There’s nothing worse than a wasted weekend. Well, that’s not true, there are MUCH worse things than a wasted weekend. But if you’re like me sometimes you’ll find yourself at home on a Sunday evening and think “Damn, I didn’t do ANYTHING this weekend.” It’s happened to me more than I’d care to admit or count here, so this weekend I’m doing something different- I’m making a checklist of some things I want to do this weekend.
First, I want to be active this weekend and do some exercise or at least go for some walks. So here are numbers one and two:
- Get out on the lake in the kayak. Right now weather-wise it looks like Sunday might be the best for this. I want to go out and go for at least an three or four mile loop. I’ll probably try and go mid-to-late morning so it’s warmed up a bit (the water is still pretty cold) but before there’s too much other boat traffic.
- Go for a walk/run This is a new goal- I mean, I go for walks fairly regularly, but I want to start building up to running. I use the RunKeeper app to track my walks/hikes/kayak rides, and one of the features the app has (if you upgrade to the paid version) is a training program, and I want to start taking advantage of it. For beginners like me who either don’t run or haven’t run in a long time it starts out with intervals between walking and running, and as you progress through the system it has you run more and more and walking less and less.
- Walk/bike to the lake Here’s a good one- walk to the club where I keep the kayak. It’s not a great distance or anything, but why not add it to the routine?
Next, I want to make sure I spend some time for myself in quiet reflection/relaxation. And I’m not talking about vegging out on the couch to Netflix.
- Meditate I’ve been a little lax recently in keeping up with my mindfulness practice (maybe this contributed the panic attack I had earlier in the week?) so I want to make sure I set aside time for some guided meditations. I find it helpful to dedicate time to doing this and working on my breathing, working on noticing my thoughts and allowing myself to allow them to pass without judgement.
- Read I have a book I’ve started and would like to spend some time on finishing it this weekend. It’s called “Nature’s God: The Heretical Origins of the American Republic” by Matthew Stewart. It tracks the philosophical background that many of the Founders drew upon that was deist or atheistic in nature, and it tells the story of some of the forgotten or lesser known Founders, like Ethan Allen and Dr. Thomas Young.
I want to spend some social time with friends and family. Sometimes we go to breakfast at a local greasy spoon, sometimes we have dinner at one of their houses, etc. I’d like to do that. I also invited some friends over Saturday night, and it’s always great to see them.
I want to be productive and get some things done around the house.
- Mow the lawn I actually don’t mind this chore. I have a set of noise-reducing headphones, I can queue up a podcast and spend 40 minutes walking and pushing the mower- it’s actually a little bit of a workout on it’s own. I also need to plant some grass seed and fertilizer in parts of the yard.
- Go to the dump It always feels good to get rid of stuff, especially when that stuff is garbage. Well… that and nobody wants bags of trash accumulating in their house. Maybe I’ll cut the grass tomorrow morning and do the dump run afterwards.
- Laundry After I’ve done all this yard work, been to a garbage dump and worked out, it’s a good bet I’ll have some clothes to wash. And it’s always nice starting Monday with a full wardrobe.
I want to eat some good, fresh food this weekend. I need to buy stuff for smoothies anyway (I have a kale/blueberry/banana smoothie I love). I should do a meal on the grill- maybe some zucchini or asparagus with a little lime marinated chicken? That could be good…
Anyway, putting this list together is a good exercise for me. It gets me thinking about what I can do to make sure I’m taking advantage of my time and using it productively so I don’t look back on the weekend with regrets. We know that things like exercise and eating well can help treat depression. Mindfulness practice is good for managing anxiety, and by taking positive steps towards projects like the lawn there’s a sense of achievement and, if nothing else, it’s one last thing hanging over your head.
What are you doing this weekend?