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53 Fun Things You Can Do This Weekend

53 Fun Things You Can Do This Weekend

It can be easy to lapse into a predictable routine at the weekend, especially if you’re on a strict budget. However, there are plenty of fun things to do during your days off, and to prove this here are 53 examples of activities to liven up your free time. They are cheap, fun, and entertaining, so give them a go!

Exercise

1. Go For a Walk: A brisk walk is healthy and can be a fascinating pursuit.

2. Go For a Run: It’s free and great exercise.

3. Learn to Juggle: This fun and healthy pastime is a great way to impress your friends, and Lifehack’s guide can teach you the basics.

juggle

    4. Go Swimming: Find your nearest leisure center and go for a swim.

    5. Drum: You don’t need a drum kit – get some percussive objects and work out a groove. Just don’t blow anything up, like Keith Moon used to.

    6. Dance: Turn on the radio, or stick on your iPod, and dance away to your favorite songs.

    7. Community Sports: There are many community football, cricket, baseball or basketball teams you can join. Take advantage of the opportunity to meet new people whilst working out.

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      Local Community

      8. Watch Wildlife: Heading out to a local park, or into the countryside, is a free way to see nature in action.

      9. Head to the Playground: Most communities provide a free park replete with a playground. Those swings and seesaws are fun no matter how old you are.

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      swinging

        10. Do Some Gardening: Head into your garden! If you live in a flat in the city you can check supermarkets for indoor potato or tomato growing bags and herb gardens.

        11. Car Boot Sales: Go to, or throw, a Car Boot Sale to interact with your community.

        12. Check your Community Calendar: Visit your council’s website for details on upcoming events.

        13. Join a Film or Book Club: Most film or literature fans will be able to find a weekly club. Here you’ll be able to meet like-minded people and discuss your hobby.

        14. Visit Friends: Organize to meet with friends and spend the day talking and having fun.

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          15. Volunteer Work: Consider doing some volunteer work for a charity. As experience it can go on your CV, can introduce you to new people, and provide a welcome feel-good factor.

          16. Visit Free Museums: Check your council’s official website for information about the free museums in your area.

          17. Visit a Zoo or Wildlife Reserve: Visiting a local zoo or wildlife center is a terrific way to spend an afternoon – use a search engine to fine your nearest center.

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            18. Become a Dog Walker: Check locally to see if any busy neighbors need any of their pets walking, or put up an ad to be a dog walker.

            Cook

            19. Make a Homemade Pizza: Follow Lifehack’s guide to perfect this treat.

            20. Make Some Bread: A simple, cheap, and educational practice, here’s how to bake a loaf.

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            21. Pop Some Corn: A very easy, fun, and delicious cooking experiment. This is how to make Popcorn.

            popcorn

              22. Organize a Budget Food Contest: Have friends round with the rules of cooking something for under $10. Mark the results and reward the winner.

              The Internet

              23. Netflix: Netflix.com is a very cheap online streaming video service. Sign up to watch amazing shows such as Breaking Bad and Arrested Development.

              little fun

                24. Free Films on YouTube: Typing “Full Movie” into a YouTube search brings up dozens of free films to watch. Check Rotten Tomatoes to gauge if they’re any good.

                25. Go On a YouTube Marathon: It’s an amazing resource for fun and creative videos; go on a wild search for the funniest videos you can find.

                26. BBC iPlayer (Europe Only): Europeans can enjoy the BBC’s programmes thanks to the iPlayer Global app. David Attenborough, Top Gear, Horizon, and QI (amongst others) await you.

                27. Play Free Online Games: There are hundreds of free online games you can play. Check Lifehack’s Relaxing Games guide for a start.

                computer

                  28. Search Wikipedia: Knowledge seekers can take advantage of this incredible free encyclopedia. Pick a random topic and you can spend hours finding out fascinating facts.

                  29. Craigslist/Freecycle: Search your local Craigslist or Freecycle for information on free events. Search for your localized version online.

                  30. Blog: If you want to write digitally you can start a blog (free on sites like WordPress) and connect with the world.

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                  31. Have a Board Game Day: Want a break from the internet? Try these classics: Monopoly, Trivial Pursuit, Scrabble, Chess, Risk, Cluedo, Checkers, Battleship, or Snakes and Ladders.

                  Be Creative

                  32. Draw: All you need is a pencil or crayons and some paper, then let your imagination run wild.

                  draw

                    33. Make a Paper Fortune Teller: Great fun for all ages, this simple activity creates you an amusing fortune teller. Follow this free guide and experiment away.

                    34. Play Pen and Pencil Games: Noughts and Crosses (tic-tac-toe), Hang Man, Battle Ships, and other classics can be easily played with a pencil and some paper.

                    35. Play the Sentence Game: Take it in turns to write a sentence on a piece of paper. Fold the paper over after you’ve finished, and then supply one word on the next line for the following person. You can make some hilarious stories this way.

                    36. Make a Kite: Build a homemade kite to fly somewhere!

                    37. Have a Go at Origami: This traditional Japanese art form involves paper and skill – learn how to master it with websites such as Origami Instructions.

                    origami

                      38. Creative Writing: A computer, or pen and paper, is all you need to be a writer. You don’t need to be Hemingway, just write whatever enters your head.

                      39. Write a Letter: Letter writing is a forgotten art. It’s more personal to write a letter to a friend or relative, and it’s always nice to receive one back.

                      40. Raid Pinterest for DIY Ideas: Pinterest offers a myriad of ideas for design work. Have a look and see what you can make out of trash or cheap supplies.

                      41. Volunteer at Your Local Theater: You can see if they take volunteers, such as ushers, for some additional experience.

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                      42. Audition for a Play: Take things a step further and audition for a local play.

                      Miscellaneous

                      43. Play Hide and Seek: This is a terrific way to entertain your children, but it’s also fun if you’re adults with a gleefully immature streak!

                      44. Hopscotch: Teach your kids how to play this classic game, or relive your youth by having a go again. Here’s a basic guide.

                      45. Build a Fort: The chances are you have a duvet or sofa. Cardboard boxes are also useful. Construct a mini-fort for yourself and your family and enjoy being childish for a day.

                      fort

                        46. Have a Kip: A 20 minute sleep can do wonders for your day, restoring energy and waking you up.

                        47. DIY or Cleaning: Fix a wonky shelf, clean the flat, or wash your bedding. It burns calories and provides a feel good factor.

                        48. Read: Reading is a great accompaniment to your life. Head to your local library for classics, and here’s a list of 20 books for inspiration.

                        49. Learn a Foreign Language: Nothing is stopping you from taking up French, Japanese, Italian etc. Try Babbel or Verbalplanet for a wide range of language courses.

                        50. Make Bubbles: You can go about this in different ways (such as buying a solution from a store), although you can make bubbles with household products.

                        bubbles

                          51. Listen to the Radio: Purchase a cheap radio, if you don’t already have one, and enjoy some free entertainment. It’s an often forgotten, but very enjoyable, service.

                          52. Volunteer at a Race Track: Motor sport tracks always need marshals for their events. Volunteer to keep track safety at a premium.

                          53. Buy a Small Pet: A fish, bird, or hamster can provide plenty of relaxation and entertainment.

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                            photo credit: Pinterest

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                            Last Updated on June 15, 2018

                            What Really Works: How to Relieve Lower Back Pain Effectively

                            What Really Works: How to Relieve Lower Back Pain Effectively

                            Eight out of ten adults experience lower back pain once in their lifetime. I am one of those people and I’m definitely not looking forward to my participation award. I know how it feels like to step out of bed and barely being able to put on your socks. Having lower back pain sucks. But 9 out of 10 patients that suffer from lower back pain don’t even know the primary cause of it.

                            Video Summary

                            Back Pain? Blame Our Evolution

                            Once upon a time in our fairly recent past, our ancestors felt the urgency to stand up and leave our quadruped neighbors behind. Habitual bipedalism, fancy word for regularly walking on two legs, came with a lot of advantages. With two rear limbs instead of four, we were able to more efficiently use our hands and create tools with them.

                            Sadly, life on two legs also brought along its disadvantages. Our spine had four supporting pillars previously, but now it only got two. The back is therefore naturally one of the weak links of our human anatomy. Our spine needs constant support from its supporting muscles to minimize the load on the spine. With no muscle support (tested on dead bodies) the back can only bear loads up to 5 pounds without collapsing [reference Panjabi 1989]. With well-developed torso muscles, the spine can take loads up to 2000 pounds. That’s a 400-fold increase.

                            Most people that come to me with a history of a herniated disc (that’s when the discs between the vertebral bodies are fully collapsed, really severe incident), tell me the ‘story of the pencil’. The injury with the following severe pain usually gets triggered by picking up a small, everyday object. Such as a pencil. Not as you may think by trying to lift 100 pounds – no, but by a simple thing – such as a pencil.

                            This tells us that damage in your back adds up over time, it’s a so called cumulative trauma disorder. Meaning back pain is a result of your daily habits.

                            Sitting Is the New Smoking

                            Whenever I sit for too long, my back hurts. In fact, 54% of Americans who experience lower back pain spend the majority of their workday sitting. But isn’t sitting something that should reduce the stress of your back? No, just the opposite.

                            The joints between the bones of the spine are not directly linked to the blood supply. These joints instead get nourished through a process called diffusion. Diffusion works because molecules (such as oxygen, important for cells) are constantly moving and try to get as much space for themselves as they can. A key element for diffusion therefore is a pressure difference. In the image below the left room contains more moving molecules than the right, that’s why the molecules from the left are moving to the right. This way nutrition gets transformed into the joints, whereas toxins are transported out of the joints.

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                            Sitting puts a lot of pressure on your spinal chord. The diffusion process therefore can’t function as efficiently. Nutrition and toxins can’t be properly transported, the joints get damaged.

                              Sit Properly

                              If sitting can play such a huge part in the creation of your lower back pain, how do you sit properly then?

                              Is it better to sit with a straight back or should you rather lay back in your chair? Can I cross my legs when I’m sitting or should I have a symmetrical position with my feet? These are questions that I hear on a daily basis. The answer might shock you – according to recent science – all of them are right. The best sitting position is an ever-changing one. An ever-changing position minimizes the pressure on certain points of your spine and spreads it on the whole part.

                                Credit: StayWow

                                Stand Up More

                                Even better than a sitting position is a stand up position. Standing dramatically reduces the pressure on your spine. If you’re forced to work on a desk the whole day though, you have two options.

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                                Take breaks every hour of about 2-3 minutes.

                                Set an alarm on your phone that goes off every hour! In that time you stand up and reach to the ceiling, on your toe tips with fully extended arms. You’re inhaling during the whole process. You do this activity for 20 seconds. Afterwards you’re walking through the office for the next 2 minutes. You might grab a healthy snack or some water in that time. The exercise relieves the pressure on your spine, while the walking makes sure that the joints on your spine are properly used.

                                Or get a standing desk.

                                One of the best companies on the market for Standing Desks, according to my research, is Autonomous. Autonomous offers a rather cheap Standing Desk, with the ability to change the height. Which means you can start the day standing and switch to sitting if you’re tired.

                                Exercise for Lower Back Pain

                                Sitting is an immobile position. Your joints are made for movement and therefore need movement to function properly. If humans are moving, all moving parts: e.g. the joints, bones and muscles get strengthened. If you’re in a rested position for too long, your tissues start to deteriorate. You have to get the right amount of activity in.

                                But not too much activity. There’s a chance that going to the gym may even increase your risk of lower back pain. I know plenty of friends with chiseled bodies that suffer from pain in the spine regularly. Huge muscles do not prevent you from back pain. In your training you should focus on building up the muscles that are stabilizing your back and relieve pressure. Squats with 400 pounds don’t do the trick.

                                The more weight you carry around, the more weight your spinal chord has to bear on a regular basis. That’s one of the reasons why huge, muscular guys can suffer from back pain too. One of the most important goals of your exercise regimen should therefore be weight loss.

                                Here are some important tips for you to consider when starting an exercise regimen:

                                Make sure you implement cardiovascular training in your workout routine.

                                This will not only help you lose weight, it will also make sure that your arteries, which flow to the tissue next to your spinal discs, are free of placque and can therefore transport nutrients properly.

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                                Important: If you have rather strong back pain, maybe even an herniated disc, don’t start running on a threadmill. Running is an high-impact exercise. Which means there are continuous, reocurring high pressure points on your spine. Your endurance training should therefore either be fast-paced walking or a training on the elliptical trainer for the beginning, because both have little to no stressful impact on your backbone.

                                Focus on developing your whole core if you want to minimize your pain.

                                There are some people that do hundreds of sit ups a day. While sit ups are a good exercise for your abdomen, it also puts pressure on your spine due to the bending movement. A sixpack workout routine is one-sided. Your abs may become overdeveloped in comparison to your back muscles. You’ve created an imbalance. A great way to train your abdominal muscles and back muscles simultaneously, is holding the plank position.

                                Stretch only if you have tight muscles.

                                I remember stretching every morning after I woke up. I took 10 minutes out of my day to just work on my flexibility and prevent injuries. Little did I know that I was actually promoting an injury, by doing so.

                                Contrary to common belief, stretching is only partially beneficial to treating lower back pain. Stretching makes sense if tight muscles (such as the hamstrings) are forcing you to constantly bend your back. Stretching to treat pain doesn’t make sense if you’re already on a good level of flexibility. Hyper-mobility may even enforce back pain.

                                If you found out that you had tight muscles that you need to stretch, try to stretch them at least three times a week. Don’t stretch your muscles right after you wake up in the morning. This is because your spinal discs soak themselves up in fluid over the nighttime. Every bending and excessive loads on your spine is much worse in that soaked-up state. Postpone your stretching regime to two-to three hours after you’ve woken up.

                                Where to Start

                                The key to improving your habits is awareness. Try to get aware of your back while you’re sitting down, laying down or lifting an object next time. This awareness of your body is called proprioception. For example, you have to be aware whether your back is bended or straight in this very second. Trust me, it is harder than you might think. You may need to ask a friend for the first few tries. But the change that this awareness can make in your back pain is absolutely fascinating. This consciousness of your body is one of the most important things in your recovery or prevention.

                                Here are a few behavioural tactics that you need to be considering:

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                                If you’re leaning forward more than 30 degrees with your upper body, support your spine with your arms.

                                Ever tried to show a colleague of yours a complex issue and found yourself awkwardly leaning forward on their desk, pointing with your fingers to his paper? If that ever happens again, make sure you’re using the not-pointing arm to support yourself on the desk.

                                Keep a straight back.

                                Be it while exercising, stretching or standing. If you’re bending your back you’re putting stress on small areas of your spinal chord. A straight back redistributes the force to a bigger area. You’re minimizing the pressure. Remember this whenever you’re at the gym and reracking your weights, focus on having a neutral spine.

                                Put symmetrical loads on your spine.

                                I used to play the trumpet when I was a child. The instrument is pretty heavy. The trumpet gets transported in a big, metallic suitcase – with no wheels. Being the nature of suitcases, you only carry it with one arm, on one side of your body. This forced me to constantly lean on the other side with my upper body, while transporting the instrument from A to B. Not really the healthiest activity for your spine as you can imagine.

                                If you have to carry heavy objects, carry them with both arms. Put the object in the middle of your body and keep it as close to your mass of gravity as you can. If this is not possible, try to carry the same amount on the left side than you do on the right side. This puts the stress vertically on a fully extended spine. The load is much better bearable for your spine.

                                Stay Away From the Back Pain League

                                Our world is getting more sedentary. We will continue to develop faster transportation, more comfortable houses and easier lives. While our technological progress definitely has its amazing benefits, it sadly has its downsides too. The danger for back pain will continue to rise on our ever-increasing motionless planet. It’s time to raise awareness.

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