Ladies and Gentlemen, Presenting……The Burpee!!

A couple of months ago I featured a post on a yoga pose called The Plank. I loved that this one simple exercise required no special equipment, could be performed anywhere, and had multiple benefits for the inner and outer body. About that same time I put together a post on The Burpee, which I am a fan of for the same reasons as The Plank, but I never got around to actually posting it. Well, this morning I received a newsletter from with great information and resources on this funny sounding exercise. So I decided to combine the old draft featuring an article from Dr. Mercola with and excerpt of Robin’s information and offer you this super-duper introduction to….. The Burpee!!

(by Dr. Joseph Mercola) Here it is… a simple exercise that helps accelerate your move towards fitness. If you want to do one of the single best exercises to get your whole body in shape, you’ve come to the right place.

Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you… The Burpee!

Developed in the ’30s by Dr. Royal H. Burpee — a Renaissance man who was an author, a physical fitness fanatic and a psychologist, the Burpee was created by Dr. Burpee as part of his PhD at Columbia University. The Burpee has historically been used by the military to test recruits for strength and agility. In recent decades, the larger population caught onto the move’s full-body calorie-blasting fitness benefits. The best part: Anyone can do it anywhere, at anytime.

Highly Effective Simple Exercise that Requires No Equipment, Gym, or Trainer

The reason why the Burpee is “the one” end-all, be-all exercise: It is a full body exercise used in strength training and as aerobic and anaerobic exercise.

  • It pounds your entire body, working out your legs, arms, chest, back, abs, and glutes.
  • It is a phenomenal strength trainer because you are pushing and lifting your own weight, and building serious muscle.
  • The Burpee burns 50% more fat than conventional strength training. In other words, you can work out half the time and burn just as much fat. Burpees, like other strength training moves, also give your metabolism a boost. This is largely because it is a powerful anaerobic stimulus and falls into the Peak Fitness type of high intensity exercise training.
  • The Burpee can be performed anywhere, and anytime for free.
  • It is also a cardio-respiratory workout. If you do Burpees you can effectively raise your heart rate to target levels by doing a brief set of burpees.

How to Properly Perform a Burpee

It is performed in four steps, and was originally known as a “four-count Burpee”:

  1. Start in a standing position and drop into a squat position (as if you’re sitting back into a chair) with your hands on the ground.
  2. Bring your palms to the floor and extend your feet back in one quick motion to assume the front plank position.
  3. Return to the squat position in one quick motion.
  4. Return to an upright standing position.

Try it, and you’ll see that it really packs a punch, targeting the legs, glutes, arms, and core, all at the same time. Do several in a row (if you can), and you’ll ramp up your calorie burn, too.

How to Modify the Burpee if You Are Not Fit

If it’s too challenging at first, here’s a simple modification: Instead of going into plank position, do a Burpee by a wall. Squat down, stand up, and do a push-up against a wall. (This is especially important for anyone with knee or shoulder issues.)

How to Modify the Burpee if You Are Already Very Fit

Once you get the hang of a traditional Burpee, there are a few variations you can use to spice it up:

  1. When you’re in plank position, add a push-up to tone your arms, chest and shoulders. Don’t forget to keep your core engaged throughout the move!
  2. At the end of the exercise (when you move from squatting to standing), lift up on your toes for some added calf work. Or, if you’re feeling really energetic, give it some propulsion and jump up for even more leg and glute action.
  3. Following the push-up, try a side plank. In plank position, keeping your right hand on the floor, slowly lift the left hand up and out to your left side, rolling your torso out to the side so that your weight is on the right hand and your left hand is extended to the ceiling. This is a great challenge for your obliques, arms and shoulders.

Take The 10-Day Burpee Challenge!

Whether you can do 10 Burpees in a row or just one, start at a level that’s comfortable for you, and begin to add an additional Burpees to your routine each day for 10 consecutive days. You’ll be amazed at the full-body-sculpting, belly fat-melting results, and it takes less than five minutes a day!

You can also try using it in the Peak Fitness model by simply warming up with walking for three minutes. Then doing 30 seconds of Burpees, and walk for 90 seconds and repeat that 7 times. Then cool down for 3 to 6 minutes.

The Secret Burpee Subculture

You’ll love the burpee, and hate it at the same time. You’ll enjoy its benefits, and groan at the pain. All the while, you’ll exult in the knowledge of participating in one of the most effective physical fitness moves known.

  • To date, there are 19 variations of the Burpee on Dozens of other variations live on YouTube and health blogs.
  • The Burpee is finding its way back into popular fitness routines. Yoga has its own variation of the Burpee, as do several popular fitness coaches.
  • The 100 Burpee challenge is a 100-day routine in which you do one Burpee on day one, two on day two, and so on, all the way up to 100 Burpees in 100 days. Can you say “ouch?”
  • A guy named Paddy Doyle performed 1,840 Burpees in one hour. If you do more, you’re eligible for a spot in The Guinness Book of World Records.

To sum up, the Burpee is your ultimate, all-inclusive, calorie-blasting, weight-smashing, muscle-building, body-sculpting wonder workout. It’s clearly the single best exercise you can ever do.

And from…

Burpees??!! Yes. And if you are new to them and haven’t done them before I’ve made an image and am attaching it below to show you exactly how the exercise goes. I would love to see you join me and do at least 10 a day.  I am planning on 50 a day for the next week. But you pick the number that works for you. Make it challenging, yet doable and what works for you.

So, here’s the thing with burpees, if you don’t already know – they are killer! They are way tougher than they look, but they really shape the body crazy fast.
Want abs? Do burpees.
Want strong shapely (and cellulite free) legs? Do burpees.
Want great arms, lats, upper body? You got it. Burpees!!

They slim you down, speed up your metabolism and shape that body quicker than anything I have ever seen. Walk your way through them if you have to, or power through them if you can, but join me and you will be thankful after. You’ll be amazed at the gorgeous summer body you get in no time! I’m putting in links to some of my favorite variations below. Changing them up helps detract the mind and makes them more fun!

It’s Burpee week!
The burpee challenge is on. Join me doing a set number (you decide) of burpees every day this week. Join me and let’s chisel, slim and shape up together!!Here are some awesome burpee variations to change up the routine. Doing different types of burpees will entertain the mind making time go by faster; they help distract you until they are done and they make burpees more fun!!Click on the links below to go to a description of it with video.
Check out this master list of exercises with even more burpees!
One Leg Burpee ..tougher than they look!
Knee Tuck Burpee
Crossed Leg Burpee
Reptile Push Up Burpee  ..a favorite, and they look awesome!
T Push up Burpee
Hop Over Burpee
Roll Over Crab Toe Touch Burpee What!!? Oh yes, it’s a burpee!
3 Point Plank Jump Burpee
Grasshopper Kick Toe Touch Burpee
Roll Back and Up to Standing Burpee  another fav. ..but all the ones listed here are!

For a video of health and fitness guru Kathy Smith doing The Burpee, go to:

If The Burpee seems a little too complicated or hard for you right now, check out this Self-help Health post on The Plank:


p.s. Be sure to subscribe to Self-help Health so you don’t miss any future posts, and tell your friends to do the same. Also check out my website’s To Your Health page and Evolution Made Easier blog for more helpful health tips, tools and information.

Disclaimer: Please note that any information here is provided as a guideline only, and is not meant to substitute for the advice of your physician, nutritionist, trained healthcare practitioner, and/or inner guidance system. Always consult a professional before undertaking any change to your normal health routine.

6 thoughts on “Ladies and Gentlemen, Presenting……The Burpee!!

  1. Melody Gramer says:

    I began incorporating some workout videos (Jillian Michaels to be exact) into my routine and one of the exercises that Jillian has us do is burpees. They are hard to do but that is why they are very effective because they challenge your body. Without challenging our bodies we will not see the results we want to achieve.


    • zirah1 says:

      Thanks for the input. The Burpee may be a little to “hard core” for some people; that’s why I mentioned the post on planking. To me that might be a place to start, and it’s simpler,… then maybe work up to the Burpee and other things.


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