My 2,192 Days of Burpees post and Inc. article got a lot of responses, including questions how to start from people who felt inspired by this free, zero-equipment, zero-cost, low-risk, healthy, and so on practice.
One reader asked if I could recommend an app. I wrote back
Glad to hear from you and that you’re inspired.
I prefer not to use an app. Like brushing my teeth, I just know if I’m going to bed without doing my burpees. This way I don’t depend on anything external.
If I want to know how many I’ve done cumulatively, I get out a spreadsheet and plug in my starting date in one cell and the current date in another. Taking the difference tells me the number of days between. I multiply that number by the number of burpees I do per day and that’s my answer.
A lot of people ask me how many burpees to start with. Here’s the suggestion that seems to work. In loose-fitting clothes do what feels like as many burpees as you can without going crazy. For some people that’s 5, for others 10. Some more, some fewer. However many you do, subtract 2 from that number and make that how many you do each set. If you could only do 1 or 2, stick with 1 or 2. Then do that number daily forever.
In time, you’ll be able to do more. When you feel comfortable moving up to a higher number, never to drop to a lower number until your body declines with age, decades from now, move up. You might also move to twice-daily. I started with one set of ten. Over the years I’ve added a burpee per set to two sets of 26 plus stretches as well as abdominal and back exercises.
I hope that helps. I found the practice life-changing… one of the greatest improvements to my life. I recommend reading these posts if you haven’t:
Good luck! I’d love to hear how they go after a month, six months, a year, and so on.
I hope the advice helps some out there.
Learn to make Meaningful Connections
with a simple, effective exercise from my book, Leadership Step by Step.
- Step by step instructions
- Video examples of me and Marshall Goldsmith
- An excerpt from my book