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How to Lose Weight Using the PX90 Workout

By Sam Ashe-Edmunds

The P90X exercise program is a 90-day workout system based on the concept of "muscle confusion," or varying the workouts regularly to prevent your body from adapting to the exercises. By switching routines, you are less likely to plateau, according to the system's creator, Tony Horton. In addition to building muscle with P90X, you can lose weight following the program's cardio component, as well as performing the muscle-building exercises using lighter weights for longer periods and at higher intensities. Buy or borrow the P90X fitness system and read the materials that come with the system to determine if you have the recommended minimum fitness levels to use the program as demonstrated on the DVDs. If not, you may be able to use the exercises at a less intense level.

  1. Calculate your target heart rate for aerobic exercise using an online calculators or manually find your number using a mathematical formula. For men, use the Fox-Haskell formula of 220 minus your age to find your maximum heart rate. Multiply that number by 70 and 80 percent to find your target heart rate range. For women, use Northwestern Memorial Hospital's suggested formula of 206 minus 88 percent of your age, then multiply by 0.70 and 0.80.

  2. Calculate the daily calorie deficit you will need to lose the amount of weight you want to lose. To lose 1 lb. per week, you'll need to burn 500 more calories than you eat each day. A safe rate of weight loss is 1 to 2 lbs. per week. You can do this through diet, exercise or a combination of both.

  3. Create daily meal plans using nutrition labels and online research tools, such as LiveStrong's MyPlate, to calculate the number of calories you will eat each day. Use the U.S. Department of Agriculture's recommendations for daily caloric intake, based on your age and sex, or calculate the number of calories you currently eat each day. Adjust your meal plans to create your desired daily deficit, taking into account how may calories you estimate you will burn through exercise. Use online tools like Harvard Health Publication's chart showing calories burned per hour, based on activity and weight.

  4. Watch the PX90 DVDs before you work out out to familiarize yourself with the proper techniques for each exercise. Write notes regarding which exercises or workouts you want to use to lose weight. You may be most interested in the Cardio X workout, which is 40-minute aerobic exercise routine that does not use weights. Note the times of any particular exercises or routines you wish to use to help you search when you begin exercising. Learn the warm-up, cool down and stretching routines so you can use them when you work out.

  5. Exercise, following along with the P90X DVDs. Start with the warm-up procedure. Keep your remote control nearby in case you need to take a break or wish to repeat an exercise. Check your heart rate monitor, if you have one, to make sure you stay within your target heart rate for aerobic exercise. Aerobic exercise will help you burn more calories than less-intense exercise, such as slow weight lifting, and more calories than very high-intensity workouts that fatigue you after a short period of time. Exercise at a pace that has you breathing hard, but able to talk. The American Heart Association recommends 60 to 90 minutes of cardio exercise, five days a week, for weight loss.

  6. Cool down and stretch using the P90X procedures. Lowering your heart rate and blood circulation gradually will prevent muscle soreness later. Stretch after you cool down to improve muscle flexibility and to decrease muscle stiffness.

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