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Health Tips: Avoiding Weekend Warrior Syndrome

separator People of either gender can succumb to weekend warrior syndrome, when you get out there to make the most of your two days, only to end up hurting yourself. We don’t know of any official statistics on this, but our suspicion is that humans of the male gender are more likely to be weekend warriors. Does any of this sound familiar?

► There’s a lot of yard work to be done, and maybe even some rocks to be moved in order to dig a garden. Instead of spending a couple of hours a day for many days on the chore, the weekend warrior decides to spend the entire Saturday and Sunday moving those rocks and digging that garden. The result? Rocks are moved, garden is dug, and weekend warrior is in bed with a sprained back and can’t even go to work for several days.

►The weekend warrior decides that doing yard work is a great opportunity to get a tan. No sun block is applied. The result? A blistering sunburn that actually causes nausea and chills.

►Weekend tennis is suddenly the weekend warrior’s favorite pastime. And not just one game, but three, is the standard. Suddenly, the weekend warrior has tennis elbow and a very sore knee, and can’t play tennis again for a month.

How do you rein in your weekend warrior?
There’s a fine line between expressing your concerns and becoming a nag. The points you want to stress are that you understand how great it feels to get out there on those weekend days and get active, and also how appreciative your are of the work that’s being done. But you also want to stress how important it is to you that your spouse is safe. Phrases like,

  • “How about this—instead of spending all day getting rocks out of that garden, what if we just spent a couple of hours and then took a break?”
  • “Oh—you’re going to do some yard work? How about if I apply a little sun block for you?” NOT: “If you don’t put sun block on, you’re going to be red as a beet by the end of the day.”
  • “Honey, I know you love playing tennis, and I’m glad you have an activity that you like. But I hate it when you get injured and then can’t play again for so long.
  • Oh, new power tools! Let’s look at the manual to make sure you’re doing everything you need to keep yourself safe.”

Just remember, make sure that it’s your care and concern that comes across loud and clear. That’s always more effective than nagging.

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