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Rough & Ready Challenge: Kansas Burpees by Mark Hatmaker

Today’s bit of old-school fun takes a conditioning standard and adds the laborious pleasure of hefting sacks of Kansas grain at market time.

·         Grab your grain-sack stand-in, make it one of heft, but not so hefty you have to break your reps. We’re looking for solid non-stop work.

·         Too heavy, you’ll take too many breaks.

·         Too light and we’ll miss all the Farmhand strength benefits of the struggle.


·         Drop and hit your plank to push-up.

·         Return to feet.

·         Gut-grip the “grain sack” and hoist it to a shoulder.

·         Push-press the load overhead.

·         Drop it and repeat.

·         Alternate shoulders with each rep for balanced strength.


·         50 in just under 10-minutes.

·         If it takes longer than 10 you either tip-toed your pace and will get a good dressing-down from the Boss or you gambled too heavy. Correct that mistake next time.

·         If you come in around 50-seconds or more under, you gambled too light and went easy on yourself. Rev it up for the next time.

·         Aim for a steady-pace that brings it in around that 10-minute mark.

Wisdom from a Texas Ranger

“Bravery is always an ingredient of a magnanimous disposition. The domineering, tyrannical man is generally, though not always, a coward at heart. I have seen but few exceptions to the rule.” William Alexander Anderson “Bigfoot” Wallace

To the bold, strong and magnanimous of the world!

[The above is extracted from our upcoming book Rough & Ready: Old World Strength & Conditioning for Modern Warriors]


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