Home / Fitness / P90X vs Insanity Workouts

P90X vs Insanity Workouts

This post may contain affiliate links. All opinions shared are my own. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. Click to view our full disclosure.
All content is created by humans – not AI.

I’m proud to say I’ve done both of these extreme workouts, and honestly – the set up are both are great. With that said, I have a clear winner in the P90X vs Insanity matchup. Both are going to get you results; it really comes down to your goals and preferences.

To help you choose the right program, we’ll look at:

  • goals
  • time available
  • workout space & equipment
  • workout preferences

P90X vs Insanity: Which Workout is Right for You?

You can read our original review of P90X or Insanity here.


P90X Overview

P90X is a 90-day advanced at home workout program by Tony Horton and Beachbody. It focuses on muscle confusion in 3 phases. You’ll be mixing cardio, strength, jump training, yoga and interval training to burn fat and build lean muscle.

It includes 12 different workouts. The workouts on average are about an hour apiece. It also includes 3-phase nutrition plan based on the Michi Ladder, and each phase’s diet changes a bit for max results.

Insanity Overview

Insanity is another extreme at home workout program created by Shaun T and Beachbody. It’s only 60 days, and it promises to give you a year’s worth of results in 2 months. The workouts are very cardio heavy and include plyometric interval training (going hard for as long as you can with a short break in between). With this type of workout, you will burn fat and lose weight. You won’t be building as much muscle as you do with P90X.

It includes 10 different workouts and a full nutrition guide as well.

Key Differences Between P90X vs Insanity

  • P90X is 3 months, and Insanity is 2 months.
  • P90X workouts are approximately an hour long whereas Insanity workouts on average are 45 minutes.
  • P90X requires equipment whereas Insanity is just using your body weight.
  • P90X mixes in cardio with strength training. Insanity is focused on cardio-training 6 days a week.
  • P90X’s nutrition plan is a little more detailed and specific to each phase than Insanity’s.
  • P90X is a Tony Horton workout and Insanity is a Shaun T workout.
  • P90X is focused on losing weight and building muscle; Insanity is more of a weight loss, shredding program.
  • While both include Fit Tests to measure your progress, P90X’s is only at the beginning and the end of the program. Insanity’s Fit Test is every 2 weeks.
  • Both have you working out 6 days a week.

Order P90X or INSANITY

Is P90X harder than Insanity?

Since they are both advanced at home workouts, people often compare them and ask which is harder. I honestly think that both are difficult, and each will get you amazing results in a short time if you follow the program.

P90X is going to have harder strength training, and Insanity is going to have harder cardio training.

Since I enjoy strength training, I found Insanity to be much harder.

My results were actually better with P90X though. I think that was because of the diet plan, and I was able to give the P90X workouts more than Insanity. I struggled during every Insanity workout, and I was in shape!

P90X vs Insanity: Which Should You Choose?

First, we want to let you know – both workout programs are tough even for an advanced exerciser.

If you’re just getting started, you should check out Shaun T’s T25 or Tony’s P90.


The easiest way to decide P90X vs Insanity is your goals.

Insanity is mostly cardio training whereas P90X is more balanced with strength training.

If you’re looking to lose weight and be overall leaner, Insanity is your best bet.

It’s Max Interval Training principle and hard cardio routines are going to help you get shredded and burn more calories.

If you’re wanting to gain muscle and burn more fat, you are going to want to go with P90X.

P90X uses muscle confusion to help you break down into fitness plateaus you have and continually challenge the body for max results in strength gains.

If you are wanting even an increase lean muscle mass, I would suggest P90X. If you’re wanting max weight loss, I would suggest Insanity.



Insanity is approximately 35 minutes in month 1 and 60 minutes in month 2. Insanity is 60 days long.

P90X is a little over an hour each day, and the yoga workout is 90 minutes long. P90X is, of course, 90 days long.

I personally wouldn’t let time matter a lot because you can always do one of the new versions of either program.

Need a 30 Minute Workout AND Max Results?

P90X3 is going to be very similar to the original and is only 30 minutes. Insanity Max 30 is like Insanity but ramped up for all 30-minute workouts.

Both test groups from the new programs have gotten the same amazing, max results from the new, shorter workouts too. So don’t feel like you aren’t going to be challenged by going with a shorter program. You’ll likely stay more consistent and go harder for a shorter workout.

Check out P90X3 or Insanity Max 30



What Equipment Do You Need for Insanity?

Insanity requires no equipment! So if you’re in a small area or don’t want to invest in weights, Insanity is the best option.

What Equipment Do You Need for P90X?

P90X requires equipment. You’ll either need dumbbells (recommended) or resistance bands. You’ll also need a chin-up bar or a door attachment to modify the chin-ups. Optional equipment also includes a yoga mat and push-up stands.


Since Insanity is focused on cardio every day, the workouts blend together for me. With Insanity, you do 6 workouts through the weeks 1-4, and then you advance to 6 new workouts in month 2.

With P90X, you’ll be mixing 12 workouts throughout the 90 days. The workouts themselves are very different too. You’ll be doing kickboxing one day, then strength and then yoga the next. It’s always something new.

The Diets

Both plans include a meal plan that is recommended for max results.

The Insanity meal plan is similar in both phases. You’ll just up your calories in month 2. It focuses on 40% carbs, 40% lean protein, and 20% healthy fats.

The P90X meal plan is a little more in depth. Each phase makes small changes to your diet.

  • Phase 1: Fat Shredder – high protein, low fat, low carbs
  • Phase 2: Energy Booster – Insanity’s blend of 40% carbs, 40% lean protein, and 20% healthy fats.
  • Phase 3: Endurance Maximizer or the Athletic Diet


Both trainers are motivating, but they are both so different!

Shaun T is pretty hardcore in Insanity. You’re in a class setting with about 20 people. Shaun T does a lot of yelling – which my husband loved and related it to football practice.

I will say in Insanity Max 30 Shaun T mixes in toughness with motivation which I really love. The people in the class are also less annoying. Shaun T also focuses more on form in Max 30, but in the original Insanity, his attention to form and modifications is lacking.

Tony Horton is a goofball (that will still kick your butt). He focuses on good form, but he is a bit cheesey with his jokes. His workouts are set up with about 4 other people who are also his close friends in real life. I really like them, and I could relate to them better than the people in the original Insanity workouts.

P90X vs Insanity Results

As mentioned above, both programs are going to get you amazing results.

Comparing Results

  • Weight Loss – Insanity
  • Toning up – P90X
  • Cardiovascular health/Endurance – Insanity
  • Building Lean Muscle – P90X

I know we all would love to have all 4 things, and each workout is going to help you improve all 4. So think about what is the MOST important to you, and go with that program.

P90X Vs Insanity for Men or Women?

I honestly see people ask which is best for each gender a lot. There really isn’t a better program for women or men.

Both genders are going to be leaner, slimmer and stronger with either program so you should base it on the results you want above.

Women – if you choose P90X, you’re not going to bulk up. We don’t have as much testosterone as the guys, so we are going to build long lean muscles compared to them.


The P90X vs Insanity battle stops right here. They are both $119.95 for the full program.

Both programs include all of your workouts, calendars and nutrition plans.

Order P90X

P90X Base Kit

P90X Deluxe Kit (includes 5 extra workouts and bands)

P90X Ultimate Kit

Order Insanity


INSANITY Deluxe Kit (Includes 3 more workouts)

INSANITY Deluxe Kit and a Jump Mat

Stream Both Workout Programs FREE for 14 Days with Beachbody on Demand

You can now stream over 700 workouts with Beachbody on Demand at 1 set monthly price.

Workouts Organized with Beachbody On Demand Streaming

Beachbody on Demand is pretty new and allows you to stream Beachbody workouts from online to your computer, iPhone or TV (through an Apple TV, HDMI cord, Roku or Amazon Fire Stick). You can read more about the workout streaming membership here.

Streaming allows you to try more!

Along with P90X and Insanity, with Beachbody on Demand you’ll get access to 700+ Beachbody workouts. So you could start P90X and then advanced to P90X2 or try Insanity and then go to Insanity Max 30 if you wanted.

Get Beachbody on Demand for a Year for Less than 1 Program!

We actually have a hybrid of Insanity and P90X which would help tailor in your max results in a balanced approach to weight loss and lean muscle!

Insanity and P90X Hybrid Workout Calendar

Still not sure about Insanity VS p90X?

You could always choose to stream your workouts so that you can change your mind, but I also love being able to have a DVD in my hand. So…

  • If you chose P90X, you might also look at P90X3 or P90X vs ChaLEAN Extreme.
  • You liked Insanity, but it’s too long? Check out Insanity Max 30.
  • T25 is a starter program to build up to Insanity or Insanity Max.
  • If P90X sounds too hard, maybe check out P90.

Which program won for you in P90X vs Insanity?

Have you ever thought about becoming a Beachbody Coach like us? We answer all of the FAQs we’ve gotten here!

View our At Home Workout Guide for More Reviews on Extreme Workouts

Insanity and P90X Hybrid Workout Calendar

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.


  1. Thanks very much I have the p90x and never really exercised before I’m nervous and excited! This article was most helpful and well presented thanks for your great work