Bodyweight Beast Building – Week 5 / Day 1 (Free Sample)

When the pandemic hit in 2020, we had to get creative.

I owned two personal training studios in the Sacramento, CA area at the time, and we had to fully close for a few months initially, then intermittently for almost a full year.

Since the weather in that area is generally favorable for outdoor workouts, they became a staple of what we did.

It was all I could do to keep my clients on their programs and continue getting them results.

And I’ll say, the people who were dedicated still achieved great results! Some even better than before the pandemic!

It just goes to show that it’s NOT about the equipment you have available to train—it’s about effort, dedication, mindset, and of course, having the right plan of attack!

Check out this free sample from my Bodyweight Beast Building course at the link below. Then, get the 2-for-1 “get outside” deal on the full course here:

Bodyweight Beast Building – Week 5 / Day 1 (Free Sample)

Full exercise breakdowns and explainer videos are available in the full program HERE


4 sets of:

  • 10 Swing Lunges (per leg – forward and back = 1 rep)
  • 12 Close Push-Ups


3 sets, 35 seconds work, 15 seconds rest each of:

  • Body Saw
  • Total Body Extension
  • Side Plank with Leg Raise (30 seconds per side)


3 – Finish with HIIT!

Number values refer to RPE (Rate of Perceived Exertion)

6 ROUNDS of 45 seconds @ 15; 90 seconds @ 10

OPTIONS – Your Choice of Modality:

  • Hill sprints
  • Stairs / stadium run
  • Jump rope
  • Water running
  • Stationary bike

Do men and women really have different nutrition needs?

Gents – this is for you today – but ladies – please share with any men you know!

Most diets were not designed for men. Over 80% of all on the market are for women, and the very diets that market to women to lean out don’t contain the building blocks for us to build natural testosterone. Here’s 3 reasons why:

Caloric Needs for Men vs Women Men typically require more calories than women as they are typically taller and more muscularly built. A fairly active 170-pound man needs about 2500-3000 calories a day, whereas a 120-pound woman, with similar activity levels, requires 1800-2000 calories. Portion sizes appropriate for their respective bodies are key to good health and proper nutrition.

Men vs Women Require Different Nutrients Men are prone to different diseases than women and our diets should reflect that. Women require more iron for monthly blood loss where as men require more fiber in their diet as men have a higher rate of rectal cancer. Women need more calcium to prevent osteoporosis. Men also need about 15% of daily protein intake and as little fat as possible – under 30% of daily calories.

Hormones Testosterone levels in men have declined over the last 20 years by 25% on average across all ages, per Kinsey. This has resulted in:

  • Impotence and low sex drive
  • Feminine fat and man boobs
  • Lack of building lean strong muscle
  • Depression disease and cancer

There are certain foods you can eat to naturally increase your testosterone, which is another reason why men require different nutrients than women.

If you’re ready to tackle all of the above and optimize your body, consider this a solution – the Man Diet. It was designed for men, to give men what they need to fuel their testosterone and optimize their health with proper nutrition and caloric intake. Learn here how to increase your testosterone naturally forever with simple diet changes, tailored for you. Start the Man Diet today and optimize your health:


To your success!

— Forest Vance, MS Human Movement, Over 40 Expert

4 Stretches to Reduce Back Pain in 2-7 Minutes

Disclaimer: I am not a medical professional. This information is for educational purposes only and should not be considered medical advice. Please consult a healthcare provider before beginning any new exercise or stretching routine.


As we get older, those aches and pains can start to creep in. To keep your back in top shape, here are four quick stretches that can reduce back pain in 2-7 minutes and keep you moving strong:

  • Single Knee-to-Chest Stretch:
    • Description: Lie on your back, bring one knee towards your chest, and hold it with both hands.
    • Duration: Hold for 15-20 seconds per side, repeat 2-3 times.
  • Lumbar Rotation Stretch:
    • Description: Lie on your back with knees bent and feet flat, then lower both knees to one side while keeping your shoulders on the floor.
    • Duration: Hold for 15-20 seconds per side, repeat 2-3 times.
  • Piriformis Stretch:
    • Description: Lie on your back, cross one ankle over the opposite knee, and gently pull the uncrossed leg towards your chest.
    • Duration: Hold for 15-20 seconds per side, repeat 2-3 times.
  • Child’s Pose:
    • Description: Kneel on the floor, sit back on your heels, and stretch your arms forward while lowering your torso to the ground.
    • Duration: Hold for 15-20 seconds, repeat 2-3 times.

Check out the next page for full form breakdowns on these moves (and many more) –>> 10-min AM Routine for Back-Neck-Sciatica Relief

Incorporate these stretches into your daily routine to help alleviate back pain quickly and effectively!

— Forest Vance
Master of Science, Human Movement
Corrective Exercise Specialist
Over 40 Training Expert


10-min AM Routine for Back-Neck-Sciatica Relief

If your back, neck, spine, or sciatic nerve gives you trouble, this program can help:

-> 10-min AM Routine for Back-Neck-Sciatica Relief

Now, just to be clear, today’s message is not a substitute for medical advice. However, for many people, a daily AM routine like this one, which improves mobility, strengthens the core, and enhances overall movement, can be a tremendous addition.

Personally, when I started incorporating movement work and specific core strengthening into my daily routine, it was a real game-changer. I struggled for years with knee, back, and shoulder pain. I consulted countless doctors, physical therapists, massage therapists, athletic trainers, strength coaches, and more.

All of these professionals were incredibly helpful and played a key role in mostly eliminating my chronic pain. However, I must say that a daily routine similar to the one linked below has also helped as much as anything else I’ve done:

-> 10-min AM Routine for Back-Neck-Sciatica Relief

If your back, neck, spine, or sciatic nerve gives you trouble, this program is definitely worth checking out!

Lose 12% in 12 Weeks with Kettlebells – Last Call

This is your last call for my “Lose 12% of your Bodyweight in 12 Weeks with Kettlebells” transformation program.

Check the document linked at the bottom of this email for more info and to sign up.

If you are aged 40 and up.. and if you are looking to rapidly lose body fat and gain new lean muscle using 3-4, 20-30 minute kettlebell workouts from home each week.. this program is designed specifically for you.

In case you missed any of the info I’ve shared on this program over the last couple of days, here is what you get with this program:

1 – The complete nutrition blueprint, customized to you

I have been working on these as they’ve been coming in over the last week. They are a LOT of work because the plans are customized to each person!… but that’s why they work, because I take YOUR specific calorie requirements, macro needs, food preferences, preferred meal timing, and much more, all into consideration.

Here is a sample of what one of these customized meal plans would look like:

2 – A full 12 weeks of daily kettlebell workouts

When you sign up, I give you a full 12 weeks of the exact kettlebell workouts to do to lose up to 12% of your bodyweight. All you have to do is log into my app, watch the quick video breaking down your workout for the day and/or read over the details, then mark “complete” when you’re done to keep you accountable and on track!

Plus, I’m always there if you need help with exercise subs, form tips, or anything else!

Here is a sample of what a workout in the program might look like:

3 – Access to Saturday Kettlebell Strength Camp series (runs month of June and July 2024, Saturday mornings at 8 am CST) live, real-time kettlebell workouts with Forest and team (live or recorded)

This is a fun way to attend some live workouts with me and/or my team and keep you motivated and working towards your goals! Folks who are signing up for this program individually will be paying $99, you get it FREE as part of your registration.

4 – Physical copy of Forest’s CORE Kettlebell Challenge book shipped to you (free shipping within the continental US)

This is just an extra little freebie bonus as my way of saying thanks – this is a $25++ value when you factor in shipping, I’m picking up the tab for free when you sign up right now today.

Here are the rest of the details and the sign-up link for the Challenge:

Questions? Concerns? Reply directly to this email and I’m happy to help.

Look forward to working with you on this!

-Forest @ KettlebellBasics

custom meal plan

Disclaimer: The information provided in this meal plan is for informational purposes only and is not intended as a substitute for advice from a registered dietitian or other healthcare professional. This meal plan does not prescribe or offer a personalized diet plan for any specific individual. Always consult with a clinical professional before starting any new diet or fitness program to ensure it is appropriate for your personal health needs and goals.

Did you know that we’re including a custom meal plan for everyone who signs up for my upcoming 12 in in 12 Kettlebell Challenge?

It’s true.

There is more info on the Challenge, along with a link to sign up, at the bottom of this email… but first, let me give you an example of what one of these custom meal plans might look like.



Here’s what a typical week looks like for Mike, who weighs 205 pounds, has 24% body fat, and is moderately active. He aims to lose 24 pounds in 12 weeks with a daily intake of 2153 calories, consisting of 158g protein, 230g carbs, and 73g fat:

Breakfast Options (Choose one each day):

  • Banana Pancake: Combine 1 mashed banana with 2 eggs and 1/4 cup oat flour. Enjoy with 1 tablespoon of honey and a sprinkle of walnuts.
  • Smoothie Bowl: Blend 1/2 banana with 1/2 cup mixed berries and 1/2 cup Greek yogurt. Top with 1 tablespoon chia seeds and 1/4 cup granola.
  • Egg and Avocado Toast: Enjoy 2 scrambled or poached eggs on a slice of whole-grain toast topped with 1/4 sliced avocado and a dash of pepper and salt.

Lunch Options (Choose one each day):

  • Grilled Chicken Caesar Salad: Toss 3 oz of grilled chicken breast with 3 cups romaine lettuce, 1 tablespoon Caesar dressing, Parmesan cheese, and whole-grain croutons.
  • Quinoa and Black Bean Salad: Mix 1/2 cup cooked quinoa with 1/2 cup black beans, chopped bell peppers, onions, lime juice, olive oil, and cilantro.
  • Turkey and Cheese Wrap: Wrap 3 oz sliced turkey breast, 1 slice Swiss cheese, lettuce, tomato, and a teaspoon of mustard in a whole wheat wrap.

Dinner Options (Choose one each day):

  • Baked Cod with Vegetables: Serve 4 oz baked cod with 1 cup roasted asparagus spears and 1/2 cup brown rice.
  • Beef Stir Fry: Stir-fry 3 oz lean beef with mixed vegetables (broccoli, carrots, bell pepper) in soy sauce and sesame oil, served over 1/2 cup cooked brown rice.
  • Pasta Primavera: Toss 1/2 cup whole wheat pasta with 3 oz grilled chicken strips, mixed vegetables (zucchini, squash, cherry tomatoes), and marinara sauce.

Snack Options (Choose two per day):

  • Mixed Nuts and Dried Fruit: A hearty mix of 1/4 cup nuts with 1/4 cup dried fruit for a quick energy boost.
  • Cottage Cheese and Pineapple: Combine 1/2 cup low-fat cottage cheese with 1/2 cup chopped pineapple for a refreshing and filling snack.

This meal plan is designed to provide a balanced mix of carbohydrates, proteins, and fats to support Mike’s goals of weight loss and maintaining muscle mass. Each meal and snack is crafted to ensure he meets his daily calorie and macronutrient targets effectively, promoting sustainable weight loss while supporting his moderate activity level.


“12 in 12” Transformation Challenge

This is a 12-week kettlebell coaching program to help you:

1 – Learn the basics of safe and effective kettlebell training
2 – Gain strength and lean muscle
3 – Lose up to 12% of your current bodyweight

-> 12-week kettlebell coaching sign up link

The demographic I specialize in helping are kettlebell fans aged 40 and up. 

If that’s you, this program could potentially be a great fit!

That, and you obviously need access to at least a couple of kettlebells to do all the workouts.

If you meet these requirements, review the details, then go ahead and sign up at the link below:

-> New 12-week fat loss challenge for kettlebell fans aged 40 and up

Here’s a full breakdown of what the program includes:1 – Kettlebell Workouts: You’ll get 12 weeks of 20-30 minute kettlebell workouts focused on fat loss, designed by me. There will be room for you to ask questions, discuss modifications, and more.
2 – Workout Feedback: I will provide regular feedback as requested on your workouts to help you progress.
3 – Personalized Nutrition Plan: Receive a 100% customized nutrition plan tailored to your specific goals, needs, and preferences, aimed at helping you lose up to 12% of your body weight in 12 weeks.
4 – Saturday Kettlebell Strength Camp: Gain access to our special series in June and July 2024, featuring live, real-time kettlebell workouts on Saturday mornings at 8 AM CST. You can join these sessions live or watch them recorded, giving you a great opportunity to stay motivated and connected with the group.
5 – Core Kettlebell Challenge Book: We’ll send you a physical copy of my CORE Kettlebell Challenge book for free (shipping included within the continental US).

-> This package is designed to provide you with all the tools you need to succeed Feel free to reply back to this message for any help, and I’ll get back to you as soon as I can!

How to lose up to 12% of your body weight in the next 12 weeks with kettlebells

If you are interested in getting my personal help with losing up to 12% of your bodyweight over the next 12 weeks with kettlebells, reply directly to this message with the words “12 IN 12” and I’ll send you the details about my new online coaching program.

Can you imagine how you would look and feel if you lost 12% of your bodyweight?

Today, I’m excited to share the exact steps you need to make that happen over the next 12 weeks.

*I am opening up a few spots for the newest iteration of my “KB Fit Over 40” program where I personally coach you to learn the basics of KB training, build new lean muscle, and lose up to 12 percent of your bodyweight in 12 weeks. If you are interested, reply with the words “12 in 12” to this message and I’ll send you the ‘deets!


How to Lose 12 Percent of Your Body Weight in 12 Weeks with Kettlebells – Step-by-Step Guide

STEP 1: Find 12% of your current weight.

(Example: If you weigh 225 lbs, multiply 225 by 0.12 to get 27 lbs)

This is how much weight you aim to lose in 12 weeks.

STEP 2: Figure out how much weight you need to lose each week by dividing your total weight loss goal by 12.

(Example: 27 lbs divided by 12 = 2.25 lbs per week)

This is your weekly weight loss goal.

STEP 3: Calculate how many calories you need to cut each week by multiplying your weekly weight loss goal by 3,500 (the calories in one pound of fat).

(Example: 2.25 lbs multiplied by 3,500 = 7,875 calories)

This is the total number of calories you need to cut each week.

STEP 4: Break down your weekly calorie goal into a daily target by dividing by 7.

(Example: 7,875 calories divided by 7 = 1,125 calories per day)


This is the number of calories you should cut each day to meet your weekly goal.

Now it’s time to get to work! ?

You can create this calorie deficit by eating less, moving more, or a mix of both.

My personal approach would be to use a combo of kettlebell training and solid nutrition, all specific to you and your goals.

Make sure to track your food intake and exercise daily so you can see what’s working and make adjustments as needed.

Though the steps are simple, the process isn’t easy. There are many details and lifestyle changes that we can’t cover in just one post, which are crucial to achieving your goal.

That’s why I am opening up a few spots for the newest iteration of my “KB Fit Over 40” program where I personally coach you to learn the basics of KB training, build new lean muscle, and lose up to 12 percent of your bodyweight in 12 weeks.

If you are interested in getting my personal help with losing up to 12% of your bodyweight over the next 12 weeks with kettlebells, reply directly to this message with the words “12 IN 12” and I’ll send you the details about my new online coaching program.

You now have the plan to lose 12% of your body weight in 12 weeks.

Good luck, and if you need help, let me know!

-Forest and the FVT Team at

(video) Pull Up Form Tip – Eye Position

Pull ups are one of the best all-around moves for increasing your upper body strength, and overall fitness level.

They are a natural movement pattern of human beings!, not to mention basic and old-school.

When it comes to cranking out more, small form tips like the one we cover in today’s video can make a huge difference.

Today’s tip is about your eyes – that is, where you are looking during the exercise – and how that impacts the position of the rest of your body during the movement, the muscles you end up activating, and the “rhythm” you get into during your set.

Watch the video, try the tip in your next pull up workout, and let me know how it helps!

– Forest Vance
Master of Science, Human Movement
Certified Personal Trainer

PS – If you’re stuck and can’t seem to make progress towards your pull-up goals, odds are you’re 
performing exercises that will NOT improve your ability to perform more pull-ups.

Exercises such as:

– Lat Pull Downs
– Band-Assisted Pull-Ups
– Machine-Assisted “Gravitron” Pull-Ups
– Bodyweight Rows

Do NOT have much, if ANY, carry-over to actually helping you to do more pull-ups.

(Don’t get me wrong – these are fine exercises in their own right, and I use them regularly in my programs!… it’s just 
important to know they they are not necessarily going to help you do more pull-ups, if that is your goal.)

If you want to improve your pull-ups, here’s what I recommend you try instead:

-> the “Physique Zero” Pull Up Progression Method

It’s called the “Physique Zero” Pull Up Progression Method, and it’s actually a free BONUS program you get when
you pick up a copy of the Physique Zero course.

Here’s how it’s set up:

1 – You “test out” at the beginning of the program. This helps you set a starting point, as well as a goal for 
the end of the routine.

2 – You pick the “phase” to start at, depending on if you are just getting started, more intermediate, 
or even more advanced. There are 10 levels total to progress through.

I followed a very similar routine, that used basically identical principles, to take my pull up total from 6
to 13 in about 10 weeks, leading up to the last Tactical Strength Challenge I competed in.

If you are looking to do more pull ups, this is a great resource I recommend you check out…
plus, you get a full at-home bodyweight strength program to go with it!

Details and order now at the link below:

-> “Physique Zero” Pull Up Progression Method + Full 12-week Bodyweight Strength plan

– Forest Vance
Master of Science, Human Movement
Over 40 Training Specialist

Deck of Pain – Bodyweight Challenge Workout

The “Deck of Pain” is a tough and fun way to build muscle, burn fat, and develop superhuman conditioning.

Plus, you can do it anytime, anywhere, with minimal-to-zero equipment.

(A lot like the Physique Zero – 12-week Bodyweight Strength Plan for 40s/50s/60s+ we’ve been talking about this week!)

If you’re up for the challenge, here’s how it works:

1 – Grab a standard deck of 52 cards and assign one of the exercises below (or a variation) to each suit:

— Clubs – Squats

— Spades – Push Ups

— Hearts – Pull Ups or Inverted Rows

— Diamonds – Hanging or Lying Leg Raises

2 – Start drawing cards from the top and let the fun begin. The suit on the card determines the exercise, while the number tells you the number of reps to perform. Face cards count as 10, and aces count as 11.

3 – Keep drawing cards and performing the corresponding movements until you’ve completed the entire deck.

Give it a go, let me know how you do.

And if you like this workout, you’ll LOVE Physique Zero – 12-week Bodyweight Strength Plan for 40s/50s/60s+.

Keep up the great work –

— Forest Vance,

custom meal plan

In today’s message, I am going to provide you with a quick outline of how to create a custom meal plan to help you reach your goals!

*If you have any questions, find this process a bit too complex, or simply prefer us to handle it for you, the next 7 people to sign up for the 20 in 6 Kettlebell Challenge will receive a custom meal plan FREE of charge – learn more and sign up here.

STEP 1 – Determine Your Goals

What is your #1 goal for the next 30/60/90 days? This initial step is crucial as it helps us understand if you aim to lose fat and at what rate, which will determine the necessary daily calorie deficit.

There’s a bit of an art to this step because if we set the bar too low initially, you WILL lose weight rapidly – but you’ll feel miserable and likely struggle to adhere to the plan. Conversely, if we don’t cut enough, you won’t see significant weight loss. Thus, precision is key.

STEP 2 – Utilize a Calculator to Determine Your Starting Calorie and Macro Targets

Numerous online calculators take into account factors such as your age, weight, body composition, activity level, and weight loss goals.

STEP 3 – Build a Meal Plan Based on Your Calorie and Macro Goals

Craft a meal plan tailored to your specific preferences and meal timings, also taking into account your specific calorie and macro targets from the last step. I recommend a moderate amount of variation – three options for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and two snacks per day strike a balance between variety and simplicity. This approach ensures you experience some diversity without overwhelming yourself with numerous meal and snack types.

That’s how we create your custom meal plan in a nutshell! Follow these steps, and you’re well on your way to success!

If you have any questions, find this process a bit too complex, or prefer us to handle it for you, remember that the next 7 people to sign up for the 20 in 6 Kettlebell Challenge will receive a custom meal plan FREE of charge – learn more and sign up here.

-Forest Vance –

KBHT (Kb-Bw Hybrid Training) vs Bodybuilding

In 2018, I traveled to Italy to re-certify as a StrongFirst Lifter (SFL).

It was an AMAZING trip!

I frequently think about the incredible time I had, even now 🙂

However, it was interesting; you could clearly see the difference in the way people had trained leading up to the event.

There were those who were likely incorporating a mix of kettlebells, barbells, and bodyweight exercises (such as in Kb-Bw Hybrid Training!)… and they managed to perform the required exercises (Zercher, front, and back squats, good mornings, deadlifts, bench press, Military press) with mostly solid form, thus meeting the technique requirements.

Next, there were individuals who had likely adopted more of a “bodybuilding” approach, focusing on isolation exercises and splitting their workouts by body parts, etc… Many of them encountered difficulties.

They were certainly jacked up (meaning big and strong)!

However, when it came to pressing a barbell into a good position overhead or squatting to depth while maintaining a neutral spine, many of them simply couldn’t do it. They lacked the mobility and/or strength in the right places to make it happen, resulting in them not passing the certification technique tests.

Now, if you’re only concerned about appearance and not performance, a more traditional bodybuilding-style program may suffice. You will indeed build larger muscles with this approach.

However, if your goal is to simultaneously build strength and muscle while staying lean, athletic, and mobile, I highly recommend Kb-Bw Hybrid Training.

In this innovative program, you’ll learn how to effectively combine traditional strength work with kettlebells for the perfect balance.

I believe it’s one of the best programs available for this specific type of training and these goals. In fact, I’m not aware of anything else out there quite like it.

Check out the program at the link below – it’s on a flash sale for St. Patrick’s Day:

–>> Kb-Bw Hybrid Training

Here’s to achieving strength and muscle gains while maintaining leanness, athleticism, and mobility all at once!- Forest Vance, MS
Kettlebell Expert
Over 40 Specialist