By Guy Lawrence
You get to meet a lot of people when working in a gym environment. Your die-hards for instance who train to excess, rain, hail or shine trying to figure out different ways they can isolate their biceps to get the perfect guns (flexed arms). But most people I find here at the Uni (where I work) are there to shake off those stubborn pounds of extra body fat! They do mention their health sometimes, but it’s a distant 2nd compared to shape and size.
I have noticed over the years that the majority of people don’t physically change regardless of how hard they are working! I always here moans and groans that ‘I’m buggered if can lose weight’, and ‘This exercise malarky is a load of b@$%^*&^s’!
But here’s the secret, they are missing the two magic ingredients to shred fat fast:
Magic Ingredient No. 1: Progressive Exercise Training
I always hear ‘But I never have enough time…’ and when they finally get their butt to the gym they spend hours making up for lost time. This is uneffective and definitely not progressive. One of the most time effective styles of training I’ve seen is with the use of a kettlebell and once you have the fundamental kettlebell exercise honed ‘the kettlebell swing’, you will see results in no time!
Below is a quick video of myself & Tarek of Australian Institute of KettleBells chatting about what it actually is.
Benefits of the Kettlebell Swing
- Whole body workout in a short space of time
- Generates rapid fat loss
- Developes strength & flexibility simultaneously
- Generates functional strength results
- A variation & a change up to traditional ways of training
- Cuts out boredom
- Develops core strength
- Creates total body symmetry
Don’t get carried away with this, just keep it simple. With every training session ask yourself if you can do a little bit more than the last session, this makes it progressive. What’s really cool with this is that when you are fully swinging you will be able to knock out a session in under 15 minutes!
KettleBell Swing Prescription
Ideally keep your kettlebell session to every 3rd day, i.e. Monday, Thursday, Sunday, Wednesday etc.
The first thing you do is warm up a little, skip for 5 minutes (or whatever will make you sweat).
If you have never swung a kettlebell before, start off with the appropriate weight:
- Male: 12kg KettleBell
- Female: 8kg KettleBell
REMEMBER: Technique first! Get this right before raising the intensity.
Once you have your technique correct, your goal is 100 consecutive kettlebell swings. In the beginning you’ll find this difficult if not impossible. Let’s say you run out of puff after 25 swings, take a 1 minute rest and start swinging again. This time you only complete 17 full kettlebell swings, take 1 minute rest. Now you are buggered and can only do 10 kettlebell swings. You have done 3 sets at a total of 52 kettlebell swings.
End your session here and only do 3 sets, this will ensure you don’t overdo it in your early kettlebell experience. When the next session comes around go for it again. Even if you only do one more total swing than the last session, it is now a progressive exercise which is all that matters. You will soon be able to complete the 100 kettlebell swings in two sets, and eventually one set!
Once you have achieved this, go up a weight. If you were swinging an 8kg kettlebell, move to 12kg. If you were swinging a 12kg kettlebell, move to 16kg, and so on, and so on…
Make no mistake though, once you have the technique down, you will be making it progressive by making the session more intense, not longer. This is no picnic! Are you ready for the challenge?
Magic Ingredient No. 2: An unprocessed diet
I’m going to keep this one short as we will be blogging a lot more about this in the future. But I believe that up to 80% of your body composition comes from the food we eat. Just think about that for a moment… 80%….’cause that’s actually good news for you! Why? Believe it or not, no matter how hectic our life is, with a little organisation you can control what you put in your mouth. If you don’t apply this I guarantee you will be on struggle street.
Along with the kettlebell swings, be disciplined with the food you put in your mouth 24 hrs a day and that excess body fat will fall off.
So what do I eat?
Apply the KISS principle. You have to ‘keep it simple’. The first thing you do is keep it as NATURAL as possible. I can’t stress this enough!
I follow a natural high fat, moderate protein & low carb regime. I eat mainly from the list below. Since I’ve been doing this I can now see my abs.
- Unprocessed meats, avoid corn fed and eat grass fed
- Ocean fish. (I’m eating lots of flathead cooked in coconut oil & butter)
- Non caged eggs and some dairy. (Definitely not flavoured!)
- Nuts & seeds (180 Natural Protein SuperFood)
- Lots of veggies and leafy greens
- No grains or bread & as little starch & gluten as possible!! (This a must)
- The only fruit i’m eating are berries and strawberries.
- And NO SUGAR!
If you can be as creative as possible with the above, along with the kettlebell swings, your excess body fat will fall off. I dare you to try it for 1 month & see what happens. But if you do, you must be 100% committed. Have the mindset of an athlete training for the Olympics and you have 1 month to go. So no half measures!
Nutrition is a monster topic and I’ve kept this section simplistic I know. In saying that, with the amount of books out there on the topic, I can I highly recommend one which I have reviewed here.
Or you can simply buy the book here. Primal Body, Primal Mind by Nora Gedgaudas.
With the right mindset and applied knowledge, you will be amazed at what you can achieve in no time at all!
If you want to improve your kettlebell skills, I can highly recommend the boys over at Australian Institute of KettleBells. They run national courses across the country. I’ve done one and they are fantastic!