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P90X3 Accelerator—it’s not just cardio, friends! Get ready to plank. (And some other stuff, too.) Let me tell you what you need to know before you try this P90X3 workout.
Accelerator is just ONE of the P90X3 workouts…
Accelerator is one of my favorite routines from the P90X3 series. The cardio exercises are unique, fun and effective.
There are some familiar exercises and some new stuff to learn in this routine.
Here are the highlights of the P90X3 series:
Find out what I love (and hate) about P90X3 Accelerator, how much space you’ll need, and what equipment you need to have ready before you get started.
Here we go…
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2 towels (for markers)
1 washcloth (if you’re on a tile floor you can use a single tile as your marker for the one exercise where you need the washcloth)
My rating- A
Tony Horton uses changes in tempo (speed) to take you through 19 exercises that you do for 1 minute each.
During each one-minute interval, Tony prompts you to change speed or style to intensify the exercise. This is metabolic training at its best.
There’s only one official water break during the 32-minute workout.
The guy over Tony’s right shoulder is doing a modified (easier) version of each exercise during every interval if you need it.
Make sure you have enough space to do a 360 spin while in plank and to do 3 big shuffles to your right and left.
All of the exercises done in the plank position make this a great ab workout, too (not just cardio).
Tracy is the female team member for the Accelerator video. She’s a total badass. Tony says she has 6 kids. Wth! She has a washboard stomach (and probably good genetics). I’m not sure if I love her or hate her.
My only complaint about P90X3 Accelerator is that Tony Horton does almost none of the routine. If you read my blog you’ll know that I find that really annoying. I prefer that the instructor include him/herself as part of the team rather than just the instructor. Tony feels more like a dictator in Accelerator because he yells out commands during several of the intervals while he’s walking around. It’s irritating. (But not a reason to avoid Accelerator.)
There’s a stretch/warm up section that’s about 2 minutes long. Tony incorporates a few yoga moves here.
Remember each exercise has 2 different speeds and/or styles. Tony will tell you when/how to change the move.
You’ll recognize this move from other P90X workouts.
You MUST keep your core engaged while you’re doing this exercise. All you do is twist right and left while pivoting your feet.
Tony walks over to Tracy and tells the world that any woman who’s had kids can have a stomach like Tracy. Not cool, Tony.
This exercise is good ol’ fashion running in place. Lift your knees high when Tony tells you to go faster.
When you ‘get down’ you go to plank position. This is harder than it looks. Tony adds a push-up after the first few reps.
Make sure you do the arm raise every time you stand back up.
There are 2 styles of jumping jacks you do during this interval.
You’ll change your arms from the traditional ‘X’ position (during the regular tempo) to an overhead double-arm punch when you do the fast version of the exercise.
You start this one in a low squat and shoot your legs out to a plank. Then you’ll do alternating side-arm balances before you jump back up to the squat.
After a few reps, Tony adds a push-up in between every side-arm balance.
Grab those two towels (or whatever you’re using for markers) and place them a few feet apart and running parallel. You’ll be hopping over them.
My feet catch on my towels during this exercise and I wind up with a pile of towels in my way. It’s annoying. Sometimes I just use imaginary lines on the floor so I don’t have to worry about readjusting my towels.
You know how to do this one. Really go for it on the fast version.
Remember the Accelerator routine is short. You have to give every exercise 110%.
Spin Stops are easy for about 15 seconds then your quads will catch fire.
You’ll be doing a 180-degree spin with a vertical jump. You land in a squat and then tap the floor.
Say this Out Loud: I can do anything for a minute. Then Go For It.
This one reminds me of the ‘Think Drills’ from P90X2. Tony calls out a move and your job is to do it quickly.
The only thing you have to think about is which direction Tony just told you to ‘plank’ in but for some reason my brain does a half second pause before my body actually moves. And since Tony isn’t actually doing this exercise he starts calling out the prompts much faster than you can actually respond. Thanks, Tony.
The directions are right, left, up and back. This exercise is so awesome for your core.
One minute feels REALLY long during this interval.
This is your only (official) break. You have 35 seconds to get a drink.
You need those two towels again.
This time you’ll put the towels on the floor end to end to make a line. Imagine there’s a big square around the towels and the line of towels is cutting the box down the middle. You’ll be doing a leap from corner to corner on the diagonal (over the towels).
Yes, leaping backwards is weird. Don’t be lazy and skip the part where you bend down and touch the floor. That forward flexion on one leg engages your core. I stumble around on this exercise. It’s ok. Don’t give up.
You’ll start on the other side of the towels after 30 seconds.
This exercise is exactly what you think. It makes me a little dizzy. You’ll need some space to do this.
Plank Circles are another great exercise for the core.
Position yourself like you’re at the starting line of a race (one leg and arm forward like you’re about to take off running). You’ll pump your arms and legs back and forth in this position during the exercise.
Try to stay low (like Tracy). You’ll feel this exercise in your legs.
Get your mat out for this exercise if you’re on a hard surface.
I love this one. There are two parts to this exercise.
The first part is in a high plank. You’ll alternate your right knee to your left elbow/tricep and your left knee to the right elbow/tricep.
After a few reps, Tony will tell you to go down in a low plank where you’ll switch the move to connect the same side knee and elbow/tricep.
Tony will tell you to actually touch your tricep with your knee. I can’t do that. Just do your best. Moves like this one are what make Accelerator a great routine.
Get out your washcloth (or use a tile on the floor if you have one).
This exercise is a hop around the square. Tony will tell you to go in a clockwise or counterclockwise pattern and what speed to use.
Swimmer’s Planks are original and effective. You’ll move your arms like you’re doing a freestyle stroke in the pool (while in a high plank).
The surprise is that you have to lift the opposite leg when you swim your arm.
Tony will prompt you to change directions before the interval is over. This is hard but you can do it. Tighten your core and remember how awesome you are.
This is a leap to the right and left using the form of a speed skater.
During the interval, the exercise is intensified by making you do a double leap to each side. You land on one leg so if you have bad knees don’t get too crazy.
Get out a mat if you’re on a hard surface. (Tony doesn’t tell the team to get out a mat but I bet they wish he did for this exercise.)
Tony will prompt you to raise a leg during the interval. Keep your core tight. You’ll be moving between a high and low plank (go down in low plank using a sphinx move…this is a yoga move, don’t be scared it’s not hard).
This interval is a triple shuffle to the right and left. The intensified move is a triple hop.
Do a donkey kick however you can (don’t expect to be able to do this like Tony does) and then twist to one side and kick your leg.
Have fun with this exercise. No one cares how dumb you look. You’re a badass.
You’ll start out strong and think, ‘I got this last move’, but then you’ll discover that this exercise uses quads (which I didn’t expect) and it gets really hard 30 seconds into the interval.
The cool down is about as long as the warm-up was (almost 2 minutes).
Accelerator is a fun and creative workout and one of the reasons I recommend the P90X3 series to people. Accelerator gives you a decent cardio workout while sculpting your core. The exercises aren’t complicated but are intense. Anyone can do this routine.
And in the library of workouts with a membership to Beachbody on Demand (I recommend you try this. There’s a FREE TRIAL period.)
If you’re considering a membership to BOD this article will answer every question you might have: Beachbody on Demand:5 Reasons to Give it a Try.
Thanks for reading!
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