Tuesday 5 April 2016

April - Kettlercise Lean In 14

   This month I'm returning to an old favourite: kettlebells. I've tried so many different things over the last few years and I've found that kettlebell workouts, kickboxing and yoga rank among my absolute favourites, which is funny because none of those are things I thought I'd ever do.
   I used Kettlercise For Women back in August of last year, and while it wasn't as explosive as Jillian Michaels' Shred It With Weights, it was still a pretty good workout. I did plan to try volume 2, but when I saw Kettlercise's Lean In 14 advertised in Women's Fitness magazine a few months ago, I thought it sounded more promising.
   The set consists of 4 discs - instructional, beginner, intermediate and advanced - and each of the levelled discs have two 30-minute workouts. I think this is pretty amazing, because it provides not only workouts that are tailored to certain abilities rather than modified for them, but it also means that there are two workouts for each level, helping to keep the workout fresher for longer.
   The DVD comes with a password to download extra material like a workout calendar and recipes, but, if I'm honest, none of it is really worth it in my opinion, and you get spammed by newsletters which you are automatically opted into. The only thing I took away from it was that the intermediate workout plan isn't as obvious as I'd thought. Rather than only using the intermediate disc, you use a combination of the intermediate and advanced discs, which can mean you do four different workouts in a week, repeating only one or two depending how many rest days you take.

   My intention is to use the advanced plan, which is a combination of intermediate and advanced discs. I would have said I was only going to use the intermediate disc, but having seen the workout plan, I'm going to push myself a little more than usual and keep to two rest days - Monday, Thursday and Saturday will be intermediate, Tuesday and Friday will be advanced, and Wednesday and Sunday will be rest days.

   And, to top it off, I bought myself some new capris - yes, yes, I know, it's an addiction and it's getting a little out of hand. But they're so, so pretty! Tell me I'm wrong! And Fabletics is a bit on the expensive side, I admit, but while I absolutely hate paying so much for one single item, I absolutely cannot deny the quality. They have perfect compression, a flattering but reliable waistband, a hidden pocket if you need that sort of thing, thick, sturdy and surprisingly soft fabric which is still surprisingly excellent at keeping you cool and dry. And, of course, there's the added fact that their designs are both exclusive and limited - generally, a design is only available for about 2 months, so you have to get in quick, but the designs are highly gorgeous and long-lasting. Those beautiful flurry ones I got for Christmas have been through the wash countless times and have been worn to death, and there's no fading - even the gold spots are still shiny and smooth!
   I've got a referral link for Fabletics - a full outfit (that's a top and a pair of bottoms) for between £22 and £30, and free shipping, and their tops are just as amazing as their bottoms! Just purchase through this link and you can help fuel my addiction to activewear. Consider it your good deed for the day - we both benefit!

   As ever, I'll report back in 2 weeks!


  1. Hi. I've just read ur review on Lean in 14 and I'm going to start this tomorrow. Do u think it's possible to lose just over a stone in 7 weeks if I do this dvd and eat healthy? I was going to start at the intermediate level as done kettlercise before. How many inches did you lose? Thanks, Mirae

    1. Hi Mirae! How much you lose depends on an awful lot of things, such as how much lean muscle mass you already have, whether you eat enough protein and healthy fats, don't skimp on carbs and so on.

      I would say 7 weeks is a very realistic time frame to lose just over a stone, but you do have to make sure you eat healthily. That means you must get enough of the right things - healthy fats such as those from fish and nuts are a must, as is protein and slow-release carbs like oats, wholegrains, fruits and so on. The only things you should look to cut out of your diet are trans/hydrogenated fats, which are found in over-processed foods, fast foods and so on, and refined sugars. Refined sugars you don't need to cut out entirely, but limit intake to 2-3 times a week. I found that when I tried to cut them out completely, I ended up breaking and binging. I learned that moderation is key, and restrictive diets that cut out the things you love just don't work.

      Calorie counting is also helpful to make sure you're not UNDER-eating. Under eating alongside a workout can be just as bad as over-eating, but rather than gain weight, your body will hold on to everything you're trying to lose because it thinks it'll need it in the future. You need to give it enough so that it knows it can afford to let go of some - aim for 1500 calories a day.

      Buy some healthy snacks like nakd bars, trek bars, bounce balls and perhaps a graze subscription box - you can get your first box for free if you follow this referral link: https://www.graze.com/uk/p/KIMW2WW6U

      This way you'll have lots of healthy snacks for when you get peckish. The best way I've found is to split 1500 calories between 5-6 meals. Breakfast, lunch and dinner should be the biggest, leaving room for two 150-200 calorie snacks. It's important to space them apart equally and try to make sure you get some protein at each sitting - nut butters, nuts, meat, eggs, etc - as that will help your body to ration out the energy from the carbs more slowly, keeping you fuller longer and avoiding crashes.

      I think I've made this sound more complicated than it is, you really just need to make sure you eat sensibly.

      As far as how much I lost, I've since discovered it was an inch from around my middle, but the scales didn't budge. Remember: the number on the scales means nothing as your weight (and size, really) fluctuates throughout the day, week and month, and that muscle weighs more than fat.

      I recommend taking a look at my bikini-ready series - one post focuses on toning up, the other on fat-loss, and covers all these tips and more in greater detail: http://www.ablackbirdsepiphany.co.uk/2016/04/get-bikini-ready.html

      I hope this helps!


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