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Four simple tips for becoming a healthier truck driver

Post Date - Dec 5, 2022

What does the word “healthy” mean to you? For example, some people might say that their goal is to lose weight but getting healthy isn’t all about a specific number on the scale. While that can be part of it, it’s also important to remember that your overall health should be the focus and that any step, big or small, toward that goal can make a difference. So here are four simple tips from Ascend that we think will help set you up for success:

Start small

Having a goal weight or a health or fitness goal is great, but these can often feel too big and overwhelming. In many cases, that feeling is why some people quit before they even get started. Instead, we encourage you to start small. Look at simple changes you can make each day. These changes will feel easier to incorporate into your life, and you’ll be better able to create and maintain healthier habits. Healthier habits could include drinking more water during the day, cutting out soft drinks, or getting a full eight hours of sleep at night. Whatever it is, try to incorporate one or two things that feel manageable into your routine.

Get moving

We all know that trucking is a very sedentary job, but physical activity is an important part of getting and staying healthy. Starting a fitness routine doesn't have to require a gym membership. Instead, make small changes, such as parking in the back of the parking lot so you walk a little further (sometimes that's unavoidable anyway, right!?), or spend 10 minutes walking or doing an exercise routine when you stop for lunch or breaks to get your heart rate up. Simple trucker workouts without equipment or those that can be done in your cab can easily be found online and on YouTube. We recommend incorporating various activities into your routine, including resistance training, aerobics, stretching, and mobility exercises. These will not only help you burn calories, but they'll also help to strengthen your body and prevent certain issues, such as lower back pain, that frequently affect truck drivers.

Make it fun

Getting fit can sometimes feel daunting, particularly if you have yet to find an activity that you love. Some fitness activities you may not have thought of but might enjoy includes:

- Joining a local sports league, such as softball, soccer, or pickleball, that meets during your home time.

- Checking out local hiking trails along your route.

- Bringing your dog on the road with you and taking it for walks or to the park to play. Ascend has a great pet policy that allows you to bring a dog or cat on the road with you.

- Meeting up with another driver at the same stop and go for a walk together.

It starts with your diet

There's a saying that goes, "you can't outrun an unhealthy diet," and it's entirely true. No matter how hard you work out, you're only going to see the progress you want by changing how you fuel your body. You don't have to completely overhaul your diet all at once or do anything extreme such as calorie counting - both of which can lead to binge eating or more weight gain in the long run - focus on making small changes that become second nature over time.

- Always eat a healthy breakfast to jump-start your metabolism. Don't skip it.

- Choose fresh foods over processed and prepackaged foods – this is where a little planning on what to take on the road with you helps. This includes more whole grains, fruits, and vegetables.

- Aim to get nine grams of protein a day per every 20 pounds of body weight.

- Stay hydrated.

- Become a mindful eater. Only eat when you are hungry and focus on eating more frequent, smaller meals throughout the day instead of two or three large meals. This will keep your blood sugar more consistent and help to improve energy levels.

- Remember that it's all about balance and moderation.

As Ascend, we love cheering you on your health and fitness journey! Let us know what goals you're working toward and how we can support you along the way.

Not part of the Ascend family yet? Give us a call today to learn more about our driver opportunities!