Faster Results = Bodyweight + Kettlebell Exercises

Last time I wrote about my training advances by forgoing kettlebell exercises and instead using primarily bodyweight exercises only.

That got me to thinking – why don’t I give you some ideas for bodyweight training that you could do either in addition to or instead of your kettlebell workouts.

(There’s nothing wrong with putting the ol’ kettlebell workouts on hold for a little while. Everything in life has a season. Each year has four seasons. It might be time to change things up – different season, different tools, focus, etc…)

Here are some simple ideas to get you started.

1. Combine kettlebells with your bodyweight (I wrote one of these workouts for you last time here.)

A1. Push ups
A2. Swings

Perform as many rounds as you can in 20 minutes.

2. Train for strength using just your bodyweight in regular or modified, leverage-disadvantaged positions

Pulling:

Chins holding pike
Towel Chins holding pike
Pull-ups holding pike or knee tuck

Pushing:

Handstand Push-ups
Handstand Push-ups on low bars (parallettes?)
Parallel Dips
Elevated Push ups
One-arm Push ups

Legs:

Pistols (of course)
Lunges (many different kinds – front, side, rotational, reaching…)
Various Jumps, Hops, Skips, Bounds

3. Train your conditioning

Put various circuits of the above together

Push-ups – Lunges – Chins. 10 reps each, no rest between, repeat for as many rounds as possible.

Of course, here’s the old standby –

Sprints.

4. Combine 1 thru 3.

There’s just so much you can do on your own. Literally endless variety. And the only way you can get bored is if you either lack creativity or you’re not getting results.

But the important thing is to apply the principles of progression – progressive overload to your workouts. Don’t just do stuff willy-nilly. (Did I just write “willy-nilly”…?)

I thought I’d put some stuff together for you but then, I decided not to reinvent the wheel. So I called my buddy Craig and asked him to hook you up with some really cool bodyweight workouts that will not only challenge you, but get you lean and strong at the same time.

Check these out.

This is some very cool stuff – I really liked Craig’s “Spiderman Push-Up.” It really challenges your abs and overloads the shoulder and the triceps on the side you move your leg on. No only that, it provides a great hip flexor stretch on the opposite side. Check it out here.

Probably the best thing about doing a season of “bodyweight only” workouts is the freedom and flexibility you feel by being able to do your workout anywhere, anytime. Outside especially. In the summer, you just can’t beat that “outdoor workout feeling” – that feeling of power and freedom. I love doing Pistols outside – especially with the sun beating down on me in the field behind my house. Pure pleasure…

When you want to feel powerful and free – and experience that “outdoor workout feeling” – check out these fantastic bodyweight workouts.

3 comments… add one
  • Rob Jun 28, 2011 @ 0:32

    Hey Geoff,
    You didn’t write “willy-nilly”, did you? 🙂

  • Robert Jun 28, 2011 @ 1:29

    Couldn’t agree more about outdoor exercise. There is no comparison. This time of year ALL my stuff is done outdoors, and even during winter I (many times) workout in the garage with the door wide open. To me exercising outdoors and fitness is the way it is supposed to be. It’s a large part of “being fit” if you ask me.

  • David D Jun 29, 2011 @ 10:09

    Glad others are rediscovering body weight exercises. Was beginning to feel like an outcast from the heckling I got from buddies who live in gyms. I purchased Convict Conditioning from Dragondoor about nine months ago and have been following the “new blood” routines twice a week while doing Geoff’s KB Burn 2.0 or similar KB exercises two to three days a week and have yet to get bored. The great thing about combining them is that joints and tendons are strengthened over time leading to better overall strength–in my opinion.

    If anyone has had success with the Pistol please let me know what the keys things to focus on are as I have hit a roadblock. I can do lots of body weight squats but cannot do one pistol without falling over and I can’t figure out what I am not doing correctly.

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