In between your treadmill workouts, you should be doing other exercises to help support the muscles that aren’t addressed by walking and running. One exercise that is an excellent full-body workout is burpees.
This calisthenic exercise has a number of physical and health benefits, from being a high calorie-burning move to improving cardiovascular function when incorporated into high-intensity interval workouts.
Reach A Calorie-Burning Phase With Burpees
Part of the popularity of burpees is due to the high-calorie burn associated with performing this intense exercise. However, how many calories you burn is dependent on a variety of factors.
Two key variables of reaching the calorie-burning phase with doing burpees are how long you do burpees and how much you weigh. Burpees are considered vigorous calisthenics, so someone who weighs 125 pounds is calculated to burn 240 calories if they did burpees for 30 minutes. Contrast that with a person who weighs 185 pounds is calculated to burn 355 calories if they perform burpees for 30 minutes.
However, as burpees are a vigorous activity, doing them for 30 minutes straight is asking a lot of your body. Instead, to help you find your potential calorie burn, you can use a calorie burn calculator. Input your fitness information and search for calisthenics to gauge what kind of calorie burn you can expect.
Reduce Blood Pressure With Burpees
When it comes to fitness, it often takes time and consistency for results to show. One study observed a group of participants to see if just one session of step aerobics and bodyweight resistance exercises was enough to acutely reduce blood pressure.
The participants – a group of healthy, young adult women – were found to experience significantly reduced blood pressure at the end of their 50-minute session.
While burpees were not the main focus of exercise in this particular study, burpees contain some of the elements that were included, such as push-ups and aerobic movement. So, it is easy to see how burpees can help reduce blood pressure as you incorporate them into your workouts.
Combine Burpees With A HIIT Workout
Building out an effective HIIT workout that uses burpees doesn’t have to be difficult. Keep in mind that as you create a HIIT workout with burpees that your other exercises should be of similar intensity if you are shooting for a vigorous session.
HIIT workouts don’t have to be complicated. Simply choose 4-5 exercises to perform for one minute each, then do 3 or 4 sets. A HIIT workout that includes burpees could be:
- High knees
- Bicycle crunches
- Jumping jacks
- Mountain climbers
For an advanced burpees workout, try this iFit® workout that includes a combination of HIIT and burpees. Don’t be put off once you notice that there are a total of 31 burpees. The reward will be worth it!
How To Do Burpees
Now that you can see the benefits of doing burpees, and before you get started with the workouts listed above, let’s make sure you know how to do a burpee properly.
- Stand with your feet positioned hip-width apart as your hand and arms are by your sides.
- Squat down and push back with your hips.
- Rock forward on your toes and put the palms of your hands on the floor, keeping your arms in line with your shoulder width.
- Once your hands are in position, shift your weight so that you can jump your feet back and take a plank position.
- Do one push-up, then jump your feet back up toward your hands. For a modified version, lower your body down to the ground and step your feet back into a plank position. Then step feet back up towards your hands and stand up, raising onto your toes into a calf raise.
- After your feet are in position, use the momentum to push off the ground, using your arms to swing up and jump. Be sure to reach toward the ceiling with your arms as you jump.
Burpee Alternatives To Try
Burpees are considered an intermediate-to-advanced calisthenic exercise. If you are a beginner – or simply don’t like burpees – there are burpee alternatives that break down the movement so you can still reap the benefits. Some of the exercises include:
- Jumping jacks
- Plank jacks
- Jump squats
By including burpees as part of your workout routine, you can effectively supplement almost any exercise plan with this high-energy, full-body movement, and improve your overall fitness and muscle function.