My "After" photo
Now that I am finished with Kettlebell Burn, I thought I would write a comprehensive review of this program.
First off, this training program works to burn fat. During the process, you will also gain strength and endurance. But the biggest benefit is that it burns tons of fat. When I first started this program, I was weighing in over 190 pounds and my body fat in the mid to upper 20’s (estimated). At the completion of the program, I was at 170 pounds. I didn’t measure my body fat since I don’t have any calipers (I wish I did). However, I feel like my body fat percentage was at least cut in half. This program is the most effective method of burning fat that I have used.
I feel that there are two main areas that are needed to be successful during this program – Dedication and Nutrition
During this program, you need to be dedicated. The program must be followed exactly. No modifications or additions. This was a hard concept to buy into. Before this program, I just finished Enter The Kettlebell program and was training about 5 to 6 days a week. With KB Burn, the training sessions are only three days a week. My first thought was how could I burn fat by only training three days a week? Even during the first week I was wondering if this was going to work. I thought maybe I should throw in another training session. Through the direction of Geoff Neupert, I stuck to the program of working three days a week and with NO modifications – even when I was temped to do more.
Here’s the deal. The days you are training are going to be hard! The days you are not training are to be used to recover. Without the recover days, then the training days will not be as intensive and therefore, the amount of fat burning will be reduced. Now the recover days should not be plopped down in front of the television watching “The Biggest Loser” (ha – another hot topic). Don’t get me wrong, there were “recover” day where I wanted to sleep all day. However, the key is doing some type of active recovery. On my recover days, I would take my dog for a long walk. I would focus on making sure my hips were loose. I would also try go get in some stretching and some work on the foam roller (ouch).
I also kept an accurate record of my training sessions. In KB Burn, there are sheets included to track your progress. I highly recommend keeping up with this. This was key with me and my dedication. Every week, I would try to improve on the number of sets or reps within the given time. And of course, always made sure that my form was not slipping. Without writing down what you did before makes it difficult to know exactly what you did. I printed out several training session logs and placed them in a small binder. Also included in my binder was a print out of the exercises in each training session. This made training a no brainer. I didn’t have to think or remember what exercises are with Training Session A.
Nutrition is another key to this program. Geoff makes some good recommendations in KB Burn. Following his recommendations will yield some positive results. First thing to remember to be successful in any fat burning program, a person must burn more calories than what they consume. With KB Burn, each training session will be hard work and you will be hungry immediately after. Without a nutrition plan, it is possible that you could eat a ton and gain weight in this program. Don’t get me wrong, there were days when my nutrition wasn’t the best. I stuck to the 80% rule. Under this rule, I would keep to my nutrition plan about 80% of the time. The other 20% would be what ever I wanted. Every once in a while I’ve got to have a cheese burger and french fries from In-N-Out. So remember to treat yourself.
So here is a typical nutrition plan that I used during the week. I tend to keep this plan Monday through Friday. I modify this a bit on the weekends (80% rule):
Morning – eggwhites, fruit, a piece of Ezekiel sprouted bread, coffee, water – Sometimes I would substitute coffee with Advocare Spark.
Mid-Morning – Oatmeal, fruit
Lunch (before training) – chicken breast, salad
After Training – protein shake
Afternoon snack – almonds, yogurt, fruit
Dinner – lean protein (chicken, pork tenderloin, fish, turkey), steamed veggies
That is about it. A few things to remember. Drink water. Always carry a water bottle everywhere you go. Make it a priority to plan for your meals throughout the week. If you have everything planned, it makes it easy. When you are hungry and you did not have a plan, you will tend to eat anything – usually bad stuff. Last thing, don’t freak out if you go off the wagon once in awhile. Remember the 80% rule and get back to your plan.
Other key thing to get is a timer. I used the Gymboss http://www.gymboss.com/ This makes the intervals easy to keep track. It is also easy to keep track of the 10 minute part of the training session. Last thing you want to do is to go over the 10 minutes.
Kettlebell size – Make sure that you are challenging yourself. Determine what size your 10 rep max would be. Also, keep track on how the difficulty of each training session. In my training log, I write down a number from 1 to 10 on how difficult the session was. If the sessions are getting easy, then it may be time to move up in size.
In the first few weeks, your grip will start to fail during the swing intervals. Keep it up and make sure you have good form. Your grip will improve. You will also do a ton of Turkish Get Ups. Love or hate them (I love them), they will strengthen your core and shoulders. You will notice the benefits later on during the program. Trust me. You will also not be doing any snatches until week 7. However, you will be performing various exercises during the first 6 weeks to increase your strength, especially for the snatch. You will be surprised.
The KB Burn is a great program to loose fat and gain strength. If you have any questions, feel free to ask.
If you choose to do this program, good luck and train hard.