P90X3 Accelerator Review

Matt bought the new P90X3 DVD set and offered to let me test it out since he won’t be able to do the DVDs for a couple of weeks (due to the healing of his stress fracture). I’ve been very intrigued with P90X3, especially drawn to the shorter 30 minute workouts! I’m a big fan of the original P90X and Tony Horton (even worked out with him at a group fitness class twice!).

Mike & I with Tony Horton in Spring 2012

Mike & I with Tony Horton in Spring 2012

In the Fall of 2011, I religiously followed the P90X classic routine and experienced big results. Having always gone to the gym prior to P90X, I was excited to realize I could get an incredible workout in the comfort of my own apartment. I didn’t need to shell out money for a gym membership. Since Fall 2011, I’ve enjoyed doing the P90X dvds randomly for cross-training, knowing I’ll get an amazing workout.

So P90X3! How could Tony lead a workout in just 30 minutes? Would I actually feel like I’d get a good workout? I was a little skeptical but 30 minutes sounds a lot better than 60+ minutes. One thing that is really different with P90X3 versus P90X original is how the DVDs are categorized. For the original set, the DVDs are pretty obvious: chest & back, shoulders & arms, plyometrics, etc. P90X3 dvds are split into three categories: Resistance, Power and Agility, and Core, Flex and Balance.

Total Synergistics
The Challenge
The Warrior
Eccentric Upper
Eccentric Lower

Agility X


Core, Flex and Balance
X3 Yoga (only 30 mins!!)
Pilates X

Mike said he’d try out a DVD with me after work. We decided on Accelerator (Decelerator is also on the DVD), unsure of what to really expect from the vague title.

P90X3 Accelerator

P90X3 Accelerator

Some things I noticed right away:

– High def – better than P90X original
– New, brighter gym with windows – not as masculine
– Since there’s not much of a warm up, there’s an option to add a longer warm-up to the routine
– No equipment needed for Accelerator – no mat or weights.

The DVD jumps right into things with a short and very fast-paced warm-up – sun salutations with down dogs, planks and up dogs. I had trouble keeping up! Unlike as in the original P90X, Tony does not spend time explaining or demonstrating the exercises prior to starting the timer. So I found myself starting exercises late because I wanted to watch to see what Double Trouble, for example, means and how to do it. Also, don’t worry, even though there are no breaks, Tony still gets in his usual jokes.

The exercises on this DVD alternate between jumping, plyometrics style moves and balance and plank exercises. And it goes by fast! Three minutes into the workout, both Mike and I were sweating. Our heart rates must have stayed pretty high the entire time. I also liked that the pace varied for each exercise. You start at a normal speed and the speed it up for brief intervals.

3 Squat Hops require a lot of space to move side to side

3 Squat Hops require a lot of space to move side to side

Some exercises were variations on exercises in the original P90X, such as:

– Roadrunner – similar to Mary Catherine lunges
– Spin Stops – like a plyo exercise
– Diamond Hops – similar to the cross one-foot hops but a diamond shape (and speed variation)
– Mountain climbers – sphinx/plank alternating. Also speed variations in P90X3
– Towel Hop – similar to original but with 2 towels and varied speed
– Speed skater

There were also some brand new exercises, such as:
– Circle Planks – need a LOT of space for this one. You get in a plank and move around in a circle, alternating directions. HARD.
– Plank Walkers – Tony gives directions such as front, right, left and back. Again, need quite a bit of space.
– Get up, Get down – You literally get up and then get down in plank again. Sounds easy – it’s not.
– 3 squat hops – need a lot of space for this one to move left and right
– Donkey Kicks – bend over at waist with hands on the ground and kick up legs.

Done with the Donkey Kicks

Done with the Donkey Kicks

I really liked this DVD! The exercises that were similar to previous P90X exercises were different enough to make them interesting and challenging. It was difficult to even finish some of them! This DVD would be great for traveling since you don’t need any equipment, however, you do need quite a bit of space to perform some of the exercises.

Two days later, I am VERY sore – glutes, back, arms, core. This is a full-body workout. The only drawback is that my wrists were pretty sore towards the end of the DVD since there were so many plank-style exercises. Pretty awesome DVD! I can’t wait to try out more. Thanks, Matt!


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