You may notice that in many of my training videos I walk around with some type of weight for all or part of the workout whether it be a sandbag, kettlebell or even a log or some other overlooked odd object people assign no value to.
So why is that? Quite simply this type of training is challenging, easy to learn, relatively brief, intense, sustainable and just flat-out works if you are looking for fantastic fitness results. When you combine all of these ingredients into your fitness program, you have a great recipe for incredible fitness success. I prefer to get outdoors and make time with Mother Nature when I do my training barring crummy weather conditions, but you can do these indoors as well.
I must give a knowing nod to coach Dan John for his advocacy of training simplicity which is “pick things up off the ground, put them overhead, walk around with them and train the body in one piece.” While there are many exercise variations to make use of these principles, you cannot help but experience great fitness gains training with this strategy if you apply them in a sane and sustainable manner. Even more important than Dan’s fitness credentials is the fact that he strikes you as a good person and influence for this industry which it desperately needs more of.
Why Are These Types Of Workouts So Good?
What makes a training routine like the sandbag and kettlebell walking workout so devastatingly effective at getting you powerful fitness results is the simple fact that your body is called upon to challenge itself in a manner that promotes an incredible total body metabolic effect.
Not only will you be performing a few quality repetitions each round using supreme game changing movements like the sandbag front squat and the suitcase deadlift, but you will continue walking with the weights throughout the exercise. This will create maximum time under tension as you are not putting the weights back down to Mother Earth until you have completed your exercise round.
You will be working practically every stabilizer muscle in your body when you do these weighted carries during these types of training sessions as well as improving your posture when walking around with these weights with proper form. That’s a nice 1-2 benefit that is hard to beat.
The time under tension that is created when you stay connected to the resistance you are carrying around will take your training into the next galaxy if you choose challenging weights, use sound technique and refrain from over using this powerful principle as you want to avoid over training and sapping your vital Central Nervous System.
I will RARELY, if ever train to complete failure and actually strive to feel strong, vital and robust after a training session and not tear my body down to the point where I am staggering out of the gym and can barely drive my car home. You will get better results and keep your training sustainable when you keep your workouts challenging, yet back off a bit – perhaps not doing those few extra reps or exercise round if you feel fatigue sabotaging your performance.
Here Are The Benefits
Ok, so you tell me you want to burn some serious calories, get strong, lean and tight in all the right places and finally drop fat like a bad habit and chase it right off your body? Want to like what stares back at you in the mirror?
Then try this total body sandbag and kettlebell walking workout if you like to have some fun and excitement as you accelerate toward your worthy fitness goals and that ideal bathing suit body you want. However, make sure you exhibit some self control and eat like a proper adult or all the excellent exercise performed in the world will not get you to that ideal body you desire!
I make no apologies for living in the confines of reality as there are no quick fixes or short cuts to your health and fitness goals as the media hypesters and disingenuous characters who litter the fitness industry would have you desperately believe in order to make a quick buck. You must reign in your poor eating habits in order to succeed. PERIOD. Ignore this advice at your own peril and eternal frustration or as my high school algebra teacher used to tell all of us class yucksters – “Don’t listen to me – you might learn something!”
Oh and if you are looking for a fantastic core training workout that challenges every muscle from the top of your head to the bottom of your feet that won’t bore the hell out of you – give this sandbag and kettlebell workout a try!
You can do this alone or with a partner, but doing these types of workouts with friends will add to the enjoyment as you will still get a challenging and results rewarding workout without it feeling like a tedious chore as you keep each other engaged and accountable to the workout!
I am fortunate to have friends like coach Moses Correa to train with and help demonstrate some of these training videos as he not only makes training fun, but his insights keep me sharp and focused. If you have friends like Moses to train with, make sure you let them know they are appreciated!
Here’s How To Do The Sandbag And Kettlebell Walking Workout:
Create two lanes for walking and pick a fixed distance to walk- say 30-50 steps depending on your fitness level and weights used.
In one lane you will be doing a sandbag front carry, walking your chosen distance performing two squats then return and perform two more squats.
In the other lane you will be doing kettlebell farmer’s carries, walk your chosen distance and perform one suitcase deadlift then return and put the kettlebells down. Check out How To Do A Farmer’s Carry Here.
Perform each of these exercises one right after the other whether you are training alone or with a friend as this will be considered a round.
Set the clock for 10 minutes and see how many quality rounds you can perform with good form.
Here’s a video demonstration tying it all together:
Tips And Techniques
Do a proper warmup before ramping up your activity before you participate in this challenging workout.
Stay aware of your surroundings at all times and police the area you are training in of obstructions – don’t trip over your equipment and watch stepping in any varmint holes or divots if you are outdoors.
Use good form when performing these carries and especially don’t get lazy with your technique when you are hoisting these kettlebells and sandbags up and returning them to mother earth.
Start with moderate weights to get a feel for the movements and to get into the groove of performing these kettlebell and sandbag carries.
Keep your abs braced and walk with a tall posture in short, quick steps
When performing the sandbag front carry, keep your elbows down as well as your shoulders down and back while you walk
While doing your sandbag front squats, maintain a tall spine throughout the movement avoiding folding forward and try to get your elbows between your knees on the descent as if you are prying your knees apart.
These weighted carries will tax your breathing pattern if you use challenging loads, so don’t hold your breath and try to breathe in short, rhythmic breaths in through the nose and out through the nose or mouth during your carries.
Don’t let your body lean forward/back or side to side as you walk
When doing the kettlebell suitcase deadlift, hinge back your hips and try to place the kettlebells back by your heels maintining an outward chest throughout the movement(I should be able to read what’s on your shirt) and reverse back to standing posture by driving through your heels.
In general, the heavier the load, walk shorter distances and for moderate loads walk longer distances. Experiment with these variables, but remember to bail out of a movement before fatigue compromises your form.
In this demonstration we are using a 60 pound canvas sandbag, an 85 pound ultimate sandbag and 24KG (53lb) kettlebells. The movements are universally sound, so just adjust the loads to your fitness level , age and how your body feels the day you attempt this workout.
Ladies, please don’t lump this into a “guys” workout. This is designed to accelerate you to your worthy goals also!
Rest as much as you need to between rounds, but challenge yourself. Start with a 1 minute rest between rounds and scale it up or down from there. Some people will need more rest and some less depending on your fitness level and how you feel that day.
If fatigue starts to compromise your form, rest a little more between rounds but bail out of a move before going to complete exhaustion and energy drain. You want to build up your fitness, not completely tear your body down!
Blast fat, build muscle, gain awesome levels of conditioning, boost your metabolism and get lean, mighty and tight with this kettlebell and sandbag total body workout designed to forge a body worth bragging to the heavens about without wasting your precious time!
Mark Mellohusky (Mellow – Husky)
I Eat T-Bone Steaks And Train With Kettlebell And Sandbag Weights!
Seven Stars Fitness