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P90X2 Preview: P90X: 1 On 1 Base And Back

P90X may “only” have 12 workouts but it’s not like you’ve been left in the lurch in the years since its release. With P90X+ and not one, not two but THREE volumes of  the P90X: 1 on 1 Series (that’s 36 discs), you’ve got a ridiculous number of ways to switch things up and keep your P90X fitness quest going for, well… ever. And now with P90X2? Yeah… ’nuff said.  If you’ve been reading and keeping up here at HDIGF, you know I’ve mentioned the One on One Series before.  The latest (and final) volume was a complete P90X2 preview (called “MC2” at the time). If you’ve ever wanted to “prep” for P90X2 with moves that WILL be in the program, these are the discs to get. And while the series and sequences may change a bit, the core of the program is still there and there’s no doubt– the volume III 1 on 1’s WORK YOU.

Enter the fourth disc in the Volume III One on One Series (MC2- aka, the P90X2 Previews/Tests): Base and Back. A substitute/companion to the Classic Legs & Back disc of P90X, Base and Back loses the foundational leg/weight training of P90X and introduces a high-count, deep movement Plyometric element. Top that off with some dynamic pull up moves and let’s just say you’ll miss wall squats. At only 50 minutes (which could be shorter but there’s a lot of recovery time– these are BIG moves), this sucker brought me to my knees and left me ringing nausea’s doorbell on nausea’s door, something I usually don’t have a problem with (here’s why). If you’ve ever wondered how to “earn” your Rest and Recovery Formula… you’ll have no doubts after your pour yourself into this workout. Base and Back is GRUELING.

The Breakdown

Base and Back consists of two sets of 10 moves: five pullups done to at least 15 and five deep plyometric moves done to at least 30. In the second round, Tony Horton drops reps to about 10 on pullups and 20 on plyo. If you’re feeling spry, you can definitely surpass those secondary counts by five or more. Just have a puke bowl nearby.

The Vibe

Each of the One on One Series tends to have their own vibe. Some are very talky and require a lot of fast forwarding, others are goofy, others are focused. Base and Back is definitely focused. Tony Horton doesn’t do a lot of talking and, despite the fact he completes the moves with perfect form for your viewing pleasure, visibly struggles through the workout. The rest between moves can be pretty lengthy– especially in the first half so be prepared with your remote for fast-forwarding.

The Workout

  • No Kip Pull Ups: In pull ups, to “kip” means to throw your body into the pull to gain momentum. In this move, the focus is on perfect form– No cheating; just a good clean pull with your back and lats with full extension at the bottom. If you “tucker”, a shorter range of motion isn’t necessarily frowned upon to nail your rep goal. The form here is standard pull ups, but if you’ve never done a pull up “perfectly”, you’ll find they take a lot more focus and effort than one where you may kip a bit.
  • Plyo Frog Squats: Wide leg squat, toes pointed and hands on floor. Jumping from full squat position to full leg extension up top with arms raised.  The first 15-20 weren’t so bad. 25-30…. rough.
  • Wide Leg Close Grip Chin Up: Instead of allowing your legs to hang as dead weight, you spread them to make your body look like and “inverted Y”. This brings your core into the game but with the close grip, your arms help bear some of the load.
  • Chair Jump Squat: This takes the Yoga Chair Pose and has you jump from the “sitting” position. “Exploding”, even. Again, not to bad until I hit about 20– then it was “owie!” lactic acid burn as my jumps became less “jumpy” and more “hoppy”.
  • Spinning Chin Pulls: Similar to P90X’s switch grip pull ups but instead of just switching hands, you move your body to the hand position (see the video below). In this pull up, you’ll do a lot of hanging and swinging as you move from one side of the pull up bar to the other… which taxes your muscles beyond just pull ups. My rep count suffered as these were tough and “took it outta me”.
  • Plyo Runner Lunge: Similar to Mary Katherine lunges. Instead of arms up, the arms start at your side touching the ground in runner’s pose and explode up as you jump and switch extended legs. This move is deep and incorporates your just-obliterated upper body for a little extra toughness.
  • V Pull Up: Form begins at the bottom of the pull up as usual but instead of pulling straight up and down with both arms, you pull to one side and touch your chin to your knuckles on the left, drop, then the right. With every pull up, you’re pulling to either the right or left for a “single focus” on either the right or left side of you back.
  • Spinning Fighter Squats: Not sure how the “Fighter” gets in there but hey– sounds Awesome. Similar to Toe Touch Jump Squats– start in a crouch touching your opposite toe. Jump 180 degree, touch the floor and complete a 360, three times in the same direction. If you’re nausea prone, this one can definitely get you there.
  • Kippy Pulls: With your back blasted from the previous four pull up sets, you’re allowed a carte blanche cheat with full-on kipping– throwing everything into cranking out at least 15 (or your max) pullups by any means necessary.
  • Jack-In-The-Box Knee Tuck: Crouched in a “sitting position” with hands touching the ground in front of you–deep as you can go with your legs bent at a 90 degree angle– you jump from that position to touch your knees to your pals at the height of your jump and back down. Repeat 30 times and fall to the ground so you can cry like a baby– my legs didn’t have much left at this point.
  • Hydrate, suck it up…REPEAT

Thoughts

Base and Back is a nice switch from P90X Legs & Back but man– it makes you EARN it. While some of the moves don’t sound all that tough, Base & Back is exhausting and sapped my strength and energy reserves like a circular internet argument had jumped into real life and turned itself into a workout. By the time I hit the JITB knee tucks for round two I was done. Still, I wanted to add some calf work so threw in Calf Raises with 55 lb. dumbbells just for a blaster. Bru. Tal.

The spirit of this bad boy is the new Legs and Back workout in P90X2– if you want to prep up, definitely give this a buy (here) and get ready for good times. Check out some of the moves in the fast-moving preview below:

Questions? Let me know or sign up for free, one on one Insanity coaching, support and motivation right here

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