SOME people begin the New Year with a resolution to exercise, eat healthier or lose weight, but imagine getting 2020 under way with a burpee challenge over five kilometres (5km), writes Rob Stevens.

That is exactly what Emily Lockhart and Christoph Young did on Sunday. Challenged to burpee their away around Dorney Lake, the pair completed the gruelling feat in three hours, 34 minutes and 21 seconds, and over 1,850 burpees.

Lockhart, 39, is a personal trainer who likes to push the boundaries of physical fitness and help to inspire others. She took on the challenge whilst others laughed and said it was something she wanted to tick off the bucket list before her 40th birthday.

The Cippenham-based star explained: “Christoph and I train together a lot and I always look for crazy stuff to do. We did burpees for one kilometre together last year.

“We set ourselves personal little challenges and people said there was no way we could do it for five kilometres around the lake. We talked about the idea in jest six months ago but people bet we couldn’t do it.

“My philosophy is to embrace life and I believe that if you feel good then you can achieve anything. I’m also a big believer that if you don’t try then you’ll never know and that it’s mind over matter.

“I try to motivate and inspire other people and by doing this challenge it shows that you can do anything when you put your mind to it.”

Slough Observer:

PHOTO: Emily Lockhart and Christoph Young are all smiles at the end of their gruelling challenge.

Lockhart admits the duo could have thrown in the towel at around the halfway stage but were motivated to carry on by friends and other users of the lake, with a real sense of achievement after the final burpee to take them to their five-kilometre target.

She revealed: “We got about halfway round and thought we couldn’t do it anymore but there were some rowing instructors on their bikes who said that what we were doing was incredible and that spurred us on.

“People must have thought we were stupid at the time. Some had to look twice at what we were doing and others asked why we were doing it. We said it was a personal thing for fitness which probably made us sound mad.

“We could have talked ourselves out of it around halfway, but you just want to push on and do it and not let people down. My body hurt and I was feeling tired, however we had members of my boot camp alongside side to push us to the finish. EL Fitness is like a family, we're always supporting each other to achieve our goals.

“It was a great sense of achievement and probably the most mentally challenging thing I’ve ever done. I was emotional and tearful at the end but I feel we’ve encouraged others to achieve whatever they put their minds to.”

Slough Observer:

SO WHAT IS A BURPEE? The Burpee is a full-body exercise used in strength training or aerobic exericse. The basic movement is performed in four steps; begin in a standing position, move into a squat with your hands on the ground, kick your feet back into a blank whilst keeping arms extended, return your feet into the squat and then stand up.

The incredible feat has inspired Lockhart to do more in the future – to continue to challenge herself and help to motivate and inspire overs.

She said: “I have a passion for running and will be doing the Brighton Marathon this year with some members of EL Fitness.

“Together with Cippenham Football Club we’ve been raising funds to get a defibrillator fitted at the recreation ground in Eltham Avenue.

“I would like to raise a lot more money for charity and give something back to the community.

“We’re now thinking about pushing a tractor tyre around Dorney Lake or doing a bear crawl, we’re open to suggestions.”