Simple & Sinister : Day 1

Simple & Sinister Kettlebell

The Simple & Sinister (S&S, for short) Kettlebell routine is both much easier and simultaneously much more effective than it seems at first glance.

Why this seeming contradiction?

This is a simple enough routine to follow, and credits to Pavel to have made this completely idiot proof.

It consists of three warm up exercises, and two main exercises. This is essentially it.

The warmups consist of a circuit of 5x Goblet Squats, 5x Hip bridges & 5x Haloes, repeated three times in all.

The meat of the workout consists of 10×10 sets of Kettlebell swings, and 5×1 sets of Turkish Getups (TGUs) after the swings.

Of course , this is a very simplified explanation of the exercises, and there are a lot of subtleties and the devil, as you know, is in the details, but that’s pretty much the entire workout.

Yeah, doesn’t sound like much, until you actually get down to it.

Well, for the first day, when I actually did the warmups, I couldn’t finish them. Literally. I assume the body adapts pretty quickly so they shouldn’t give me any trouble down the line, but I could only do 3 circuits of the warmups instead of the recommended 5. And I was sweating like a pig (if pigs actually sweat, that is).

After that, four sets of ten swings with a 12 kg Kettlebell. Yup, I’m a sissy.

Aaaand when I went to do the TGUs with a 15 pound dumbell, as I’ve done many time before, my form was shot to hell. I did only 2 TGUs a side before I decided to call it a day and rest before I hurt myself. After all, Pavel says if you can’t do an rep with perfect form, it doesn’t count and it’s best to hang your hat.

So this workout, while it doesn’t look like much on paper, is actually doing lots of things to your body on a lot of levels.

Plus, I had an excess of energy the rest of the day. So much so, that I even went hiking in the evening.

I can’t help but contrast this to my previous workouts at the gym, where I trained to total failure of each muscle group and at the end all I wanted to do was go drop down on the couch and not get up.

I really loved S&S, and the fact that this works the muscles as well as conditioning the cardiovascular and metabolic systems.

V, on the other hand, has been inspired by Tim Ferriss and his book, the 4 Hour Body, which is an awesome read, btw. If you haven’t already read it, buy it ASAP. I promise you that you’ll be coming back to it again and again.

If you’ve read the previous post, his goal is to lost body fat, while keeping his muscles mass more or less constant and as low maintenance as possible. He did a set of 60 swings, with some whole body stretching beforehand. We’re both being conservative in the beginning, while we feel out the new kettlebells, and are choosing to work on perfecting out form.

I plan on sticking to this, and documenting my experience as I progress on this path.

If you haven’t checked out S&S already, and are unfamiliar with kettlebells, I highly recommend you do so. You won’t be disappointed. 🙂


Yash Chheda


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