Kettlebells burn WHAT??

We’re suffering through a scorching heat wave here in Northern California – it was 106 degrees F at my house yesterday, fortunately today is predicted to be cooler – about 100! In addition, the hot winds are driving smoke from the Lake County fires into the Bay Area, so the air quality is abysmal. I ran Saturday morning before I knew better (also strong lungs are one of my superpowers), but seeing how brown the sky has become I won’t do that again until we get some cooling breezes to clear out the smoke.

So this morning it was indoors exercise for me. I dusted off the Level 2 workout on Jillian Michaels Kettlebell DVD and gave it all I had. Then I went online to try to figure out how many calories that burned, since MyFitnessPal acts like it doesn’t know what kettlebells are (sheesh! I’m only 8 years behind the trend – how far are they??).

According to several articles and a calculator I found, kettlebell workouts burn up to 20 calories per minute. If you’re accustomed at all to tracking calories and exercise burn rates, that’s hard to believe. I mean, I know I was working hard but 20 calories per minute is an INSANE number. That’s like cross-country skiing level of effort. Actually, according to that calculator, that’s even higher than cross-country skiing (generally the gold standard of full-body, high-calorie-burning workouts). I have to admit to being a little skeptical. According to everything I’m seeing, I just burned 500 calories in 25 minutes.

I couldn’t embrace that, it really seems too high, so I dropped a bit off and put 450 into MyFitnessPal, but I’m still suspicious of that number. It seems too good to be true. Anybody else have any experience with kettlebells and their burn rate?