Experiment Recap: 308 Kettlebell Swings a Day
Updated: May 12
This 7-day experiment officially ended yesterday. Here are the biggest lessons I learned:
1. My body can do more than I thought.
Going into this experiment I was afraid that I would have trouble being able to complete 300 swings a day, since I had only been doing 30-60 swings a day up to that point. What I found was that doing 10x the number of swings I would usually do was already well withing my body's physical capabilities. This brought me to the conclusion that I have been greatly under training and holding myself back from improving. Looking back it is obvious to me that I had fallen into a hole of conformity withing my kettlebell swings. To avoid this from happening again I have to add a system for progressing with the kettlebell swing.
2. Doing something too often can get in the way of other tasks.
I designed the experiment for me to do 22 swings every hour over 14 hours so that it would be effortless to complete. However, it might have been too effortless. Each hour I would have to stop what I was doing to complete 22 very easy repetitions. This got very annoying very quickly. Since these repetitions were also not very stimulating, I did not feel like I was accomplishing much. What I learned is that the key is to make the habit enjoyable so that it is easy, but not so easy as to were it seems pointless to do. With this idea in mind, it makes more sense to complete more swings in a shorter period of time so that I feel a sense of accomplishment after every set. This will also help me be more productive by limiting the interruptions I have while doing other tasks.
3. Doing more of one thing can lead to excuses for skipping other activities.
The increase in kettlebell swings made me think that I was getting a lot more exercise done throughout my day than on previous days. Because of this, I gave in to the temptation to skip the bodyweight workout and the gymnastics ring workout on several days. In my opinion, this negatively affective my results because I think it led to me burning fewer calories overall than what I had been previously burning. The lesson here is to commit to following my experiment plan even if I feel that I am already doing enough. Once I complete the experiment then I can decide if there are things I should eliminate.
I did not reach my goal of going down 2cm in waist size. The final weigh-in was 188.4 lbs with a waist size of 100.9 cm. The weight gain is due largely in part to cheat day where I downed an enormous amount of pasta and ice cream. This is not concerning to me since I have seen similar spikes in my weight after other cheat days, but it always returns to normal. As for the waist size, I think it did not go down because I skipped the body weight and gymnastic rings exercises on several of the days.
Moving forward I am doing 350 kettlebell swings over 3 hours. 100 swings at the start of every hour. I may eventually get to the point where I do them all in one hour, but for now, this seems the most enjoyable and least annoying approach. I will also make sure to complete the bodyweight and the gymnastics ring workouts.