Even The Quickest, Most Basic Kettlebell Workout Will Melt Your Fat Off Like Butter
There was a study done by Ace Fitness, led by John Porcari, Ph.D., and Chad Schnettler, M.S., at the University of Wisconsin, La Crosse Exercise and Health Program. After taking baselines of their test subjects (another word for guinea pigs) based on a treadmill workout and a five-minute snatch routine, these 10 kettlebell-experienced volunteers, male and female, between the ages of 29-46, performed a 20-minute basic kettlebell snatch routine. A 12kg, 16kg, or 20kg kettlebell was used, depending on gender, weight, and experience level of each subject.
If you don’t feel like doing the math, we’ve done it for you. This workout will cost you 404 calories. And they can keep the change… because, don’t forget, that your body will continue to burn some calories for some time after your workout.
Here are the 20-minute workout details:
- Basic warmup
- Snatches for 15 seconds – dominant hand
- Rest for 15 seconds
- Snatches for 15 seconds – other hand
- Rest for 15 seconds
- Do the above set 20 times
- Cool down for 5 minutes
It doesn’t sound like much, does it? Well, looks can be deceiving.
The volunteers who performed the workout above had their heart rates monitored at 60-second intervals, as well as a blood lactate test immediately after the workout was completed.
During the 20-minute workout, the subjects burned an average of 272 calories, in addition to the calories burned as a result to the anaerobically. Based on estimated oxygen consumption, they burned an average of 13.6 calories per minute aerobically. Based on the blood lactate measurements, an additional 6.6 calories per minute were burned anaerobically. Total, they were burning at least 20.2 calories per minute, which is about the same as running at a 6-minute mile pace. With this simple snatch routine, you will burn more calories than cross-country skiing uphill at a fast pace.
If you don’t feel like doing the math, we’ve done it for you. This workout will cost you 404 calories. And they can keep the change… because, don’t forget, that your body will continue to burn some calories for some time after your workout. It may not be like the 400+ calories, but consider these calories freebies.
But that’s not all, folks!
The average HR (Heart Rate) during this workout was between 86 and 99 percent of the kettlebell HR max for all subjects (fig. 1). The average HR was 93%, but some averaged 99%.
The treadmill VO2 max was 23% higher (38.9 ml/kg/min vs. 31.6 ml/kg/min) than the VO2 max from the kettlebell VO2 max (tab. 1).
Why is this routine so effective? Snatches involve the movement of the entire body, not like an isolated muscle exercise such as the infamous bicep curl. Pair the whole body movement with the fact that it was done very quickly due to the interval-training approach, and you have a killer 20-minute workout.
Of course, you shouldn’t do this workout every day. You should vary your routine sometimes. You’ll lose more weight in this routine, which is of a much higher-intensity workout than the standard weight training routine. Better still, you’ll also be giving yourself a workout that improves your aerobic capacity.
So, there are no excuses. If you’d like to burn an additional 400+ calories a day, take out twenty minutes and your kettlebell, put on your wristwraps, and get to work!