P90X. The "X" stands for extreme, make no mistake about that. Anyone who's seen the program through to Day 90 can attest to what I'm saying, and even more so, the people who haven't made it to Day 90 will say the same thing as well.
No matter what kind of shape you're in, nothing can really prepare you for Day 1, when you press "Play" for the first time. Ditto for Day 2, when your first "Plyometric experience" begins and about 6 minutes into the video you're also wondering if it'll be your last (I'm only half kidding!).
But rejoice, there are things that you can do to prepare for Day 1 as much as possible. I've coached hundreds of people through P90X now, and those who ultimately achieved the best results heeded my advice and were able to really "hit the ground running."
1) Start Stretching Daily – start doing this at least a week before Day 1, and make it meaningful, for at least 20 minutes per day. Focus on stretching your legs, your core and your shoulders especially. If you already have the P90X dvds, you can use portions of the X Stretch dvd for this. Getting (and keeping) your muscles loose and limber is an injury-prevention key.
2) Get a Headstart on Your Diet and Supplements – about a week before Day 1 I'd recommend starting to gradually move your diet to where you want it to be on Day 1 and start "tinkering" to figure out how to hit those 50/30/20 ratios recommended for Phase 1. Also, start taking your supplements about a week before Day 1 as well. People who start a new exercise program AND a new diet simultaneously really sort-of "double-shock" their bodies and put themselves in the "hurt locker" big time.
3) Start Doing a Little Cardio – Get those legs and lungs ready for what's to come (you'll be so glad you did!). About 10 – 14 days out from Day 1 I recommend starting to do some light to moderate cardio, perhaps every third day. Again, if you already have the dvds, the Cardio X dvd is perfect for this - it has a little Yoga, a little Plyo, a little Kenpo and a little Core Syn! If you don't have the dvds yet, my recommendation would be to do some interval sprinting, which will simulate the type(s) of cardio you'll be doing on the "X."
The ideas above detail "My Plan" and how I approached Day 1 of P90X. Plans are roadmaps to success – they keep you focused, driven and on a defined course towards Day 90. In my experience, the people who don't have plans and sort-of take it "day-by-day, workout-by-workout and meal-by-meal" are the ones much more likely to drop out of this intense program and never reach Day 90.
Those who have a plan are much more likely to follow-through on it, and ultimately, become a "graduate." Ask anyone who's reached Day 90 and tossed their "P90X cap" into the air – it's a pretty Xcellent feeling!