What’s a weekend warrior? There are a few definitions I’ve gathered from my research. One says that it’s a person who is pretty inactive during the week due to a busy schedule with work, their family or whatever other commitments they are responsible for but on the weekend goes all out in recreational/sporting activities. The second definition is similar but entails general exercise that’s crammed in 1-2 days. That could be lifting, running, cycling etc. The term “Weekend Warrior” in general tends to be someone who crams all of their physical activity in 1-2 days.
According to a study that compiled data from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention from 1994 to 2004 only 1-3% of the American population fit into the definition of “Weekend Warrior” or someone that crammed at least 150 minutes of moderate-vigorous physical activity in 1-2 days. That may not seem like a lot, but that’s still millions of people. There isn’t anything specifically wrong with being this type of mover, according to multiple studies as long as you’re fulfilling your 150 minutes of moderate-vigorous physical activity per week, you’re still decreasing your mortality rate and improving your health!
So why bring this up? One reason: sustainability. If you are consistently sitting and inactive during the week and go hard during the those 1-2 days (maybe not even the weekend) your body isn’t use to intense activity due to the majority of your time being spent in a sedentary manner. Because of that lifestyle, your body is most likely going to be tight and immobile leading to a high risk of injury, however minor or serious.
If those activities are very intense and require a lot of mobility such as crossfit for instance, you are putting yourself at a high risk of injury. Ultimately, I would recommend trying to incorporate for NEAT (Non-exercise Activity Thermogenesis) into your lifestyle to increase your mobility as well as become more efficient in your daily movement. Examples of NEAT are: taking out the trash, gardening, taking the stairs, walking your dog, walking to the grocery store (if it’s close), carrying groceries by hand etc. These modalities of movement are not intense, but still give your body more energy expenditure and can attribute to a better lifestyle. If you can’t do that, at least stretch the day before and right after the activity!
Last question: how does relate to all the articles? Same word: sustainability. That one word has come up in every article thus far. Adding little bouts of physical activity to your life can help you increase mobility and decrease your pain long term, especially as you go hard on the weekend!
- Lee, I. M., Sesso, H. D., Oguma, Y., & Paffenbarger, J. R. (2004, October 01). The “weekend warrior” and risk of mortality. Retrieved March 15, 2018, from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15383407
- Kruger, J., Ham, S. A., & Kohl, H. W. (2007). Characteristics of a “Weekend Warrior”. Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise,39(5), 796-800. doi:10.1249/mss.0b013e318031faac
- Roberts, D. J., Ouellet, J., McBeth, P. B., Kirkpatrick, A. W., Dixon, E., & Ball, C. G. (2014, June). Retrieved March 15, 2018, from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4035407/