We know regular cardio is boring, which is why we put together this list of kettlebell cardio exercises and workout circuits for you to try.
Sure, traditional cardio is convenient in a normal gym setting where the walls are lined with treadmills and TVs to keep you engaged, but it's not necessarily the best way to burn fat.
Aside from maybe the rowing machine, treadmills and bikes often allow you to be lazy and are an ineffective way to burn fat and calories if you don't bust your ass on them.
benefits of Kettlebell Cardio Workouts
Benefits of Kettlebell Cardio #1: It's More Dynamic
Kettlebell cardio exercises typically engage your entire body and work different planes of motion. Treadmills and bikes tend to focus only on the legs and movement in one direction (moving forward). This is great if you're a runner or cyclist, but the average person's life is way more dynamic than that.
Most of us need to be able to get up and down off the floor; twist with a heavy object when tired; and, carry kids and groceries.
Kettlebell cardio workouts and exercises engage your arms, core, and legs so that every muscle can build the necessary endurance to handle the marathon of life's day to day challenges.
Benefit of Kettlebell Cardio #2: It's More Time Efficient
Kettlebell cardio workouts are way more efficient than your average treadmill session and will burn more calories and fat in half the time. This is important if you only have enough time to get in 15 minutes while the water boils for spaghetti.
Additionally, studies have shown that traditional steady state cardio workouts (over 20 mins) done too often can actually have negative health consequences, likely due to having elevated cortisol levels too often.
They also can be catabolic and cause your body to break down muscle tissue, which is not ideal if your goal is to build a lean, muscular body.
Kettlebell cardio workouts are typically designed as high intensity circuits where you perform an exercise in a series of intervals from 30 seconds to 1 minute with short periods of rest in between. Think of them more like a sprint than a jog.
The Best Kettlebell Cardio Exercises
Just about all kettlebell exercises can be used to create a great cardio workout, but here are some of our favorites.
- Kettlebell Thrusters
- Double or Single Kettlebell Clean to Press
- Kettlebell Swings
- Renegade Rows
- Double or Single Kettlebell Cleans
- Pendulum Swings
- Gorilla Cleans
- Kettlebell Snatch
- Double or Single Kettlebell Squats
- Single Overhead Lunges
Again, these are just a few of the great exercises you can use. You can pick one of these exercises for your kettlebell cardio workout or mix and match two or three in a circuit. Either way, they're all great for burning fat and building muscle at the same time.
Kettlebell Cardio Workout
Kettlebell Cardio Workout #1
Instructions: Perform each exercise for 1 minute without stopping with 30 seconds of rest between each exercise. Rest if needed, but try to do as much continuous work as possible without breaking down your form.
Complete as many rounds as possible in 10 minutes.
- Double Kettlebell Squats
- Kettlebell Swings
- Renegade Rows
Kettlebell Cardio Workout #2
Instructions: Complete each exercise in the circuit without stopping between exercises. Rest for 1 minute between each round. Complete as many rounds as possible in 15 minutes.
- Double Kettlebell Cleans 5 Reps
- Double Kettlebell Squats 5 Reps
- Double Kettlebell Overhead Press 5 Reps
- Single Kettlebell Overhead Lunge 5 Reps Each Side
- Double Kettlebell Push Up 5 Reps
Conclusion: Kettlebell cardio workouts are a great way to burn fat, build endurance, and increase overall athleticism. The next time you don't feel like running or biking because they can be boring, grab your kettlebell and get swinging.