Are you busy with work, kids, travel, volunteering and the million other things making us so busy these days? Are you using your weekends to pursue sports or fitness and do not have time during the week? If so… you’re a weekend warrior!
Weekend sports and outdoor adventures like team sports, hikes, and running are good for the mind and body. Your well-earned weekend recreation has the added benefits of boosting your mood, reducing stress, increasing muscle and cardiovascular health, and providing a great social outlet. But there are some things you should know.
Risks of Being a Weekend Warrior
Irregular exercise quickly increases the risk of strains, pains, and injuries. Skimping on weekday workouts leaves muscles stiff and deconditioned for the weekend. Here are six simple tips that can make your weekend performance better, safer and more fun.
1. Reach for it
Basic stretching allows muscles to prep for the work they are going to do, preventing muscle strain injuries (10 -15 minutes to stretching twice during the week) Even better, a Pilates class can also improve your balance, core strength, back strength, and conditioning for the spine.
2. Pick things up and put them down
Strength training is an important way to build endurance. Muscles need resistance training to function at their full capacity. You can hit all your major muscle groups in 10 – 20 minutes twice during the week. A trainer can put a circuit together for you to make an impact fast.
3. Cross Over Time
Most people are weekend warriors by necessity, not a choice—life simply does not permit time to train during the week. If you can find one day to do something aerobic it increases your cardiovascular health and fitness. A quick walk, run, or a fitness class that is fun and enjoyable will suffice.
4. Did You Say Feed Me?
Remember, a healthy diet, including hydration, is essential for athletes and weekend warriors. Consult your doctor, who can support your good health through appropriate testing and supplements if necessary. Routine blood work can guide you on nutritional deficiencies and the need for additional experts.
5. Proper Form Counts
Good ergonomics, posture, and footwear can make a big impact. Consider taking a few lessons from a professional trainer or physical therapist with expertise in your sport of choice.
6. The Fun Factor
Most importantly, realize that exercise should be fun! This certainly goes for your weekend recreational events, but the fun shouldn’t have to end on Sunday night. It’s far easier to keep up on your regular conditioning if you genuinely enjoy it and look forward to it.
Any weekday physical activity is better than none, and regular light activity will help your body be acclimated for weekly hard activity. If you can keep moving, stretching, and having fun during the week, you’ll reach new levels of excellence in your weekend pursuit of excellence.