The Perfect Posterior: Kettlebell Swings and Cheap Alternatives

Tracy: 100+ lbs. lost with 2–3 sessions per week.

In The 4-Hour Body, I profiled Tracy R., a mother of two who lost more than 100 pounds.

The secret wasn’t marathon aerobics sessions, nor was it severe caloric restriction. It was the Russian kettlebell swing, twice a week for an average of 15–20 minutes. Her peak session length was 35 minutes.

This post will explain how to perform the two-handed kettlebell swing, and it will offer a cheap $10 alternative.

Beyond fat loss, this movement will help build a superhuman posterior chain, which includes all the muscles from the base of your skull to your Achilles tendons. For maximum strength and sex appeal in minimal time, the posterior chain is where you should focus. From “violent hips” for power sports, to the perfect ass for aesthetics, I suggest one starting point:

The Swing

Reps and Sets – Less is More

Long before I met Tracy, I met “The Kiwi” in Buenos Aires, Argentina.

In early 2006, he happened to be taking a private Spanish lesson in the same café where I was finishing the manuscript for The 4-Hour Workweek, and we quickly became close friends. He had competed in elite-level rugby in New Zealand but was equally proud, I soon learned, of applying his BSE in exercise physiology to perfecting the female posterior.

He told me the story over a bottle of Catena Malbec. His obsession started when he saw a professional samba dancer in Brazil balance tequila shots on top of each butt cheek in a dance club. Lamenting the lack of similar scenes in his own country, he set off on a mission to isolate the best exercises for creating buttocks worthy of tequila shots.

By 2000 he had refined his approach to a science. In four weeks, he took his then-girlfriend, an ethnic Chinese with a surfboardlike profile, to being voted one of the top-10 sexiest girls out of 39,000 students at the University of Auckland. Total time: four weeks. Other female students constantly asked her how she’d lifted her glutes so high up her hamstrings.

If The Kiwi could have answered for her, he would have said, “Add reps and weights to the swings.”

In 2005, my interest in kettlebells reinvigorated, I returned to the United States from Argentina and purchased one 53-pound kettlebell. I did nothing more than one set of 75 swings one hour after a light, protein-rich breakfast, twice a week on Mondays and Fridays. In the beginning, I couldn’t complete 75 consecutive repetitions, so I did multiple sets with 60 seconds between until I totaled 75. Total swing time for the entire week was 10–20 minutes.

I wasn’t trying to balance tequila shots on my butt cheeks. I wanted clear six-pack abs. In six weeks, I was at my lowest bodyfat percentage since 1999, and l’d reached my goal. I’ve since worked up to 50+ reps with the 106-lb. “beast” (video), which has directly transferred to 100-lb.+ gains in the deadlift.

The king of exercises—the two-handed kettlebell swing—is all you need for dramatic changes.

Here are a few guidelines:

• Stand with your feet 6–12 inches outside of shoulder width on either side, each foot pointed outward about 30 degrees. If toes pointed straight ahead were 12:00 on a clock face, your left foot would point at 10:00 or 11:00, and your right would point at 1:00 or 2:00.

• Keep your shoulders pulled back (retracted) and down to avoid rounding your back.

• The lowering movement (backswing) is a sitting-back-on-a-chair movement, not a squatting- down movement.

• Do not let your shoulders go in front of your knees at any point.

• Imagine pinching a penny between your butt cheeks when you pop your hips forward. This should be a forceful pop, and it should be impossible to contract your ass more. If your dog’s head gets in the way, it should be lights out for Fido.

75 total reps, 2-3 times a week, is the recipe.

Simple works.

###

Odds and Ends: An Appeal

George Bush 691 vs. The 4-Hour Body 427 –

Since the book came out, I’ve fantasized about having more Amazon reviews than George Bush. Now, it’s actually possible! The ask: If you’ve enjoyed The 4-Hour Body, could you pretty please take 30 seconds to leave a short Amazon review here?

I’ll toast some wine and do a thank-you video this weekend if I crush The Decider. Thanks in advance — it’s been an exciting few weeks, and this would really be the icing on the cake.

Much more to come soon…

The Tim Ferriss Show is one of the most popular podcasts in the world with more than 700 million downloads. It has been selected for "Best of Apple Podcasts" three times, it is often the #1 interview podcast across all of Apple Podcasts, and it's been ranked #1 out of 400,000+ podcasts on many occasions. To listen to any of the past episodes for free, check out this page.

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928 Replies to “The Perfect Posterior: Kettlebell Swings and Cheap Alternatives”

  1. Have I mis-read the MED (minimum effective dose) thing? Can I seriously expect to reduce my exercise routine to 3 kettle bell sessions of 75 swings (working up to 150) plus the bosu crunches… and that’s it!? (plus the few extras Tim mentions he did on the middle day)

    I ask because I’m 2 weeks into slowcarb and looking to introduce more regular exercise.

    It just seems too good to be true that that’s all I need to plan for, time-wise.

  2. Tim, finding it difficult to get parallel shins during the initial dead lift ahead of the kb swings. Any advice. Many thanks for the book. Marcus

  3. Hi Tim

    Does your 4HB offer anything at all for a 56 years old lady, 5ft, 9st12lbs who wants to lose 2 st? The catch is, I have CP.

  4. Hi Tim or anyone who can answer this – I bought the downloaded-able version of the 4HB. It lacks photos so I go to the 4HB site and find most of the stuff.

    Cannot however find the “flying dog” photos to know what this exercise is.

    Anyone?

    Thanks.

  5. Hope someone can help me with this question. Getting ready to start week 1 but I notice under binge day section it mention taking PAAG while binging but the next section mentions taking it every day. Which is it? Do you take it every day or just when binging?

  6. Tim,

    I built the t-handle. Excited to use it.

    Don’t know if anyone has mentioned, but I thought I might point out that one could, for just $1.57 each (Lowes’ price) buy some caps to put on the end of the handles. It covers up the threads somewhat, and gives a stopper to the end.

    I put the caps on mine and I think it adds a nice solid grip to the device. I filled the space between the cap and the Tee joint with some duct tape. I think it came out really well.

    I also torqued the crap out of each joint with a vice and pipe wrench. All except, obviously, the tee and the weight bar, which you need to have loose to take the weights off and on. But for the force of God will those other joints come undone….

    I think these changes make the device feel a little beefier. Just hand threading didn’t feel really secure, this way is super solid.

  7. Hi Tim,

    I’ve been doing the kettlebell swing, but it leaves me with sore muscles for a few days. Is this normal?

    I haven’t really been warming up properly prior to doing the swings though, so maybe that’s the cause? But there is no real warm up program described in the book. Can you recommend something?

  8. I have a question for anyone! I am getting ready to start diet this week but am confused about a point in the book which during binge days you are suppose to take “athletic greens” and PAAG but in next chapter it mentions taking PAAG 6 days in a row with one week off a month. Do you “supplement” every day or just on binge days? Can you do just athletic greens on binge days or do you also need to do Yerba Mate Tea or can you just do athletic greens?

    Elizabeth

  9. Quick question:

    I’m looking for a good home gym of some sort and was wondering if anyone had any suggestions that work with all or most of the workouts in the 4 Hour Body?

    Obviously, price is an issue…but I don’t want to go cheap or something I need to replace in a couple of years.

    Anyone have thoughts?

    Thanks,

    Travis

  10. I was really excited about your book when I read it last month – especially the slow carb diet – my husband’s Cuban so black beans are a staple and I can easily live on chicken stir frys- I now add black beans or lentils and love it. For variety (and fat) I eat chili made with extra lean ground beef and with more veg than usual – my fav is bok choy. My breakfast is stir fried veg with 1 egg and egg whites topped with black beans or lentils. I cut up lots of veg Sunday night so I have them ready to throw in the wok through the week.

    I am 49 and have gained 35 lbs (from 120 – 155.5) in the last 2 years and have had difficulty dealing with my sweet tooth – especially since my B-I-L is staying at my house during the week and has an even worse one and brings home a cake every week. Even though I ate ice cream cake twice, I lost 4 lbs in the first week!… but went up 1.5 after binge day. I lost that extra 1.5 by Wednesday and ate cheesecake 3 X that week – my weight went up 2 lbs after binge day. The third week I followed the diet fairly strictly all week until Friday night and my weight went down again (151 lbs). On Friday night I binged – cheesecake, rollo’s and sweet tarts. On Saturday I binged but not big and ate a slow carb lunch, but since then my weight increased by 3 lbs. (154)

    I drink lots of water, but find myself constipated. I’ve tried to add extra fat by eating a bit of almond butter in the mornings and sometimes at night, hoping this might help. It doesn’t seem logical, but has been my response on low carb diets as well and is what has made me give up on them.

    This week I’m committed to sticking to the diet without cheating until Saturday. – My B-I- L brought a double chocolate cheesecake home yesturday and I have resisted! I have also started with the PAGG this week to see if that makes a difference, though will cut out the Green Tea extract tonight as I had a hard time sleeping last night (mine isn’t decaf.) – I don’t usually drink caffeinated bevs.

    I swim freestyle for exercise, but haven’t been swimming anymore than usual. I’m trying to buy a kettlebell but in my town the biggest weight seems to be 15 lb, though WalMat did seem to have a 20 lb weight in a package with lower weights.

  11. Hey everyone & Tim,

    Half way through the book and very impressed so far, should finish it today.

    One thing – the DIY kettlebell doesn’t translate very well to UK hardware stores. I sure if you really hunted you could prob get the various parts but I live in London, know the plumbing/hardware stores and found it impossible to find parts in one day. I have never seen a flange like the one described in the book although I assume you could get one in a UK major city if you really tried. If you lived in the sticks, however, it would be nigh on impossible.

    I came up with an alternative that has some additional advantages as well as being easy to source here.

    1 x filler loop for combi boiler (Builders depot part # 344871281) – basically a flexible tube covered in steel braid with a 15mm compression t junction and 15mm flanged nuts at either end (the flanging is great as you do not need a tool to dismantle the kit) attached to an inline valve with a 15mm male threads at both ends.

    1 x drain test plug cap (Builders depot part # 436172161) – odd piece of kit. Two 15cm metal plates separated by a squidgy 15cm rubber ring with a large centrally placed 15mm male thread, washer and large, brass, knurled nut fitted to the thread. This nut is very useful as it takes the place of the Irwin clamp.

    Take the 15mm nut and olive off the end of the in-line valve and screw the cap and filler loop together using the large brass knurled nut. Get two bits of 15mm copper tubing cut to size and screw them tight into the compression joints on the two horzontal arms of the t-junction (you need two adjustable spanners for this). Tape the tubing with duct/gaffer tape and you are done! I put two 15mm compression end caps at the ends of the copper tubing to prevent my hands slipping off …. all right, because I thought it looked nice … but this is probably unecessary. To fit and change weights simply undo the brass knurled nut. Total cost about £28 (inc VAT @ 20%), takes about 5 mins to assemble.

    The major difference over Tim’s model is that the arm carrying the weights is flexible which adds a new ‘twist’ to the work out – I think to the better as you have to work at preventing twist through the lifting arc and it focusses you a bit more. The set up will probably not do very heavy weight – should be good enough for starting out – but it should last longer as the impact loading on the kit is reduced by the flexibility. The flex and the flanged nuts also make it very easy to dismantle for travel/storage.

    The only question I have, Tim, is whether you think the flexibility will make much of a difference? Seeing as some of the demo shots show the use of a towel on the kettlebell arm I assume the answer is ‘no’ but I would be interested in your view.

    One other thing which I may have missed elsewhere. Has anyone come up with a combined starter timetable/list for Occam’s and fat loss that includes cooling/water/nutrition/supplement and the kettlebells?? If so where is it?? I know to some extent the book answers some of the cross over points but I can’t seem to find a ‘one stop shop’ generalised programme for all the elements which I assume lots of people would find very useful given the multiple timings and elements. If I don’t hear anything I’ll have a pop at it myself and post it for criticism!

    Thanks for the breathing tips above – that answered one question.

    Hope this helps all UK based 4Hbodies.

  12. Tim,

    Listened to the audio book. From what I have found on-line I think I am missing a lot of info that is in the hardback. Looks like I’ll be buying that soon. I’m your typical 56 year old, 5’10, 220 lb. desk jockey. Tried HCG worked good until I stopped using it.

    I think the audio book will help keep me motivated along with the photo of me naked on the fridge. I’ll let you know

  13. Hi all. I just completed 4 weeks on the low carb (and very happy with the redistributed 18lbs).

    But… I have a long way to go: I have a further 30lbs of fat to shed and 10lbs of muscle to gain. Kettlebell swings and bosu crunches are surely not the only exercise I need to do?

    (not that I mind if that’s the case 🙂

  14. Kettlebells are awesome! Swings are such a good exercise. I got a kettle at home and did the 10,000 swing challenge in Janaury!

  15. Hi. I just got through reading the 4 Hour Body and am really amazed. I really want to start doing the kettleball swings. I considered the building the t-handle but another idea crossed my mind; an adjustable kettleball. I saw several that have plates and stuff, but they no longer resemble kettleballs or the proportions are wrong. What I did come up with was a hollow cast iron kettleball that you can add steel shot to adjust the weight. If designed correctly, it would be adjustable from a lower limit (15-20 lbs with nothing in it) up to 50+ lbs (filled with shot), at least, that is what I have in my mind. It would be rubber/plastic coated with a threaded insert to add or remove weight. I would appreciate any comments on this idea. Thanks

  16. Tim,

    Just wanted to say I love the book. I gained 10 pounds of muscle in the month of January and at 6’3″ and 180 pounds (starting weight), 10 pounds made a huge difference on my frame. I was eerily close to my high school weight and there was NOTHING sexy about that body.

    I’m also the Clinic Owner of Egoscue Nashville and greatly appreciate the praise for Egoscue. For those of you wondering about Egoscue, it is discussed on pg. 302. in the “Reversing Permanent Injuries” chapter.

    I’ve written my review and a bit more about Egoscue here:

    http://wp.me/pbv4c-cH

    I’d love to be your “Egoscue Guru” and am offering to field any questions your readers have about Egoscue and how we can help their particular situation.

    All the best to you,

    John Elder

  17. Kettle bell exercises are very good options for those who wanted all the body’s muscles to work out. No doubt how fitness gyms today placed a lot of attention to its benefits. It doesn’t require too much space either! Even the American Council on Exercise (ACE), America’s leading authority on fitness, included kettlebells among the top ten fitness trends for 2009. It’s very effective! I’d better try this exercise to see and feel it’s benefits for men too! Thanks, Tim!

  18. @ anyone struggling, the importance of measuring, the same way, repeatedly can’t be overstated. I was feeling pretty bummed out because my weight has plateaued (around 18.6lbs lost) for a few weeks. I didn’t even record weight and measurements before my last cheat day because I’d only lost the weight gained on the previous cheat day and felt as though nothing else would have changed. This weekend when I measured I’d only lost 2 lbs all week, but I had lost 6.5″ (thighs, hips, waist, navel and chest) over the last two weeks!! As much as I’d lost in the previous four weeks.

    I was getting bummed when really the effects of the diet and exercise were probably at there greatest. I said when I started I cared more about the inches lost than the pounds dropped, and I’d completely lost sight of that because I way myself throughout the day like its an obsession. Even when obvious improvements were staring me in the face, like I can pretty easily do 50+ push-ups now and a month and a half ago I could barely do 20.

    Everything I have bothered to try from 4 hour body has worked really wonderfully for me, even unexpectedly partially fixing problems I thought were permanent genetic issues (crooked legs, which apparently were mostly due to underdeveloped adductors, which have become much stronger doing kettlebell swings).

    If you’re stuck, look at your before pics, you’ve probably changed more than you remember, and always measure your progress.

    Thanks you Tim Ferriss, others are seeing my success with your book and becoming willing to try the uncommon.

    Now I just have to put the body on auto pilot and get my first muse off the ground!!

    Speaking of that Tim if you read this, I was wondering if you’ve applied any of this stuff to your martial arts yet? Specifically Barry Ross training methodology.

  19. Hello Fellow 4HBers,

    Any thoughts on a tasty home-made breakfast meal-replacement drink consistent with the Slow Carb diet?

    I’ve got the Plant Fusion Protien Powder, Chia seeds, almonds, and brazil nuts ready to go, but with milk, soy, and even almond milk a no-no, some ideas on what liquid to use would be a great help. (I guess water would be ideal from the diet standpoint, but the taste won’t cut it!)

    Thanks!

    John

    1. I was thinking to combine powdered vanilla (natural sugar free) and a good cinnamon blend to flavor and use water as the base. You could try a mix of lemon and lime juices, too, but will be tart. Given the high upside and relatively low sugar and beneficial fiber the acai smoothie packs seem like a potentially good tradeoff. http://www.sambazon.com/shop2/images/PRODUCT/large/37.jpg?48793

      As Tim mentions in the book, there are a few exceptions to the fruit rule. From previous reading berries could very well be one of them since they are low sugar and fairly acidic. I’d love to here Tim’s thoughts. I’ve allowed an occasional blueberry small snack on non-cheat days for their upside benefits (much like wine).

      Worth a potential 2-week experiment.

      1. Thank Michael,

        … for the tips on how to jazz up my meal replacement breakfast drink. I will give it a try.

        Thanks,

        John

  20. Hey Tim!

    Huge fan, just wanted a clarification on something in the book! I’m posting it here because it was in the same chapter (Perfect Posterior)…

    During the weekly workout you did to test yourself, you mention doing reverse drag curls using a thick bar…

    “Reverse ‘drag’ curls using a thick bar twice the diameter of a standard Olympic bar (I put plates on metal piping I bought from Home Depot, secured with $5 pinch clamps): 2 sets of 6 reps, three minutes’ rest between sets”

    Since I’m no hardware guy and like to walk into stores knowing exactly what I want, can you break down exactly what kind of pipe, the length, etc as well as what clamps you use? Also, will regular plates fit on a thicker bar like that?

    I know you recommend FatGripz elsewhere here, but heading to the hardware store to buy the parts for a T-Bar and thought I’d kill two birds with one stone!

    Another thing… your routine also mentions doing Single-Arm Kettlebell Swings. Should I follow the same protocol for determining what weight to use as for the Two-Handed (20 reps of perfect form)? And would doing Single-Arms with a Dumbbell be okay… seeing as doing it with a T-Bar seems almost impossible :).

    And last, I swear… would you consider your own routine to be a full body workout (complete with the Flying Dogs and Glute Activation before each session)?

    Thanks again for everything!

    -G

  21. One tip you forgot is hand and wrist placement for males. If you hold your wrists to close on the kettlebell, you will crush your groin with your wrists on the way down.

    1. All these methods and alternatives are great! however, we must not forget that consistency is the key to success. We may have different instruments and get different results. However we must not loose focus and dedication to our routine in such a way we can achieve our goal to have a healthy and sexy body! Always remember to stay healthy, eat healthy and be pro-active!

    1. Book says 35-lbs for women, but I started at 25-lbs.

      Another spot says a weight you can do 20 reps in good form with, but not 30.

      Tamara

  22. I’ve been using a dumbbell to do the kettlebell swings for the past couple of weeks and am wondering if it still has the same benefits as the traditional workout. Basically, my gym doesn’t have free-weights (a fact I realized after I purchased the $10 kettlebell swing), so I simply turn a 45 pound dumbbell sideways and do the swings with that. The only real difference I can see, is that I am holding the dumbbell on its sides, as compared to the swing where your hands are faced down. Will I still see the results I am hoping for in doing these exercises, or should I make a change?

  23. Tim, I have been involved at various levels of weight training for over 25 years. I recently devoured your book and am really excited to test out your system.

    Here is another alternative to purchasing expensive kettlebells: I have constructed several small sand bags using medical bags (heavy canvas, about 9 inches by 4 inches) from a local army navy surplus store ($10), a few industrial strength yard bags, some athletic tape, and some sand. You cut the bags down to size, fill them with the desired amount of sand and put them in the medical bags. I duct tape them tightly so they do not split. You then use athletic tape to wrap the handle, and viola! instant kettlebell.

    The advantage of these bags is that they are variable in size (just add/remove sand) and you can use them for snatches, overhead work, and one handed work…all of which is impossible or at least dangerous and difficult with a T-bar set up.

    Also, when you get exhausted, you can drop them with no repercussions! =)

    Cheers!

  24. Hi Tim,

    I have been doing the slow carb diet. I am on my second cheat day and I have lost 10lbs so far. I have seen several comments from people who have issues with ground cinnamon floating on the top of their coffee or tea.

    Obviously, a cinnamon stick would solve that, but it’s an expensive option. Here’s a more economical option:at your local tea merchant, and at most grocery stores, you can purchase a box of paper pouches to put loose leaf tea in, you can either put your tea and ground cinnamon in together or make a pouch of just cinnamon to put into your tea or coffee. The tea pouches are pretty cheap (usually 3 or 4 bucks for 100 or so). If you are the McGuyver type, you can also tear a coffee filter and put your ground cinnamon in it, fold it shut and staple it, thus making a tea bag.

    1. The easiest way of adding cinnamon (into coffee) is to brew it right along with the coffee in the coffee filter. This adds cinnamon flavor and avoids having anything floating in your coffee. I simply put my 6 scoops of coffee grinds in, spread ground cinnamon evenly over the top of it (err on the side of using too much rather than too little), brew a 12 cup pot, rinse and repeat.

      1. Please note, this does NOT work in many espresso makers. I’ve managed to slowly strangle a couple decent machines because the cinnamon is too oily and will clog your machine. If you can easily clean the filter, and do so, then it will work. A lot of the countertop machines have a multilayer filter you cannot take apart and clean.

  25. Dear Tim,

    I am highly discouraged after reading this chapter that focused on KB and other re-shaping methods. You see, I have two rods in my back. They start at my shoulders at the top of the spine and run the entire length of my spine on either side to just above the hips.

    I can’t lift more than 10 pounds without bad pain, plus my doctor tells me not too. So most of the weight training is out for me, I can’t do the myotatic crunch because is requires your back to bend which mine does not do. Additionally, I can’t do many stretches because again, it requires bending of the back. I can’t run for more than 10 seconds without sharp back pain and I can walk for about 5-8 minutes before I have to sit down to rest my back.

    I have weight I so desperatley want to lose, and It seems like I can’t do anything to speed it up. I bought wrist and ankle weights to help build muscle, hoping it will help.

    Please help in any way. I know I can lose weight just by following your diet, but reshaping is different. I will take any advice. I don’t like excuses and I’m not trying to give them to you, I’m just being a realist. I can lay flat on my back, so if you can reccommend something for me that could help shape without all the bending and turning, I would be forever grateful! =)

    Thank you so much!

    Best regards,

    Amanda

    1. Amanda,

      Buy Esther Gokhale’s book – 8 Steps To A Pain-Free Back

      She’ll teach you how to sit, stand, walk, and sleep properly. When you figure it out, as I recently have, you’ll see that one can get near-ripped abs and a toned butt from perfect posture. In other words, you can shape-up without working out. It’s worked for me and my damaged back. Good luck.

      1. Dear Captious Nut,

        Thank you very much for your advice! I’m going to go onto Amazon and check it out. =)

        You’ve encouraged me with your story, and thank you for taking the time to reply to my message!! 😀

        Sincerely,

        Amanda

    2. Good luck to you.

      One more low-impact thing you should definitely give a go is that supine progressive groin stretch that’s mentioned in Tim’s book.

      I’ve been doing it (without the apparatus) and profiting greatly.

      Email me on the side if you have any questions. I’ve battled my broken (car accident) back for 12 years and I believe I’ve recently turned the corner.

  26. Been trying kettlebell swings.

    Have a few questions.

    1: I have short arms. To touch the ground w/ the kettlebell I have to take my theighs past parallel to the floor. Is it ok to place a phonebook between my legs to do the touch w/o that over extension?

    2: again, w/ my short arms, I don’t seem to get the full range of motion on my swing if I try to duplicate the video demo. I can compensate for this by bending my knees more than in the demo, or bending at my waist more than in the demo. Would one be more advised than the other???

    3: I’m worried about my form in general. With each downswing, my feet slip farther apart. By the 35th swing, it’s getting.. Interesting.. Pretty sure if I went 75 straight, I’d end up in a full split. What am I doing wrong?

    Thanks

  27. I bought the kindle version, and a hardcopy for reference. Many years ago I had an ovarian rupture, the hormal result of which was 70lbs of additional body fat. I have exercised, dieted, had aesthetic surgery and still struggle. I’m doing the slow carb diet, (2 weeks now- c’mon Saturday!), I have been out of the gym/kettlebells the past two weeks due to a respiratory infection and back injury- but ready to get back on the train this week… I’m wondering though if you have any particular advice for people with hormonal disruptions or diseases.

  28. Hey all,

    Here is a link to the Supine Groin Progressive video (the one that Tim talks about on pg. 303 with pictures/descriptions on pg. 305) that will help you understand what it’s doing for you.

    Contact me with any questions.

    All the best,

    John Elder

    Egoscue Nashville

  29. Tim,

    A possible solution to try for hair loss: I believe the culprit is shampoo. Many of the ingredients (even fr. health stores) are harsh to say the least (i.e. it’s rumored that plastic is in Pantene).

    I use baking soda and although the process isn’t the same and takes some adjusting at first, it’s easy and worth it. There are rinses too like some teas or vinegar to replace the conditioner but I rarely need to condition since my hair is retaining it’s natural moisture since I don’t use the shampoos anymore. Depends on your hair type too.

    Anyway, my hair is fuller and healthier looking. I am especially happy that I’m cutting out all those plastic bottles that could end up in the ocean’s garbage patches (http://5gyres.org/).

    Anyway, I don’t know for sure but even if it doesn’t help with hair loss I think you will still like the switch if you try it for a while.

    Heather

  30. Tim,

    From just watching the video it seems like this exercise would put a lot of stress on the knees at the top as you’re popping your hips forward. It seems that the hip pop would also drive the knee back, as if your leg was trying to fold the wrong way. Is this a legitimate concern?

    It seems like there are other ways to directly target the glutes in that range of their motion, instead of this indirect way. In other words, at the lower part of the squatting motion, the force of the muscle is working directly against gravity. Toward the top, the muscle is moving closer to a 90 degree angle to gravity, and thus the resistance against the muscle is less. That’s why guys can squat so much weight if they don’t go down too far, but if they do a proper squat all the way down to thighs parallel to the ground, suddenly their “max” goes way down.

  31. The kettle bell kettle bells link is not working right now.

    Just completed ten minutes straight with an 8lb weight until I get the real deal 🙂

    Can’t wait to write Tim’s name on my ass cheeks as a testimonial.

    Jennifer Goodwin

    1. I don’t know anything about Metzner but did you check out BodyRock.tv ? They might have some videos that integrate those 2.

      Good luck! I’m *addicted* to these. I mean ADDICTED!

  32. Hi Tim,

    I just got your book and have been engulfed for the last week. Thank you first and foremost.

    I’m 36 with a wife and 2 kids and basically looking to drop 20. My job allows me to travel to China 3-4 times per year. I just got back after almost 2 weeks and it was a great springboard to trying the slow carb diet as I have basically dropped dairy, wheat and have been eating alot of proteins and fresh veg.

    I have been trying to adhere to the slow carb diet, but being a huge foody and someone who loves to cook and eat I am having a hard time sticking to eating the same things. Any suggestions? Second, are polenta and ezekiel bread are on the naughty list? They seem legit, but wanted to double check. It’s been tough to knock the beer, but thanks for keeping the dry reds available. I have just stocked up on a few bottles of Multipuciano d’abruzzo to get me through.

    Keep up the good work, and I’m stoked I just ordered some kettlebells.

    1. There is no real reason being a foody and a cook conflicts with the SCD. I have been cooking for 34 years and started a food business a while back, love to cook & entertain, but making delicious food that fits SCD is easy. You just have to think and be a bit creative. I love using lentils, spinach, cauliflower and curry mixes. The main trick is to focus in on the veggies and how to make them fun & interesting.

      As to polenta, yes it is verboten. It is corn based — starch and carbs/sugar. Not sure about ezekiel bread, but given that it is bread I would say NO.

      Remember, red wine is only allowed becuase the value (anti-oxidants, etc) outweigh the negatives (sugar, slower metabolism from alcohol, etc). So, keep it in moderation.

      Good luck

  33. I just left a 5 star review on Amazon for The 4hb. I’ve been reading the blog and both of your books now for a while – and figured the least I can contribute is a review on the book!

    In the book I thought it mentions more exercises for the posterior on the blog – does anyone here know where I can find those? I’m really looking forward to adding them to the swing routine. Thanks!

  34. Hello All – 4HWW/Four Hour Body fan from the UK – I was lucky enough to buy Tim’s book on the Barnes & Noble site and got an autographed copy! I have it before it has been released in the UK – I am very smug!

    Just started Kettlebell classes in North London – wow – its a fantastic workout as well as toning. Got a great mother’s day present today – my 16 year old son was pushing me around because I was teasing him and he grabbed my arms and said “Mother – you’ve got muscles – yuck”

    Sadly can’t get on with the eating plan – doing a fab alkalising one instead which is making me much happier and dropping the inches.

  35. Hi Tim,

    I just watched your interview on GMA Health Online

    I must say you explained yourself very well despite the Dr. (I don’t remember her name) antics. Especially in regards to sleep. I work 3am-11am and getting a solid 8 hours sleep requires me to go to bed at 6pm, not advisable! I take 2 – 20 minute naps throughout the day and sleep about 3.5-4 hours (10ish – 2am). It is very tough to get used to it but as with any new sleep schedule, it just takes getting used to. I have been doing it for a couple weeks now and i can really feel the difference!

    I appreciate your book and enjoy your interviews in the media, keep up the good work…

    As far as endurance training, would you recommend Vibram Five Finger’s to run in? You say run 30 minutes a week barefoot, would training in the Vibrams replace this need? (I live in west Texas, “desert” and grass is hard to come by!)

    Thanks,

    Trent

  36. Hi Tim,

    Love the book. Just wanted your feedback on this. I like to smoke marijuana. Something like thrice a week. What are your views on this? I don’t drink or smoke cigs btw. The munchies associated with smoking are my major problem, I eat A LOT. Any thoughts?

    Best,

    Jude

  37. I have 20 and 25 pound kettlebells. Will it work ok to use both at the same time for 45 pound k-bell swings? I can alternate which hand gets the heavy one. The thing is that my wrists will be turned 90 degrees so that my thumbs are forward. Will that mess up my form in any significant way?

  38. First off … GREAT BOOK.

    Question, why can you do the Cat Vomit in a regular sitting position, say at your desk at work? Or perhaps i should ask is there any negative impact on doing it that way?

    I’ve tried both ways and seem to be getting the same results, but that might just mean I’m doing it wrong.

    Thanks,

    Jacob

  39. I am leaving for a cruise ship gig for four months, and while they have a gym, not kettlebells. I can certainly do the basic occam’s kind of strength training. Any suggestions on kb-like workouts I can do? I can’t obviously bring my own equipment on the boat.

  40. Been using the KB’s for a couple of weeks now. Why drive all that weight? Add reps and really burn it. I’m completely wasted after a set of 80 to 100 reps just using a 25 pound KB.

  41. Tim, THANK YOU for compiling such great info and being the guinea pig for us all.

    Still loving 4HB, rereading several chapters as progress. Have been on SCD for couple of months only lost about 12 lbs, but did take off about 5″ inches on waist and hips, 2″ on thighs, 1″ on neck (I added this measurement in since wear suits/dress shirts w/ties often and was noticing a change in fit).

    1st plateau broken by drinking more water, and was not taking a day off stack.

    Plateaued again last two weeks or so. I just turned 50, 5’11” hovering around 215 (was 230 when started). Last summer was down to 205 doing SCD based on your blog (pre-4HB), but put it on again when fell of the wagon, and not bike riding as much.

    Started KBS about 3 weeks ago. Like some comments, 2nd session tweaked back so laid off a week, then started again. Gym only has 25 and 45lb KB, so being me, started with 45 2 x 15 reps, 1st day. 2nd session 4x15reps, 3rd 5×15 reps. Now at 4×20 reps. Love the work out and feel increase in core (along w/cat vomit & m-crunches).

    Last week, lost balance on second swing briefly and ended up squating w/thighs below 90degrees/parallel to floor. Heard and felt a “pop” in my groin. sounded like the times have torn ACL skiing. Some pain, but after short break able to finish set. Took break/rested for a week from KBS and groin muscles felt better. Did one spinning session w/out pain. Still a little tight, but just noticed after a short 20 mi ride yesterday that had a large healing (now down to yellow/brown) bruise mid-inner thigh. Now wondering if I did tear something w/the KBS. Going to dr. this week to check out, but had done another 4×20 rep of KBS two days ago with no pain. Since bruise = blood, figure to play it safe.

    Anyone have ideas of what may have torn, etc. doing KBS? No pain now, able to do KBS sets w/out pain, bike ride w/out pain. some tightness in groin still and bruised area little tender if push hard. If did not notice the bruise, would not have thought twice about the previous ‘pop’ I heard during the sitting portion of the KBS.

    Thanks, Bob

    PS – written a few post wondering if Tim is going to look at any cycling hacks. Doing Crank the Kanc time trial in 3 weeks 21 mi, 2650 verticle, ,last 4 miles 7-9% grade ) but with snow finally melting in NH, yesterday was only my second ride in advance. The KBS seemed to make the few spin class climbing sessions easier. Curious as to other hacks to add to KBS and spinning. Any other cyclists out there?

    PPS – Tim a philosophical question in addition to Seneca and stoicism, curious if you are fan of Ayn Rand given that life style design seems to fit well with individualism. If so, the highly recommend the new Atlas Shrugged movie!

  42. Hoping someone can help me out here. I’m a bit confused as to WHEN one should be doing the kettlebell swings/crunches in the context of the SC diet.

    The rule in SC eating is to eat within an hour of waking (preferably 1/2 hour). I’m cool with that. In the book, Tim adjusts Fleur B’s morning routine to include a workout BEFORE her first meal.

    Suppose my questions are these: Does it matter at what point in the day the exercises are performed? Does it matter whether they are performed before or after a SC meal?

    My thanks.

  43. Hi Tim,

    Some of the earlier comments did bring up some valid points about the diameter of a standard weight plate (which is two inches) on a 3/4 in pipe. Safety is my concern. I’ve been tinkering with the 3/4″ pipes and I think the solution is to use a 2 inch diameter flange piece, 2 inch diameter pipe (so the plates fit perfectly on it, connect that piece to a 2″ to 1/1/4″ coupling reducer, connect 1/1/4 coupling to a 1/1/4 to 3/4 inch coupling reducer, connect that to the 3/4 inch T at the top. Any thoughts?

  44. How much time did it take for Tracy to lose 100 lb using this method? How much weight did you lose during the six weeks that you used it to clear up your abs? In short, how long until good results can be expected? Also, does this fit well with the 4hb diet?

    1. Jay

      Tracy lost 100 pounds in about 11months.. she lost the first 50 by just reducing her calories and walking 2 miles 4 times a week. then she started swinging the kettlebell and not only lost another 70 lbs but transformed her body muscularly as well.

      when she started kbs she did two workouts for 30 minutes a week,Four Hour body indeed!

  45. I’m just into my 4th week of the slow-carb diet and last week, introduced the kettlebells swing. My gym only has handled medicine balls up to 20 lbs and the weight wasn’t enough to get the necessary momentum.

    Over the weekend, I hit the hardware store and assembled the t-bar. Today, I did 40 lbs and what a difference! I had to split the 75 reps into 30-20-25 with one-minute breaks but I was flying afterward on a serious high. As a note to some other suggestions up top, I didn’t have a problem stacking four 10-lb plates onto a 3/4″ pipe and didn’t even require the Irwin quick clip. Can’t wait to do another set!

  46. Hi Tim

    I’m young (36), fit, strong and otherwise healthy but I have early-onset osteo-arthritis (mainly in hands and feet) and have just bought a 16kg kettlebell. The 16kg feels pretty fine, and good for growing into, but lifting the bell by wrapping my thumbs around the handle (like in your pic of Tracy, above) hurts my thumb joints because of the arthritis there.

    Can you suggest any modifications or do you know if the bell’s a bad idea or if the pain will just die down once I’m more used to it? The discomfort doesn’t bother me in itself but over time will discourage me if it persists or gets worse. Also, I don’t want to be doing anything dumb that will aggravate it.

    Any suggestions or wisdom greatly appreciated!

    — Lisa

    1. Lisa,

      I would definitely recommend looking at the “Reversing Permenant Injuries” chapter and reading about Egoscue (pg. 302-306). We see clients all the time with osteoarthritis, helping them not only eliminate their pain but also return to the activities that they want to do without limitations.

      Let me know if you have any questions.

      Thanks,

      John Elder

      Egoscue Nashville

      1. Hey John

        Thanks, and apologies for being slow to respond. I’ve read the chapter, but will reread it. On first glance it didn’t seem clear to me how I could apply that information to arthritic issues. For example, the feet advice Tim gives would be inappropriate for someone like me as if I don’t wear rigid-soled shoes, I’m at risk of losing complete mobility in my big toes. This is a shame, because I’d like to reverse the issue altogether, rather than damage-control it, but it’s hard to find info re: that as ppl say it’s not possible. I only have a short window of time where I can experiment, before losing toe-joint mobility altogether. On a budget, it’s doubly difficult.

        Essentially, Egoscue seems interesting, but I’m unclear how it would work with joint-swelling and calcification issues. I realise I may need to reread to get a clearer picture. If I have specific Q’s, I’ll come back to you. I’m in the UK, btw.

        Best,

        Lisa

  47. anyone else having trouble viewing this video? a URL to download to my PC would be much appreciated!!

  48. Hi Tim, do you know if there are exercises or supplements to tone up/lift sagging breasts that actually work? Thanks.

  49. Hi Tim, you are my new Arnold. Thank You. Old bodybuilder here, won the NPC heavyweight Nationals in 1992. Worked out conventionally now for 40 years, during the last 10 I could not help but think how wrong it all seemed (old way). Thank You for putting it all together for us. A few questions: (I am 6’1″ and weigh 228 with about 8 percent bodyfat, have lost over 20 pounds of fat in 8 weeks but put some dam muscle on). (Love the slow carb diet!) Using the T Bar swing, did 15 nice reps with 150 pounds after 50 with 100 pounds, which direction? more reps or weight? Please give me a little background on bouncing the ball while walking 20 minutes after breakfast. Should I do kettle swings twice per week or once if I am doing all of my other exercises on Saturday? Don’t want to burden you with too many questions. Thanks for being yourself. Christian

    1. Hi Christian,

      Thanks for the comment, sir! For kettlebell swings, I think 2x/week works well if you have 3 days in between swing days. I’d work up to a total of 75 reps for the swings and use whatever max weight you can safely to do so with perfect form. If you get to 150 lbs x 75 in one uninterrupted set, I’d keep that weight and aim for a 150-rep set.

      Again, this all requires PERFECT form. End the set as soon as any fatigue-related form-breakdown occurs.

      Best of luck!

      Tim

      1. Thank You Very Much Tim, that is now my plan. I had been stuck at 228 for a few weeks, until I started strictly following your/now my morning “routine”.

        * 3 cups water upon waking

        * 5 organic eggs within 30 mins(!) of waking

        * 20 minute walk bouncing a ball after eating (4 hour work week)

        3 days after starting routine (5 days after last weighing) I weighed 220(!) significantly leaner. Do you know who Dan Duchaine was? He helped me move out to LA in the early 80’s were I was one of the charter group of personal fitness trainers. You are like the new improved version (compliment). Tim, please watch the video of me winning the Nationals on Youtube, it will only take a minute and 14 seconds and I hope it will be my buy in to be able to talk to you about some of my past experimentation that I think you would find fun, and that would help me to make more effective in my future experimentation. Thank You Very Much Tim, Christian

  50. I have been doing the slow carb diet now for about a week and a half. I have already lost 15 pounds and over 20 inches from all over my body. I feel great!

    What I am curious to know is your blood type Tim? Because you did all these experiments with yourself as the test subject and because genetics and blood type fascinate me. I love that you have said we can change our genetics. I totally agree. I just know that we cannot change our blood type. For the sake of science and no other, I would love to know your blood type. Please!

  51. Tim:

    4HB is outstanding. I’ve lost 21 lbs, 9 total inches and about 8% body fat since March 7th. It’s also opened my mind to other areas of performance I haven’t thought to address in many years. Well done.

    I started with Pavel’s Enter the Kettlebell about sixteen months ago. Program Minimum the whole time, really. Started Rite of Passage with the 16kg kettlebell a while back, but stopped because my pull-ups needed work.

    My goal is to do the RoP with the 24kg KB, but I want to burn more fat first. I’ve been doing the PM with the 24kg exclusively since January, but I still have a long way to go before I can press or snatch it well enough. I’m doing 200 swings (sets of 20, 1 min active rest) twice per week, 5 TGU’s each side twice per week.

    So, if my primary goal is to continue burning fat with the SCD, could the 200 swings be detrimental? Would I be better off to adhere more strictly to the 75 swings you prescribe in the book? Would an Occam’s-like diet be more effective for tackling the RoP later?

    Thank you for 4HB. It has changed my life.

    Jason

  52. Hi Tim, saw You say something about a “Mother F__ker gene”. I am sure that I have it. Any ways to work with it. Your body of work has me thinking of competing again (IFBB pro). Talked to Shawn Ray about Your work last weekend, suprised he wasn’t caught up, turned him on to the site. Any pro/national level bodybuilders using 4HB? Any info for a previously maxed out cat that is dragging around the “MFer gene” that wants to take another shot at the title? Any hints where I can find out more about dealing with the burden/opportunity? (“MF gene”)

    Can’t Thank You Enough,

    Christian

  53. I am writing as I have stagnated my weight loss of 15 lbs, and wonder if I am drinking too much water with crystal light since drinking water can be boring. I have been using corn as a vegetable substitute. Is this bad for the diet? It wasn’t mentioned in your book.

    Note sure if its from working overnight shifts, not sure how to coordinate my eating during the day after recovering from working 730pm to 730am, friday, saturday then sunday. when should I eat? will what I eat just pile on unwanted weight if I eat before going to bed during the day before getting up again to work the overnight shift again? Or should I just focus on eating during the overnight shift?

    Can I supplement as a snack, beef jerky, Muscle milk or Myoplex, or should I avoid these when I can’t get a good meal?

  54. I am 63 years old female, 5’4″, weigh 137#, in descent shape and want to start Kettlebell swings. What weight? I can’t figure it out.

  55. If I can deadlift 50lbs (3x20reps), what kettlebell should I get? Hong Kong doesn’t have stores where I could test this out using a T-bar. I’m female if that helps. Thank you

    1. FHK, it does help that you’re a female. Females are wonderful!

      Thanks for being one! (it’s a holiday weekend)

      oh yeah, good luck with all that. Approx. 20K (45#) weight would be a good starting point for you. Go easy the first few days, no matter how it feels. There’s a good chance that your lower back will bite you if you don’t.

  56. I have been doing the kettlebell swings for 2 weeks now, but I feel like I am doing this workout wrong. I do swings for 20 mins with 60 sec rest periods thrown into the workout. So I am not doing 1 straight set with the 53lb kettlebell….more of a duration workout…..swings averaging 250 per workout. I do this workout 3 times a week. I don’t stick to a set number of swings for each set, I do as many as possible – 45 swings straight being my max. No back issues or any pains in the body. Is this wrong? If so what is the correct way to do this program and progress as you become stronger? Thanks.

  57. I like to do snatches (hardy har har) so I’d rather just buy the kettlebells than have that crappy T handle. That thing belongs on the “redneck” flicker page next to the flower vase made from a toilet. (Did you make that, too?)

  58. I just purchased your book and was reading the slow carb requirements and wondered if I could include other dark leafy greens such as chard, dandelion greens, turnip greens, kale, endive, raddichio and lettuce in the diet as well as spinach…I couldn’t see why spinach should be the only green on the list and since I am currently on a diuretic blood pressure medicine (which I hope to be rid of after a significant weight loss) and was ordered to eat a banana or orange with the medication every day. Also, I am post menopausal and, hypothyroid (all of my life). Because I would like to get my potassium and calcium from natural sources whenever possible I would like to add chard and other greens to my diet.

    I was also wondering if you were aware of the toxicity connected with unfermented soy products such as soybeans and tofu. Don’t get me wrong…back in my vegetarian days I used to eat a ton of soybeans…I never liked soymilk (thank God) as it is totally spiked with the toxin, but since learning about it I keep my soy ingestion to tempeh, soy sauce and tamari only. If you want to live to 120 as you said in your book you might do a little more study on soy products.

    1. Hi Cathy,

      The other leafy greens are fine. Follow doctor’s orders vs. me, of course, but you can get potassium from avocado instead of banana.

      Lastly, I don’t suggest soy in my book or otherwise.

      Best of luck!

      Tim

  59. Howdy all!

    Can I get a clarification … is the goal to work out with the KB for 15-20 minutes or to do 75 reps?

    Tip for anyone who lives in Japan … when I first looked at buying KB’s here, the online stores were mad expensive – seemed to be almost double the price on US online stores 🙁 … but then the guy who put us onto the 4HB said to check out a large mall sports store and voila! we found 5, 10, 15, 20 and 25kg KB for … much less! IIRC the 25kg cost us about US$60! Nicely rubber coated bell and smooth handle … a good score!

    Problem is, the biggest size is 25kg … I can do about 35 reps in perfect form with it now … worried about what happens when that gets too easy, hence the questions 😀

  60. HI! I just got the kindle version of the book yesterday and started the diet and exercises today. My question is does anyone have an exercise plan written out? There are so many different exercises, it seems and I want to get the most out of this system. I can’t print out the pages from the kindle book so it is kind of scattered feeling for me. I wish I had bought the print book but I was too anxios to get started with it 🙂

    I am a 50 y/o female and have quite a lot to lose. Also are there any online groups for this program, out there where one can go to do challenges and keep each other motivated?

    Thanks

  61. Tim,

    What starting weight is recommended for a 20 yr. old female (my daughter) who is around 160 libs. and wants to lose 30? She is strong, an athlete (basketball, swimming, discus, P90X), but I don’t want her to injure her back. A medical issue caused some weight gain, but she is better now. I know you can’t be exact, but a ballpark or a formula for determining the starting weight would be helpful.

    Thanks.

    1. I have 5 daughters, great athletes, one competes nationally. Even the one that competes against men of all weight classes as a military hand-to-hand combat champion would be stressed if she started out doing 100 reps with a 30 pound kettlebell.

      For your daughter: The key factor is how much she has done exercises where she is bending all the way over at the waist. Few things do that. Before you buy a kettlebell (“KB”) you might have her do 50-100 reps of standing “Good Mornings.” That’s where a person stands upright, legs slightly flexed (horse stance) and then bends over at the waist so that her torso is a bit lower than parallel to the floor-with no weight. Do 50 the first day and see if her lower back is sore at all. Do 100 the next day if no soreness. Then do 100 holding just a 5 or 10 pound weight of any kind– with arms somewhat extended. Increase weight if little or no soreness.

      When she is comfortable doing 100 reps with 20 pounds, she will have a good idea of what weight KB to buy. Kettlebells are a good way to start, especially if one has no other exercise options/resources. Sounds like she does though. Good luck.

      1. Hi,

        Thank you. That sounds like great advice.

        I found some recommendations by Tim in the 4HB, page 170, but they are general for men and women, and the weights actually seem a bit high to start. Thanks again.

  62. Hi Tim,

    I’m trying out the Kiwi’s Complete A/B Workout (just starting), but I’m having trouble setting a measurable goal. I’m part of that under 120lbs minority (5’5″, 118 lbs), so I know I should be aiming for a 10 lbs recomp goal, but 10 lbs of what? According to Bio Electrical Impedance my body fat is 15.4% (I’m doubtful of this number, but it’s what I’m using for now), and to lower it I’m not sure what’s the right combination of fat loss and/or muscle gain. Also, I don’t want my measurements to change too much (waist/hips/etc.).

    For anyone who’s wondering why I care at all, one of my goals is to get at least one paid job as a fitness model and I’d really appreciate constructive comments. It’s nice being told I don’t need to do anything more, but it’s not helpful! Thank you!

  63. In the book (great by the way) you hint about a single arm kettlebell swing, but I can’t find a demonstration or explation. Can you (or anyone else) help me out?

  64. Tim,

    How do you select which questions to answer or to which remarks to comment? Clearly there is no time (or likely desire) to answer everything.

  65. Hi, some may think this is a silly question but it’s serious to me: is there any issue of using medical marijuana while on the 4HB diet? Will it counter-act anything, since we should take a bunch of supplements. I do not get the munchies, it helps me fall asleep (insomniac here…) and if my back ache acts up, it eases that nicely.

    Thanks for any input!

  66. Hi Tim,

    Read 4HB and was inspired by the kb story. I just turned 50 2 wks ago.I want to lose 20-25 lbs and get seriously toned.I am athletically built but have not stuck with any weights program for any long period of time since I work long hours. Too hard to get to the gym regularly!

    I just got my kb set and this whole slow-carb diet and kb workout sounds easy and do-able. I can’t wait to see how it goes.

  67. G’day all, another 4hb fan here. I’ve just bought a 32kg/70lb kettlebell, which feels pretty heavy. I did my 1st workout with it today: 100 reps, then a table tennis session for fun, then 150 reps. My grip was nearly failing by then.

    Should I be using a higher weight? I suspect so, but wouldn’t mind some feedback from others with more experience than me. I can’t really afford a stable of kettlebells for now!

    Thanks in advance 🙂

      1. I’ll tell you tomorrow! BTW, I just joined the group, and might post there as well. Thanks for the reply!

  68. As reported, my lower back is fine this morning, I don’t even notice it. Guess I’ll have to exchange it for a bigger weight, perhaps 40kg/88lb. I hope the shop lets me do that.

    Ok, enough here, I’ll stick with the group from now on. Thanks again, Tim!

  69. Hi-

    Any recommendations for determining starting kettlebell weight if I don’t have ready access to the plates mentioned in the video?

    1. Hi Ellie,

      This is my reply, verbatim, to someone who asked much the same question-only for her daughter:

      I have 5 daughters, great athletes, one competes nationally. Even the one that competes against men of all weight classes as a military hand-to-hand combat champion would be stressed if she started out doing 100 reps with a 30 pound kettlebell.

      For your daughter: The key factor is how much she has done exercises where she is bending all the way over at the waist. Few things do that.

      Before you buy a kettlebell (“KB”) you might have her do 50-100 reps of standing “Good Mornings.”

      That’s where a person stands upright, legs slightly flexed (horse stance) and then bends over at the waist so that her torso is a bit lower than parallel to the floor-with no weight. Do 50 the first day and see if her lower back is sore at all.

      Do 100 the next day if no soreness. Then do 100 holding just a 5 or 10 pound weight of any kind– with arms somewhat extended. Increase weight if little or no soreness.

      When she is comfortable doing 100 reps with 20 pounds, she will have a good idea of what weight KB to buy. Kettlebells are a good way to start, especially if one has no other exercise options/resources. Sounds like she does though. Good luck.

      And here’s a group that is very helpful to people:

      http://www.facebook.com/groups/timfitnation/

      They will add you to the group, answer questions, etc. Very friendly bunch who are very experienced with the 4HB, etc. A great resource no matter where you are in your fitness journey.

  70. Just wanted to post my results with kettlebell. I could only get 1 – living abroad has its challenges – so I went with the 16k (35lbs). I am 54 years old and had not lifted weights regularly lately. I started with 2 sessions per week. 1 time per week with maximum number that I could do at one time. In 6 weeks, I went from 25 to 80. Once a week I did sets – I can’t remember exactly but I think I did a sets of 10/5/5 at the start with 1-2 minutes between and worked up to 60/40/20/10/10. I did measurements done before and after the 6 weeks – I reduced my fat by 3 kilos (6.6 pounds) and increased muscle mass by 2.8 kilos. Overall, little change in weight, unfortunately, but change in distribution and calorie burning.

  71. Hi Tim,

    I read your book got inspired and have started on 4HRbody last week 5th Sep for weight loss. I have hypothyroid and am 32 yrs old weighing 166 pounds. I am feeling light now and am measuring every Thursday though I do not see any weight loss yet. Please let me know if this is normal.

    Diet:

    Breakfast : 1 whole egg, 2 eggs only whites; lentils; steamed mixed veg with lemon juice.

    Lunch:Chicken thigh or Tuna in water or Tofu and spinach or Seitan;lentils; steamed mixed veg with lemon juice.

    Dinner:Chicken thigh or Tuna in water or Tofu and spinach or Seitan;lentils; steamed mixed veg with lemon juice.

    Also thought Tofurky is also good protein source and had today but just saw that it has fat too. Please advise if Tofurky,Tofu is ok and if my above menu seems good.

    Thanks!

  72. Hi Tim,

    I started the Slow Carb Diet 9 days ago, and am seeing improvements already! I was a bit nervous on my cheat day, but “forced” myself to indulge! : ) I was back down today (Tuesday) to my low weight on cheat day morning (Saturday). I love the simplicity of the diet. I can see now that too many options made it difficult for me to stick to a program in the past.

    My question is about the Kettlebell Swing. I am 52 years old and quite out of shape. I have a small tear in my left rotator cuff and bursitis in the left shoulder. I am hoping to get by without surgery. I’ve had several steroid injections which have helped tremendously with the pain and lack of mobility. That said …. I am dying to do the “Swing”. Do you think I could do it with a lower weight (10 lbs)? Or, is there another dynamite exercise that comes in second to the “Swing” that I could do?

    Thanks so much for putting all this information together! I think this is the beginning of alot of positive changes for me!

  73. I was wondering when is the proper time to move up to heavier weights in doing the swings? I can already manage 100 reps with a 16kg kettlebell but notice that my forearms start to give up on my 3rd set.

    Here’s a sample workout that I do:

    Set 1 – 100 swings

    1m active rest

    Set 2 – 50 swings

    1m active rest

    Set 3 – 50 swings

    1m active rest

    Set 4 – 50 swings

    1m active rest

    1. Ryan, I’d be moving up right about now. If you can do those sets with only a minute in between them, I’d say the weight is too light.

      I’m doing 100 reps with 32kg, and I’m knackered by the end. I spend the next five minutes breathing very heavily.

      As intensity seems to be the key, I reckon doing hundreds of easier low weight reps isn’t the way to improve the fastest.

      Try 20kg or 24kg if you’re feeling strong. Good luck!

  74. Tim,

    Just got your book and I’m amped to use it. Well I did a week on the slow carb and had some setbacks (all my fault), so I’ll head at it again.

    I did have a question about sequence in the book. I know you recommend picking a chapter specific to personal goals and starting there. But what if you want to accomplish all of the exercise/diet goals? What order would you recommend? Logically, I’d think start with injury fixes, then injury prevention while losing fat then the add muscle program to strength. But can you maintain strength and the added muscle achieved if you then push into the longer running goals? Anyway, just wondering what your thoughts are if someone wants to try it all.

    Thanks

  75. Tim,

    Hey, loved the book! Especially enjoyed (and have put to use) information about Vitamin D and and also that on increasing testosterone. I feel better already after only a couple weeks, although maybe it’s a placebo from the weightlifting I’ve been doing.

    Speaking of which, I have a question for you. What weight kettlebell would you guess would be appropriate for my girlfriend? She’s 5’6″ and a typical skinny weakling Asian girl. 🙂

    Final note — I noticed you didn’t talk about avocados in the new book. They’re loaded with unsaturated fat and are a good source of Vitamin E, and yummy too. Hope to hear from you about that kettlebell for my gf.

  76. I highly recommed this product. I, and a few of my close friends, have been using for about 2 years now and have yet to have even a cold! It is noted for being rich in its’ vitamin and nutrient content.

  77. Hi, Tim!

    I’m a Canadian journalist, writer, and big fan of yours. 😉

    Could talk for hours about all of your think-outside-the-box ideas, but for now need to focus on the body.

    Am about to buy a set of kettlebells. What weight do you suggest for a 49 year old female who currently weights 138 pounds?

    Look forward to your response, my friend. 😉

    Karen

  78. Tim (&Karen and Nicolai),

    I am just about to start kettle bells and think I have pretty decent strength I am planning on investing in a 30lb kettle-bell to start with to have at home. I read for females to start with about18-26lbs depending on strength and getting to 35 lbs. I figured I would start work with the 30 with low reps to be economical, but I may be an overachiever. I am 22 years old, 5’3″, & 150lbs and just started the Slow Carb diet. Is this weight ok for me?

    Also I am aiming to lose as much as fast as possible. My friend did this diet with kettle-bells 2-3 times a week as well as exercising (biking and swimming) every day. I know the priniciple of MED but I would like to do cardio (eliptical) everyday with my personal trainer (30 minute HIT circuit trainng) and maybe a toning barre class on the weekend. If i promise to keep to the slow carb diet 100% will this only help me burn more fat faster? I dont care if im doing 6x more work to get a tiny extra lbs.. the more fat loss I can get I want.

    Please help I’m ready to be your book’s next spokesmodel!!(as a former model that gained 30lbs in the past 4 months due to a medication which i stopped taking)

    Thankyou,

    Meagan

    P.S. Big fan of CLA and fish oils.. your thoughts?

  79. Hi Tim, I really hope you’ll respond so I’ll make it short. I have been looking around your website and I’m a bit confused by the huge amounts of information. I’m 23 years old, 5’2 and 250 lbs and I’ve been overweight my entire life. I really want to finally commit and lose the weight quickly and in a healthy way. How would you recommend I do this? Would I follow the post I found on losing 20 lbs in 30 days? Is that diet the way to go for me? And would I do the Kettleball Swing for my weight training along with cardio? Any tips you can give me would be amazing. I’ll read the book but any info you can give me to start me off would be great. I really need help so I really hope you’ll answer. Thank you!

  80. Really appreciate in posting the videos on the swing. I tried to do them off the pics in the book but it hurt my back. Adjusted my posture a bit and makes a big difference

  81. Tim,

    I have been working out for years. My daughter just recently quit all competetive sports, but is still working out faithfull. She is fit and healthy. I am 46 she is 17. I lover the book and am wondering if you think there is anything in the SCD and the supplements that would be a problem for a healthy 17 year old girl? Is there anything we should do differently because of the age difference?

    Thanks for all the information.

  82. Ok,I get a second go around at this WOD. Last time I did this I pulled my calf muscle in the second round, time to get some revenge, and so soon too. I hate to fail so I will hit this HARD with no worries about my previous injury.

  83. Tim and all,

    It is very exciting to see all this activity and comments here. Many successes.

    Ten days on slow carb without much weight change(my rings are looser though). Any tweaks for slow losers? (Remember Tim says this does not require any exercise- I do walk 2mi 3-4 days per week). Diet Snapple iced tea OK? More protein in the AM? I will start KB swings with the 53 pounder.

  84. This is a great routine. It can be tricky for newbies though. If you are just starting out you could use less weight and be careful with your posture

    1. Hey Peter,

      Just a follow-up. I have Tracy Riefkind’s video on swinging KB’s

      She recommends swinging to a timer such as a Gymboss 15 sec work (10 reps) 15 sec rest. Using this, I am now up to 120 swings with the 53 3 times a week. When this gets easier, I’ll be aiming for 200.

  85. Hey Tim or anybody in the “know”. On Tim’s recommendation of eating within 30 minutes of waking. I’m usually at the gym already (4 days/wk). Can I eat right after my workout? Or should I do a small whey protein shake? Don’t want to puke while trainings legs 🙂 Thx!

  86. I think that is one of the most important info for me. And i’m glad reading your article. However wanna statement on some normal issues, The web site taste is wonderful, the articles is actually nice : D. Just right activity, cheers

  87. I put the t-bar together, and bought some plates at play it again sports, so far very economical, but I found another use for the T-bar. I bought a 3/4″ cap and (2) 1″ clamps at the hardware store for a total of $6.00. I now have everything I need to make an adjustable dumbbell! First Take off the handles and remove all plates. Put on, for example 10lbs. Use the first clamp to hold the plate in place. Add a second 10lbs, and put on the 3/4″ cap instead of the handle. Next, put the rig on it’s side, slide the second 10lbs to the cap, and add the second clamp to hold it in place. Adjustable weight gear is great for saving cash, and space!

  88. Yes…kettlebell swings are awesome. On the recommendation of this post I bought one almost a year ago now and have been loving it ever since.

    These days I’m trying doing 50 swings a day vs. 75 3 days a week to experiment with making exercise much less difficult, but doing it more regularly. Less will power draining and the results seem to be roughly similar.

  89. Hi

    I’ve bought and read the 4HB recently. Great book that fired up my enthusiasm to workout again.

    However. Three months ago I had my second surgery in 5 years on my left shoulder, an arthroscopic Bankart’s Repair. The rehab has been slow and I still feel aches and instability in the shoulder. But it’s meant I’ve been off the gym for three months too, and I’ve shrunk.

    Time to get back. However, wanted to ask your advice for re-introduction. Your recommendation in the book of low-rep, 5/5 cadence to fatigue seems like too much to shoot for initially, until I can get say 3 months of training under my belt.

    I was considering starting with kettleball swings, two handed, and instead of low-rep weight routines, substitute for high-rep, low-weight 5/5 cadence to fatigue. I know it won’t be as effective, but it won’t stress my shoulders.

    Diet and supplement advice appreciated too, either from Tim or anyone else really! Creatine/NO/amino acids/protein intake etc.

    Any recommendations/suggestions as to how to setup a routine? I’d really appreciate your input as someone who has also had shoulder injuries.

    Thanks

    Ben

  90. Can anyone elaborate on the ‘repositioning the pelvis’ section in the ultra endurance chapter in 4hb? I’ve got surgery booked mid June 2012 to shave the front of my femur ball bone off so it doesn’t scrape on the front of my hip socket. I would LOVE to find a way to fix the problem without surgery! Thanks

    1. Hi Cam,

      Go see Eric Franklin’s stuff about the pelvis. It’s brilliant. There are books, classes, and maybe videos? It allows for functionality to be way improved. Also try BodyTalk System… prevented me from needing surgery on the knee and took away all my allergies. Good Luck!