A burpee is a full-body exercise that begins in the standing position. To begin the repetition, bend forward at the waist and drop both palms straight down to the ground, then kick your feet back into a high plank or pushup position.
For extra credit, a full pushup can be done before hopping both feet toward your hands, springing back up straight and jumping.
There are a variety of different ways to do a burpee with a varying degree of difficulty, but it is a great exercise to get your heart pumping and calories burning.
I did military-style burpees every morning
For a month, I did 15 burpees every morning, and after about a week, my body felt very different. I was lighter on my feet, more nimble, and felt as if I could outrun anyone (even though I know I can’t!).
The first few mornings were tough. In fact, I wanted to give up after the third morning of blasting through my set of 15 burpees. But, I kept going. I kept pushing myself. By the start of the second week, I felt noticeably stronger.
I added pushups to each burpee repetition starting week three to make the exercise a bit tougher, and for the last week, I doubled the repetitions to 30 instead of 15.
I felt much more awake after my morning set of burpees. I also seemed less tired throughout the day and better prepared for any type of physical activity, including walking, moving furniture and, of course, my full evening workout.
Health benefits of burpees
The burpee is a whole-body exercise and has a variety of health and strength benefits. It is a great cardiovascular exercise because it gets the heart pumping, and quickly.
The exercise targets several big muscle groups like the quadriceps, hamstrings, shoulders as well as the glutes. Because it hits so many muscle groups, it burns a lot of calories.
“As your muscles are lengthening and extending through your burpee reps, they require lots of energy to make that happen,” said McKinney.
This energy requires oxygen, and higher oxygen consumption is a great way to improve your cardiovascular health. Studies have found that the more burpees a person can do in about three minutes, the lower the risk of cardiovascular diseases.
By the way, have you ever wondered why it’s called a “burpee”?
It was named after the inventor of the exercise, Royal Burpee, who used the movement to evaluate physical fitness at Columbia University almost 90 years ago.
Start doing burpees
Try adding burpees into your morning routine.
If you are new to fitness, then start slow and work your way up. Practice the movement. Don’t worry too much about burning a ton of calories until you are confident in your form.
Then, kick up the intensity over time and boost the difficulty by adding a pushup or increasing the number of repetitions.
I think you might be pleasantly surprised by how good you will feel during the day after morning burpees.