Ever since a study came out in 2006 proposing a new exercise schedule to fit into a busy lifestyle, the term “Weekend Warrior” has taken on a new meaning. As the term implies, instead of working out during the week, a Weekend Warrior will get in all of their exercises in during two days. The study, published in 2006 by Tim Meyer and other researchers at the University of Saarland in Germany, looked into comparing the results of this kind of regiment and whether it was less effective after 12 weeks.
With a study group of 38 participants, the study looked to compare the typical exercise schedule practiced by most people during the week. What was decided on was five days a week of 30-minute training with 90% of the anaerobic threshold for a total of 150 minutes a week. As a control, a third of the group did no exercise at all. The other third exercised during the week and the last third, twice on the weekend for 75 minutes a session. The participants were given VO2 tests which measure their oxygen and exercise capacity at the beginning, during and at the end of 3 months.
Surprisingly, the study concluded almost complete parity between both exercise groups with the implication being that both regiments resulted in the same results. Vo2 testing results also spoke to the increase in exercise capacity of both groups during the same 12 week period. The study also made the point that while cramming all of your 150 minutes of exercises into two days and taking the rest of the week off may work, one has to keep in mind that the longer you work out the more time you need to recover and the increase in the chance of injuries related to exercise.