During June we celebrate National Men’s Health Month and Father’s
Day, making this an ideal opportunity to promote men’s health and
wellness. For some men, a busy workweek presents obligations that keep
them from regular exercise. Instead, they find themselves among a group
that’s known as “weekend warriors”. Weekend warriors
engage in physically demanding activities primarily on weekends despite
having minimal physical activity during the week. Consequently, these
spurts of strenuous activity create an increased risk of injury—with
certain types of trauma more common among weekend warriors.
Intermittent physical activity leads to unplanned office visits with patients
reporting a variety of injuries. “One of the most common weekend
warrior injuries we see is muscle strain,” said Dr. Elizabeth Restino,
a primary care physician at
Catawba Valley Family Medicine – Southeast Catawba. “We have weekend warriors making appointments for complaints related
to chronic tendonitis, plantar fasciitis, and, even more serious injuries
like rupturing the Achilles tendon.”
Pressed for Time During the Week?
Instead of risking weekend warrior injuries, Dr. Restino encourages patients
to try to maintain a healthier balance regarding physical activity within
their everyday life. She offers these cautionary tips:
- Don’t try to do a week’s worth of activity in a day or two.
- Learn to do your sport right. Use proper form to reduce your risk of “overuse” injuries.
- Use safety gear.
- Know your body’s limits.
- Build up your exercise level gradually.
- Strive for a total body workout of cardiovascular, strength-training, and
Overuse injuries are common yet preventable by being properly conditioned
for the activity. So, whether hiking, running, or playing team sports,
it’s better to do some pre-participation training first by lightly
working the relevant muscle groups in the weeks before the activity. Another
suggestion is to space out your active days to avoid long periods of inactivity.
For example, instead of exercising just on Saturday and Sunday, try for
Saturday and Wednesday or Monday and Thursday. Also, learn to recognize
fatigue. Muscle fatigue takes away the protective mechanisms and really
increases the risk of all injuries.
“Try to keep in mind that, because you don’t do something regularly,
you should keep the intensity in check,” said Dr. Restino. “Listen
to your body – if something hurts, lay off.”
If you experience pain or ongoing discomfort, make an appointment with
your primary care provider for an evaluation. Together you can decide
on the best course of treatment to meet your goals and achieve a balanced
active lifestyle without battling chronic pain.
Dr. Elizabeth Restino and Physician Assistant Julia Alexander welcome you to
Catawba Valley Family Medicine – Southeast Catawba. The top priority of their practice is helping you and your loved ones
prevent illness and maintain physical and emotional well-being by providing
medical care and recommending healthy lifestyle choices. To schedule an
appointment at the practice located at 6127 South Highway 16, Denver,
NC 28037, please call 704.483.0340.