Thursday, May 19, 2016.   For those of you unfamiliar, a “burpee” (according to Wikopedia) — otherwise known as a squat thrust — “is a full body exercise used in strength training and as an aerobic exercise.”  [The lawyer in me is including the citation just to be careful, see en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Burpee_(exercise)].

The definition on Wikopedia goes on to describe the basic movement of a burpee in four counts:

Begin in a standing position.
Drop into a squat position with your hands on the ground. (count 1)
Kick your feet back, while keeping your arms extended. (count 2)
Immediately return your feet to the squat position. (count 3)
Jump up from the squat position (count 4)

I fu*kin hate burpees.  Anyone who says they like them are full of it.  But they are good for you.  I only did them for a very brief period of time when I joined the gym near the office and got a free training session.  I really liked the trainer and I ended up getting coaxed into buying a few sessions with him.   I had thought I was in shape.  Boy was I wrong.  But the guy made me do burpees every session and I think that (subconsciously) was one of the reasons I ultimately stopped training with him (in addition to thinking I knew what I was doing).  After abandoning the trainer, I would pretend to do a few burpees on my own.  But I totally faked the funk (pathetic when you actually let yourself count by two in your own head!).   I do, however, vividly remember when I was done with three or four sets of 10-12 burpees, and how good it would feel to have them behind you.  Because as bad as it sucked doing each and every one of those burpees, when you were done and sweating your ass off you felt incredibly accomplished.  [By the way, you may be wondering why this post started with a picture of me and Jen.  There really wasn’t a particular reason other than I finally figured out how to include a picture on this page.  But today was all about Jen, so the picture of the two of us will make sense.]

The nerves and guilt of yesterday, together with the anticipation of today’s 1230 pm chemo session in the city, actually had me thinking about burpees this morning.  I wasn’t in a bad mood but I was definitely distracted.   But after having a great breakfast care of Jen as usual (my favorite omelet, four strips of turkey bacon and a wheat bagel); only being nauseous and throwing up for a moment right after breakfast; dropping Jake and Ryan off at school as I planned last night; taking a shower and putting on some new comfortable clothes early this am; having a few minutes to hang out with my mom; stopping at Cherry Lawn for what turned out to be a delicious lunch; and getting to drive into the City with Jen in the passenger seat just the way I like it (all while she dipped my turkey wrap into both honey mustard and Russian dressing), I kind of felt like I would just do the burpees and move on.  So you can imagine how frustrating it was to find out at the doctor’s office, towards the end of the 2 hour visit, that there was a snafu with our insurance and the chemo session was going to be moved to Monday instead of today as planned.  Jen — as she always does to comfort me — immediately shrugged it off and said it really was not that big of deal.  I knew she knew that I was anxious and had agida and was moments away from a complete melt down.  I even tried to convince the people in the check out room to give me the chemo because I had thought I was mentally prepared for it.  [They actually called back one of the doctors who emphatically said no — it would be Monday.]

The interesting thing is Jen is/was totally right.  It really isn’t that big of a deal.  I always described myself as a glass half full kind of guy, but maybe my glass has always been half empty?  Because as much as I said I was pissed that I didn’t get the chemo today (and don’t get me wrong, the whole thing was generally annoying), it really wasn’t that big of a deal when I took step back and really put things in perspective.  And I mean really put things in perspective and not just pay lip service with yet another catch phrase.  Bottom line:  I will get the chemo on Monday.  And as I drove home from the City with Jen, after getting a sandwich at Lennwhich with Jen, my Uncle Jeff and cousin Alex (toasted rye with corned beef, turkey, swiss, mustard and mayo — so good), I realized that the chemo mishap meant another drive to and from the City alone with Jen.  Yet another “priceless” moment to add to the ever expanding list.  We didn’t even need to speak (but we did a ton); it was just great being next to her in the car.  Was it really that big of a deal to have it today vs. Monday?  In fact, isn’t it better to have it Monday?

And my day only got better from there.  Had a visit from some amazing friends that I consider family; got a fake tattoo from my three old son Brandon; read Brandon Curious George goes to the car wash before he went to bed; tucked Ryan into bed; watched the first quarter of the Cavs game with Jake as we high-fived incessantly; and hung out with my Mom and Jen for hours talking about nothing important. [Below is a selfie of Jake and me watching the Cavs starting to lock it down towards the end of the 1st quarter….]


It feels like I broke my record in burpees today.  And it of course feels good.  If I had to do them tomorrow — while I certainly won’t enjoy them — at this point I will just do them and move on because I think I appreciate that the sweat coming at the end is worth it.

By the way, “vindication” turned out to be a misnomer of epic proportions.  The booster doesn’t work and I have to do a trouble shoot tomorrow with both Verizon and AT&T.   My buddy was over earlier and noted the directions said to put the booster near a window.  My booster is sitting in a closed wood cabinet.

14 thoughts on “Burpees”

  1. Enjoy your weekend with your family. I too get really anxious with those healthcare snafu’s. Drove me nuts but you are so right. It is no big deal. Monday sounds good to me. Go Cavs! Hugs to Jen.


  2. Josh-
    Although it’s been awhile we have been keeping track of you guys on Facebook. Your boys are adorable!
    So sorry you guys are going through this. We have fought the cancer fight around here too. I was so happy and relieved to hear that you are seeing Dr. R. She’s literally the best in the business. She not only keeps Mark healthy but she keeps us sane! Equally important elements!
    Your attitude and spirits are amazing. Keep up the blog posts. I love reading them! This too shall pass and you’ll come out even better on the other side!
    Shira and Mark


    1. Thanks so much Shira. Jen had mentioned you guys were dealing with something similar. I’m sorry to hear that, but thrilled to hear that you are in the care of Dr. R and everything is being treated appropriately. Quite a common bond!

      Your family is beautiful and I am sure you are enjoying every second of every day. Looking forward to getting together with you guys before another 15 years rolls by. We might just need to get everyone to show up at Yama and take over for a few hours.


  3. Suss:

    I am sorry to hear that you and your family are going through this, but if anyone can conquer this challenge it is you.

    “Don’t give up, don’t ever give up”

    Mike Feldman and family


    1. Jimmy V baby. Feldman I hope you are well. Sorry we haven’t talked in what seems like 15 years. I hope you and your family are well. I very much appreciate you reaching out. Let’s plan to connect down in Florida once I kick the shit out of this ting.


      1. Suss:
        As soon as you can travel to Florida let me know. I spoke to Slavin today. It still boggles my mind that the two of you hit it off so well At Cuse…stuff legends are made of.


        1. Great to hear from you Feldman. Know that all is well with you through Slavin — and I always love hearing about you.

          Will do on Florida. Was talking to my wife tonight about trying to get back for the reunion in August (really going to try). Will definitely let you know. Best to you and your family.


  4. Josh, I am so sorry to hear that you and your family are going through this. My thoughts and prayers and with you.


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