Mistake #5: Doing Workouts That INCREASE Your Fat Storing Hormones

Conventional wisdom says that you need to work out for an hour. In fact, if you follow the “wisdom” of the US government, you’ll either do 5 hours a week of moderate aerobic exercise or 2.5 hours a week of intense (vigorous) aerobic exercise AND resistance training at least twice a week using all the major muscle groups. (This usually involves a gym membership and the same machine circuit over and over and over again.)

So you’ll need a minimum of 4 hours a week to exercise.

And if you’re anything like most people, trying to carve out 4 hours a week to work out, not including travel time to and from the gym, time to change into your workout gear and shower, working around work schedules, spouse’s schedules, and the kids’ schedules, seems like a pipe dream. In fact, for many, just thinking about that makes you feel stressed out!

Speaking of stress – That’s the problem. 

According to a recent study by the American Psychological Association[1], 72% of Americans report being under some form of external stress.

Furthermore, that excess stress, when left unchecked, can damage your health[2].

What kind of damage?

Just little things like anxiety, depression, heart disease, sleep disorders, substance abuse, accidents, and eating disorders (binge eating, emotional eating, etc.).

Not to mention you’ll get fat. kettlebell-workout-routines-with-too-many-reps-are-bad

More on that in a minute…

First, what most people fail to realize is that working out is a stressor.

You are taxing your body, and in the case of resistance training, damaging your body, to make it grow back stronger.

The problem is when your “stress cup” is already full, your body can’t recover and adapt to your workouts.

That’s where the “workouts make you fatter” thing comes in.

Here’s how it works:

You have two primary stress hormones – cortisol and adrenaline. And when they get out of whack or go haywire, then things get ugly.

See, when you get stressed out, there’s a part of your brain – your hypothalamus – that sends an alarm signal to your body. In response, your body releases adrenaline and cortisol. (This is called the “fight or flight” response.)

Adrenaline increases blood pressure and signals your body to release extra energy (blood sugar) to overcome the potential threat.

Cortisol also mobilizes blood sugar for energy use, and basically shuts down your reproductive and digestive systems.

On the flip side, insulin is released to deal with the excess blood sugar and to return it the body’s cells for storage.

When you experience too much stress, without relief, including self-inflicted workout stress and emotional or psychic stress, your body is placed in a chronic “fight-or-flight” state.

So your sex drive drops and your digestive processes are basically shut down and your insulin levels become chronically elevated.

Among other things, this means your body no longer fully digests your food, so it stores it as excess body fat, which is why you see an increase in belly fat and love-handle fat among other things when you’re over-stressed.

Worse yet, it’s why no matter how hard you workout, you don’t see changes in that belly or love-handle fat. It just never seems to go away.

Great, huh?

Yeah, not really.

So what can you do about it?


I’ve put together a Free Special Report for you, called, “The Top 5 Kettlebell Workout FIXES To DOUBLE Your Fat Loss” that outlines the “fixes” for these 5 Mistakes. You can get a copy here.

If you have any questions, comments, or concerns about kettlebells or kettlebell workouts, feel free to email me at support@kettlebellsecrets.com.

Talk soon.

Geoff Neupert, CSCS
Author, Presenter, Master Kettlebell Instructor





[1] American Psychological Association. “Stress In America.” http://www.apa.org/news/press/releases/stress/index.aspx

[2] STRESS AND HEALTH: Psychological, Behavioral, and Biological Determinants. Annu Rev Clin Psychol. 2005; 1: 607–628. Neil Schneiderman, Gail Ironson, and Scott D. Siegel