Sunday, April 12, 2009

Life after burpees... not something that currently applies to me. Sure, it was nice to wake up on Saturday and think "I can do whatever workout I want! OR not workout at all!" (I was brutally hungover from Friday's celebration so I opted for the latter.) But then, Sunday, I sat down at my parent's kitchen table to enjoy some comfort food and I felt an itch. My body wanted me to do something with it. At first, I told my body to shut up. I was feeding it, wasn't I? Isn't that enough? No, it wanted activity. Too cold to run around the lake, too many dogs to ward off to do planks. Let's be real, my body wanted burpees. And a set of ten it got. 
And ten was enough!
Congrats to everyone who participated in the challenge, whether it was until day 20 or until day 100. It was a pleasure undertaking it with you all!

Friday, April 10, 2009

100th Burpee!

Last 10 of the 100 day Burpee from Joke and Anuj in Amsterdam!

Day 100 and beyond!

Yay for day 100! I can't believe it is here. While many of you might stop checking this burpee blog it will continue. I know that I am going to finish the challenge (one week) once I am healed up. I also know that many new people joined us after the posting on

If anyone new would like to be a contributer to the blog please comment here or email me at -- that way we can keep supporting each other!

Also anyone with celebratory videos send them on and I will post them!

Day 100: Congrats from the person who kicked this challenge off but was herself not able to finish!

Dear Burpee-ites,

I never actually wrote in to say that I broke up with with the Burpee Challenge. My wrist couldn't stand the Burpees anymore and they had to be thrown out. It was... gosh, all the way back on Day 50. I fell really hard on my wrist during a basketball game. I thought I'd just take a break for a while and the Burpees and I could work out our differences (of backlogged burpees) when I felt fresh again. Turns out my wrist could no longer stand to coexist with Burpees, or at least the wrist wouldn't really tolerate more than 10 a day. Whatever. Day 100 is not about my sob story. Its to say Thanks & Congrats

1. Thanks for being the kinds of friends who would join a challenge with a friend even though they thought it was nuts.
2. Thanks for proving that communities are hugely important to our individual endeavors and supportive communities are once that carry us farther than we ever thought we could on our own.
3. Thanks to the strangers (strangers no more!) who joined and proved that technology today is enormously capable of bringing people together.
4. Thanks to all for always remaining supportive and never judgmental.
5. Thanks for those who wrote posts and comments. It helped!

1. To the few, the proud who gutted it out. You have inspired me beyond words.
2. To those who tried but were deterred by injury. Especially you day 90 plussers. My heart goes out to you. You deserved to finish this challenge.
3. To those who did Burpees Every. Single. Day.
4. To those who actually made up all the Burpees when a day (or days) was skipped.
5. To all the fans and supporters. You made the world a better place by inspiring others to do difficult things.


DAY 100!

At long last--it's Day 100!

Congratulations to all burpeers! Do you have a permit for those guns?

(shamelessly stolen from alonzoh on flickr)

Thursday, April 9, 2009

99+1/2 just won't do!

Tomorrow is our final day together! For me this is kind of like a first date, I am nervous, excited and scared, and wish it would happen now! Can I start my burpees today? I plan to see you all tomorrow at Professor Thom's, 219 2nd Ave (between 13th & 14th), for the FINAL BURPEE (I am sure closely proceeded by a raucous chorus of Europe’s THE FINAL COUNTDOWN).
We have been through injuries and dispassion, disillusionment, aches and pains on our burpee journey, and coming upon the final day I’m in a retrospective mood.
I remember getting a congratulatory message via facebook on January 1, at 11:47, “Great job on day 1!” Only then, being reminded, I did my one burpee a bit shamefaced, and pat myself on the back.
I lost the thread while in San Diego, did 70 bupees over three days (though I did get roundly mocked for doing drunken burpees at a party with Hoop in front of my teammates). Pretty good for a normal human, but 70/3 is not good enough for the elite company I currently keep.
I’ve showed burpees to my friends, forced them upon my students, tried to explain them to my mom (Is a burpee something that happens to you when you eat too many cherries?). My roommate even commended me on my kinky personal habits from all the thumping and panting he’s heard coming from my room at all hours of the day and night (occasionally burpees related!).
This has been part challenge, part journey. I have better arms and chest, more core strength and more of a gleam in my eye. The muscles I can explain, but the gleam I can’t. It comes from knowing that I have gotten more out of myself over the past 99 days than I knew the challenge would demand, it comes from overcoming the sense of dread I feel before EVERY set of burpees I do (especially when cold!). Also, it comes going to work with all of you bloggers every day; y’all have kept me in it at various points. Thanks for being part of this with me, and I will see you all tomorrow!

Day 99 - Burpees are great

Since it is day 99 (enter huge smiley face here) and since we are now in the final stretch and the work is that much harder, I figured I'd put a post out to state all of the great things about burpees. We have had PLENTY of posts on why we hate them - but I'm going to restrict comments to this post to ONLY GOOD is what I like about burpees, and the effects from them that I've seen in the last 99 days that I've been doing them:

1. Muscle tone (yeah!)
2. Significant increase strength (arms, shoulders, quads)
3. The ability to walk up the numerous stairs in my subway station without becoming winded
4. Form has become crisper/easier. eg: The jump out, the jump in, the push-up and jump up all actually flow together.
5. Shoulder pain from nagging rugby injury has for the most part subsided
6. Having a consistent (and "never gets old") conversation topic amongst my group of friends
7. Completing something that on the first day, I never thought I would complete. I have this huge sense of accomplishment that I never anticipated having
8. Doing burpees everywhere and getting strange looks for it - I love the list that this group has created!!
9. Having a great wake up call in the morning. After doing 4 sets of ten as soon as I get out of bed, the level of energy I have for the day has increased significantly
10. That they are (almost) OVER!!!!!!!

What do you like/love about burpees??

So close, yet so far away

If the burpee challenge were a marathon, it'd be safe to say that we are now in the last mile.  Unfortunately for me, I hit the proverbial wall on day 97 doing deadlifts at the gym.  After way too many exercises, including 150+ burpees, I decided to ignore that tiny little voice in the back of my head and do deadlifts.  Next thing I know, I feel that lightnight bolt through my back that those who have back troubles know too well.  Dropped the weight, but alas, it was too late.

So now I'm stuck with 297 burpees left to do by friday and a back so stiff and painful I can barely walk.  I'm doing my best to ice/naproxen/muscle relax/stretch it and have made progress, but still, that's a lot of burpees to do.  To be honest, it's only 257 now because I've managed to inch worm my way through 40 since Wednesday, but considering it takes me 4 mins to do 10, I'm not looking forward to this, at all.

Good luck to all who are still in it.  The light at the end of the tunnel is in sight.  I'm making it, even if i have to crawl.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Day 98 - post break up

Dear Burpees,

As much as I hate to admit this I have been thinking about you constantly the last five days. I knew it would be hard to end things cleanly, but I did not anticipate the emptiness that your absence would create. Every day I try to go about my daily routine without you and it doesn't feel right. I mean for 92 days you were a huge part of my life - that just doesn't go away.

Little things remind me of you. People still ask about you constantly - and I have to awkwardly explain our break-up. Today I thought about getting back together, but it is just too painful right now. I wish it could be different. Maybe with some more time we can work things out. Until then I am going to take care of myself as it will be a slow healing process.


Day 98 - Get ready to Party!

Folks, final stretch! Only 297 burpees remain (for most) between us and the end of the challenge. So, to celebrate the 100th Day, we will be gathering at Professor Thom's in the East Village in NYC for all those in the area who can make it.


WHAT: 100 Day Burpee Challenge Finish Celebration
WHEN: Friday, April 10th, 7:30 PM
WHERE: Professor Thom's, 219 2nd Ave (between 13th & 14th)
WHY: You just completed 5050 burpees, or came close, or supported someone who did, or hate burpees and need to drink to wash away your anger, or just because its Friday!

There will also be some fellow challengers and supporters gathering at Professor Thom's for some birthday and going away festivities and then who knows where the night will take us!

For those challengers in other parts of the world - how will you celebrate?

Monday, April 6, 2009

Day 96--Burpee Fame!

Fellow Burpee-ites (and friends, and fans),

As I perused my google reader tonight before bed, a Cranky Fitness post caught my eye. I won't lie, it was partly because of the big photo of the Slanket (evil cousin of the beloved Snuggie). But imagine my surprise to learn that our challenge was featured in the post!

Check it out!

Apparently I'm an internet temptress. My parents will be so proud...

Day 96 - Burpee Hiatus

So I sprained my ankle on Saturday. That wasn't cool.
It's healing. I'm taking care of it. I'm not doing burpees, yet.
There are 679 burpees (days 94-100) standing between me and challenge completion. If I start again on Wednesday and do 226 a day (+1), I'll finish.
That'll be fun.

Friday, April 3, 2009

Day 93 - Not looking good

After struggling through the last few days in pain -- though getting them done -- I decided to go to the doctor this morning.

Last night I took a light run at rugby practice - not doing any contact - and it seemed okay. That I guess wasn't the smartest thing as woke up barely able to move with shooting low back pain that extended into my upper hip. Four 200mg tylenol and ice didn't even put a dent in the pain. Stretching was unproductive. Since this was the 4th day of a lot of pain I knew it was time.

I told the doctor I hurt myself doing burpees. Then asked if she knew what those were. Instead of responding she dropped and did one!

First, they discovered that my resting heart rate was 90. Crazy it is usually in the low 60s. They said that pain will raise it up. After a few basic tests they determined I couldn't leave without x-rays....

So the result is that my pelvis and low back are completely out of alignment because of muscle spasms. I have to rest and take pain killer. She said no burpees (unless I am 100% pain free). If its not better in 10 days its an MRI and orthopedic.

So with exactly a week left to finish I am pretty much out. It is incredibly disappointing considering I've been diligent the whole challenge. The most I've ever carried over was 30 burpees on a weekend where I played two days of rugby. In fact I've only carried burpees over 4 times total. The other 3 days were because I had a neck injury and couldn't get them done in a day.

So to have an injury that takes me out totally blows besides the fact that now I can't play rugby on Sunday.

I'll cheer you all on though -- hoping to be pain free before the end so maybe I can finish....but considering the fact that I can barely walk and can't sit through class without pain...I am not going to get my hopes too high!

Day 93 - 'tude relief

I was in a terrible mood when I got home last night and the last thing I wanted to do was my remaining 24 burpees. If it had been any other (non-challenge related) exercise, I would have beelined to my bed, pissy mood in tow, and not bothered. Instead, some small, rational part of me understood that waking up with 24 extra burpees of debt would have me in a worse mood the next day. So I burpeed. And I went to bed significantly less grouchy, knowing I'd accomplished something, however small, in the course of the day.

That being said: I'm sick of burpees. I'm sick of doing them with a cautious landing in the morning so I don't wake up the neighbors (even though these neighbors host my nemesis, the evil, loud, and mostly talentless band down the hall, until midnight on weekdays--another issue altogether). I'm sick of doing them in my socks at work so museum-goers below my office don't mistake the thump.. thump.. of burpees for the ghost of my institution's namesake. And I'm sick of the 2 lb. weight-toting girls with their hair down at the gym gawking at me while I turn red, sweat all over everything, and, in my final sets, make noises similar to those of a cow dying in labor.

Maybe that's all talk as a result of the 'tude creeping back in, but knowing that the challenge is over in one week and that future burpees (no, i can't cut them out entirely; yes, i may have an addiction) will be done out of my own desire is a relief.

One week! We can do one more week.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Day 91 - low returns

I have been struggling through these last few days. I have quite a bit of low back/hip pain, which seems to be better after fully warming up and stretching out. However, that means I am doing sets of 5 fairly slowly concentrating on the push-up and jump at the end. I can't jump my feet all the way up to my hands from plank right now because of the stiffness.

It makes wonder at what point I am not getting any benefit from doing burpees. Over time I've been trying to make sure that each set is quick and dynamic to get the full benefit -- but now with so few days left and so many each day there is a lot at stake missing a day....

I also sometimes wonder that for those of you making up 100s. Does your body truly get any benefit from not building up daily?

At what point is it just to do the challenge? as opposed to fitness benefit?

right now for me I am just trying to finish and then heal...but I am beginning to wonder if the toll these high numbers are having on my body are worth it