Lady Marmalade Meets Kettlebells!

by Marianne  - August 11, 2010

Hi everyone,

As promised I am back with a new workout. Oh and a new cat too LOL Welcome Marmalade 🙂

Over the course of the last few months, I have been conscious of how beginners may feel when they see my workouts. I have also been asked to make a workout specifically for beginners. When I thought about what a Kettlebell Fitness workout would be like for beginners, I could only think of a few things I would adapt – and none of those are necessarily the exercises themselves. Other than not putting in technical KB exercises like cleans, snatches and Turkish Get Ups, the “basic” or foundation exercises are all the same no matter what your level.

Take for example a body weight workout, like the Beginners Body Weight Workout I did a few months back. The exercises are the same as ones I still use now, but I modify them to suit my level. Take a push up – if you’re a beginner you maybe only do a partial movement or perform the exercise from your knees until you have the strength to do a full push up from your toes. Advancing the exercise further involves adding different tempos or force to it, like the explosive or clapping push up is an advanced version – but the principles always remain the same.

Anyway, I chose 5 exercises that are “low injury risk”, which is a good place to start if you are a beginner. BUT for those of you who are regulars or who are advanced KB users, don’t you be shying away from this workout because you think it’ll be too easy! I dare you to decrease rest time, decrease tempo in places, add more rounds or increase the weight. These types of KB exercises make up the bulk of Andrew’s KB classes and they are by no means easy! Because if it’s a fitness class/workout, people need to be able to pick up technique quickly, so as not to slow the pace down. That makes this workout great for fitness, fat loss and muscle tone which, let’s face it, most of us want from a workout anyway. Although I love a good technically challenging workout, I think that you can achieve great results by using these exercises below.

There are two parts to this workout, the first section is timed and the second section is interval training. So as usual I timed the workout using my Gymboss Interval Timer as a stopwatch, and I performed 3 rounds of the following 5 exercises:

  1. KB Halo x15 reps one direction and 15 reps the opposite direction
  2. Two-handed KB Swing – timed for 30 – 60 seconds (depending on your level)
  3. KB Goblet Squats x 15 reps
  4. KB Single Arm Row (right then left) x 15 reps each side
  5. KB Reverse Lunge (right then left) x 15 reps each side

I used my 12kg Kettlebell for the halos and my 16kg for the rest of the exercises. This section took just under 18 minutes. Had a mishap with the timer LOL

I then reset the Interval Timer for 5 cycles of 15 seconds rest and 45 seconds Max effort and I performed the following medley of Kettlebell Swings:

  1. Kettlebell Single Arm Swings (right)
  2. KB Single Arm Swings (left)
  3. KB 2-Handed Swings
  4. KB Alternating Swings
  5. KB Vertical Swing (although not technically a swing, but it’s hard work)

This workout should leave you in a sweat no matter if you’re beginner, intermediate or advanced 🙂

Hope you all enjoy today’s workout.

For those of you who love a KB Challenge, I am working on very something special, so stay tuned 😀



Get the free guide just for you!


Work That Bootie - Ulitmate Glute Workout

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked

  1. Pingback: Kettlebells for Beginners and Experts Alike | | Free Fitness Blog | Duend'art
  2. Thank you so much for responding to my comment Marianne, I really appreciate it, i’m sorry but I have one more question, well three 🙂 I have an issue with a knee because i’m so overweight and i’m only 5’2, i also have issues with the ball of one foot and the heel of another (ugh), the dr suggested I don’t run often, i enjoy running actually but i find that if i run like 4 miles my knee starts to give out, i do want to keep the run maybe to once or twice a week, how often do you suggest i should exercise? and which ones of your workouts are better for burning fat? I currently use a 15lb kb, when do I increase the weight? should I start using two 15lb? I see that in some of your videos, What is the best time to workout? I have a 20 month old boy so I try to fit in my workout when he’s napping or at night time when he’s sleeping but some people say its best at night and some say its best in the am.

    1. Miriam,

      Thank you so much for asking me to clarify all these things for you. Not meaning any offence, but it seems you are a good example of how confusing all the masses of information is. When you exercise, best workouts for fat loss, how often to exercise. I totally understand your confusion and it is very frustrating that things are made so darn complicated, when they don’t have to be.

      Some people prefer to “follow” a set programme that tells them what and when to eat, and what exercises will get them the results they want etc. I am not saying that this is wrong, or that they don’t see results. But I do think everyone has to find what ACTUALLY works best for them IN THE LONG RUN. So, I can tell you that, without a shadow of a doubt, you will lose more body fat by remembering a few simple “rules”:

      1) You can exercise whenever YOU want. Especially since you have a young child, you will be under enough pressure to find time as it is without worrying about when you are supposed to train. So, work with your energy levels, motivation and your baby’s naps 🙂 I would recommend trying to do some sort of activity at least 5 days a week; whether that be a brisk walk, swim, cycle (all better for your foot issues – there is no need to run if it causes you pain – you can always take up running again when you are stronger, fitter and have lost more weight). Gradually add in resistance training with the KBs. This will help your muscle tone, stability, co-ordination, strength and your overall energy levels, without the impact on your feet (just adapt the jumping exercises so as not to annoy your joints. As you grow stronger this will be less of an issue). In summary, build up to KBs 2-3 times per week, other activity 2 times per week and see how you get on with that.

      2) I would describe ALL of my workouts as potential fat loss workouts. I say “potential” because whether a workout is going to give you the results you are after, you need to be in a slight calorie deficit. If you are eating better (without an extreme calorie deficit) and you are putting your max effort into your training, you should see good results. If you want to make it even better, then I would recommend setting yourself the goal to become progressively stronger. For example now you are using 15lbs, but once you feel that becoming too easy for espcially the swings, rows, squats etc, then I would advise you to actually buy a heavier KB, rather than buy another 15lber. The 15lber is fine for you to get good at the basics, but the ultimate goal should be to build on that. 15lbs will not be that beneficial for building enough muscle to allow more fat burning. So I would go to 22lbs or, for better value buy a 26lber (as this will last you longer). If you increase to a heavier weight, you will benefit more due to more effort being needed to actually train with it AND it will help give your body more muscle to burn calories at rest.

      The interval training workouts and Mix N Match ones are good to really increase the intensity, but for a beginner I would recommend staying with the selected workouts in the Beginner’s Corner, practicing the exercises in the tutorial section for about 6-8 weeks. Supplementing these workouts with other activities and a smarter diet will work best 🙂

      3) If you feel yourself becoming confused by “what some people say”, then never hessitate to come and ask here me. Most people over complicate things and I like to keep things simple.

      Hopefully this answers your questions.

  3. Hi Marianne,

    I recently found your blog and started with kettlebells and I cannot thank you enough for posting these work outs. I have tried other workout videos before and i love yours the best. Are you able to provide maybe some guidance for me? There is an overwhelming amount of information on the internet now a days that frankly is intimidating and im not sure where to start with my weight loss journey. I am currently 29 years old, and weigh 165. I have been exercising on and off for about 2 years and I actually was a 15 lbs heavier. What do you recommend as far as workouts go? I enjoy running so im alternating right now, one day run and one day kb. I watch what I eat, but I dont starve myself, what do you reccommend as far as nutrition goes, some people say high protein, low carbs before 2p.m, some say no carbs at all? Do I need to start taking any type of supplements? Any type of feedback or recommendations you give me would be very much appreciated, keep up the great work!!!

    1. Hey Miriam. Thanks for the comment. You are right that there is so much information out there it is impossible to know what will work for you. The fact that you have already lost weight is great, but in order to get you to a place you are happy with, the biggest factor will be increasing the resistance training. I would advice you to focus on building strength and gradually progress the weights that you use for your training. Keep your long runs to maybe 1 or 2 a week and do intervals/sprint training the rest of the time. This way you will be more likely to burn fat, rather than muscle. Remember it’s not “weight” you want to lose, it’s fat. You also need to ensure you feed the muscle you are building, so don’t do anything extreme with your diet like cutting out food groups. I don’t even believe that you need to take supplements, unless you are deficient in something.

      For me I do a thing called Intermittent Fasting, were I don’t eat from about 9pm until 1pm the next day. So essentially I miss breakfast. I always train in the morning during my fast and then come lunch time I eat a large balanced meal. I also snack a little until I have my second big meal around 7pm, then I usually have a little wine and another snack. I don’t restrict the foods that I eat because I have tried all that and hated it! I love my food, but also make sure that my training is good. I train for stength now and my body loves it 🙂

      I train for strength 1-2 times per week in the gym (for 1 hour at the most), then I do these conditioning workouts on the site 2-3 times per week. They only last about 20 – 45 mins, so I get to enjoy my free time and not sit and worry about training more. This is enough to maintain my body that way I like it, and I am also seeing more improvements since I started increasing the heavier strength training in the gym. More weights work!

      Focus more on your training for a while and be less strict with diet. That I feel takes a lot of stress out of the equation and allows the body to function better. Be sensible with the amount you eat but don’t go to any extremes. Just do what makes you feel healthy and happy.

      I hope this helps 🙂

  4. Hi Marianne. Love your fur baby! I’m so happy that I found your site. I was looking for a way to start working out with kettlebells, then I found you on Youtube! I just finished this workout and loved it. Thank you for sharing all of your knowledge and experience!

    1. Hey Noelle,

      I am happy to help 🙂 This is what the site is all about. I know a lot of people are curious about Kettlebells, but don’t know what to do with them on their own. So, I thought I’d provide these workouts, to spread the KB love LOL

      Wee Marmalade has got a new nickname that suits her personality much better … “Squirt” LOL she’s such a wee rascal! Not a lady at all.


  5. Hi Marianne,
    Great workout. I’m giddy about trying out the kettlebells. I’m shopping around for a class on practical instruction. I’ll buy them and try it but feel a class would serve me better. My concern is my wrist,bringing the kettlebell up over my head and such. Is there a technique? So delighted to have found your website. It’s refreshing.
    Thanks again.
    Minnie V. in NYS 🙂

    1. Hi Minnie V, When shopping for a KB I would look for one that doesn’t have too short a handle. A lot of the more “commercial” KBs have the handle too short, so when the KB is in the rack position (tucked by your side between your forearm and bicep) the bell part sits on your wrist instead. This will only hamper your technique for many of the lifts and will also hurt your wrist bone. The rack position is crutial to all KB exercises, so I would advise going to a specialist KB provider and seek their advice.

      Once the KB sits in the correct position, then with regard to technique for lifting the bell over the head etc, it should always fall to the forearm side. Since you are totally new to Kettlebells then seeking advice from a professional KB Instructor is a good idea. Once you have mastered the basics, then you can challenge yourself further with my workouts. It’s a pity you live so far away, because Andrew is an Advanced KB Instructor and teaches here in Ireland.

      I wish you well with getting your first Kettlebell 😀


    1. Thankyou Gwen. When I look back over the months I can see a big improvement in my form. Dispite the workout not containing any technical lifts, it still was challenging as a fitness workout. I actually really enjoyed simplifying things again. Cheers

{"email":"Email address invalid","url":"Website address invalid","required":"Required field missing"}

You may be interested in