Beginner Workout: Cycle 3, Week 1

Bret Hamilton


Wilsonville, Oregon, United States

Kettlebells, Strength and Conditioning, Functional Movement Screen


EDITOR'S NOTE: For an in-depth description of the beginner workouts and the movements contained in them from their creator, Bret Hamilton, have a look at his article on getting started with this 12-week program.


These workouts are programmed for three sessions each week. You will need only very basic equipment: 



  • Foam roller
  • Training shoes (not running shoes - see article)
  • Two kettlebells - an 8kg and a 12kg for women, a 12kg and 16kg for men
  • Lightweight dowel rod
  • 8' X 8' workout space


If you have a question regarding kettlebell swing or getup technique, or are just not "getting it," please review this video from 2:55-7:23, but keep in mind we are doing the swing with one bell, not two. All other technical cues will remain the same.


Week 1 - "Build a Base": Day 1 (HARD)

Foam roll


Warm up: 

Cross Crawl: Lie on your back, touch elbow to opposite kneecap. 10x each side


Rocking: Rock your butt back towards heels, but don't let your back round. x10


Easy Rolls: Roll from your back to your belly, and your belly to your back using just your arms, or just your legs. Lie like Superman with arms stretched overhead, lead with your eyes. If you're using your arms, shut the lower body off, and vice versa.



Crocodile Breath: Lie face down, forehead on the backs of your hands, breathe in through the nose, and push all of the air down in to your belly. Exhale all of your breath out through your mouth.


With each inhale, feel your belly push in to the ground. Have a friend put their fingertips on the sides of your belly to make sure it is expanding laterally. If you catch yourself breathing in to your chest during workouts - i.e. your shoulders are rising and falling as you breathe - go back to your crocodile breath to fix it.



Turkish get up w/shoe: 3 each side (3/3)

Balance the sole of your shoe on the top of your fist. No thumbs touching the shoe! That's cheating. Your goal is to go from lying to standing and back to lying without dropping the shoe. No trying weights until you've grooved this to the point you can do it your sleep.


Circuit 1: 2 rounds

  • 15 X Bodyweight squats
  • 15 X Pushups
  • 15 X Rocking + Scapular Wallslide




Circuit 2: 2 rounds

  • Kettlebell swing 15 sets of 1 rep
  • 15 X Plank x15s Tighten everything! Make fists, squeeze your arms, armpits, abs, butt, thighs.
  • 15 X Hip flexor stretch


 To cool down, repeat the warm up.


Week 1 - "Build a Base": Day 2 (EASY)

Foam roll


Warm up:

Repeat day 1 warm up




  • Swing practice: 15 sets of 1 rep
  • 5 minute walk/jog/bike (walk/bike briskly or jog slowly, or mix a bit of both)


 To cool down, repeat the warm up.


Week 1 - "Build a Base": Day 3 (MEDIUM)

Foam roll


Warm up:

Repeat day 1 warm up



  • Shoe get up 3/3


Circuit 1: 3 rounds

  • 10 X Bodyweight squat (try light kettlebell held at chest on last set)
  • 10 X Pushups
  • 10 X Rocking + Wallslides


Circuit 2: 3 rounds

  • KB swings (10 sets of 1 rep)
  • 10 X Plank 10s
  • 10 X Hip flexor stretch+stick windmill


 To cool down, repeat the warm up.

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