Kettlebell, I’m Lovin’ It.

kettlebell_loveWith today’s yoga (and tomorrow’s rest), I’ve now completed week 3 of the Skogg Kettlebell System.

As the week progressed, I was introduced to Level 2 for the Intervals routine. And as with Roots, Level 2, I’m just amazed how quickly this gets difficult, by simply adding another 30 seconds to each move.

Technique-wise, the snatch remains my least fluid move. And so, with it comes the greatest risk for poor form related injury. On occasion, I have performed the move correctly, and I can feel the difference when doing so. As with any repetitive athletic effort, muscle memory is the key.

I’m also now fully committed to using the 12 kg bell for all the moves. The only exception for now is I am using the 16er for the squats in Roots. I have to say, it’s difficult to imagine extending these sets another 30 seconds with these weights. Toward the end of the routines, I’m having to really focus to keep all my muscles engaged so I don’t spaghetti-arm the weight. Looking ahead on the calendar, I see I’m not asked to move up to Level 3 until mid week 7. I expect strength, endurance and technique (efficiency) will continue to improve so that 4 weeks from now, what seems impossible will prove doable.

Things I find interesting with respect to this workout, thus far:

  • The core is a huge factor. I started this program with a pretty fit core. But it’s my core/abs that’s feeling it the most. Particularly with the squats.
  • I’m used to workouts that alternate each day focusing on different muscle groups. Now, with the kettlebells, every single muscle is engaged in every routine (including muscles in my feet). The whole-body soreness that follows is a new, weird feeling.
  • Initially, I was very, very sore. Now, with the very good post workout stretch routines in the Skogg program and my own use of yoga on stretch days, I’m not very sore at all. And, more importantly, I’m not tightening up.
  • Only 3 weeks in, I’m feeling stronger. Everywhere. Arms, legs, shoulders and back.

I’m really enjoying this program so far. For the first time in ages I am actually looking forward to my daily workout. I enjoy learning a new skill. And I love how I feel almost weightless after I put down the bell at the end of a routine.

Backpacking this weekend. We’ll see how this all translates into real world performance.

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