Five Reasons Why Burpees Should Be Your Favorite Exercise


What do extreme athletes, elite military forces, and football teams have in common?

They all embrace burpees and regularly include them in their workout routines.

Lots, and lots, of burpees.

But burpees aren’t just beneficial for hardcore athletes or certified badasses…

They’re for everyone. 

That’s why we include so many burpees in the workouts in the official 12 Minute Athlete HIIT Workouts app—they’ll get you fitter than pretty much any other exercise can.

Because not only will burpees turn you into an athlete, they’ll also help you scorch fat, rev up your metabolism and get you conditioned like no other exercise can do.

But what the heck is a burpee… and why should you care?

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Five Steps to Reaching Your Happy Weight Once and For All

If you could get to a place where you never had to worry about your weight again, would you?

If you’re like 99% of the people out there, your answer is most definitely yes.

(I don’t know what goes on in the other 1% of people’s minds, but let’s just assume they exist…)

Because let’s face it: trying to be healthy and fit sucks.

Constantly thinking about how you should be exercising, denying yourself your favorite foods, counting calories… it’s no fun. This type of thinking starts to take over your life, interfers with your social engagements, and totally stresses you out.

And on top of that, it’s probably not even working.

Find your happy weight

Everyone, including you, has an ideal weight. This is the weight where you don’t have to be overly concerned about what you eat, where you have plenty of energy to do all your favorite activities, and where you feel pretty damn good in a bathing suit.

This is called your “happy weight” (yes, this is an informal term). Basically, it means that you have the right level of body fat and muscle for your body.

When you reach this weight, you’ll be healthy and strong—but not overly skinny.

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On Being Hipster, Skinny Fat, and Getting Diabetes in Your 20′s

In my 26 years on this planet, I’ve had the privilege of living in some of the coolest cities in the planet—Portland, Amsterdam, New York, and San Francisco, just to name a few.

The one thing these places have in common?

Hipsters. Lots and lots of hipsters.

If you’re not familiar with the term (although you’d probably have to be a hermit to not have come into contact with it these days), the (condensed) Urban Dictionary definition of a hipster is:

“Hipsters are a subculture of men and women typically in their 20’s and 30’s that value independent thinking, counter-culture, progressive politics, an appreciation of art and indie-rock, creativity, intelligence, and witty banter. Although “hipsterism” is really a state of mind, it is also often intertwined with distinct fashion sensibilities. Hipsters reject the culturally-ignorant attitudes of mainstream consumers, and are often be seen wearing vintage and thrift store inspired fashions, tight-fitting jeans, old-school sneakers, and sometimes thick rimmed glasses. Both hipster men and women sport similar androgynous hair styles that include combinations of messy shag cuts and asymmetric side-swept bangs.”

Now, I have no idea why, but one thing nearly all hipsters have in common is that they seem to avoid exercising at all costs (biking is the one exception).

It’s almost as if they consider being healthy and in shape to be ‘uncool.’

The strange thing is, because they subside mainly on cigarettes, beer, and tacos (please do not do this), most hipsters don’t actually appear overweight.

Instead, they perfectly embody what is everybody’s favorite body type to bash these days: skinny fat.

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How to Keep Fit When All You Have is a Hotel Room


It’s no secret that most people use traveling as an excuse to not work out.

They assume that just because they don’t have access to a gym or fancy exercise equipment, there’s no point in even trying to keep fit.

But it doesn’t have to be that way.

Because despite what you may think, you can actually get a really good workout when you’re traveling—even if all you have is a hotel room as your gym.

And best of all, you won’t have to spend an hour a day of your vacation exercising—or shell out $20 for a day pass at an expensive gym.

All you need is a hotel room—and determination

I used to always use traveling as an excuse not to exercise—even on long European vacations filled with French pastries and German beer.

And even though I’d end up walking a ton every time I traveled, I never did a single push up or lifted even one weight. As a result, I’d end up losing much of the hard work I’d put in before my trip… and have to start from the beginning when I got back home.

So a few years ago, I changed my stance on exercise while traveling, and now I work out just as I would normally, albeit with a little less equipment or space.

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Functional Fitness: The Ultimate Guide

Have you ever had a killer workout at the gym…

Busting out the biceps curls, leg presses, and calf raises…

Only to find you have trouble lifting a heavy suitcase above your head in a crowded airplane, or going up five flights of stairs when the elevator is broken?

You’re not alone.

Because the truth is that when most people work out, they focus on exercises that isolate individual muscles, such as the biceps, triceps, quads or glutes.

This type of training isn’t necessarily wrong (it’s used by bodybuilders to pump up particular muscles so they’re big and puffy), but it won’t help you in everyday life.

Because in the real world, your muscles don’t work in isolation—they work together as a whole.

And that’s where functional fitness comes in. Because if you want to be truly fit… you have to be fit inside and outside of the weight room.

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OMG My Thighs Are Getting HUGE!


My mom called me up the other day, noticeable worry in her voice.

“I have a problem.”

My mom then explained how after nearly five months of doing some type of resistance training four or five days a week, she was starting to notice her thighs getting bigger.

“And that wasn’t exactly the goal,” she said, obviously freaking out a little.

“Calm down,” I said. “Tell me exactly what’s happening.”

“Well,” she went on, “my waist is getting smaller and firmer, but my thighs are GROWING. It’s getting harder and harder to fit into my pants!”

I laughed, and proceeded to explain.

Here’s what happens when you begin a new exercise program:

You start to lose weight and gain strength almost immediately. This makes you happy and motivates you to keep exercising.

Then you hit your first plateau. Your strength and endurance gains start to slow, and you stop shedding the pounds as quickly as you were in the beginning.

And then… here’s the scary part for women… often certain body parts start getting BIGGER.

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Seven Ways to Motivate Yourself to Exercise

How do you motivate yourself to exercise when there are dozens of things you’d rather be doing?

You know it’s good for you. Exercise helps you reach and maintain a healthy body weight, lowers blood pressure, gets rid of bad cholesterol, strengthens bones, lowers your risk for cancer, and decreases stress.

But we all know the truth: finding the time and motivation to get off the couch and work out isn’t always easy.

Here are seven ways to get—and keep—the motivation to exercise regularly:

1. Find something you enjoy doing.

Many gym-goers spend hours on the treadmill even though they hate it (this used to be me).

Yet there are plenty of other forms of exercise that can be just as (or more!) beneficial for weight loss and cardiovascular health.

Try a new class, substitute long cardio sessions with interval training, join a friendly sports team with your buddies—anything that will help you look forward to exercising, rather than dread it.

2. Keep track of your progress.

Using a journal to track measurements like weight and body fat percentage as well as progress made in your workouts will keep you much more motivated than looking in the mirror every day.

Just being able to see in print (or on the screen) that all your hard work has paid off can be the motivator you need to keep you working out on a regular basis.

3. Notice how you feel after exercise.

If you’re like most people, you may be tired and unmotivated before your workout, but feel nothing short of amazing afterwards.

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Is Your Food Obsession Ruining Your Life?

Some people spend every minute of their lives obsessing over food.

Devout Paleo diet followers, for instance, nearly cry if a speck of grain touches their lips. They have a hard time eating out with friends, and can’t enjoy a rich dessert at a party. And this is the same for any extreme dieter, not just Paleo lovers.

If that’s the kind of life you want to live, go for it.

I, on the other hand, am a big believer in enjoying life.

I want to experience everything life has to offer, and yes, that means a glass or two of wine several times a week, some bread here and there, even (gasp!) a melt-in-your-mouth chocolate chip cookie once in a while.

No, I don’t eat these things every day, but I do eat them more often than you might think.

Why? I want to be happy. I want to experience life with the people around me. I don’t want to obsess about every morsel of food I eat—I want to enjoy my food.

I live by the 80/20 rule — 80% of what goes into my body has to be good food (fruits, veggies, protein, healthy fats, etc.)—and 20% can be the fun stuff (wine, treats, carbs).

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Why You Should Throw Away Your Scale

Admit it… it’s depressing.

You work out on a frequent basis. You do resistance exercise and high intensity cardio like you know you should. You try and eat nutritious, healthy foods (and not too much of them) 90% of the time. But the scale refuses to budge.

And you can’t help wondering…

Do you just need to be patient, waiting for the numbers to finally get smaller?

Or could it be possible that the numbers on scale doesn’t really matter… and you’re actually making progress, despite your stagnant weight?

Why weighing yourself doesn’t work

People have been using scales to determine their physical health for ages. Long ago, someone determined that what you weigh is somehow the pinnacle of how fit and healthy you are. And society wholeheartedly accepted this.

Heck, I remember hearing about cheerleading squads in high school who wouldn’t accept anyone into their team who was over 120 pounds, despite their level of skill or overall appearance.

Not even two pounds over. Does that seem right to you?

Well, the ugly truth about the scale is that it doesn’t actually tell you how in shape you are.

Why? Because the scale only looks at your overall weight… it doesn’t consider other (more important) factors such as how much muscle you have, how dense your bones are,

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100 Ways to Get Moving Outdoors This Summer

Looking for ways to get outside this summer? Here are 100 ways to have fun and get fit outdoors:

1. Go to the beach.

2. Take your canine friend to a local dog park.

3. Try hang gliding.

4. Take up windsurfing.

5. Take up kiteboarding.

6. Do your workouts outside.

7. Go swim in a lake.

8. Go camping.

9. Learn to sail.

10. Sign up for a sprint triathlon.

11. Go for a hike.

12. Dust off your bike and take it for a ride around town.

13. Pack a picnic and eat outside.

14. Run stairs.

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