Healthy tips for truckers in the New Year
Posted: January 21, 2022
Have you made your goals for 2022 yet? It’s no surprise that health is at the top of the list when people make New Year’s resolutions or goals. Wherever you may be on your health journey, this is the perfect time of year to hit the reset button or just make sure you’re on track to make positive changes in your life. Not quite sure where to begin? Here are Averitt’s tips to help get you started:
Stay hydrated - Being dehydrated may seem like it’s not a big deal, but it can lead to problems like mental fatigue, muscle cramps and other health problems. A study by the Journal of Physiology and Behavior indicated that driving while mildly dehydrated can be similar to driving while intoxicated. To stay well hydrated, aim for drinking half your body weight in ounces each day. Always have water on hand so you can sip it throughout the day.
Eat healthier - If your diet’s not where you’d like it to be, there are a lot of areas where you can make adjustments. Commit to eating more fruits and vegetables every day. Plan to cook meals in your truck or reheat meals from home instead of eating out as often. Eat lighter meals more frequently instead of fewer, heavier meals that make you sleepy after eating. Pack healthy snacks like nuts, dried fruit and whole grain crackers so you’re less likely to overeat at mealtimes or grab junk food when you stop somewhere.
Get more sleep - Adequate sleep is extremely important, especially when your job requires you to be alert so much throughout the day. Aim for a solid eight hours of sleep at night. Create a routine in the evenings that helps you relax and get your body ready for sleep. Avoid overuse of coffee and energy drinks, especially later in the day, as those might prevent you from falling asleep. We also recommend using a sleep mask to help block out any light and help give you better quality sleep too.
Learn new ways to relax - If you’re bored on the road, that can affect your mood, how lonely you feel and reduce your passion for this career you love. This is why it’s important for Class A truckers to find positive ways to relax and de-stress, both when you’re driving and when you’re not. If you’re looking for ideas to help you relax, try listening to music regularly or checking out a new audiobook or podcast. Pick up a new hobby, such as photography, learning how to play the guitar or studying a new language.
Move more - Another great way to get healthier this year is by moving more. Whether it’s walking around for 10 minutes every time you take a break, doing regular in-cab workouts or finally signing up for that gym membership you’ve been thinking about (there are many nationwide chains where you can get a workout anywhere), these can all lead to big changes in your life. Moving more can improve your circulation, lighten your mood, and help prevent health conditions that are often linked to truck driving.
Take care of your mental health - Your mental health is so important, especially when you’re out on the road by yourself and away from friends and family. If you’re focusing on your mental health this year, work on maintaining strong connections with your loved ones while you’re away. Use technology like video chats and social media to stay in touch regularly. Bring comforts from home while you’re away such as family photos or favorite books. Introduce daily meditation and breathing exercises into your routine. If needed, schedule an appointment with a professional. Averitt offers a family and personal counseling program to our associates for free and confidential services covering a wide range of issues. Focusing on eating healthy, working out and getting more sleep can also improve your mental health.
Get creative with your cooking - A lot of times, people think that eating healthy means eating only salads or the same few things all the time. But the reality is that there are a lot of great recipes out there that are full of flavor and can still keep you on track. Try adding a new recipe or two to your routine. They don’t have to be hard to find either. For recipes that are both delicious and healthy, we recommend checking out websites like eatingwell.com, cookinglight.com, fruitsandveggies.org, healthyrecipesblogs.com, and skinnytaste.com. All of these blogs and websites are full of healthy recipes that can be modified for the trucking life.
What New Year’s resolutions will you be focusing on this year? We’d love to hear it! Averitt has excellent wellness programs to help our associates reach their health goals. Want to learn more? Connect with us today to learn more about how Averitt can you achieve personal and career success!