This past summer I really fell off the exercise bandwagon in August - a couple of vacations and some summer time slothfulness were really getting in the way of both my fitness and my weight loss. I knew I had to change my attitude and self-talk and get back on track with my good SP habits - enter Jillian Michaels and the 30 Day Slimdown program!
After I finished a month of self-inflicted Jillian Michaels torture (which really helped me get the structure that I needed because I had to schedule everything and make up any day that I missed), I decided "let's keep the good streak going"... I wanted to up my fitness time to really push for some results before the end of 2010. My decision: I would start running again (aiming for 3x per week) and incorporate the workouts from the P90X classic routine into my workout schedule (to manage this, I would either have to double up cardio and lifting videos on my P90X days or do some of the upper body lifting videos on the same days that I ran). I've been doing this schedule the last four weeks and have run into a few issues that is making me re-evaluate my plan:
1) Getting back into running after not doing it for almost 2.5 months is hard!
I have been starting slow and listening to my body but I have definitely had some bad legs days. My aerobic capacity is fine to be honest, but I am always amazed at all the little aches and pains in my legs. One day, it is my knee clicking and my ITB being too tight, another day my left achilles is acting up....after the next run, my right achilles is super tight and painful, the next day I'm having plantar fasciitis symptoms for the first time in my life ...etc, etc. (today it is my left knee in case you are curious )
As a quick aside: do all you real runners out there experience something similar? Is it normal to have new aches and pains that go away after a day on a fairly consistent basis? I am giving myself at least one rest day, following the 10% rule and after the super painful plantar fasciitis episode the other day, I took two full days off from everything until it felt better. Unfortunately, my podiatrist stopped taking my health insurance and until my company switches to the new provider in January, I am self-treating a little and I never know if I am pushing too hard and hurting myself or if this is normal.
2) P90X is just not doing it for me.
I'm not 100% sure why...Tony Horton is pretty motivational and I will usually crack a smile from his silly jokes. I burn a good amount of calories during the workouts...I just am not in love with the workouts or the schedule. Even when I have a good calorie burn, I really don't feel into the workout- they seem unnecessarily high impact and I just don't find them fun. I have even been getting to the point where I dread scheduling my exercise at the beginning of the week because I don't like the P90X days. Turbo Jam is fun for me, Jillian's workouts, even when they are kicking my butt, are fun, even Chalean Extreme with their heart rate pounding heavy lifting...I would look forward to the workout and push myself.
Part of it is, the workouts are very long. If it is the only workout you are doing in a day, then an hour workout video + warm up/cooldown is fantastic. But here I am, trying to squish two videos in a single night (which stretches to 2.5 hours with warm up/cooldown and stretching) and finding myself eating dinner at 11 PM and wondering why I am so tired at work the next day. Realistically my main focus right now is getting back into running with some strength and cross training and the reality is you can't just "fit" P90X in...you have to plan for it and have that be your main focus or else it is just impossible to complete and makes you feel bad every time you miss a video. Since I'm already associating that workout with negative failure feelings, it makes pushing through them a mental effort where I force myself to do something I don't "like." And honestly, while I like Tony Horton, I am not a huge fan of the sparse set, the gym like mentality and setting and the fact that P90X does not focus on form in the way that I prefer to avoid injuries (clearly shown and clearly described with explanations of how to avoid knee injuries!). In particular, modifications are so inconsistent....sometimes thrown in unless the person doing them feels like going hardcore and even then, you have no idea they aren't doing the modification until halfway through the exercise.
I know it's the gold standard for at home workout systems and really inspires alot of people. I guess it is just not for me right now - I like the fun music and happy dance moves of Turbo Jam. I love Chalene Johnson and her strict adherence to form in Chalean Extreme. I have to get over the fact that I feel like I am "wimping out" by not doing P90X and do what I enjoy.
Tonight, I am going to get home from work, put on my sneakers and dance/exercise around to a Turbo Jam workout, have a blast, and not be embarrassed by the fact that my favorite workout is more fun than it is "hardcore"!