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This exercise will help you burn 1,212 calories in one hour

If you want to burn an insane amount of calories in the least amount of time, look no further than Pat Flynn’s workout, the Kettlebell Swing.

Woman with kettlebell
Photo credit: wickedpix/iStock/360/Getty Images

This super-efficient workout comes in handy when you’re crunched for time or made the mistake of indulging in a cookie… which, you know, led to eating the entire bag.

Pat Flynn is a fitness minimalist and author of Paleo Workouts for Dummies. His workout is perfect for the busy woman who wants to maintain her physical health within the small windows of time she has available.

If you’re all about cardio and not so much about strength training, it’s important to proceed with caution — overdo it as a beginner and get ready to be knocked on your tuchus. As with any new workout, start small and work your way up — start with 50 swings a day, eventually working your way up to 300; complete them in 50-swing increments with rest periods in between. “Focus on precision before power, quality before quantity,” says Flynn.

How to do the Kettlebell Swing

Warrior music is optional.

  1. Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, toes pointing slightly outward, and about 1 foot behind your kettlebell.
  2. Hinge at the hips like you’re about to sit in a chair, reach forward and grab hold of the weight.
  3. Start the swing by swinging the kettlebell behind you — like a granny shot in basketball (or drunk bowling).
  4. Once you’ve swung the weight up in front of you, drive your hips forward and stand up as quickly as you can.
  5. Allow the weight to go no higher than eye level before reversing and repeating the movement. Don’t lean back at the top of the swing. Otherwise, I’d imagine you’ll turn into the Robaxacet puppet.

Let’s do the math

As for how many calories you’ll burn personally, there are a number of factors involved, such as the size of your kettlebell, as well as how you do the swings — whether you do them all at once or spread them out.

“From our studies, we know the average calorie burn per minute is 15 to 21 calories,” says Flynn. Therefore, if it takes you five minutes to do 50 swings at 10 swings per minute, you’d burn around 100 calories in that time.

To reach the whopping 1,212 calorie burn per hour, says Flynn, you’d have to work your way up to completing 250 to 300 swings using a kettlebell that’s between 20 and 35 pounds.

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