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Discovering My True Strength (Through Kettlebells)

Discovering My True Strength (Through Kettlebells) 

by Kim Marivoet from Belgium

I am sure you have people sending you thank you e-mails like these all the time, but I really wanted to tell you how grateful I am that you decided to share your no-nonsense approach to kettlebell training and nutrition with all of us the world over. 

I started my kettlebell journey with Lauren's Ultimate Body Sculpt and Conditioning Volume 1 just after my 31st birthday this past Summer, and was hooked from the first suitcase deadlift! 

Growing up, I stayed active the way most children do: through play. My bike and I were an inseparable duo and I was keen to spend as much time as I could outdoors. As the years passed and other interests took over, the only exercise I got came in the form of two dreaded hours of mandatory PE, the memories of which inspire nightmares to this very day.
It would be unfair to say my family lived a sedentary lifestyle, but the fact was that engaging in formal exercise or sports simply didn't occur to us: if you were overweight, you dieted; cardio was meant for marathon runners and the like; and lifting weights was the privilege of bodybuilders.

It wasn't until my late 20's that I realized we are designed to move. Bearing witness to family and close friends battling illness and injuries taught me how lucky I was to have woken up healthy and able all these years, and inspired me to finally give my body - ├índ mind - the care and attention it deserved. Around this time, my partner Rick was some way into his own fitness journey, and seeing the results he'd been rewarded with only served to motivate me further.

Like so many of us, I had brief flirtations with workout systems that promised the world ("Get the secret to Celebrity X's butt/abs/arms!"), focused solely on losing pounds and inches, and shied away from promoting strength for fear of "bulking". It wasn't long before I grew disillusioned with the amount of work I was putting in and having very little to show for it. It was then that I knew I had to shift my focus to becoming stronger, not smaller.
I successfully switched to an exercise routine based around traditional, tried-and-tested bodyweight exercises and got my first set of kettlebells about 6 months later. Given Lauren's excellent reputation and credentials in fitness and nutrition, I knew I wanted her to show me what these cannonball-shaped babies could do.

In the few months I've been using her programs, I've graduated to "real" push-ups, carrying several heavy bags of groceries up the 48 steps to my apartment without having to give my arms and lungs even a second's rest, and noticed I have a much easier time keeping up with Rick (an avid runner and obstacle course athlete) during our hikes. To top it all off I'm seeing some promising changes in my body composition and I have never felt better! 

Lauren's teachings on strength have also inspired me to start working towards performing unassisted chin-ups and pull-ups. If someone had told me a few years ago that I would ever even attempt this, I wouldn't have believed them for a second, but now I know I will get there, however long it takes.

It is an amazing feeling to know I am growing stronger and fitter every time I train, but what keeps me going most of all is the knowledge that getting serious about my health has made me a happier, more resilient person and allows me to be a better partner, daughter and friend to my loved ones.

I can't thank Lauren enough for sharing her no-nonsense approach to kettlebell training with all of us the world over, and I look forward to having her coach me in my living room for many years to come!


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