Tyler Robbins Fitness

B.Sc. Biochemistry, Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS), Certified CrossFit Trainer (CCFT/CF-L3), USA Weightlifting Level 1

P90X3 X3 Ab Ripper Coaching, Advice, and Complete Review

Equipment Needed

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When does it appear in the schedules?

P90X3 Classic Schedule: N/A
P90X3 Doubles Schedule: N/A
P90X3 Lean Schedule: N/A
P90X3 Mass Schedule: N/A

X3 Ab Ripper only appears in the "Elite Schedule," although if you are wishing to add more core work to your regular X3 schedule, make sure to check out my blog on this very topic.


Welcome to P90X3's core-centric routine. It may be a big surprise to most, but X3 Ab Ripper does not appear in the regular P90X3 schedule. Inevitably, questions will be raised as to whether or not this routine is "worth" the extra cost, so between this review, along with my reviews for Complex Upper and Complex Lower (Elite DVD), you can decide for yourself whether or not you wish to purchase.


Similar to X2 Ab Ripper from P90X2, this routine spends more time and effort working on your overall "core" rather than just abs or "six-pack." Overall core strength and stability is far more beneficial to overall healthy, safety, and performance than just having visible abs.

There are some great new exercises in this routine. By doing the original Ab Ripper X, or X2 Ab Ripper, many of you, myself included, grow a bit tired of doing the same exercises over and over, so it is nice to have an almost entirely new routine.

I like the fact that a couple of the exercises in this routine incorporates a dumbbell. Although you won't be able to go crazy with a lot of weight, it allows for some progression so as you get "better" at the exercise, you can increase weight to allow for further improvement.


Obviously, one of the glaring issues here, is the price of this workout. At $90 for this, Complex Upper, and Complex Lower, $30 (breaking down the price per workout) seems pretty steep for just a core workout. I mention it in my video, but I can't evaluate your own individual spending, so you will have to decide on whether X3 Ab Ripper, Complex Upper, and Complex Lower are worth the extra cost.

This routine seems very short to me. Although it comes in at 16 minutes long, it just seems to be shorter than both Ab Ripper X and X2 Ab Ripper.

The first couple of exercises aren't terribly difficult, especially the very first "exercise," which is more of a stretch than a core exercise. This may be good for some people, but the routine definitely "eases" you into the routine rather than kicking you in the face like the original Ab Ripper X.


I will say that I did not find this routine to be glaringly difficult. I will fully admit (stating, not bragging) that I am able to get through the original Ab Ripper X and X2 Ab Ripper with not a lot of difficulty any more either, as I personally find that my core strength is one of my strong suits, especially since completing P90X2.

This routine has some very tough sequences, don't get me wrong. The first time doing it, I had to drop to take a few quick little breaks. Having said that, there are only a few tough sequences. As I said previously, the first couple of exercises aren't terribly difficult, and for a 16 minute run time, you need to jump right into the action rather than "easing" into it.

What I do like is the "challenge" type exercise at the end of the routine. I know that for a lot of people, when they originally did Ab Ripper X, by the time they reached the "Mason Twist" exercise, they either had nothing left in the tank or had to really struggle to even get half of the reps. Over time, however, it became a challenge for many to hit that milestone to be able to do all of the reps in not only the routine, but to get through ALL of Mason Twist as well.

With this routine, there is a great final exercise that really burns out your midsection that I was challenged with my first time through and thought to myself, "Well that is certainly going to take some work!" It made me determined to get through it!

This will definitely challenge some folks, and the weighted exercises are nice to include some progression, but this one may seem "not that hard" for P90X and P90X2 veterans.

Difficulty: 4/5

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Workout Design

This routine has a 16 minute run time. There are 8 exercises. The pacing of the routine is definitely slower and forces you to be in control of you body.

There is a good variety of exercises here, some planking, some more ab-focused and oblique-focused work, and you will definitely get a good burn. I do wish there were a few more exercises that would challenge me a bit more.

As I mentioned in the Difficulty section, I really enjoyed the last exercise "challenge" in this routine. It is something to work towards, being able to get every single rep to finish this routine off.

Workout Design: 4.5/5

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X3 Ab Ripper only appears in the "Elite Schedule," although if you are wishing to add more core work to your regular X3 schedule, make sure to check out my blog on this very topic.

Slow the pace during this routine. This is meant to be different than a pure-and-simple routine full of crunches. Focus more on control, your breathing, and of course focusing on core engagement rather than rushing through, trying to crank out as many repetitions as you can.


A good routine, in my opinion, but not great. Overall, I am glad I picked up the Elite DVD, and will continue to use this routine for the variety, and because this one definitely has some challenging sequences. I also enjoy the overall "core" focus of this one.

Overall Score (not an average): 8.5/10

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