Grit: in psychology, “grit” is a positive, non-cognitive trait based on an individual’s passion for a particular long-term goal or end state, coupled with a powerful motivation to achieve their respective objective.
I am just about 5 weeks into my own Spartan Race training as I am headed into some competitive heats this year. My coach and I are combining my knowledge of kettlebells and body weight work with his incredible endurance training to make for some super strong fun! Be on the look out for our first test program that will kick off in January! It is about to get real!
Today’s post contains a training routine that is guaranteed to test your mental fortitude, endurance, and strength! This thing called “grit” is a huge theme in the Spartan World, and because I am a kettlebell nut, my coach decided to give me a routine to challenge my kettlebell skills from an endurance perspective.
CUE THE MUSIC! THIS IS THE ACE OF SPADES!
The Ace of Spades: Kettlebell Grit Routine
1 kettlebell at your snatch test weight (12-16kgs for ladies and 20-24kgs for men)
A pair of dice
1 deck of playing cards.
This drill is focussed on three ballistic lifts: the kettlebell swing, the kettlebell snatch, and the kettlebell jerk. To begin the game , you will roll your dice to determine what lift you will perform. If you roll a 2-4, you will perform single arm kettlebell swings. If you roll 5-8, you will perform kettlebell snatches. If you roll 9-12, you are performing kettlebell jerks.
After you roll the dice to determine your lift, shuffle your deck of cards to make sure the cards are evenly mixed. You will pull a card and perform reps that each card dictates.
Cards labelled 2-10 will mandate that you perform reps at the designated number. Example: If you pull a 7 of hearts, and rolled a 4 on the die, you will perform 7 kettlebell swings on both your right and left sides.
Special faced cards will have rep schemes as follows:
Jack- 10 reps
Queen- 15 reps
King- 20 reps
Ace of hearts, Diamonds and Clubs- 11 reps
Joker- 13 reps
Please note that the rep schemes listed for special faced cards are listed PER SIDE on single kettlebell lifts.
The goal is to keep up with ALL of the reps per arm on each card that you draw until you find the Ace of Spades. Once you pull the Ace of Spades, the game ends. A deck of cards has 52 cards in a playing deck. This means you will more than likely be hungry after you finish this training session provided that you shuffle your deck well 😉
Here’s a break down of the ace of spades routine in video format with both instructions on how to play, and my first few rounds into the workout itself (PHEW!)
BONUS: If you are feeling up for a SERIOUS CHALLENGE, grab two kettlebells and make this entire training session one hell of a kettlebell complex. Please note that if you are using two kettlebells, choose a kettlebell size that is 1 size down from your regular snatch test weight. I normally training with a 16kg, so I dropped to two 12kgs for this routine.
Give this routine a go and let me know how you do! This was a truly challenging workout that tested my endurance, conditioning, and overall mental grit. I am excited to hear how the rest of you do with this routine as well! Never fear testing your limits! You are stronger than you know! Like this post and do share it with your friends!
That’s it for today! Until next time. . .
Special thanks to my coach, Steve Manns SGX, for the push to attempt this routine. I think it is safe to say I one-upped you though ;).