P90X2

Today as Day 2 of P90X2, I did the workout "Plyocide."  The DVD is about 55 minutes and requires some equipment, but though the list at the beginning seems kind of daunting with how much equipment you need, you really can get through the workout without much equipment at all.  The DVD begins with basically the same warm-up as X2 Core, with some stability ball lifts, squats, and lunges, foam rolling and some extra stretches.  In this workout, as with Core, Tony suggests hitting the pause button at the beginning to work on your "rough spots" with the foam roller.  He doesn't give a lot of instruction on how to foam roll, but I imagine after going through the Recovery and Mobility DVD a couple times, I'll have a better sense of the technique.

This will be the first of a number of individual reviews of the new P90X2 workouts.  Today I popped in the first disc, X2 Core.  As I assumed, this is very much a new version of Core Synergistics from the original series.  It is a key part of the "foundation" phase.  The DVD is about 55 minutes and requires a lot of equipment - ideally a stability ball, a medicine ball, a foam roller, and a mat.  However, one of the great things about P90X2 is that one person is always doing the "hotel version" using only bands or no equipment, so there is no question how to modify if you don't have all of the equipment.

The workout begins with a number of light lifts and twists while holding the stability ball, which weighs maybe 2 lbs.  Then comes a long, long sequence of stretching using the foam roller, as well as some other warm-up exercises.  In fact, the main workout didn't start until about the 20 minute mark.  However, the stretches were very valuable.  I do not own a foam roller, so I was a little bored just doing standard versions of the stretches, but did like some of the warm up exercises.

When the main workout begins, it was a series of completely new moves, many of which take advantage of the use of the balls to cause instability and force you to engage the core to balance.  In fact, I'd say most of this workout is about balance and control, instead of strength and speed.  Some of the highlights were traditional core syngergistic moves taken to the next level, like "Roll the Boat" which alternated boat (the yoga position) holds with a tuck and roll onto the back.  Additionally there were a set of banana holds where you hold the stability ball and in between holds pass the ball from the hands to the feet and back again.  Many moves are based on the "sphinx" position from original core synergistics as well.  There was a great warrior 3 balance move as well which was really tough to hold.

Some of the moves were plyometric in nature, including a single leg leap frog squat and one of the lunge moves.  One of my favorite moves was a one legged burpee using the stability ball.  There was a medicine ball pushup which was kind of the same motion as a clapping or plyo pushup.