I love any exercise that can be done anywhere using your own body weight but the Burpee takes the cake! I used to tell my clients that if they could only do three exercises, I would have them do push-ups, squats, and planks. But the burpee can be a combination of all three. The basic burpee takes you from a squat, to a plank, back to a squat, then to a stand as illustrated above. The beauty of the burpee is the variations that can be added to it. From the plank position, any type of push-up can be added as well as variations of mountain climbers. At the end of the burpee, a jump up can increase the energy output which will cause the heart rate to increase. Consecutive burpees done at maximum effort will surely ignite the fat burning processes. What you have is one compact little exercise that packs a big punch. Try doing eight rounds of them where you alternate 20 seconds of effort with 10 seconds of rest for a total of only four minutes. This is a great add-on to any workout that is getting stale and the results will show.

If you are a beginner, do not dismay if you can’t perform a burpee. Here is a progression you can use to work toward the advanced version. To begin, stand in front of a stair step or a sturdy coffee table. Place your hands on the surface, then walk your feet back one at a time to the plank position. Step forward the same way and then rise to a standing position, driving your heels into the floor as you rise. Little by little you can lower the surface, and instead of walking your feet back and forward, try jumping them. You can perform a beginner push-up by placing your knees on the floor before stepping or jumping forward. When you can successfully complete about 10 at each level, try progressing to the next level. Don’t worry, you will get there over time.

I will be adding more body weight exercises to future posts that can energize your day.