Monday, October 31, 2011

It's now P60X

Obviously, this is not a picture of me. I don't have a full head of hair. But my arms, back and chest, are beginning to show a resemblance. You know, if you squint your eyes and employ a little imagination.

Yesterday I officially, and faithfully, completed Phase One of the infamous P90X program.

I know you've all seen the infomercial. I know I have for the last five years or so. And have always been tempted to pick up the phone. Then we had one of my wife's publishers over for dinner. He was a recent graduate and was clearly sold on Tony Horton. By desert, I was too. He also convinced me to buy one of those plastic microwavable pasta boats, but that's a different story.

Within a week the DVD's arrived and I started pouring through the material. If you know me at all you know I have deep commitment issues. Once I'm in, I'm in up to my eyeballs. I cleared out half my garage, padded the floor with industrial rubber tiling and made several trips to the sporting goods store for resistance bands, dumbbells and a yoga mat.

That's right, a yoga mat.

Yoga is hardly the chosen sport of barrel-chested Scotsmen like myself. We're more given to throwing logs and tossing kegs. But it turns out stretching and yoga are essential components of the P90X program. I've even found that I'm actually better at some of the balance postures than our esteemed instructor. Though I could hardly be termed graceful on the mat.

My Downward Dog looks more like a Downward Armadillo.
And thirty days into the program I'm about as close to performing the Crane as the Israelis and the Arabs are to sharing a hookah and breaking some pita bread.

My favorite workout is the Kenpo X. Not surprising since the guy who helped Tony design the workout is Wesley Idol, who also teaches karate at the dojo where I once studied. If memory serves, Wesley is a third degree black belt. I think I sparred with him during our regular Wednesday Night fight classes. The instructors loved to throw the lower ranked belts (myself included) in with the guys wearing the black gees. They were quite sadistic. Wesley once caught me with a roundhouse kick to the ribs that separated me from oxygen for a month and a half.

So where am I at, you may ask. Well, at the end of a brutal Phase One, I'm down 6 pounds, lost an inch around my waist, gained an inch around my chest (not that I needed that) and feel stronger, more flexible and more athletically fit than I ever have -- except for the late 80's when I was doing triathlons.

I just saw the long range weather forecast for Southern California and they are predicting an unusually warm winter. That works out perfectly for me. Because after I complete the P90X program, I plan to go to work everyday in nothing more than my flip flops and a Speedo.

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