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I know burps and burpees are different, and I now know that I struggle to do either one. I live in a household of men who have the natural ability to burp (and other noxious things) at a moment’s notice. I cannot! Besides, they’ve set the bar too high. Yesterday, at Workout #2 with my ladies’ Bible study group, our instructor introduced us to 2 new “moves”…one was Burpees, and the other was planking…one is fast torture, and the other one is slow torture. The key word here: Torture!

For those who aren’t sure what burpees or planking are – let me keep it simple.

“The burpee …is a full body exercise used in strength training and as aerobic exercise. It is performed in four steps…
1. Begin in a standing position. Drop into a squat position with your hands on the ground.
2. Extend your feet back in one quick motion to assume the front plank position.
3. Return to the squat position in one quick motion.
4. Jump straight into the air as high as possible.”

There are multiple variations but when we did it, we followed the above steps but added a push-up between step 2 and 3…well, I tried to add it. Our instructor was telling me, “now do a push-up”…but all I could do was lie in the starting position and smell the carpet. It was not…pleasant. My arms were straining but nothing was happening, and I burst out laughing. We should have done burpees before she taught us planking (that’s my excuse and I’m sticking to it). I managed to do some push-ups with my burpees, but it wasn’t easy!

Planking, in this case, does not refer to any carpentry venture or the fad among the younger set of lying in weird places and posting pictures on social media. I am referring to “the isometric core strength exercise that involves maintaining a difficult position for extended periods of time. The most common plank is the front plank which is held in a push-up position with the body’s weight borne on forearms, elbows, and toes.” Try it and be amazed at how quickly your entire body turns to jell-o. It gets better – in a few hours, your arms will threaten to start shaking as you hold the steering wheel at 10 & 2…

She also made us do deep knee lunges, squats, bicep curls, tricep something-or-others, and things with no names because the very thought of them will make me cry. We also learned how to roll and plank and I don’t know with a big red rubber ball…and now I have that song stuck in my head…”And I think it’s going to be all right / Yeah, the worst is over / Now the morning sun is shining / Like a red rubber ball…”

Trust me – this time I am hurting in strange places like my armpits and my elbows, but I think the worst is over. I can keep working at these things at home and next Thursday, we’re going for a run instead! I just hope it’s not up hills…

I had a sobering thought late last night…let’s just say, based on my prayer life, what if God has allowed me to start training my body for something that will require strength & endurance? What is this is more than just for health or a day in the mud? The adventure continues!