement if they get through. It's pretty amazing when you see a fat guy go through this program--their results are transformational.

I don't really think P90X is geared towards women--I couldn't see many women keeping up with all the pull-ups and push-ups, their bodies are built differently. And on youtube, you see Tony saying that the women were not liking the program.

For those who are just getting started, these are a few tips for getting through the 90 days:

Get Accountable - Write a blog. Put videos on youtube. Work out with a friend. Find something or someone that will make you feel guilty if you miss a day. Sometimes it's difficult to find the motivation and we just need a nudge.

Timing - I would start day 1 on a Wednesday. This would put Yoga on Saturday and Legs & Back on Sunday. Yoga takes an extra long time to do, and Legs & Back is a killer. It also puts the rest day on a workday which seems more practical than putting it on a Sunday.

Back Up the DVDs - The case is piss poor. Especially when you are sliding the dvds in and out every day. When you get the dvds, either put them into gentler cases, or back it up on your computer. I'm still reeling from the loss of my Yoga DVD. Grr....

Do Your Best and Forget the Rest - I must say that I am so glad that this program is done in your own home. I was grunting, and screaming, and sweating. And it wasn't very pretty when I was convulsing on the floor, not sure where I was hurting. Working out at home really allows you to do your best and forget the rest.

Write everything down - I have worked out for a long time, but never thought it was necessary to write down how much I lifted each day. I would just keep a running total in my head. Well for this program, I put together a spreadsheet with all my workouts--how much I lifted, how many reps, my heart rate, calories burned. And I must say that it is awesome for motivation. You see where you are and where you came from. Just do it.

Prepare - Take 5 minutes every night to prepare your workout for the next day. The workout will go more smoothly, and it forces you to visualize the next workout. And setting time aside for the workout is part of the battle. For the diet, you really need to plan--especially stage 1 where you need to eat TONS of protein. Have some protein powder as a back-up plan.

Stay Focussed - It's only 90 days. Try not to miss a day--if you do, inertia takes over as you end up constantly trying to catch up. Use the rest day as a flexible cheat day, but don't cheat more than this. If you really feel like skipping a workout, put the dvd in and do the first 10 minutes--then decide whether or not to skip the workout.

Don't give up - This is definitely a tough program. And there will be times when you feel like quitting. And your body will be sore. And you will stumble and fall. But just keep going. Once you're done, the pain will go away. The sweat will wash away. And what's left will be a great feeling of accomplishment and a sexy new body.