Kettlebell: Butts & Guts

B&GKettlebell: Butts & Guts is a cardio + strength kettlebell workout by Brook Benten. As the title suggests, it is kettlebell driven. I have had this workout for several years, though I have not done it recently. My recollections of when I used to do it was that it was hard and I was seriously, painfully sore for days afterwards. So I was a little scared coming to this workout again. Also, when I used to do it before the heaviest kettlebell I owned was 10 pounds. I now also have a 15 pound kettlebell. This time through I used both the 10 and the 15 pound kettlebell. Primarily the 15 pound one, but one of the exercises moves too quickly around my legs that I had to lighten up or bang my knees. I also used the 10 pound kettlebell for the warm up and for the abdominal section. I do plan to purchase a 20 pound kettlebell and in the future I will use the 20 pound bell for everything I used the 15 pound bell for, but I will stick with the 10 pound bell for the abs and the figure 8 exercise.

Now, having done the workout again, I can say, I still find it a challenging metabolic strength workout, but the day after? No DOMS. I have been noticing this a lot lately when I do workouts and expect some serious lower body DOMS that never appears. I can only attribute that to Cathe. I have been doing primarily her workouts for a long time and she always hits the lower body hard. In fact, anymore, she is the only one who seems able to give me DOMS. But nevertheless, I still found Butts & Guts an effective workout.

Butts & Guts is another non-stop workout. Your only down time is the recovery move of squatting with the kettlebell. And you squat non-stop. Other than some lunges and deadlifts, the primary exercise in this workout is non-stop squatting while doing something with a kettlebell. Which makes the “butts” in the title make perfect sense. Also, though it is called Butts & Guts, you also get a good bit of upper body work. Primarily shoulders and back. And I really like Brook. She is a good trainer though a little corny sometimes. She does say “More cardio, less lardio” once, but other than that she was pretty low key, pleasant and informative.

The main screen of this workout gives you several options to choose from: Intro, Safety and Technique, Complete workout 53 minutes, Warm up 4:30,  Kettlebell: Butts & Guts 37 minutes, Fast Track Express Butts & Guts 16 minutes, Fast Track Express Kettlebell Abs 8:30, Cool Down 2:30 minutes. I’ve only done the complete workout, so I’m not sure exactly what the others are made up of, but just doing the math, the complete workout consists of the warm up, Kettlebell Butts & Guts, Abs and cool down since that equals 53 minutes. Fast Track Butts & Guts is probably just a condensed version.

The warm up starts immediately with your kettlebell, bringing it over and and behind your head in a pull over, then halo it around your head. Then you start squatting and never really stop unless you are lunging. So unless I mention a specific lower body move, just assume you are squatting with everything. The actual workouts start with kettlebell swings–a lot of them. In fact, this is a very high rep workout. Next is overhead press or toss, then upright rows. You’ll do variations with the upright rows including one arm upright rows. Next you do something called curvilinear rows in which you swing and pull back. Lunge side-to-side and figure 8 the bell around your thighs. Then you just pass it around one thigh while doing side lunges and back lunges. Suitcase squats followed by deep lunges (where you place the kettlebell on the floor) and then stand and do upright rows.  Next is one arm rows with side lunges and reverse lunges (while still doing one arm rows). You will go through all of the exercise listed again, then the “butts” portionof the workout ends with deadlifts and one leg deadlifts.

Next you move on to abs. You will use the kettlebell for all of the abdominal exercises. Slow roll up and down. Rotation side-to-side while in V-sit (Russian twist). While still in V-sit, bring knees in and out. Bring kettlebell to one shoulder and do oblique crunches. Bring bell behind head on floor and weave hands through horn, bring legs up toward ceiling and do reverse crunches. Bring bring knees in and bring kettlebell to knees then extend legs out and extend kettlebell overhead. Bring kettlebell to one shoulder and do oblique crunches–other side. Lay flat on ground with kettlebell overhead; sit up and bring kettlebell over feet (legs straight) and lay back down–so a full sit up with kettlebell (this felt so good!). Basic crunches holding bell behind head. Full crunches with bell in front of you. And that ends the abdominal portion. Move on to a short stretch and you’re done!


6 thoughts on “Kettlebell: Butts & Guts

    1. Yes–a squat is a compound exercise that works everything–glutes, quads and hamstrings. There are a lot of reps in this workout so that is the main way you are working the muscles (endurance) but the heavier your kettlebell, the more work your lower body will receive.


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