Home Kettlebell Tabata Workout

*Edit: I have added an instructional video! See below.

Because I teach and train on a college campus, my schedule revolves around the academic calendar.

So, I’m back in my routine! I told my classes that I was 5 months pregnant (in case they couldn’t tell!!). When I’m in fitness gear, you can really see my belly–time to fess up!

FitPregnancy_circuit class
I felt really good teaching and continue to use the “talk test” for intensity; meaning if I can still instruct and encourage, I’m doing okay! However, I still like to wear my Polar HRM so I can see my heart rate on a consistent basis.

Self conscious?
When my body is changing, growing, getting softer, I can’t help but notice. This is my first pregnancy, so it’s all new for me. When you’re in the fitness arena, it’s tough not to think about appearance especially when leading a group fitness class. However, I’m working on re-framing my self talk. Now, it’s about showing women you can stay active during pregnancy. Plus, it may help my class seem less intimidating, right?! “She’s 5 mos. prego, it has be easier!”

What does 21 weeks look like?
belly pic_21 weeks
Still dressing “nice” for my exercise science lectures, but we will be in the weight room for a majority of the semester, so sweats it is! Thank goodness-I’m running out of clothes already!

More normal clothes! what?!
BlondePonytail_Date night
Spencer and I went to Zero Dark Thirty over the weekend. With baseball season approaching, weekends will be filled with practices and games, so we took advantage. Really enjoyed it–lots of focus on the “hunt” versus the actual mission.

And, the GNC Total Lean Challenge is in its third week. I had the chance to instruct and demo the prescribed workouts, so if you get a chance, check it out! Bonus: prizes are awarded weekly.

Here’s my supplement regime now: GNC Prenatals & probiotics. It differs quite a bit from what I was taking when I wasn’t pregnant.


Guess who also keeps me active? You got it, my best buddy Cooper! He found a ball during one of our walks and promptly deflated it. He was quite proud of himself.


Last week, we added kettlebells to our home gym! I was so pumped to work out with them! For the following WOD, I set my timer to tabatas [20 seconds on: 10 seconds off x 8] for each move. I used a 35 lbs. kettle bell for all moves except the dead lifts where I substituted with 50 lbs.


The single arm KB snatch is the most technical move, and high pulls look something like this:

Reebok_CrossFit_capris_KB_high pull

You will do each move for the 4 minutes before moving to the next. Take a 60 second break in between each exercise. It’s 20 minutes of intense work!

*Edited on 2/14/13 to include video:

Your turn:
1. What was the last movie you saw?
2. Do you like wearing normal clothes or could you live in sweats? –Obviously, I’m not a fashionista. Sorry, little girl. Your mom will have you in athletic gear! 😉

*FitFluential LLC compensated me for this campaign. All opinions are my own.


  1. Oh I’m pretty sure I posted to Facebook last week that I wish I was a phys ed teacher so I could wear my workout clothes every day!! Practice grace with yourself through this Jess. You are in amazing shape and look amazing but I completely understand what it is like. After having Aubrey, I didn’t even want to leave the house because of how I looked! It was having to go get Em at school that pushed me out the door and I have to constantly remind myself of the miracle my body created!! You’ll get back there…but I completely understand!
    Fancy Nancy recently posted..Foodie Friday…belVita Breakfast BiscuitsMy Profile

    • Thanks so much Nancy! I know moms can relate–especially active ones like you–it is a process to get comfortable with change! 🙂

  2. Yesssss would love a video of that WOD. I have to say I have always loved your blog but I am LOVING all your pregnancy posts! Every time I read them I think how lucky your baby is to have such a fit, strong and healthy mom. You’re looking great!

    • I will make sure to video it! Thanks for your comment Caitlin–truly means so much. I hope to instill that in her too: strong is beautiful.

  3. I like dressing up, but now that i’m pregnant i’m all about being comfy 🙂 And when I’m at home I have to be in yoga pants or something I can relax in 🙂

    {love jenny xoxo}
    love jenny xoxo recently posted..The Bachelor – Lesley’s Pink Lace DressMy Profile

  4. I did see Zero Dark Thirty and liked it. In the theater, the last movie was Silver Linings Playbook. Also very good. And we watched The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel.
    I could probably live in sweats. I could DEFINITELY live in sneakers.

    The Kidless Kronicles
    Nicole@TheKidlessKronicles recently posted..http://www.thekidlesskronicles.comMy Profile

    • Thanks for the recs!! We have fallen behind with movies! And, yes to sweats and sneakers–they are so flattering now, it isn’t that offensive to wear them all the time….right?! 🙂

  5. Yes I love your tutorials for the workouts/moves! They’re very helpful!

    I live in workout clothes 90% of the time. My job is pretty casual and I’m in jeans everyday – I prefer comfy over style. Plus, I’m horrible at being trendy. I end up looking like I’m playing dressup.
    beka @ rebecca roams recently posted..Playlist Thursday – Rock It OutMy Profile

    • Will do! I love getting feedback from readers–so glad the videos are worth it! I find that athletic gear is so attractive nowadays that I simply feel good in it!! Not to mention the comfort! 🙂

  6. You look absolutely fit and amazing!! So cute!
    Lindsay @ The Skipping Pixie recently posted..hello there.My Profile

  7. Christina D says:

    Yes please video this workout!! It’s super helpful for me to hear all your form cues before actually doing the moves, especially when kettlebells are involved.

    21 weeks looks good on you! You and your baby bump are so adorable 🙂

  8. Did you do this as a circuit or each one for 4 min tabata before moving on?

  9. As you said, “Now, it’s about showing women you can stay active during pregnancy.” That’s exactly right!! Being pregnant and working out in a group setting is really motivating for other people whether they are pregnant or not, and whether we realize it at the time or not 🙂 So, embrace the changes your body is going through and continue to set an amazing example for your students. I bet they really look up to you 🙂

    • I will keep working to embrace! 😉 Thanks jen! I hope the students, faculty and staff taking my classes see it as a positive! 🙂

  10. I’m 14 weeks today and while my clothes still fit, they’re getting a little tight. I have a two week meeting in London and I was just saying that I wish that the dress code was workout clothes- they’re just better!
    Chelsea @ Cardio and Cocktails recently posted..Heart WorkoutMy Profile

  11. You look great! I am 4.5 months (also my first) and also teach. You are right – hard to hid the bump in workout gear. Up until this month I hadn’t noticed much of a difference in my own fitness but boy has that changed! Basic moves require modification now, and while I always encourage modifications for my participants it’s sometimes hard to practice what we preach 🙂

    • So good to hear from someone else prego AND teaching fitness! I too am struggling dialing it down a notch–modifications are becoming more regular!

  12. Love your watch!

    1. American Pie-Reunion
    2. I love wearing running shorts, but nothing feels more sexy then some high heels and skinny jeans!
    Candice@allthingsyogi.com recently posted..Half full or Empty?My Profile

  13. I live in sweats. I think the other moms at my sons preschool think sweats/workout clothes are the only type of clothing I own. Hey, when you squeeze in a workout in the middle of the day there is no use in putting on “normal” clothes first. Just makes for extra laundry! Can’t wait to meet you at the meet up tonight!
    Ashley @ Eat, Run, Live Happy recently posted..My Refrigerator and Apple StrawsMy Profile

  14. Ha, I would totally do sweats all the time if I could. I think it’s awesome how you’re discovering and dealing with changes in your body during pregnancy. It’s all part of life, and I like your approach!
    Addy @ Six-Kick Switch recently posted..Fit Friday LinkageMy Profile

  15. Suzanne S. says:

    Yay! I’ve been waiting for my blondeponytail kettleball WOD!!! I’m a happy girl! Woot! And your belly pics are awesome. Cutie prego!

    • Oh gosh! Aren’t KB’s fun?!! I love them and such a nice addition to our “gym”! Hope you like the workout!

  16. I am interested in working out more with kettle bells so I would love it if you did a video of the WOD!
    Danielle @ Truffles n’ Treadmills recently posted..The New Late Night OptionMy Profile

  17. Pregnancy and good fitness plans too – I’m just loving your posts, Jess! 😀 Great KB workout – I’ve been teaching a few clients snatches this week and they ARE hard to teach! But such a great exercise to keep in rotation. Cute pictures, and I’m glad you’re embracing where you’re at pregnancy/body-wise – that always seems like it would be much easier said than done. Keep it up! 😀
    Bonnie recently posted..Fitness Friday: I Got a ComplexMy Profile

    • Thank you Bonnie! Yes, KB snatches are super technical so I’m glad you’re clients have you to instruct or they’ll likely bruise their forearms! ha! Trying to embrace the belly! 😉

  18. I think that whenever we decide to have kids, working out will get challenging for me because don’t they say to keep your hr below 120? My heart rate has always been high, and gets to 100 when I’m just stretching! I hope my doctor will allow some leeway since mine seems higher to begin with.
    Love that you’re doing kettlebells while pregnant! I recently learned kettlebells and love them. I’d love to add them to a home gym. We just added a TRX which I love!
    Looking great!
    E recently posted..hikes latelyMy Profile

    • That old standard is 140 bpm but that’s just a ball park figure–because no two of us are alike. You truly should feel like exercising will still be part of your lifestyle when pregnant–definitely not a time to stop normal life-just listen to your body! 🙂 It will help you during and after pregnancy too. 😉

  19. Oh my gosh, sweats.
    Actually, I’m really ready for warmer weather so I can stock up on a shit ton of dresses and just live in those… waistbands are the devil.
    Lauren Q @ Duck on the Run recently posted..New baby post!My Profile

  20. I think it’s awesome that you are staying so active during pregnancy. I think it will definitely show other pregnant ladies that you can remain active throughout pregnancy.

    I could live in workout clothes everyday. I like to be comfortable.
    Natalie recently posted..Recommitment DayMy Profile

  21. Rachel Bouzis says:

    Congratulations on your little girl! And I’ll get to see your bump next week! Which days are you teaching?

    • Hey girl!! I’m teaching MW but we may combine the sections if enrollment is low–hope to see your pretty face soon!

  22. Definitely sweats! I skate in skating pants that are basically like yoga pants or workout pants, but snug around the ankle (don’t want to catch a toe pick in them). That and a warm-ish workout top and REI powerstretch layer. I tend to just keep those clothes after I skate– what can I say, they’re comfy! Last movie: The Hobbit. Congratulations on having a girl— I kept thinking I was having a girl but it didn’t work out that way!
    Mary @ Fit and Fed recently posted..Bronze Ice Dance Test | Hickory HoedownMy Profile

  23. I think Lincoln was the last movie I saw. It was good. I want to see Zero Dark Thirty soon. I like seeing the nominated films before the Awards happen. I like wearing “real” clothes but find myself in workout wear most of the time. I recently added some kettle bell stuff to my workouts. It is hard work! You look GREAT.
    MILF Runner recently posted..Coffee Makes You Happy?My Profile

  24. So I read your blog all the time, and have made notes of different things to try in my workouts, different moves, etc. I LOVE THIS ONE. It will go in my regular rotation of at home workouts. It was quick, it worked many different muscles, and the next day (today) I’m sore in the best way possible, if you know what I mean. Thanks for the great workout!

    • Thank you Christy! I’m so glad you like it! I found it fun and the time flew by, I have been incorporating KB work all week!! 🙂

  25. Yes! Video please. 🙂

  26. Could you post a video of the kettle bell wod please?

  27. Get over yourself….

  28. I need a KB! Tabata workouts are my favorite at-home workout format.
    Monique @ Burpees to Bubbly recently posted..Guest Post: Aqua AerobicsMy Profile


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