“OKAY CLASS, LET’S DO THIS! BURPEES EXERCISE ON THREE! ONE, TWO…”
That was the drill every morning in middle school. I hated it. I know everyone in my physical education class hated it, but we did not have an option. All we wanted to do was play basketball, softball or flag football, but not this.
At the time I did not understand just how valuable an exercise this was. I mean, who would think that an exercise that requires you to move quickly from a standing position, do a push up position and back up could be so valuable?
Build Athleticism Using A Simple Exercise
In order to becoming athletic or simply get fit it takes doing a lot of cardio or lifting weights- or so we are told. We have become used to hearing that it takes expensive equipment in order to get in shape but sometimes the smallest and simplest techniques can get us in shape as fast. If you look at programs like Jason Ferruggia’s “Renegade Bodyweight Bodybuilding” you will find that all it takes to get in shape is your body alone. A burpee exercise is one way to get in physical conditioning in a short time.
Bodyweight workouts are often not even mentioned in gyms and are rarely talked about in fitness magazines. However, these workouts are also an excellent way to do strength-training workouts without having to spend money and they can be done in the comfort of your own home.
Burpees Exercises- A Full Body Exercise To Lose Fat
The burpees exercise is a simple exercise that only requires your body and nothing else. There is no need to use equipment, yet it gives you cardio and strength training benefits like very few other exercises can. Here you will find a sample workout using burpees.
In order to do a burpee you have to follow this sequence:
- Begin in a shoulder wide stance
- Quickly move in to a squat and crouching position with your hands on the floor
- Kick your feet back in to a push up position and perform a push up
- Bring your legs in together at the same time back in to the crouching position
- Explode up and jump as high as you can (similar to a bodyweight jump squat)
- Land in the same shoulder wide stance
- This completes one repetition
Note: the movement should be done without stopping and each repetition is performed non-stop, moving from one repetition to the next.
Do as many burpees as fast as possible for a period of one minute. Rest for two minutes and repeat the minute sequence 4 more times for a total of 5 sets of burpees. However, if you cannot do 5 sets that is fine. You should be able to do a challenging 3 sets and build up to 5 over time. Do this workout twice a week allowing 72 hours between workouts.
This exercise is an excellent total body workout. As you can see the push up will work the triceps and chest muscles. The explosive jump and landing will work on your thighs and hamstrings along with your calves. The leg tucks and subsequent jump also works your abs/ core region.
If you are a beginner or simply find this sequence challenging you can eliminate the jump in the burpee as well as the push-ups. If you can perform push-ups I definitely recommend that you keep them.
For an example of a burpee you can see the following video by Craig Ballantyne of Turbulence Training (turbulencetraining.com). In this video he incorporates burpees at the end of this bodyweight routine.
Why This Exercise Works So Well
The best way to burn fat and keep lean muscle is by doing burst training or interval training along with strength training. As you can see, this workout combines the two. Rather than do long cardio sessions you can get better results by doing short bursts of cardio broken up by short rest periods. In the 15 minutes that it takes to complete this exercise you will get more benefits than if you were to take a jog for over 30 minutes.
How To Make This Your Workout Routine
If you do not have access to a gym, do not have the money, time or you want to switch things up a bit here is my sample weeklong workout.
Monday: Sprint Workout (15 minutes followed by 15 minute jog or walk)
Tuesday: Burpees & Abs/ Core Workout
Thursday: Sprint Workout (15 minutes followed by 15 minute jog or walk)
Friday: Burpees & Abs/Core Workout
What I have outlined is a simple workout you can try. If you are interested in a complete bodyweight program you can follow a more structured and complete program like Jason Ferruggia’s “Renegade Bodyweight Bodybuilding.”
As you can see a burpees exercise can be a great way to burn fat and get lean if you are new to working out or if you are looking for a different way to get in shape.
Feel free to comment below and join in the discussion.