Kettlebell Workouts vs HIIT vs Running vs Calisthenics

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Whether you’re trying to lose weight, build muscle or simply improve your general health, there is a variety of exercises that you can consider.

You can think about popular cardio exercises such as swimming and running, or consider adding some weights into your regular stretching exercises.

Kettlebell Workouts vs HIIT

When it comes to kettlebells and HIIT, the novice gym-goer isn’t likely to know much about them, so here are some quick facts about the two popular types of workout.

What are kettlebells?

Kettlebells are weights that are shaped in such a way so that it is easy for you to lift them and swing around.

They range in weight from just one pound to as much as fifty pounds or more, so you can use them regardless of the level you are at.

The handle makes it easy for people of all ages and abilities to lift and use them in a workout.

What is HIIT?

HIIT stands for high intensity interval training.

It is one of the best ways to burn fat and lose weight, and many people unfortunately don’t know about this method of working out.

The concept is quite simple – you will burn more calories and have a more effective workout by varying your heart rate.

Therefore, no matter what type of workout you do, you should do 30-60 seconds of high intensity workout, followed by 30-60 seconds of lower intensity workout (or cooling down period).

The time you spend on the different periods of intensity may vary, such as 45 seconds high intensity and 60 seconds low intensity.

The idea is to get your heart rate very high and then let it come back down again before going back up.

Which is best for you?

It’s impossible to say which type of workout is best, since it depends what you’re trying to achieve.

HIIT workouts are great if you’re trying to lose weight, while kettlebells can also help with weight loss while toning and strengthening your body too.

Can kettlebells and HIIT be mixed?

Yes, you can combine the two to create a great workout.

45 seconds of high intensity kettlebell training followed by the same amount of time at a lower intensity to cool down will help you to achieve great results in the gym.

Remember that your heart rate will depend on a variety of factors, such as your age, weight, fitness levels and gender, so don’t be too worried if somebody else’s heart rate is higher or lower than yours from doing the same workout!

Kettlebell Workouts vs. Running

It’s no surprise that kettlebells have made a huge impact in the world of health and fitness.

They’re easy to pick up, available in a variety of different sizes and colors, and give your whole body a great workout.

Since many of us hate cardio and try to avoid it at all costs, it’s a relief to hear that kettlebell workouts can burn pretty much the same calories as running.

Here are the benefits of both running and kettlebell exercises to help you figure out which you should be doing in your exercise routine.

Kettlebell Workouts

  • You can do many different exercises using kettlebells, which means it never gets boring. Unlike running, you won’t be doing the same thing for a solid hour – you can vary the motions since there is an almost-endless list of things to do with kettlebells.
  • It’s easy to combine cardio and strength training using kettlebells – carry a small one while you walk around or even incorporate it into a dance routine or Zumba workout.
  • You can get the best of all worlds – cardio, flexibility and strength training. If you’re busy and you can only fit in half an hour of exercise, you’ll get a good effective workout from using kettlebells.
  • They are available in many different sizes, so whether you’re just starting out with weights or you’re looking to lift heavier, you can find a suitable weight for you.
  • Swinging a kettlebell around not only tones your body and helps to build muscle quickly, but you can burn fat pretty quickly through the workout too.


  • Anybody can start jogging or running at any time, so unlike kettlebells where you need to either join a gym or buy the items, it’s very accessible and you can start at any time.
  • It’s entirely free to start running, and you can do it anywhere you want. Step outside your house and immediately get a great workout by running about your neighborhood.
  • You can start off slowly and build it up to the next levels until you are running with ease and covering further distances.
  • It’s one of the best ways to burn fat, since your entire body has to work hard in order to keep moving.
  • It’s a great form of exercise for your legs, which you will see gradually becoming more toned and defined.

Which one is best?

It’s difficult to say which type of workout is best, but if you’re stuck for time, a kettlebell workout is a great way of combining cardio and strength training and benefiting your body in many different ways.

Kettlebell Workouts vs. Calisthenics (Bodyweight Exercises)

Some people prefer using weights when they exercise, while others find them a bother and don’t like using them.

For other people with health issues, such as arthritis or heart problems, using weights while exercising isn’t even an option.

If you’re struggling to decide which type of exercise is going to be more beneficial for you, here are some of the key points for both kettlebells and bodyweight exercises.


  • Kettlebells allow you to do movements which you would do otherwise, but you can add the extra weight into your workout. This means that you’ll be able to burn fat quicker, tone up more easily and burn more calories during the time you spend exercising.
  • Due to the fact that they are heavy, people with health problems aren’t always able to use kettlebells in their workouts. However, since there are many different sizes available, you can still use these weights even if you can’t lift a lot.
  • The movement of swinging a kettlebell works your entire body from head to toe, so you don’t have to do a variety of exercises to target different areas.


  • Bodyweight exercises can be done wherever you are, so you don’t need any extra equipment in order to start exercising and burning some calories. If you’re on vacation, you don’t need to worry about having to skip two weeks’ worth of workouts. You can continue with your normal exercises without a problem.
  • Since there is no weight involved with bodyweight exercises, you don’t have the added resistance that comes with using free weights such as kettlebells. This means that toning up and burning fat around your body will take longer.
  • There are many different exercises you can do to work and tone different parts of your body, such as the legs, upper arms and abdominal region.

Which type of exercise is best?

The best way to get a great workout is by combining both types of exercise on a regular basis.

If you’ve been doing bodyweight exercises, continue to do them but use kettlebells to add resistance.

You might find that you can’t do as many reps since it’s a lot harder, but start off with a small kettlebell and gradually increase the weight.

You’ll see results in no time, and you’ll be surprised at how quickly you can burn those extra calories.

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