I completed the initial six-week KettleWorX program this morning. Here is my assessment of the program – from a runner’s perspective.
Full Body Workout in Half the Time – The program really provides a well-rounded program that hits all your muscle groups in about half the time it would take to do a full body workout at the gym. The training is fairly intense and there is very little rest between exercises, but I think that is what makes it effective. Each workout lasts about 26 minutes, which includes a 3 minute warm-up and cool-down. After each session, I was usually dripping with sweat and my muscles felt adequately fatigued to know I got a good workout.
Balance – As a supplement workout to my running, this program provided just the right balance – resistance, core and cardio. The program has 3 total workouts a week for 26 minutes each. The workouts are broken down to focus primarily on resistance, core or cardio, but you get a good dose of all three regardless of what the primary focus of the workout is. I never felt the sessions were so hard that it overworked me to a point where it sub-optimized my training runs – where a program like P90X did.
Focuses on Core Lean Muscle Development – If you are looking to bulk up, this is probably not the program to use. However, if you are looking to strengthen your core and lean out your muscles, this program seems to a good job in that regard. After the six week program, I didn’t really gain or lose any weight, but I did see some additional definition in my core area and arms.
Improved My Running – Not sure how much to attribute my running improvements over the past few weeks to KettleWorX, but it certainly didn’t hurt. I ran a 5K yesterday in 18:46, which was the first time I broke the 19 minute barrier – and I’m not getting any younger. I believe a stronger core may have had something to do with it.
Quality of the DVD – The quality of the editing and the way the sessions are put together certainly could use some improvement. They splice together various exercises instead of continuously doing the workout session from beginning to end. So with each set and exercise, you have to hear the same thing over and over again. Not sure why they put it together this way, but it may be something they want to consider changing in future videos.
Only One Kettlebell – I got the 20 lb kettlebell, which seemed to be adequate for most exercises, but there were times when I felt it was too heavy for certain exercises and too light for others. I felt I could be susceptible to injury when the kettlebell was too heavy for some exercises. Others who embark on this program may want to consider investing in two or three different kettlebell sizes.
But the bottom line is I liked the program and feel it is a great supplemental program for runners who want to strengthen their core. I liked the first six week program so much that I will begin the Advanced KettleWorX (Level II) next week. The DVDs cost about $50 through Amazon and I’ll post a review of whether or not it was worth it on a future post.