Over the next couple minutes you will learn the comparisons and differences between these two rival "workout at home" exercise programs.
The P90X workout program used to be the one exercise program that everyone knew thanks to early morning and late night infomercials. Recently Beachbody added a new program to the game that to some may have considered a rival, that program is Shaun T Insanity.
But which one is more intense?
Comparably they are both equal in their own rights but each workout program focuses on a different approach towards fitness.
I have personally used both programs and this gives me the rare opportunity to offer a first hand look at both the P90X workout program and Shaun T Insanity. After this article you will be fully equipped with the answers you are looking for.
Which works better? P90X or the Insanity workout?
Great questions, though it's hard to put both workout programs side by side as it's not a simple apples to apples comparison but more like apples to oranges. Both programs are capable of offering a huge physical challenge but each has it's own approach and it's own target results. I'll explain.
The P90X workout program is a 90 day system which could otherwise be considered an "at home boot camp". You will need a chin up bar, a chair, a set of dumbbells and / or bands, shoes, plus about 1 hour to 1 hour and a half 6 days a week. The 7th day is an optional stretch or complete rest day.
From first hand experience I like to look at P90X as a "all-in-one" program. It is not designed to just bulk you up, it's not going to just help you lose weight, it's not just balance, and it's not just cardio.
The P90X workout program just tosses a bit of everything into the equation. You lift heavy one day (or light if you want) ;, you're punching and kicking with Kenpo karate another day, and to top it off on other days you will be doing 1 and a half hours of Yoga for a complete mind / body / soul adventure.
You will go through three phases of 1 month each in P90X with each month switching it up. Most of the cardio, stretch, and balance routines stay the same. The difference in each phase is that you change out the resistance workouts so that your muscles are constantly challenged so they will always be receptive to the workout rather than plateauing.
Shaun T Insanity takes a completely different approach. The workout program is 60-days in length and is based solely on Plyometrics, Core, and Cardio training. You will not lift weights, you will not do chin ups, you do not need a chair, and the workouts range from 35-45 minutes the first phase to 1 hour and 15 minutes the second phase.
You will need very good shoes, preferably a mat to jump on, and near perfect form to avoid injury.
You can already see that Shaun T Insanity is different than P90X so how are the comparable?
The Insanity workout program, although shorter in length, is based on maximum effort Interval cardio. Meaning it's all about fast, powerful, and coordinated moves. You will still be doing push-ups just like in P90X but otherwise you only use your body, gravity, and will power to push through.
I am telling you from personally experience, with Insanity you literally drip buckets of sweat, seriously! Just because it's shorter than P90X does not mean it's not as intense.
You will not be running in one place for an hour, you are jumping around, squatting, balancing, and crunching your core. Shaun T Insanity is on the same level as P90X but the difference is you do not need extra equipment, you will not be lifting weights, and the workouts go by much faster.
Insanity is more for the leaner ripped look while P90X will allow for more muscle size and strength.
If you have already completed P90X then I will tell you this. Shaun T Insanity is like taking P90X Plyometrics, doubling the intensity, and doing it 6 days a week.
So which one is better, P90X or Shaun T Insanity?
I do not think you will find one "better than the other" but what you will find are two different approaches towards fitness.
P90X is a longer 90 day program that has longer workouts but incorporates a slower pace compared to Insanity offering more time to adapt and become stronger. Also you are lifting weights so there is more potential to gain size and muscle definition.
Shaun T Insanity is 60 days with much shorter and faster pace workouts, you will not be able to adapt as fast and you will not get great results by pausing through each workout. Insanity is a balls to the walls style workout, it's straight forward and fast but demands major motivation and energy.
Both workout programs have a "mix-it-up" style so each one changes things through the program so there is no monotony.
One final note, if you have knees or lower body joint issues, Insanity may not be for you. It is based on a lot of jumping and really can and will tax your knees and joints if not performed correctly. It is much higher impact compared to P90X. That is something to consider when looking at the two side by side.
Because of the approach Insanity takes I like to look at it this way. If you feel you are P90X capable and are in decent shape, if you can do push-ups, chin-ups, and if you can handle interval cardio, then either program is suitable.
If you can not do some or all of the previously mentioned exercises then it's better to avoid Insanity until you can at least complete P90X. Insanity is not a beginner workout, so if you just stepping back into the physical fitness game, throw the ego out, start somewhere small and build up.