The following workouts are for those who know how to use a kettlebell safely and can execute all of the foundation movements (Swing, squat, press, clean) with clean and effective technique.
Sometimes 20 minutes is all you have to get a workout in rather no workout at all, that’s great! What’s even greater is 20 minutes is still plenty of time to get an effective workout, especially with minimal equipment even if all you have is a kettlebell and your own bodyweight! Whenever I’m in this situation I have a few go-to kettlebell conditioning circuits I love to run to make sure I’m not wasting my time. Complete these workouts anywhere using limited space even if you’re limited to just your home.
Knowing your working weight is important for these workouts ladies and gents, so be honest with yourself and use the appropriate weight to challenge yourself.
Kettlebell Full Body Workout #1
Get a proper but brief warmup in and prepare for a 20 minute every minute on the minute full body workout. You’re going to complete a set of the following on your non-dominant arm first then complete another set on your dominant arm on the next minute:
Start your timer and hike your kettlebell and begin to do 1 swing, 1 clean, 1 squat, 1 press, and 5 pushups on your non dominant arm. This normally takes around 20-30 seconds depending on fatigue. You are resting until the start of the next minute and then completing another set on your dominant arm. Alternate arms every minute on the minute for 20 minutes. Once you complete 20 minutes that is the end of your workout and you just burned an effective amount of calories in a short amount of time and will continue to burn more calories over the next couple of days due to *EPOC
If you have more than 20 minutes and want to do more on top this workout I would invite some pull ups, farmer carries, and any accessory work you may need to the workout as well.
Kettlebell Full Body Workout #2
This workout is a cardio effective combo between pushups and kettlebell swings:
Start with 10 kettlebell swings then do 1 pushup
then do 9 kettlebell swings and 2 pushups
8 swings/3 pushups
7 swings/4 pushups
6 swings/5 pushups
5 swings/6 pushups
4 swings/7 pushups
3 swings/8 pushups
2 swings/9 pushups
1 swing/10 pushups
Take small breaks where you need to when completing this workout, and also time yourself and see how long it takes you to complete 1 round. Start the 2nd round in the reverse order of 10 pushups/1 swing and work your way home from there. This workout should take 20 minutes and is an absolute killer for the duration of work you’re putting in.
Kettlebell Full Body Workout #3
Simple and Sinister is what some will know this workout as. It’s a classic kettlebell workout/challenge created by Pavel Tsatsouline the founder and chairman of Strongfirst, inc. In this kettlebell challenge you are to complete 100 single arm kettlebell swings and 10 turkish getups!
100 single arm swings (50/50) 10/10 on the minute with 5 minutes on the clock
followed by 1 minute of rest
10×1 turkish getups performed with 10 minutes on the clock.
Now the challenge in this workout comes from the weight. There are 2 difficulties to this workout and yes you guess it simple and sinister:
The SIMPLE goal
Get-up Weight Swing Weight
Women – 16kg 24kg
Men – 32kg 32gkg
The SINISTER goal
Getup Weight Swing Weight
Women – 24kg 32kg
Men – 48kg 48kg
If the simple version is too hard that should be goal to work towards. Don’t force what isn’t there and earn you way through simple and sinister and share the journey with me on instagram @MikeMonti_. Always love to see other progressing with their kettlebell work.
*EPOC – Excess Post Oxygen Consumption is big fancy talk for an elevated metabolism. Due to the short duration/high intensity of these kettlebell workouts, the body increases its intake of oxygen and begins the process of recovery immediately. Meaning your body is burning more calories while you’re recovering. The EPOC effect is greatest soon after the exercise is completed and decays to a lower level over time. One experiment found EPOC increasing metabolic rate to an excess level that decays to 13% three hours after exercise, and 4% after 16 hours.
Take your friend Bob for example who runs 45 minutes of steady state cardio on a treadmill, he’s only increasing his caloric expenditure for that 45 minutes and will go back to his normal metabolic rate post run. Kettlebell workouts give you the rewarding blend of strength work and cardio training together and with these short but intense workouts you can burn significantly more calories than Bob and look like a majestic warrior over the summer while Bob looks the same. Sorry Bob.