What if P90X had it right? What if Shaun T really had the solution?

Or at least part of the solution. Workouts at home delivered fitness to the masses, while overcoming 3 of the biggest obstacles most people face when trying to commit to a workout program.

CONVENIENCE. It’s a lot more convenient to warm up and workout in the living room in front of your big screen with Tony Horton than it is to fit a trip to the gym in your already jam packed schedule.

TIME. You didn’t have to worry about finding a gym who’s schedule worked for you.

PLANNING. You didn’t have to figure out what you were going to do. Just move the coffee table and pop in a DVD (those were the shiny circles that you could never scratch, kids).

What’s not to like? It worked. But with all positives, there are negatives. Or rather missing pieces of the puzzle.

Because the program was on a DVD and pre-recorded, there was no accountability. You could ghost Shaun T. as much as you wanted, there weren’t any consequences. There wasn’t any fear of answering to Tony Hortons jawline for your weekly food sins.

There was no direction from the trainers as to WHY you were doing 5000 burpees with Barbara in her matching neon orange headband and tights or how that workout got you closer to your goals.

Even though the workouts were intense, the DVD’s didn’t provide us with any hands on personal coaching. There wasn’t someone keeping an eye on us to make sure we weren’t doing the exercises incorrectly (RIP to all of the rotator cuffs that were trashed doing living room push-ups all those years).

Most of us didn’t even know why we were doing what we were doing. We weren’t really sure what our goals were. We just knew that we wanted to look like the people on TV, so we should probably follow along, sweat and hope for the best. Probably don’t eat that box of honey buns, either.

Coaching. That’s what it lacked. Someone that knew your name. Knew whether or not you showed up to workout that day. Could help you understand your emotional drive to get healthier. Or to pinpoint the behaviors or habits you were missing to see success, or the ones that need to change to get you there. There wasn’t a guide to get you from point A to point B.

I did a lot of P90X and Insanity back in the day. I still remember the living room I would do them in, and even how the furniture was arranged. But I never accomplished the goals I had set out for myself because I never had a coach to help get me there.

Was P90X right? Partly. Here’s what I know about online coaching and video programs.

  1. Successful trainers provide coaching, not choreography.
  2. Online programs that you hold yourself accountable to actually work, but not for long.
  3. Working out alone in your living room with your “TV friends” gets boring after awhile.

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