The P90X workout program challenges users to "bring it!" But you may be wondering just how hard you'll be bringing it. Get a sense of the difficulty level of P90X aerobic workouts by estimating the number of calories that you burn.
The P90X program materials don't provide an exact number of calories that you should expect to burn in each workout. Instead, the "P90X Nutrition Plan" simply says that 600 is the number of daily calories required for your exercise needs during P90X. This estimate does not take into account whether you are doing aerobic or strength-training workouts. It also doesn't account for other factors that will affect your calorie burn such as your weight and the effort you put in.
The American Council on Exercise studied workouts in the P90X program, including two aerobic routines: Plyometrics and Cardio X. The study found that women burned an average of 12.6 calories per minute during the Plyometrics workout, while men burned 16.2 calories per minute. During the Cardio X routine, researchers found that men burned 13.4 calories per minute and women burned 10.3 calories. Your own individual numbers will differ based on your weight and how hard you push yourself.
According to John P. Pocari, the lead researcher in the ACE study, "when you look at the average caloric expenditure for P90X, it’s actually very comparable to jogging." According to the HealthStatus calorie calculator, a 130-pound person will burn 7 calories per minute from jogging. This number will increase with your weight. For instance, a 170-pound person will burn 9 calories per minute, while a 210-pound person will burn 11 calories per minute.
Estimating Your Calorie Burn
Everyone is different, so you can't rely on general estimates to accurately count your calorie burn. Use a heart rate monitor to estimate your calorie burn based on your weight and your heart rate, which reflects how hard you're working out. A heart rate monitor is a device that usually features a chest strap that measures your heart rate and a watch-like device that provides an interface to operate it and read information. According to the Department of Recreational Sports at the University of Florida, heart rate monitors provide a fairly accurate estimate of your calorie burn.