Hi Tony, I'm excited to get this opportunity to talk to you. My name
is Carol Bardelli, I'm a columnist at The Examiner, and I write for a
website called Healthy New Age. HNA has an existing page on you and
your exercise programs, some of which I've written. They wanted me to
rewrite the biography they have on you. That lead me to ask for an
interview with you through Beachbody's PR representative.
I have a few questions for you to open our interview. Further
questions, if any, will depend on your answers. Feel free to add
anything you'd like to cover. And thanks again for giving me this
Tony, I've used all of your exercise videos, starting with Great Body
Guaranteed. Now I'm using Power 90X Plus and Tony Horton One On One.
I couldn't help but notice you can motivate people, including myself,
like no one else. An example is the portion of Power 90X Legs & Back
in which we do wall squats. I've got my back to the wall, my legs are
burning, there's about thirty seconds left. And you've got me and the
gang laughing out loud. What's your take on you're motivational
skills, combined with your personable demeanor and sense of humor?
I discovered a long time ago that the best way to get through the physical pain and agony of any workout is to have some fun along the way. Exercise is hard enough and to turn it into rocket science or make it so serious that it feels like torture, will certainly result in failure. I'm trying help people look at fitness and exercise in a completely new way. My goofy light hearted approach makes the physical intensity of exercise slightly more palatable. My coaches growing up cared more about winning and losing than the players on their teams. I was miserable during fitness tests and drills and there was never a sense that modifying an exercise was okay. I want everyone to play and I want everyone to succeed. I'm constantly looking for practical techniques that keep people in the game. If you're busting a gut during a wall squat, then I'm doing my job.
Your programs are revolutionary, not because of their separate
components like resistance training, aerobics, stretching, yoga,
karate, plyometrics, and core. The unique way you blend them seems key
to the amazing results people are able to achieve in a short period of
time. What inspired you to design fitness programs that integrate all
aspects of exercise?
There are three things that cause people to lose faith in their fitness routines. Boredom, injuries and plateaus. When you repeat the same movements over and over again, one of these three will take you down. After 25 years in the fitness business I've seen hundreds of people get hurt, lose interest and stop seeing results because of lack of variety in their routines. Concepts/techniques like Sectional Progression with Power 90, Muscle Confusion with P90X and now Super Stacking with my new 10 Minute Trainer program are all designed to avoid boredom, injuries and plateaus. Running is a great but it's just one thing. Yoga is the Fountain of Youth in my opinion but it certainly doesn't improve your Plyometric strength. If you want a well rounded level of fitness and you want to continue to see results over a long period of time then variety is certainly the spice of health and fitness.
With exercise systems like Power 90, Power Half Hour, Tony and the
Kids!, Tony and the Folks!, Power 90X, 10 Minute Trainer, Tony Horton
One On One, and Power 90X Plus, you literally offer something for
Power 90X, P90X Plus, and Tony Horton One On One, are designed for
folks looking to take their physiques to the next level. I can attest
to the challenging nature of these workouts, as well as the intensity.
Even after years of aerobics and weightlifting, I found myself almost
crawling to the shower after my P90X workouts. But, man, did I ever
see results. You're personally responsible you my finally developing
triceps definition. I finally have horseshoes. And now I'm addicted to
your extreme workouts.
Do you see a wider audience opening up to your style of extreme
workouts? And do you plan new projects along these lines?
First of all, congratulations on those triceps and thank you for your commitment to the program. If you had asked me this question a year ago my answer would have been different than today. P90X was intended for gym rats and people tired of spending money on expensive trainers and not getting results. A finite number of people in a niche market. We would have been happy if just these folks realized that you can get better results in your living room. Turns out our little niche in-home boot camp idea had legs. P90X has become a phenomenon. Everybody is doing it. Even folks who probably need Power 90 or some other milder workout program first. The amazing thing is that people (on their own) are approaching the program with common since. If there's a move or exercise that's out of their comfort zone, they skip it (for now) or modify it in some way. People are listening to what their body can do during these workouts and understanding that trying to keep up for the sake of keeping up is counterproductive. They're doing their best and forgetting the rest.
On a more personal note, I have mild Cerebral Palsy. This has never
stopped me from doing anything including driving, horseback riding,
and of course, Power 90X. I also discovered that pull ups on the
program relieved my shoulder tendonitis, while plyo and yoga has
improved my balance. Did you think people with physical challenges
would use your systems, and that it could be used for rehabilitation?
You are living proof that a positive attitude is a huge piece to the success puzzle regardless of your situation. My nephew Andrew has a more than mild case of Cerebral Palsy and I've introduced to him all kinds of fitness routines that might have been considered too difficult for a guy with his genetic birth defect. He has a trainer, works out at the gym and goes to yoga twice a week. The fact is, we all have different starting points in life. The real measure of person is determined by how hard they're willing to work to overcome and deal with the hand they're dealt. I was the quintessential 98 pound weakling with a speech impediment, afraid of his own shadow, who got beat up at the bus stop by the local bully. That was my starting point. My challenge was great and long but worth it in the end. I'm not a physical therapist so it's not my place to say that it's okay for someone with sever physical challenges to jump into P90X, but I will go out on a limb and say that if you have the will, there is a way for anyone and everyone to benefit from a fitness program that challenges them.