You want to get strong and fit, but you don’t have a lot of time to exercise. Give kettlebells just 20 minutes, For people who don’t have space or time or want a real fitness based workout without going sort of “to the Dark Side,” of really heavy lifting, kettlebells might be the your ultimate workout. Even for the more hardcore guys but especially for the beginners they help to incorporate high level concepts into simple terms and exercises.
These cannonball-shaped weights with a handle on top, have been proven to carry more fat fighting and body-toning benefits than doing 30 minutes on the treadmill and 30 minutes of traditional weight lifting! This hyped-up toning session features dynamic, multi-muscle moves. Unlike stationary weightlifting, you swing the kettlebell rhythmically through full-body motions to get your heart rate up fast and engage more muscles, especially in your core. This then turns your workout into a massive fat burner- Tripling your calorie burn up to 400 calories in 20 minutes! That’s what I call EFFICIENT!
It works! Kettlebells are the real deal! I know many people despise them, but I feel it is because they don’t understand the methodology behind them and may not think they are anything special or unique. They ARE wrong! After personally testing it I can tell you this. It is definitely one of the top 10, all-time tools for physical strength endurance and incredible workouts.
The kettlebell allows you to get both muscle stimulating strength work, explosive speed building work and incredible endurance work all at the same time. That means it fits perfectly within our “out of the ordinary” conditioning style here at PFC. They stimulate the muscles, and blow the cardio out of the water without taking away from strength! Sounds IDEAL to me!
Unlike a dumbbell, where the weight is equally balanced when you hold it, a kettlebell is asymmetrical. Your hand is set away from the heaviest part of the kettle bell, so you work harder and activate more muscles.
Handle: Most common spot to hold, so you can swing the bell and pass it from hand to hand.
Horns: Alternative or Swap grip, especially if you’re holding the bell upside down.
Base: The heaviest part of the bell – Gripping it here provides more stability.
SO LET’S TRY THEM!
WHAT YOU’LL NEED:
A kettlebell, I am using an 8.8-pound (4 kg) kettlebell ($29.95 at spri.com)I recommend between 8-26 lbs for this routine. You’ll also need a watch or timer, as well as space to swing your arms freely on all sides, including overhead (about 4 square feet).
3 OR 4 DAYS A WEEK:
Do 20 minutes of cardio, such as brisk walking, or jogging, lap swimming, dancing, or bike riding. You should exercise at an intensity at which you’re breathing hard but can still speak in short sentences. Do cardio on the same day as kettlebells for the best workouts or on alternate days for shorter workouts.
Watch portions and fill up on whole grains, vegetables, fruits, lean protein, and healthy fats to maximize results. Just good advice AYE? Weird…
KETTLEBELL GROUND RULES
Keep shoulders back and down, chest lifted, hips under.
CONTRACT YOUR CORE
Bellybutton to Spinal Cord! Before beginning each move, tighten your ab muscles as if someone threw very cold water on your belly. Maintain this contraction throughout the exercise, but don’t hold your breath!
STAY IN CONTROL AND KEEP IT SMOOTH!
Move rhythmically, but don’t fling the weight.
(2 minutes) Stand with feet hip-width apart for all three exercises. You can do these with a lighter kettlebell (or dumbbell) or no weight at all if you want to ease into the workout more slowly.
THE HALO TARGETS ABS & BACK
Hold kettlebell upside down by horns with both hands, arms overhead (A). Keeping shoulders down, chest forward, and abs tight, rotate torso from waist in a circle to the left (B). Kettlebell should make small, controlled “halos” overhead. Repeat for 20 seconds (about 6 circles), then switch directions.
HALF SQUAT TARGETS HIPS, BUTT, AND THIGHS
Hold kettlebell by horns with both hands in front of chest (A). Shift weight onto heels, bend knees and hips, and sit back, as if lowering halfway into a chair (B). Press into heels and stand back up. Repeat for 40 seconds (about 40 squats).
ROUND THE WORLD TARGETS SHOULDERS AND ARMS
Hold handle in left hand, arms at sides. Swing weight around back and pass kettlebell to right hand behind you (A). Continue circling around front, passing it back to left hand (B). Repeat counter-clockwise for 20 seconds (about 12 circles). Switch directions for another 20 seconds.
SQUAT AND SWING TARGETS HIPS, BUTT, AND THIGHS
Stand with feet more than hip-width apart and hold handle with both hands, arms down, palms in. Sit back into a squat (A). Then press into heels, straighten legs, and thrust hips explosively upward to swing kettlebell up to shoulder height (B). Keep wrists in line with forearms. (Arms and shoulders should move as levers, rising and falling with momentum, as hips do the work. You are not necessarily lifting the bell, more of popping it up.) Keep your Stomach TIGHT! As weight swings back between legs, drop hips back into a squat. Repeat for 1 minute (about 45 swings). Next do single-arm swings, passing kettlebell from hand to hand at the top of each swing, for 1 minute (about 44 swings).
LUNGE AND LOOP TARGETS ARMS, ABS, BUTT, AND LEGS
Bend knees, lowering toward floor, as you pass kettlebell under front leg to left hand (A).
Then pass it over leg to right hand as you straighten legs (B).
Continue for 30 seconds (about 18 loops), then reverse arm direction for 30 seconds. Switch legs and repeat.
PIVOT AND POINT TARGETS SHOULDERS AND BACK
Stand with feet hip-width apart, palms together (prayer position) with handle hooked over thumbs, arms extended overhead (A).
Turn on heels so entire body faces right side. (Keep head up, shoulders back, abs tight, and back straight.)
At the same time, lower arms to shoulder height (base will rest on wrists) (B). Turn back to center, raising arms overhead. Repeat to left side. Alternate sides for 1 minute (about 20 reps).
SQUAT CATCH + PRESS TARGETS SHOULDERS, ARMS, LEGS
Sit back into a squat (A), then press into heels and stand up. Use the momentum created by the hip thrust to help pull weight up (elbows will bend out to sides as you lift bell).
As weight reaches chest height, slide hands down to grab base (a slight tossing motion) (B). Press weight overhead (C), then lower it to starting position, sliding hands back to handle. Repeat for 1 minute (about 20 reps).
WINDMILL TARGETS SHOULDERS, BACK, AND ABS
Bend at waist to left and lower kettlebell toward left shin (B). Imagine you are standing between two panes of glass to keep body in line; don’t roll forward or back.
Slowly stand up, using core muscles to lift. Repeat for 1 minute (about 20 reps), then switch sides.
“There you have it! If you haven’t given kettlebells a try you might be missing one of the key ingredients to taking yourself to the next level. Here at Premier Fitness Camp in Utah we are a fitness retreat that teaches you the most effective ways to reshape your body! Plus these kettlebells are fun, addictive little toy that’s also good for you. They have been some very enjoyable workouts for me and once you start swinging that little thing around sometimes its hard to stop!” ~Leah
Leah Britt, holds a Bachelors Degree in Clinical Nutrition and Health Science from Southern Utah University where she was a collegiate athlete. She is certified by International Sports Science Association and The National Academy of Sports Medicine as Personal Trainer.
Leah uses an individual approach to achieving optimal wellness for each and every client. “We are all unique”- no two people have the same metabolism, biochemical make-up, health concerns, behavioral issues or nutritional needs. Failing to address these issues when designing a nutrition and fitness program can lead to poor results and frustration. Leah’s focus is on helping her clients set realistic goals and to achieve lifelong health and wellness.