Today is day 45 of the Burpee Summer Challenge. We officially signed on for the challenge and described its terms here. We started on US Memorial Day on the 27th of May. July 16 is day 50, the halfway mark.
Neither Tracy nor I have kept up with the unadulterated burpee challenge. Tracy’s modified challenge is described here.
My version involves not making up the missed burpees on the days I miss. Why miss days? Too hot, sick, too much other physical activity…..
So far I’ve missed six days. Not bad, I think. But I’d like to limit the number of allowed missed days to 12, I think. Otherwise I could get off pretty easy at the end.
Tracy and I were really impressed with the many versions of the challenge our readers had adopted. Turns out we weren’t the only burpee challenge people making changes to the original, very demanding plan.
How do I do my daily quota of burpees? Up to ten I did them all at one go but since then I’ve been breaking them up into sets. Today I’ll do three sets of fifteen. I’m not sure if that sounds easy but it’s not. Burpees are still hard. But when I’m feeling down I remember that when I started CrossFit fifteen months ago I couldn’t do a single standard issue burpee.
First things first, what’s a burpee?
“By combining squat thrusts with a return to standing in between each rep, the burpee is the ultimate full-body exercise. Just one seemingly simple movement challenges the muscles in your chest, arms, thighs, hamstrings, and abs. And because you’re using your full body when doing burpees, it’s one of the best exercises to burn fat.” From 25 Most Deceiving Exercises (They Tone More than You Think!)
What are the challenges?
I do some in the morning and some in the evening but finding time during the day can be tricky.
There is also the “where” question. I’ve been doing burpees everywhere it seems. On the mats at Aikido, on the grass at the rowing club, in the backyard at home (the dogs love this), and I struggle a bit with shyness and public exercise.
Unlike Tracy I haven’t been able to talk any friends or family into doing them with me! Oh, and at home there is the added bonus of no air conditioning. Grrr.
I like the days when we do burpees at Crossfit now! I subtract them from my challenge total and I always get at least 20 out of the way as part of my Crossfit warm-up.
One thing I’ve learned is that speed matters.
From LiveStrong: “The main benefits to burpees are increased strength and endurance. Speed is the key to performing burpees effectively, and you should aim for as many as 30 reps a minute. This kind of high-intensity exercise will force your body to produce energy without the help of oxygen, which can improve your body’s anaerobic ability. Using your body weight, burpees are considered a high-load exercise and are very effective in increasing your muscular strength and endurance.” Read more: http://www.livestrong.com/article/406426-are-burpees-any-good-for-exercise/#ixzz2Y0nKHk00
I’m certainly not managing 30 a minute but 20 maybe. I still remember the advice from the well nicknamed “Speedy” at CrossFit Dunedin. After the jump, quickly get back down to the floor. If you ever need to rest, rest at the bottom because you will have to get back up again and do another burpee. Don’t ever rest at the top, it’s too easy to walk away.
Why do burpees? Five Reasons Why Burpees Should Be Your Favorite Exercise
My favourite burpee videos:
An excellent guide to technique and skill: CrossFit – The Skill Transfer of the Burpee
Speed burpees! 100 Burpees (3 mins 54 secs) Unbroken