Mend Physical Therapy Blog and Injury Information

Can Weekend Warrior Exercise Patterns Reduce Disease Risk

June 11, 2024

Time continues to be the most common barrier to participants beginning or continuing an exercise program.  As adults look to balance work, family, and outside commitments exercise is often cut out of a weekly schedule.  If their weeks are limited some participants, the weekend warriors, try to achieve their fitness goals through two longer or harder sessions on the weekend.  These individuals likely fall below the national recommendations of minutes of exercise per week, but a new study highlights weekend training is still having a positive impact on their health.

O’Donovan and colleagues performed a prospective study to determine the association between weekend physical activity patterns and risk of death from either heart disease or cancer (British Journal of Sports Medicine. 2024).  Authors followed over 154K adults over an average 18 year survey period.  They reported 26K deaths over this study period.  Compared to non exercisers, weekend warriors has a similar reduction in disease risk compared to weekly exercisers.  These effects were noted only among weekend warriors who exercised at least 30 minutes at a time.  This study highlights the health benefits of weekend exercise in patients who are unable to obtain their training during the week.

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