Being a gym owner, I get the same remark almost daily when trying to sign up new members.
“I just don’t have time to train!”
This workout leaves you no excuse. I have moms who own businesses, have multiple kids, and a side hustle yet still find 30 minutes to focus on their health! I know many of us are not blessed with the ability to work out for an hour or more, but it doesn’t give you a reason to skip training.
In fact, recent studies have shown 20 minutes to be effective enough to build muscle and help you progress further towards your goals.
The best part about this unique workout is the setup. All you need is one kettlebell and a timer. I’ve become a fan of using these quick workouts for busy parents who need a quick workout or even my athletes who need a solid conditioning finisher to end their workouts.
The 15 Minute Madness
You start with doing:
- Three kettlebell squat cleans
- Four kettlebell goblet squats
- Five kettlebell swings
The fun part is you do these two straight cycles without rest! Once the 2nd cycle is complete, you go right into 5 snowboarder squat jumps to break the sagittal plane and rest until 2:30 minutes are up because you then are going again!
The goal is to complete 6 cycles or 15 minutes of work!
This is a density workout you will love to hate! Remember, training density is still a way to progressively overload and build strength. It is a way of training that limits the amount of rest you get while also continuing with the same amount of work being done. In the workout here, you are rotating through three exercises plus your snowboarder jumps
Would you instead use a heavier kettlebell?
That is ok. You can try grabbing a kettlebell 60-70% of your Bodyweight and do the same but just ONE cycle and forgo the jumps for ten walking lunges. Let’s not be silly, with that kind of weight, you need rest, so take 90 seconds and go again!
Heavy Version Instructions
The Heavy Kettlebell Version
Why does this work?
Many of us turn to cardio equipment and boring things that end up making us hate getting our heart rate up more than we already do. So we turn to circuits and HIIT, which can be dangerous and place too much stress on our central nervous system, joints and potentially elevate cortisol too much and too often.
Excessive cortisol is never a good thing, and too much cardio and long bouts of intense cardio can do just that. Remember, cortisol’s job is to mobilize stored energy. However, too much of it can lead to muscle breakdown. It also reduces protein and glucose uptake by the muscles, can increase myostatin, and – in the long term – lead to lowered testosterone levels and make it harder to recover. So it is essential to be careful with the things that can cause this spike, like volume, intensity, density, neurological demands, and stress.
To sum things up, 15 minutes is a far better option to work with higher intensity cardiovascular work than longer durations for optimal recovery and hormone function.
Additionally, picking up kettlebells and working short, crisp reps is a sure-fire way to boost growth hormone, build muscle with progressive overload(especially here by manipulating your rest), and get your heart rate ramped up!
Squat cleans are outstanding for producing power and having to use more energy to lift the weight from the momentum of your body, catching it lower in a squat. So concentrically, it’s more demanding.
Going right into four solid goblet squats changes up the dynamic of your squat, then ending on the swings gives your quads a break for the glutes to kick in to deliver the ending power!
So next time you need a quick workout or leg day finisher, add this guy to your plan and give your legs something to talk about the next day!