CHEK Upside: Victoria athlete lands Guinness World Record for burpees

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For Issy Watson, working out is an essential part of her life.

“Growing up I’ve been so active, I’ve played every sport out there and I’m just so passionate about working out,” says Watson.

The transplanted Ontarian has always been on the hunt for her next challenge, so when she found out there was a Guinness World Record for the most chest-to-ground burpees completed in an hour by a female, Watson was determined to break it.

“It’s just been lingering in my mind and my family’s like ‘you can so beat that’,” says Watson.

“So that’s mainly why and I like pushing myself and challenging myself so [there’s] nothing better than going for a Guinness World Record.”

In August of 2021, Watson gathered a few friends and some cameras to document the attempt. She unofficially broke the record, managing 829 repetitions, but there were still a few more requirements to meet before the record was made official.

“We had to submit a lot of evidence, cover letters, witness statements, the videos had to be very particular showing the amount of reps,” says Watson.

“It was a really long process.”

After months of waiting, the confirmation finally came from Guinness just a few weeks ago.

“At the beginning of February I woke up to an email saying congratulations and it was just a really good feeling,” says Watson.

It was a moment that Watson’s friends and family had also been waiting a long time for.

“We are amazingly proud of her and what she’s able to accomplish here,” says Watson’s friend Hal Kriesel.

“[It’s] just a world-class effort for being able to put in the training and then to attempt a goal that takes a lot of mental fortitude.”

Now that the record is hers, Watson has one piece of advice for anyone attempting something similar.

“If you have a goal just set your mind to it and don’t stop until you reach it,” says Watson

Cole SorensonCole Sorenson

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