wetsuits are not flattering....they are basically black SPANX.

I was introduced to the burpee when I first started Crossfit back in 2007.  I had never heard of this movement before and thought it was an expression for mid-workout flatulence.  I quickly learned to dread the burpee….especially when paired with thrusters.  I may dread the burpee, but I secretly love the burpee.  I have participated in a couple of different types of burpee challenges involving the completion of 100 burpees at once.  I even took a pair of argyle socks, cut the toe hole out of them to create make-shift knee-pads so I could do burpees on my hardwood floor at home without destroying my knees.  Over the past 3 years, I have probably done thousands of burpee’s….possibly even 10’s of thousands.  But I have never been so thankful for all of the burpees I’ve done than this past week when I tried surfing for the first time.

Warning: I’m about to brag and that’s OK because I have never been good at sports. I have never picked up an athletic skill easily…except for synchronized swimming when I was 11.  Coordination and rhythm are not my strengths.  It took me 1 year to get a kipping pull-up and I struggled with double-unders for the LONGEST time.  So when I signed up for my first surfing lesson, I had low expectations.  But, when the instructor (a super-cool surfer chick from Surf Diva) walked us through the movement on land, I recognized it instantly!  The familiar plank position…the pop-up to a semi-squat followed by a slow stance.  “THIS IS JUST LIKE A BURPEE!” I proclaimed.  From that point forward I was determined to nail this.  We hit the waves and the instructor told me to lay on the board – she pushed me into my first wave and yelled “Go! Go!”  I immediately popped up on the board and was able to surf for maybe 1 second.  I actually got up on my first try.  I swam back and tried hitting another wave.  In between the many misses, there were at least 4 occasions where I got up and surfed into the shore.  The instructor said to me, “you did amazing for your first time!  you are a natural!” – Yes, I’m bragging – I responded, “it’s because of all the burpees I do!”.  She said, “huh?”  I had to explain what a burpee was.  My thousands of burpees paid off and I have never been more thankful.  “Bless the burpee.”  I only wish we had waves in Toronto.

There must be other practical uses for the burpee…please share!