Short answer: Rucking and burpees.
The Covid pandemics and the recurring lockdown let my inner conservative spread his wings like never before – and rucking and burpees have become a very prominent role in my body’s maintenance routine.
Historically, these two are very conservative exercises.
Below, me bathing in sunset shines in my gym this summer. Over the last year, despite certain overconsumption of red wine and chocolate, I went down in weight from 86 to 78 kg. (My height is 182 cm).
What I did was taking into use two basic body exercises known to the pious and God-fearing for thousands of years.
Rucking is a heavy-duty, lower-intensity workout that consists of walking or slowly running with a weight for a set distance. Usually, it happens with a weighted rucksack. I use a weighted 30 kg vest:
I pace the walk to keep my average heart rate at about 80–85% of my maximum HBM for 30–45 minutes. Almost the entire body working under the pressure of additional kilograms makes me break in sweat during the first few minutes of the exercise. Usual walks bore me to death. Rucking at about 6 kmh with an additional 30 kg is the opposite of boring, I assure you.
Saint Peter was the most known practitioner (albeit involuntary) of rucking. In his time, people used chains for weight. St. Peters device is kept on display in the reliquary of San Pietro in Vincoli.
Many Christians have been practicing this ever since. Some of them even made it a lifestyle item. Below is a part of a large painting “Boyar Lady Morozova” with a fool for Christ sporting a massive metal cross with an industrial chain over his shoulders.
Below, a modern-day Russian lady in an Orthodox procession disciplining her body and spirit with a similar device.
Burpees are ground bows extended to lying down flat on the floor at the low point and jumping jacks at the high point. You can take burpees at your own tempo. Fast or slow, they are taxing anyway.
The classic of Marxism-Leninism Vladimir Lenin discovered the magic of burpees in Tsar’s lock-up. This illustrates one major great advantage of burpees. You can do them whenever pandemics, angry parents, or court orders ground you in some cramped space.
Once you start doing burpees, it doesn’t take too many of them before you find out how much you hate them. I hate them, too. But my inner conservative is merciless. Millions of Christians, Muslims, and others who practiced the deep bows through centuries — and the founder of Soviet rule is also among them —can not be wrong. I abide.
Below, a woman in old-era Russia performs deep bows in the small living room of a peasant cottage in front of her mother-in-law. Combining your burpee routine with relationship-building with your in-laws, how about that?