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Let me introduce myself. My name is Mark Sisson. I’m 63 years young. I live and work in Malibu, California. In a past life I was a professional marathoner and triathlete. Now my life goal is to help 100 million people get healthy. I started this blog in 2006 to empower people to take full responsibility for their own health and enjoyment of life by investigating, discussing, and critically rethinking everything we’ve assumed to be true about health and wellness...

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October 11, 2010

WOW: Cave Burpees

By Mark Sisson
59 Comments

For time:

100 Burpees (with Pushups and Jumps)*

How-to:

Warmup: A couple rotations of the Grok Squat.

This is an oldie but a goodie. All you need is a small patch of floor space and your bodyweight to perform this WOW. There is no equipment and little space required, so it’s perfect for a quick, impromptu workout while on the road or when you want to stay indoors, out of the harsh fall and winter elements.

Give it a shot, record your time and list it in today’s comment board to compare with others. Just finishing 100 burpees is an accomplishment in itself, but if you’re a fit individual and would like a goal to shoot for I’d recommend attempting to do it in under 10 minutes. Sub-4 minute times have been recorded.

This is a challenging WOW and may not be for everyone as prescribed. Luckily, there are ways to customize this WOW. See the variations below for ways to adapt this WOW to match your fitness level and goals.

*How to Perform a Burpee (with Pushups/Jumps): Drop down into the squat position. Place your hands on the ground about shoulder width apart while simultaneously jumping your legs back so that you are in the standard pushup position. Perform a pushup. As you come up from the pushup jump your legs forward so that you are back in the squat position. From the squat position jump straight up so that your feet leave the ground and your arms come up over your head. Here is a decent video example.

Variations:

There are numerous ways to make this WOW easier:

  • Decrease the volume. Instead of 100 burpees for time attempt 50 or 30 burpees for time.
  • Instead of regular pushups do knee pushups.
  • Skip the jump and/or pushup, so the movement only includes the squat and plank.

What are WOWs?

  • Workouts of the Week (WOWs) are an optional component of Primal Blueprint Fitness that add a fractal and often fun and playful quality to the basic PBF protocol.
  • In most cases WOWs should only be completed by those that have mastered Level 4 of each Lift Heavy Things Essential Movement. Also, it’s recommended that WOWsreplace one or both Lift Heavy Things workouts or the Sprint workout (depending on the WOW) each week instead of being done in addition to the Lift Heavy Things and Sprint workouts.
  • Learn more about WOWs and Primal Blueprint Fitness by getting the free eBook. And access all Workouts of the Week in the WOW Archive.

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59 Comments on "WOW: Cave Burpees"

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Jon
Jon
5 years 11 months ago

i really like this one.

adam
adam
5 years 11 months ago

simplicity πŸ™‚

Guy
Guy
5 years 11 months ago

Harder than it might appear; 8 min 49 secs.

debbie_downer
debbie_downer
5 years 11 months ago

estimate: 3 weeks

The Primal Palette
5 years 11 months ago

LOL, nice!

Aaron (Grok Mendoza)
Aaron (Grok Mendoza)
5 years 6 months ago

Haha I think we’re on the same level.. Or i still am at least

skink531
skink531
5 years 11 months ago

This is great. Just yesterday I made the comment that everyone on the forum should do 100 burbees in celebration, and know it will be happening!!! This is why I love this site.

SLS
SLS
5 years 11 months ago

I’m always slightly baffled by the new trend of “high intensity” workouts to be highly repetitive. It’s like the reverential badge of pride endurance athletes uphold to justify their continuation of a grueling, un-fun regiment has been transferred over to a different type of physical training. In the same space and time used for 100 burpees, one can throw in some different movements to work more muscles, engage the mind a bit more, and enjoy a refreshing sense of strength rather than slog through the uphill battle with fatigue.

The Primal Palette
5 years 11 months ago

While I agree with the spirit of your post, there is value in mastering the basics and repetition is an effective tool for doing so. Doing 100 burpees is going to challenge anyone and help their form with that movement. That said, I wouldn’t do something like this all that often for the reasons you specified.

Justin
Justin
5 years 11 months ago

I’d like to know which muscles are not being used in a full burpee?

SLS
SLS
5 years 11 months ago

You’re right, it is full body, no doubt. I misspoke there. In particular, though, your hams, biceps, lower back, upper gluts, and obliques probably won’t be fatigued like your quads, upper back, triceps, delts, lower gluts, and calfs. Also, it could certainly help to transition to another move and preserve posture, as hunched shoulders, rounded spine, and closed hips become pervasive as you fatigue with burpees.

Justin
Justin
5 years 11 months ago

Yes, but your lower back hamstrings and glutes should be the prime movers in powerful hip extension for jumping, not your quads. Also some of us do find pushing ourselves to the limits “fun” it’s all relative.

SLS
SLS
5 years 11 months ago

You have to have a deeper squat to really use hamstrings and there are multiple glut muscles, each activating maximally with different movements. Lower back should really stay neutral and act as a stabilizer. Yes the hip flexors work hard, hence the tendency to hunch and not fully extend in the jump as you tire. Yea I totally understand the desire to hit it till you drop. Cool for testing, but for a workout, not so much.

Mark L
Mark L
5 years 11 months ago

Any muscles that are used to smile.

Craig
2 years 2 months ago

This kind of workout is about mental endurance as much as physical. There is a benefit to training your mind to focus, and not needing to be distracted by other exercises.

Primal Toad
5 years 11 months ago

I love the simplicity. I am not sure if I can do 100 in less than 10 minutes but I may give it a try Friday.

Graham King
5 years 11 months ago

6:35

I just finished the 100 Day Burpee Challenge…this is the final day.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mdphRPkbED4

David Grim - Get Fit Get Lean
5 years 11 months ago

I did it in 7:34. I was totally out of gas by the end. You can see the video of it here: http://www.getfitgetlean.com/the-100-burpee-challenge-part-4-of-4/

Good luck to all that try.

David

Griffin
Griffin
5 years 11 months ago

My time was 5:48, but I left out the pushup (chest is slightly sore)…I’ll have to do it again with the full pushup and see how much longer it takes!

Awesome minimalist workout. My kind of thing!

gilliebean
5 years 11 months ago

Great workout!! I’ll try it “tomorrow.” πŸ˜‰

Rich
Rich
5 years 11 months ago

Grab a pull- up bar during the jump, and insert a pull-up in each burpee for real fun!

Rich
Rich
5 years 11 months ago

… or maybe a low hanging tree branch!

Family Grokumentarian
5 years 11 months ago

Love the simplicity and adaptability of this one. Thanks, Mark & Co.!

Robert
5 years 11 months ago

Holy S#!7, kicked my A$$. lost 30lbs since January so it is definitely better than in the old days. had to break up into 10 sets of 10. 16:08, but I know i can and will do better. GREAT WORKOUT, full body is feeling it.

The Primal Palette
5 years 11 months ago

Hey man, you had the tenacity to stick it out so good on you. 100 burpees ain’t easy!

Robert
5 years 11 months ago

Hey man, No kidding. That is by far what too many people fixate on. I can’t so I won’t. I am no stranger to pain. played Rugby for close to 10 years. I don’t think I ever worked this hard in such a short amount of time per week and still I am in better shape now than then? Love it.

Jack
Jack
5 years 11 months ago

8:16…how anyone has managed a sub-four minute set is beyond my comprehension. great “sprint” like workout.

David Grim - Get Fit Get Lean
5 years 11 months ago

Here is another guy doing it even faster! He only does 99 but I am positive that he could have done one more. He is lightning fast! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=np2UpsPF9k8

Quite impressive.

Jack
Jack
5 years 11 months ago

if i had that soundtrack to motivate i might’ve been able to pull a sub-4 errrr sub-8 minute set.

Daniel
Daniel
5 years 11 months ago

14.29 for 100 +/- 5 . 100 is a really high number. I lost count a few times.

Dan
Dan
5 years 11 months ago

Brother, that happens to me all the time! I can’t seem to keep track past about 20 reps on any workout. Maybe I should just do it for time.

Nikki
Nikki
5 years 11 months ago

First WOW ever – Originally estimated 1 week and 4 days, but knock out 100 burpees (most without pushup) in 16 minutes. This is the first day of a new process for me. Grok on!

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[…] WOW: Cave Burpees […]

Arthur
Arthur
5 years 11 months ago

No knee tuck? πŸ˜€

Primal Toad
5 years 11 months ago

I just did 100 burpees in 9:57. I may start to do this weekly as it was tons of fun… literally.

Grok on!

trackback

[…] perusing a posting @ Marks Daily Apple when I came across a Workout of the Week that looked rather … […]

Sean
5 years 11 months ago

13:45 holy heck that was intense!

bear in mind that I have a 6’5″ frame to move around…so thats why it took me longer than you smaller people. Its not because I am not as fit as you guys… πŸ˜‰

Pricey
5 years 11 months ago

Ive been doing 100 burpees once a week for the last 6 or 7 weeks. I have also never cracked 10 minutes, but was in teh low teens working at 10 rep sets.

In any case, checking the comments here gave me the kick I needed and this afternoon I set a PB of 9:23.

So cheers for that! πŸ™‚

Archie
Archie
5 years 11 months ago

8 min 18 seconds, come on!

Yale
Yale
5 years 11 months ago

Have done this for years with a weighted BP. First I put it on my back then flip it to my front. Great workout. Try hiking with weights too! Challenge extended…

Alan
Alan
5 years 11 months ago

6min 48sec….Last time I did this, it took me 7:10

Sean
5 years 11 months ago

9:05 but that included one phone interruption. I think we a few more attempts I can get to 6:xx range, but sub 4:00 is crazy.

Jim
Jim
5 years 11 months ago

Never done Burpees before, 10:30 for 100 the 1st time. Gonna keeep working on it to get it under 10. Great workout as with all the WOWs.

trackback

[…] the burpees. several weeks ago, Mark’s Daily Apple, had a challenge up to do 100 burpees for time. I went to my gym one night and tried to accomplish this, got to about 50 and thought I was going […]

M. Pile
M. Pile
5 years 9 months ago

In case anyone needs more “motivation”:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PYfNA_lmkHM

Aaron (Grok Mendoza)
Aaron (Grok Mendoza)
5 years 6 months ago

Daaang.. I’m out of shape primalistically speaking haha I only did 65 in 10:01 Seconds. That sure was fun though I am most def going to try that again!

I need to get past the big shots who posted. Good job ppl!

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[…] and Primal Recipes Delivered to Your InboxRelated posts:WOW: Merry Go RoundWOW: Explosion ComplexWOW: Cave BurpeesMark's Daily Applehttp://www.marksdailyapple.com/wow-nfl-combine/Mark SissonLeave a Reply Click here […]

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[…] enjoy inventing my own exercises to keep things fun. Recently, I was trying out the Cave Burpee workout and found myself extremely […]

anotherMark
anotherMark
5 years 4 months ago

Please tell me again why do this for time, doesn’t that encourage poor form? I bet I can do it 20 second faster by not jumping so high; another 20 second gain by not controlling my push-up and making it a bouncing flop …?

jingxiamnh
5 years 25 days ago

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Pseudomotive
Pseudomotive
5 years 8 days ago

Just did this for the first time today – 100 burpees (highest possible jump I could muster each time). Finished at 9:55.

Still sweating.

poker news
4 years 9 months ago

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Cassidy
Cassidy
3 years 6 months ago

I just didn’t have the motivation to drag out le weights, so I did this workout today. The sweat coming out of my scalp was intense. XD
I managed to get 12:36! I’ll try to shave that down to 12:00 next time.

El Roberto
El Roberto
3 years 4 months ago

I accepted the challenge from a friend and though for sure I could get under 10….it’s harder than I though. 10:47 for me with a new goal of breaking the 10 min barrier

Ellen Mangan
3 years 1 month ago

I’m still pretty deconditioned so did a modification: x5 (10 burpees, 10 bridges), no rest (well, maybe a little rest). Good compromise for those needing to work up to it. Got my blood moving and the last set of burpees was tough. Took me about 8 min.

ChrisC
ChrisC
3 years 7 days ago
I do these sometimes but find ways to avoid them more often than not because there’s few things that gas you more (thrusters and 400m laps come to mind….maybe but there’s not much in it!). I’m 40, 200lbs and I do them in around 7 mins sometimes under sometimes over. The trick is to keep going! They are the kind of exercise that you think you will have to stop after about 20 but actually you can keep going. More slowly and it hurts the whole way but you can keep going And not taking a breather dramatically increases your… Read more »
Jan Foselli
8 months 25 days ago

Wow! This was a challenge. I had to break it up into sets of 25, but I did all 4 sets in 10:38. I did take about 1:30 minute breaks in between sets but I have a new goal! Thanks for this awesome, simple, quick, challenging workout Mark!

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