The Long and Winding Road

By Ron Pereira Updated on January 11th, 2011

As I come up on the 90th day of my P90X workout program I can’t help but compare the situation to the continuous improvement journey.

You see, by definition, the P90X program is meant to get you into top shape within 90 days. And, let me tell you, it’s worked wonders with me. I feel great and look better than I have since my college days.

But here’s the thing… I can’t help but wonder how many people finish P90X and then, sadly, fall back to their “old” way of life of not working out, eating bad, etc.

The Continuous Improvement Journey

One could say the same dilemma occurs for those starting their journey with continuous improvement.

Initially we’re consumed with excitement, passion, and vigor. Things are changing, people are motivated and real, authentic transformation is happening all around us.

But, alas, as with most things the excitement wanes.

That 4 day training class seems like it was years ago. The lean workbooks once referenced by the team have now taken their final resting place on the bookshelf. And sustaining the improvements seems like more work than it’s worth.

The Wrong Approach

But it doesn’t have to be like this. While the P90X is meant to get you into top shape in 90 days it doesn’t have to end there.

The program provides you with ideas for how to continue the journey… how to mix things up, increase the intensity of the program, etc.

This is exactly how I intend to continue my P90X journey. You see I don’t plan on stopping because if I do… well, I know I will backslide in a big way.

The Long and Winding Road

So, while the marketing genius of P90X  is unquestioned (they’ve sold millions of DVDs) I do wish they’d put more focus on how to continue after 90 days.

Likewise, those that think a workbook or 5 day training class will get them where they need to be with respect to continuous improvement are sadly mistaken.

It’s a journey folks… and a long one at that.

There is No Easy Way

There are no easy ways to getting into shape. It takes hours and hours of work. It takes sweat. It takes pain. It takes dedication.

Likewise, there are no easy ways to authentic continuous improvement. It too takes sweat. It too requires pain. It too takes dedication.

In our next article I’ll share some tips on how to approach this journey in such a way as to maximize your chance of success.

Questions for P90X Alums

Until then, if you’re a P90X ‘alum’ I am curious to learn how you approached things after 90 days. Did you stop? Continue? Or start something else up?

  1. Shane Allen

    May 3, 2010 - 8:16 am

    I finished the first 90 days a few months ago. I had weight to lose so I followed the slim down approach the first time through whcih was mostly cardio. Now I am going through the standard program which as you know has a lot of push ups, pull ups, and curls. As they say, I hate it but I love it.

  2. Colin

    May 3, 2010 - 8:16 am

    P90X has an addendum to their program, P90X plus which is designed for P90X “grads”. Its more intense with new move and routines. Also Tony Horton One on One which rolls out new workouts every month.

  3. Panu Kinnari

    May 4, 2010 - 6:28 am

    If like short and intensive workouts I recommend to check out crossfit.com. They have workout of the day posted for each day that you can follow along. Or you can train at affiliate gym which usually have their own WODs. Workouts seems pretty hardcore, but they all are scaleable to individual fitness levels. At our gym, we have extremely fit 30-somethings doing basically same workouts as recovering couch potatoes at their fifties.

  4. Mark R Hamel

    May 5, 2010 - 1:29 pm


    Congrats on finishing P90X! I expect a new picture on your LinkedIn, Twitter, etc. accounts!

    I am a P90X alum from a couple of years ago. It was great PDCA, can’t say that I am doing the best on my personal SDCA. While I have “experienced” (my fault) some backsliding, I have still maintained much of the base.

    I am thinking about doing a full re-start soon.

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