At first, it doesn’t sound like too much of an arduous chore for those who like to keep fit and are up for a challenge.
The task is simple: to complete as many burpees (also known as squat thrusts) in a minute in a world record attempt. There’s just one catch. It’s going to take place inside a freezer where temperatures will hover around -10°C. Oh, and the freezer will be parked at Azaiba Beach.
Dozens of hardy souls have applied to be part of the 10-man elite team hoping to put Oman on a very cool athletic map.
As spectators are sweating outside in the summer heat on Saturday (7), the frozen “burpers” will be shivering inside the mobile freezer unit and, hopefully, squatting and jumping their way into the record books.
Fuelled by Weetabix and trained by RevGX Fitness, the brave challengers will be in good hands. Bader al Lawati, one of the original Freezing Omanis who went to Antarctica, and his employer Enhance are leading the attempt.
The world record for burpees in one minute is 40 but no one has been brave enough to try the feat in a freezer. Until now, that is.
While there have been many burpee world records in the past, the organisers say this particular challenge is the first of its kind.
“We are setting a new category in the world record book and we invite the world to break it,” said RevGX’s managing director, Rashid al Barwani.
“We wanted to organise an event to spread environmental awareness and also raise awareness in our communities for the need to be active.”
After a series of qualifiers in which competitors had to complete as many burpees as possible in seven minutes, the top 10 people have been selected for the new record.
“The challenge will require a lot of energy so I’ve been maintaining a high-fibre diet,” said al Lawati, who should be used to the cold after his adventures in the sub-freezing Antarctic.
He added: “Also, I’m trying to eat foods low on the glycemic index. Besides the diet, I’ve been training with CrossFit Wadi to be in the best shape.”
At the challenge, the participants will enter the freezer boxes individually to perform the burpees and will be assessed by an independent third party to ensure correct moves are used. There will also be an ambulance on site in case of any problems.
“Being in the freezer will make it hard to breathe and lower my energy levels. I’m hoping to do over 20 burpees to set a competitive world record,” added al Lawati.
The winner will get to walk away with a cash prize and a one-year membership at RevGX Fitness, along with a certificate as a world record holder.
Cheer on the competitors and be part of the fun at Azaiba Beach Park from 6.30pm on Saturday.