I may be biased here, but I don’t think so.
When I was in college I stumbled – well flipped over my
handlebars actually – onto this theory –
I would routinely observe the “cardio bunnies” all the girls
on the stairclimbers and treadmills –
Sweating away, sleeves pulled up, and Walkman headphones on
(remember those – ahhhh, the good ol’ days…)
Sure, they’d get off the step machines and then go do their
bazillion crunch workout for their strength training and
maybe some of those “innie-outie” machines to “tone” their legs –
But nothing substantial.
And here’s the thing –
They would still look the same, week after week, month after
Sure, they might have lost a couple of pounds but they were
still soft and puffy.
15 years later, when I ran my kettlebell group class studio,
that same mindset was still pervasive among the women.
They wanted to “sweat,” feel like they got “a good workout”
but they balked when we “made” them do strength work.
Many of them wouldn’t show up.
Less than stellar.
(Abbye “Pudgy” Stockton. 5’2″, 115lb. 1940’s Strongwoman.
Lifted heavy weights, including her 185lb husband, Les,
above her head.)
It’s a mindset thing.
When I was in college ALL I cared about was being as big
and strong as possible.
Until I woke up one day and realized that I’d gotten fat.
I entered college at 165lb. 3.5 years later I tipped the
scales at 252lb.
Sure, I was wicked strong, but I was eating anything that
wasn’t nailed down. I’d literally have 3 plates of food
at dinner – then dessert.
So, there’s a balance here.
You have to be careful you don’t get lost in the weeds in
There is a middle ground.
When most people think of strength training – they think of
big fat guys lifting weights –
Not the strong, lean, even wiry Old Time Strongmen of the
late 19th and early 20th century.
(Eugene Sandow – 19th Century Strongman – strength and
health pioneer – advisor to kings and queens of Europe.)
And when you look at these guys – they’re all, for the most
part, really lean.
Did they use today’s fat loss workouts to look that way?
Jumping, bouncing, huffing, puffing, sweating, and sometimes
Not even close.
To a tee, ALL of them trained very heavy, very frequently,
without much, if any fatigue.
Of course, they weren’t tempted with our modern conveniences
of fast food…
So they ate whole, natural foods – meat, fish, poultry, eggs,
fruit, vegetables, and even starches – like potatoes and bread.
(Many times they kept the potatoes and bread many times to
It was so simple.
For “cardio” and “conditioning?”
Those notions didn’t exist.
They just walked.
There are many methods for losing fat – especially with KBs.
And some of them even work predictably.
But many are not simple – too many moving parts (which is fine
if the season in your life is right).
What about you?
Want a SIMPLE way to lose fat?
Then do the following:
1. Focus on getting really strong by using a pair of kettlebells.
2. Use the Old Time Strongman’s diet “secrets” I described
3. And then walk daily.
Certainly not en vogue.
But time tested and proven.
To learn how to effectively use a pair of kettlebells quickly and
safely AND to get really strong and lean in the process –
P.S. Forgot to tell you about the time I flipped over my
handlebars and how that impacted my fat loss programming –
Next time. Gotta run for today…