Nerd Gone Strong! Home Fitness Workout with Kettlebells

by Marianne  - January 9, 2012

Hi everyone,

I am feeling mean today … >)

After having a weekend of rest, this workout was just what my body needed to get kick-started for the week ahead. The meanness I refer to, is the good kind of course – the sort we NEED after the weekend!

Over the last week on Facebook, I have been moaning that I had to get glasses. Β All this computer work has made me realise I cannot deny the problem any longer as the screen has been getting more and more blurred. I’m not sure about them yet, but since they make such a difference, I’ll stick with them πŸ™‚ What do you think – Nerd Gone Strong?

Now on with today’s workout breakdown – please excuse the brevity of it as I need some sleep after my shift last night.

The Workout

There are two sections, both interval training, but they the first section is geared more towards strength exercises and the second section is Tabata … so just a SLIGHT change in pace πŸ˜‰

Section 1

Set your Gymboss Interval Timer for 18 cycles of 20 seconds recovery and 1 min effort. Perform 3 rounds of the following 6 exercises. As usual my reps and weights per exercise are in brackets:

  1. Front Squat to Press to Reverse Lunge (right) (16kg) (6.5, 5, 4.5)
  2. Same on Left (16kg) (6.5, 5.5, 4.5)
  3. Alternating Bent Over Row (20kg) (15, 16, 14)
  4. Super-Duper Plank Climber (feet elevated) (13, 13.5, 11)
  5. Single KB Single-Leg Deadlift (right) (20kg, then 24kg in last round) (15, 16, 13)
  6. Same on Left (same weights) (14, 15, 12)

Now comes the Killer …

Section 2 – TABATA!

Reset your Gymboss Interval Timer for 8 cycles of 10 seconds rest and 20 seconds MAX EFFORT. Complete 4 rounds of the following 2 exercises:

  1. Heavy Kettlebell Swing (I used 2x16kg)
  2. Dynamic Squats

The Tabata killed me! This is the first time in ages since I did double KB swings and it was tough – but in a good way. Wish I had standard KBs to do this with as it would mean a more “comfortable” Lady-like stance (lol).

Have fun with this and I’ll be back soon with more πŸ™‚


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  1. Pingback: 4DAY 84/90 – MYOMY: Nerd Gone Strong
  2. Pingback: DAY 84/90 – MYOMY: Nerd Gone Strong
  3. Hey,
    have recently decided to start kettle bell workout at home, having only done them in classes before, and have falle in love with your site. I decided to be a wimp and only get a 10lb kettle bell but having just done this workout with it i think I may have made the right call! Am totally wiped out but feeling great πŸ™‚
    Thanks sooooo much.

    1. Thank you Karen for the feedback. You will soon progress the weight, but being good at the exercises is more important long term, so stick with the 10lb KB for a while. Well done on completing the workout πŸ™‚

  4. I did this one today at the gym, with their kettle bells and wow ! I used a 15 lb kettlebell for all the exercises and for the swing a 35 lb. You used more than double this weight ! You are so strong, girl !:)

  5. Awesome! Really enjoyed this one. The only change I made was to use a barbell for the rows because my dumbbells don’t really give me enough range of movement. I have, however, bought five “Lucky Dips” for the Lottery this week so with any luck I’ll be ordering my kettle bells soon! LOL

    Oh yes, the tabata was indeed brutal. So thanks for that, really…! πŸ™‚

  6. Pingback: Training Log: January 13th, 2012 | | Strength & Conditioning
  7. Did this workout at the gym…muscle head came up behind me…said “youre crazy”. I wear that with honor. Question, how much barbell training do you do? Glasses look good too.

    1. Tony, it depends. I try to do 2 BB “workouts” a week. The last while, because of my SI Joint and stress, I have only been making it to the gym once a week πŸ™

      Thanks πŸ™‚

  8. Marianne,
    Whew! That was a good one! Perfect mix. And, I like the glasses – I have a similar pair for reading (I actually like the way they look, kinda nerdy but in a good way).

  9. hi marianne,

    the sexiest gluteus on youtube is surly yours! :-))

    great videos, best kettlebell workouts in the net!

    thanks a lot!


  10. Finishing this workout with a Tabata?? Thats just evil!! I was wiped out. Took me a we bit to recover.

    Oh and your glutes and Legs look awesome in your video!

    When my workouts get stale I can always count on you to give me that virtual sucker punch that keeps me motivated. Great stuff.

  11. I just did this workout with some modifications as I am pretty new to this, but I did all 18 rounds of section 1 and all 8 cycles of tabata with about 20 extra seconds of rest half way through. But I am SO proud of myself. This is the first time I didn’t cut it short.
    I used 20 lbs (about 9kg) for the first section, which is challenging for the presses, but not the squats, lunges.
    Squat/Press/Lunge R -7,6,7
    Same L 7,6,7
    Alt Row 36,34, 32
    Plank Climb (NOT elevated, these kill me as is) 13,11,10
    DL R 15,14,15
    DL L 13,14,16
    For the tabata I used 35 lb (almost 16 kg), single and managed about 12 swings and 15 squats per cycle.
    Thank you so much Marianne! Some day I’ll throw around the kind of weight you do.

  12. I’m calling you evil geek after this workout.

    Part A
    1. Front squat to press to rear lunge, L 2 8kg Kb first round then I switched to 1 8kg I did not count
    2. R same as above
    3. Alt Bent row 16 Kg 12kg then the third I combined the 2 I was doing around 22 rounds
    4. Super plank climber did not count 2 rounds elevated the last on the floor
    5. Single leg DL alt 16 Kg and 12kg no counting again I can’t count when I am sweating
    6. russian twist with 12kg last round I used 8kg

    B. Tabata
    1. Double KB swing 7rounds with one 20kg had not done swings with this much weigh so I took it quite easy. Last round I used 2 8kg
    2. skipped I did rope jacks for most of the tabata

    I called you an evil Irish beast. ha! Then when I was finished I corrected myself and called you a beautiful Irish beast.
    Man was I sweating. and that was after being sore from yoga yesterday which I thought was going to be easy. ooohhhff

  13. Pingback: Nerd Gone Strong! Home Fitness Workout with Kettlebells | myomytv … | Increase Your Vertical Jump and Athletics
  14. That looked like a tough session. Especially since the work to rest ratio in the first part was a pretty big difference. Keep up the good work tho!

    Btw, I have to wear glasses too so don’t feel down. And I think u look great in them! πŸ™‚

  15. You look incredible! I’ve been watching your progress off and on and enjoying every second. You look amazng and are a great inspiration. 2012 is when I will get back on track. I’ve been squatting, and have found a good trainer. Throughout most of last year my sciatic nerve was playing up gob time, but I’ve been training my glutes regardless, and am coming out stronger. Your glutes, by the way, are loking amazing. Kudos, lady!! Stay stron and keep inspiring us with your verve and passion πŸ™‚

  16. Happy New Year Marrianne….

    The video does not appear on your site ( Perhaps it’s my computer. Is there another place I can get it?



    PS. The glasses look very nice!

  17. C’mon – these glasses are sexy!
    And let me tell you one thing – I mean, I am the IT bunny, hanging out with the real nerds all day – and we have a saying: If you’re socializing, you’re not a nerd – you’re a geek. So sorry – no nerd gone strong πŸ˜‰ but a geek?

  18. Forget that question Marianne, after watching it I realized your stopping then pressing it is a difference between the two.

  19. I’ll have to try this today, i know how tough the double 12kg are to swing together let alone the 16kg. Lauren Brooks third dvd has a segment that goes from double swings right into double high pulls it’s like the worst 60 seconds of my life every time I do it!! I can tell this is going to be a doosy. I will let you know what I think. Love the glasses by the way, I have them too and my husband finds them sexy!! My question is what is the difference between a front squat to press or a thruster? They seem so similar.

  20. Oh boy, can looks be deceiving… on the outside you are mild mannered, but on the inside… look out! ;-}

    Part A
    1. Front squat to press to rear lunge, R, 12 Kg 10 (I am supposed to count?), 8.5, 10
    2. ” ” Left 12 Kg 9, 9 ,9
    3. Alt Bent row 16 Kg 23, 23, 23
    4. Super plank climber 21, 19.75 (to failure), 19.5
    5. Single leg DL R 16 Kg 19, 20, 22
    6. ” ” L 16 Kg 20, 21, 22

    not too bad… reset gymboss, drank water

    B. Tabata
    1. Double KB swing 2×10 Kg 13, 12, 12, 12
    2. Dyno squats 14, 14, 14, 14

    OMG, for a moment there I didn’t think I’d get through it. Those double swings are way harder — they work my glutes way more and I have to figure out how to get enough room for them between my legs, and I’m using standard bells! I even tried twisting them inwards slightly. For me they are way more effective and torturous! The only good thing was that 20 seconds went by pretty fast! And then those dyno squats… evil glute torture!

    I have DOMS (rare for me) from the last few days (shoulders, biceps and lower quads) so I guess now I’ll be more balanced on the backside.

    The variety is awesome– you always change things up just enough to make it a challenge every time! The longer work load and the-three-for-the-price-of-one (squat-press-lunge) was great. That took concentration and precision.

    Since we’re in a love hate relationship… I hated this Tabata but I can see its good for me, so can I, ouch, have, ooh, more? Just whip me now.

    HR 1.5+ sweat 1 (but I started to sweat more during my cooldown) face – light red.

    Now I’ll go and melt in a nice hot shower!

    ~ Gillian

  21. Wow!! double KB swings. you are an animal! myomy πŸ™‚
    Good workout I really like the single leg deadlifts I seem to incorporate them a lot in my workouts.
    One thing I notice with those which I find strange, is that I have to alternate the legs as I do the deadlifts can’t do one leg then the other, otherwise I lose my balance, some weird brain thing I guess.

  22. Wow!! double KB swings. you are an animal!
    Good workout I really like the single leg deadlifts I seem to incorporate them a lot in my workouts. One thing I notice with those which I find strange, is that I have to alternate the legs as I do the deadlifts, otherwise I lose my balance, some weird brain thing I guess.

  23. AWWWW! I think you look super cute:)I always wanted glasses but my vision has always been very good. I’m not bragging, just saying:) Can’t wait to try this workout. I’m going to do this one Wed since I haven’t done the last workout that you posted yet and I’m looking fwrd to it today!

    1. Okay!
      thruster to lunger l @25lbs:8 8 8
      right:8 8 8
      rows@25lbs:26 26 26
      plank climber: 12 12 12
      deadlift l @35lbs: 20 20 20 same on right
      Now i have 2 35lb bells but didn’t want to atempt to swing them at the same time. I thought i might fall over so I just used one with 13 reps throughout and 15 of the d. squats.
      Question: I know that you have severe back troubles. While doing the rows and the two handed swings my back hurts pretty bad. I installed a mirror in my workout space so I could ensure that my form is correct so it’s not a form issue. Once I build more strength is that going to go away? It really affects the amt of reps I can do at a time. One more thing. I found something called a kettlegaurd on amazon, have you ever used them? I have a serious bruise on my left forearm from doing cleans. Ofcourse I am still working on perfecting my form on those but I was just curious what you thought. I don’t want to spend the 20 bucks if they are crap:) Have a good night!!

      1. My back problems are to do with inflammation, rather than a structural issue, so the pain I feel does not always mean danger. I can’t say the same for you. Do you get this pain any other time, or just when you do these exercises? If it is only these exercises, I would be tempted to say it’s more a form and strength issue. I can’t tell if it is form, because I can’t see you πŸ™ But, I would recommend filming yourself and watching it back rather than a mirror. A mirror can loosen your form and you can often think you look right at the time, but when you watch it on video, you can get a much better idea of what you do wrong. Also, you might watch yourself do a few reps in the mirror and they LOOK good, so you look away, but you can easily forget how it felt. As soon as your eyes wander, your body can’t remember how it felt. Does that make sense?

        I think those arm guard things are ok. Has anyone else here used them, or could advise Trisha? πŸ™‚

      2. It usually starts hurting in the last round and its my lower back. I’m probably just getting tired and ready to be done:) Its not a really bad pain just a sort of dull soreness that putting the bell down usually fixes. Thats why I was thinking it may be just a strength thing because I don’t have that problem doing alt swings with the lighter weights. Just my heavy one. I actualy tried taping myself before but I can’t get the camera angled right, I need a tripod. Other than the soreness in my back, I can feel a definite improvement in my overall strength and endurance, thanks to you:)I even got my boyfriend working out with the bells, but he doesn’t like the intervals for some reason so I usually design him a rep based workout similar to yours. I’m on week 2 my new workout plan and I’ve lost 4lbs! I do your workouts 3-4 times a week and do bodyweight workouts inbetween. Once I get closer to my goal I’ll send you before and after pics, right now I’m still too embarrassed:)Have a good day!

        1. Don’t worry Trisha, I will look forward to hearing your progress. From what you have said, it sounds about right that is is the heavier weight causing this. Maybe lower the weight a little, shorten the reps or interval time for those exercises and gradually build up the endurance there πŸ™‚

          Men GENERALLY hate intervals, because they a) tend to use heavier weights – so fatigue quicker and b) they tend to need more recovery because of point “a”. This is not always the case, but women seem to “like” intervals better. Not always the case, but any guy I have come across here has been this way πŸ™‚

          Keep up the great work, both of you!

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