I’ve recently re-engaged my love for eating. For years I had suppressed it and viewed eating as something mechanical – food, after all, is just energy. Viewing it as such became a means to an end – achieving a lean, strong, muscular body.

In college though, it was much different. Eating was almost a sport. I was on a quest to get as big as possible – something I achieved quite successfully – going from 165lbs my freshman year of college to 252lbs midway through my senior year. Was it all muscle? No – but most of it was. The key was eating as much food as I could at each meal. My workout partners and I would hit the dining hall and eat as much meat and potatoes, pasta, and/or bread as we could get down (milk too).

That’s a great plan for bulking up – but it can’t really be done if your goal is anything other than getting as massive as possible.

And that’s a problem with kettlebell training. A big problem. Many of us wrongly believe that we can start using kettlebells and the we’ll lose weight (fat) “without the dishonor of dieting or aerobics.”

That’s true – but with a caveat – a BIG caveat.

Here it is – all things being equal – namely caloric content – you can and will lose bodyfat just by swinging or snatching a kettlebell. But, and it’s a BIG BUT (not to be confused with a “big butt”) – you must not eat more than you are currently eating.

And that’s the problem.

Here’s a case in point:

I was talking to a friend of mine – someone who’s a leader in the RKC community – and she’s trying a fat loss program I’m working on. She was calling to give me feedback on her first week. First of all, she said she absolutely loved it. Second, she said she was starving. And she hadn’t lost any perceptible weight because she was eating to match her appetite.

And that’s the caveat – most people will increase the amount of food they eat because kettlebells, when used properly, have a tendency to increase your hunger response. This means you have to exercise a measure of self-discipline when putting stuff in the ol’ piehole. And this, as we all know, is a challenge for those who are overweight.

So how do you overcome that hunger response? How can you eat almost “as much as you want” and still lose some body fat? How can you outsnatch a donut?

First, you have to know how many calories are in one donut.

One Krispy Kreme glazed donut (hey, only the best will do here) has 200 calories, 22 grams of carbs, and 12 grams of fat. Awesome!

Second, we have to have a method to burn off those calories. If we take a look at the ACE study on Kettlebell Snatches performed last year, they concluded that using an interval training protocol of 15 seconds of work and 15 seconds of rest (again with the kettlebell snatch) that approximately 20 calories were burned per minute.

So, it would take you a minimum of 10 minutes using THIS protocol to break even on your calories – 20 calories burned * 10 minutes = 200 calories. This means you’d have to do at least 11 minutes to burn off MORE than you just consumed. (KEY POINT: I don’t know how many calories are burned on other protocols – so we can’t extrapolate from this study that all kettlebell workouts burn 20 calories per minute.)

So far, so good.

Third, there’s bad news – here’s the part very few people are looking at – all calories are not created equal. The fastest, easiest way to store fat – to send a signal to your body to flip on it’s fat-storing hormones – is to combine sugar and fat together. And that’s what makes up a donut. Cool, huh? (Not really.)

The good news is though flipping the fat-burning hormone “switch” is pretty easy to do.

Here is the first of a two-part strategy.

Eat as many whole, organic, natural foods as possible, focusing primarily on lean red meat, poultry, fish (especially cold water fish), berries, fruits, and vegetables.

Now a word on fruit – I personally don’t even eat anything but berries, for a variety of reasons. But primarily, I’d rather get my calories from other sources. Plus, I just don’t like fruit other than berries, so I’m not going to eat it.

Of course, you may like fruit, so feel to free to eat it, but don’t go overboard. There are a variety of reasons. And you’ll also notice that there are a bunch of foods that didn’t make the list. There are a ton of reasons why.

If you want to know the exact details – in a step-by-step format, I strongly recommend you check out my colleague Mike Geary’s “Fat Burning Kitchen.” In it, he shows you in depth which foods you literally can eat as much as you want and which “health” foods are actually causing you to store fat – even if you are “undereating” and in a “negative caloric balance” and using your kettlebells religiously.

Of course, you don’t have to get it and you can start with the information I’ve provided for you in here. But I’m a big believer in “shortcuts” and Mike’s done a great job of providing them for you – so why try to reinvent the wheel.

Get your copy of “The Fat Burning Kitchen” here and discover just how much you can eat and still burn fat while swinging or snatching your kettlebells.

Tomorrow, I’ll be back with the second part of my strategy. This part works incredibly well with today’s strategy. It lets me and my clients eat all of our favorite foods and still get lean. In fact, it allows us to OVEREAT and still get lean – maximizing the results from our kettlebell training.


kettlebell, kettlebell exercises, kettlebell training, kettlebell workouts, Kettlebells

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  1. Its late on a Wednesday but is my maths wrong? Or have I misread this.
    15 sec satch + 15 sec rest = 30 secs/20cals
    So 200 cals = 5 mins

  2. My preference I have learned is to ask myself “Is this Hersey with Almonds Bar at a cost of 400 swings really worth it to calorically break even?” Why not down the whey protein at 60 grams of protein and only 300 or so calories, fell full and fuel yourself with something that helps make you stronger.

    It’s helping me “just say no”, but before I did experience the eat everything in site mode…I did gain muscle but then had to turn around and burn the fat back off. Double work, so now put the muscle on without the fat and keep swinging.

  3. I think part of the out snatch a donut phrasing is the time it takes to eat a donut is about 1 minute. Then 10 minutes to work it off. So you can’t work 200 calories off in a minute…that’s why you can’t outsnatch a donut.

    Though I’ve started to eat my donuts really slow. ..

    1. Cris – that’s one reason. The other is the metabolic damage donuts due in the long run.

  4. What about post caloric burnt how long are we burning up calories after that snatch session add fasted state now we’re movie into the jelly filled donuts

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