Yeah, we’re doing…Yeah, Tony’s doing mine but no one can see it. In those early days, I was a performer for a company and all of my job was to hit my mark and to try to sell some pretty funky stuff.
The piece of Nordic Track device was pretty effective. Again, it’s this one thing. It’s like a stationary bike, reversal clamor, a treadmill or a heavy bag. It’s just one thing. I was just thrilled to get on an airplane and get hired for a gig and go.
Now, whether those things were successful or not, I don’t know. I got my payday and I went home and then it was different. When I started with Beachbody, the first thing I did was something called Great Body Guaranteed.
It was an actual program of push-ups and sit-ups and crunches and arm day and back, then leg day and whatever in the stretch workout. It was kind of Fitness 101. It was all body weight stuff, maybe a couple of dumbbells and some bands.
I worked with somebody else. Somebody else who’d been in the business for a while. He said, “Well, how about should this exercise sitting? Where should that one be and how should we do it?” I didn’t have the persona then.
I was just pretty strict because my Nordic Track days were “Hi, everybody. Tony Horton here. We’re going to really work hard today. You’re going to really love these routines. We’re going to work on our chest, and our back, and let’s start with our stretch.”
Again, apparently, it did well, because we were able to make something called Power 90. When people see it, they buy it. You’re buying wild spots with our…we’re going to buy Copic Ipsy, New York. We’re going to buy Fort Lauderdale, Florida and we’re going to buy Seattle, Washington, and see what happens.
These spots are coming up for this infomercial at 3:00 in the morning and people are up late, eating ice cream and drinking beer. At the same time, been going, “Hey, man, looks good. I don’t know that Tony Horton guy as well, but I’m full and I’m bloated and I’m got to get going.”
Then what was happening with it, we were getting some feedback and this is pre-Internet. This is pre what you and I are doing here on Zoom, the phones. Everybody had cameras that were on their shoulders like they were working for Fox News or Fox Sports. We didn’t have things like this.
People were getting good feedback. When you do an infomercial, 99.5 percent fail and ours didn’t. I guess the short answer is I was very lucky. I had some good training early on. Look, I was trained in Tom Petty and Billy Idol and Annie Lennox and Bruce Springsteen and Stephen Stills. I couldn’t help Stephen and Crosby, Stills & Nash. Stevie Nicks couldn’t help her either.
Anyway, Sean Connery, Shirley MacLaine, Bryce Dallas Howard. My day was pretty full and I was learning, I was hanging around very successful rock stars, TV stars, and movie stars. The conversations aren’t all about fitness. I’m not that kind of get trainer.
It’s like, “Hey, let’s do this exercise,” and just bullshit and talk about life in the world and everything. And so, I was learning from these very successful people like OK, that’s a nugget. I stole so many nuggets from Billy Idol. So many. I trained Tom for 32 years before he passed away.
I was learning a lot just from those folks and I was doing improv classes and I was doing stand-up. I’ve had three different acting coaches. For me, there was a lot of Intel coming in so that I didn’t have those early failures because I had the right people around me. Plus I was with the right kind of folks who are helping me develop these programs.
Hey, man, reality checks came in and they were successful because people were getting results. After a while, you’d make…P90X came along and it was the biggest thing since Jack LaLanne and all this. I’m just riding that wave, but P90X2 didn’t do as well. It was too hard.
Professional Collegiate and Olympic athletes were doing it because we were doing four-ball push-ups. We’re doing levers. We’re doing a push-up called Impossibles which were basically impossible. Super, super proprioceptive balance skill-based stuff. A lot of people come up with me and said P90X2 saved my life.
P90X2 turn me from division one to division three. P90X2 help me be a Marine. P90X2 gave me the physique and strength and ability to be a better skier, a hockey player, ice climber. It was nuts, but we didn’t sell nearly as many. I think the mistake there was…my feeling was P90X was hard.
Then like, let’s see what super-hard. Then, we made P90X3, which was half an hour, got back to basics. Basically, P90X Lite didn’t do as well as P90X, but collectively the whole P90X series — 10, 11, 12. I don’t know how many million were sold, and there’s people that still don’t know them.
Still people hey-dude. I’ve seen this. I see people at the airport, “Just did the upper-power X.” I go, “That thing is like 16 years old. He goes, “Yeah, still works.” Professional football players will come to me. Extended my career in football for five years because of PLYO and because of upper-power X.
Here we are with the Power of Four, my wife and I, it’s a little mom-and-pop thing. I have all this great intel from Kelsey, from my buddy Ted who was a yoga instructor, from Michael. We just talk and chat and experiment, and we’re still going strong.
I wish I could say, yeah, those first three were horrible. I don’t know what I was doing. I was on my mind, I screwed up, but that didn’t really happen to me.