The Hemp Connection + trip

Let's get to the core of the problem…with kettlebells!

I consider myself to be"reasonably athletic", in better shape than most people. I walk an average of 2 miles a day, I swim a mile regularly, in the winter I run 4 1/2 miles or rollerblad 6 miles 4 to 5 times a week. One reason I swim so much is to balance training upper and lower body.

But in Craig Ramsay's fundraiser boot camp a couple of weeks ago, I was made painfully aware of something I was neglecting — my core muscles. These muscles, in the abdomen area, connect upper and lower body; when strong, stablize your movements and make other exercises easier to participate in.

Kettlebells are popular for core work. I was struggling after just a few sets with a little 5 lb.'er! Not to be defeated, I came home and started working on strengthening my weak spot. I don't yet have my own kettlebell, but I do have a 5 lb. barbell. So I'm using that to get started. When I'm easily doing 5 lbs., I'll reward myself by buying the 10 lb. kettlebell.

The great thing about this training is it doesn't take that long at all, 15-20 minutes at the most, 3 times a week at the most. I simply have my weight on the edge of the rug near the TV as a visual reminder that this is what I will now be doing when I watch the news. Here is the simple workout I'm starting with:

I tell you, it's pushing my muscles in ways they don't like, but that's the point. They're not used to moving this way and it's going to take awhile for them to be down with the new gig. But the reward is worth it for me. Standing a little stronger, being in better condition for those tennis lessons I'm planning to take, maybe strengthening the bones in my spine.

I told Craig I'm pumped to show up at one of his boot camps on a future trip to LA, pumping a lot more weight, with a whole lot more ease, than I did on the beach. Putting here publicly on the blog…is my insurance that I'll keep that promise!

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Let's get to the core of the problem…with kettlebells! + trip