For Whom the Kettlebell Tolls

Too bad the yellow one was gone.

I caved in and bought my very own kettlebell yesterday. If I had waited until today, there’s no way on God’s green earth I would have done so, because I am seriously sore from yesterday’s workout.

We did quite a bit of ab work toward the end of yesterday morning’s workout. Well, Kate the instructor did, as well as Jennifer, the other victim. Aside from standard crunches, I didn’t do so well on the other ab stuff. The moves were simple enough, but tough for me. Here’s one: Lay on your back, feet straight out, your arms stretched out on the floor above your head, holding the kettlebell. Ready? At the same time, left your right leg straight in the air while raising the kettlebell over your head to gently tap your knee. Lower your leg and kettlebell back to the starting position and repeat with the left leg.


Simple, right? This was part of the floor exercises portion, after about 15-20 minutes of other kettlebell exercises, with lots of squats, lunges and twists. Up or down, we do a set of about five or six exercises, three sets each. Same with the floor stuff, and yesterday’s emphasis was on abs. So in addition to the above, there were about four other exercises in each set – three sets each.

Round about the third set, I was looking pretty sloppy and breathing really hard. Oddly enough, two signs of a great workout. Seriously, these moves are so uncomplicated I can’t believe I’m paying for them. On the other hand, I know I wouldn’t push myself as hard as Kate, who corrects as often as she encourages. (And between you and me, Jennifer – who really looks trim and fit – uses a lighter weight than I do.)

After the session, I stuck around to do some strength training. It took me a lot longer than usual because I was actually worn out. I’d had a good night’s sleep, so it wasn’t that. Had to be the kettlebell itself. Later, when I dropped my son off at work, I swung by the Ross store where I’d seen yellow and blue kettlebells about 10 days earlier. Tucked behind a shelf with exercise mats and hand weights was a single, blue, 10-lb. kettlebell by Everlast, for only $10. Again, it usually retails for $30+. I caved and bought it.

The handle is somewhat different than the ones at my gym, which are more rounded. There’s probably something significant and preferred about the rounding, but hey, I’m now the proud owner of my very own kettlebell, and can try some of the exercises I’ve learned at home.


But not today. No, no, no. Stomach, sides, arms – sore. I thought my thighs would be singing as well because of all the squats, but nothing going on there.

Tomorrow morning, back in the gym for another session. Class is actually Friday, but I told Kate I have to be in Winston-Salem all morning. No problem, she said. She’ll see me Thursday, 6:30 a.m. sharp.


Wasn’t that nice of her? (Grrr . . .)

Physical fitness can neither be achieved by wishful thinking nor outright purchase.  ~  Joseph Pilates


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Leslie J. Ansley is an award-winning journalist and entrepreneur who blogs daily for TheRoot. She lives in Raleigh, NC.

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