Maximising Your Spare Time

Although we might think that our weekends fly over, with a little time management you can maximise your spare time and do something new! The Waterfront Hotel, host of spa days in Bedfordshire, tell us more:

How many spare hours do you have at the end of the week?

You might have more hours spare at the weekend than you think. Let’s say you wake up at 9am on the weekend (give yourself a lie-in), and go to bed at 11pm, that’s 14 hours a day that you have to play with. Take three hours each day off for meal time, and two hours per day for seeing family and friends and you’re left with 18 hours.

Expand your language skills

Why not learn the language of your favourite destination? Benny Lewis, author of Fluent in 3 Months and fluent speaker of seven languages, estimates that it can take around 400-600 hours to be a proficient speaker at B2 level. This is where you can express yourself on a range of topics and would have the ability to show someone around an area and give detailed descriptions in the new language.

If you wanted to learn for 500 hours to reach B2, how long would this take? If you spent eight out of your free 14 hours perfecting the new skill (any more than this could be too intense). This would take you 62.5 weeks — are you up to the challenge?

Be active!

If you like running, why not push yourself and practise for a half-marathon? Experts advise that you should be training at least three times a week. So, if you can fit a training session in mid-week, you could be well on your way! Runner’s World suggest that 15 weeks is sufficient to train for the 13.1-mile race — what’re you waiting for?

Walking can be beneficial too. It depends on your weight and distance of the walk on how many calories you burn. For a person who weighs 130 pounds (9.3 stone) an hour walk at a moderate pace burns 120-140 calories per hour. If you spent four of your 14 spare hours walking the dog or heading out to the countryside, you could burn 520 calories on your days off!

Take to the slopes and learn to ski! There are many dry slopes in the UK that offer ski lessons. UK indoor ski slope, The Snow Centre, say that to achieve a ‘good’ level of skiing (be able to venture down advanced steeps on the mountain) you need to complete five of their two-hour lessons and two of their two-hour coaching sessions. If you spend five weekends completing two-hour lessons and two weeks on the coaching sessions, you’ll be ready to hit the slopes after seven weeks!

If you’d rather relax, you can still burn some calories. If you have a swim and sauna session for an hour a day on the weekend you can still improve your fitness and wellbeing levels. One 30-minute sauna session can lead you to burn as much as 300 calories! And a 30-minute swim can burn 295 calories.

Take your driving test

Some people choose not to drive for a range of reasons. But, being able to get behind the wheel can have some benefits. You can look for jobs further afield, venture on driving holidays and visit family and friends that don’t live close by. With a full-time job though, driving can be difficult. How long would it take if you used your weekends to pass your test?

The Driver Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) say that it takes around 45 hours of learning to pass a driving test. With a non-intensive driving instructor, it’s likely that you’ll be able to take 2-hour lessons. The DVSA also advise that you should spend 20 hours revising for your theory test to ensure that you’re fully prepared. That’s 65 hours in total before you’re a fully-fledged driver!

Taking four hours of lessons a week could mean that you’re ready for your test in 3 months. For ten of these weeks, you should spend an hour per weekend day revising for your theory.

Take up learning an instrument

There’s still time to learn that instrument you’ve always wanted to play. Not only can you impress your friends with your new ability, but you can use it as a way to de-stress and improve your concentration skills. Suppliers of guitar lessons, Hub Guitar, have suggested that it takes around 312.5 to play at beginner level. This is where you have ‘an expanded grasp of fundamentals, and can play several pieces, albeit imperfectly’. Spending eight of your free 18 hours per week could lead you to reach this level in 40 weeks.

Anything else?

There are a range of things you could do with your weekends. You could learn to cook, take up photography or even write a novel! Start being proactive and make the most of your weekends.