Every job has its risks and dangers, and for truckers sitting still may be the greatest risk that is faced. Long hours of not moving leads to a lot of health issues. A study conducted by the Center for Disease Control found truckers were twice as likely to be obese than the rest of the nation’s population. A lot of this is due to sitting still and poor eating habits. Truckers often eat on the road, and there is probably the temptation to eat when not even hungry while driving.
Here are some other findings from the study:
- 69 percent are overweight
- 54 percent smoke
- 27 percent get six hours or less sleep per night.
- 14 percent have diabetes, twice the national rate
- 22 percent have high cholesterol
- 27 percent say they have had no exercise in the past week
There is a risk in sitting all day, so truckers need to take the effort to do what they can to improve health. Eating right is a good start, and exercise is a great option to follow up on a better diet. It can be impractical to find a gym for a workout while on the road. it can also be difficult to find places to go running or walking while away from home at work.
Weightlifting is an option, as is resistance training. Resistance training can include weights or anything that requires you to use your muscles. Even pushing hard against the side of the cab would provide enough resistance to get a little exercise. But for exercise to do you good, doctors say you need at least 30 minutes of continuous activity at least twice per week to get the most benefit.
Some truckers do have a large sleeper cab, but it is still pretty impractical to carry around large equipment.
How to exercise
- You can carry some dumbbells in your truck and use them during idle hours. Anything can be used, but a small set of weights could be a good option. Anything you can lift regularly for a set amount of time is a good option.
- Some truck stops have workout centers, so check those out and plan your stops accordingly.
- While two 30-minute workouts a week is recommended, that is a minimum. You could take 10-minute walks, and carry hand weights, to get a power workout in during downtime on your trip.
- There are YouTube videos showing how to use the truck itself for resistance training. Pushing against the truck, trying to push the truck itself, are a couple of options that can be used.
- There are Apps available that give information about specific exercises, as well as trackers to show your progress during workouts. Getting one of these apps can help you stay organized and on track with exercise.
- Small weights can even be used while driving if you are desperate to get some exercise in.
- Pay attention to working on different parts of your body. Work different areas of the body on different days to get a good balance.