A 2014 survey of long-haul truck drivers by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health found 69 percent of drivers are obese. Transportation workers have the highest risk for chronic health problems. Most truck drivers are sedentary most of the day because they have to sit for their job. With deliveries to make and deadlines to meet, it may seem impossible to stay healthy as a truck driver. Make these five healthy changes in your routine for a healthier 2017.
1. Exercise at least 15 minutes a day
No matter how busy you are, make a promise to yourself you will get moving for at least 15 minutes everyday. It could be a quick jog around the parking lot, bodyweight exercises like pushups and squats, or jump rope. Whatever you choose to do, don’t stop moving for a full 15 minutes.
2. Choose water
Instead of quenching your thirst with a sugary soda or juice drink, choose water. Water helps relieve fatigue, flush out toxins and improve mood among many other benefits. It is recommended to drink half your bodyweight in ounces of water each day. Buy a big water bottle and keep it filled all day to have water easily accessible at all times. Sometimes you may think you are hungry, but you are really just thirsty. If you are feeling like snacking, try drinking some water first. If you are still hungry, reach for a snack then.
3. Keep healthy snacks on hand
Instead of choosing a candy bar or calorie-loaded chips, reach for a healthy snack. When you are on the road, this can be easier said than done when there are tempting treats everywhere you look. Stock your truck up with healthy choices like protein bars, fruit, Greek yogurt, vegetables and nuts.
4. Watch serving sizes
As an over-the-road trucker, going out to eat is inevitable. When eating at restaurants, especially buffets, it can be easy to overeat. To avoid overeating, eat slowly and stop when you are full. Focus on the way you feel so you don’t stuff yourself and eat unnecessary calories. This portion size plate tool will help you learn how to portion food.
5. Get more sleep
Sleep is essential to a healthy lifestyle. It not only makes you feel better, but it also improves memory, sharpens attention and lowers stress – all important things for a truck driver. If you are sleeping in your truck, invest in a high-quality berth mattress with the firmness you need to get a good night’s sleep. A white noise machine to block outside noises can help you get more restful sleep.
Make these changes to your trucking routine for a healthy year! If you are interested in more healthy trucking tips, check out this blog.