A 2010 study published in the American Journal of Industrial Medicine does not bode well for the truck driving industry and those who work in it. The study, conducted by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, indicated that truck drivers are twice as likely to suffer from obesity as compared to the rest of the working population. They are also more likely to be smokers as well. There is already enough information about the detrimental health effects of smoking. Stopping smoking now can greatly increase your health. Find support and a way to quit.
Obesity and weight management is a struggle because of the sedentary nature of trucking jobs. This makes them prime candidates for workers who are heavier than they ought to be. The good news is that managing your weight may not be as difficult as you think. It comes down to two things: eating and exercise.
Pay Attention to Calories
For as long as most of us have been alive there has been no shortage of fad diets sweeping across America. Nevertheless, diets do not work because they are only temporary fixes. The best way to lose excess weight is, and always has been, paying attention to calories. In addition, once a trucker reaches his or her ideal weight, calorie management is the best way to maintain.
Think of calories as being similar to the fuel you put in your tanks. The more fuel you have, the greater the distance you can travel. If you do not travel far enough in a single day to empty your tanks, you will have excess fuel when you stop for the night. Calories are the same way. Any calories you are not burning through your daily routine are left over as excess; the body converts them to fat and stores them.
You can lose weight by reducing your daily caloric intake to a level that is less than what you need on a daily basis. There are plenty of websites and applications that will help you calculate this number free of charge. Once you have lost the weight, calculate your maintenance calories and stick to that number.
The great thing about paying attention to calories is that it does not prevent you from eating any food you love. You can eat whatever you want, as long as you keep your calories at a specific level. It will take 3 to 4 weeks of getting used to, but things will go surprisingly well once you get the hang of it.
Exercising helps you burn calories while also keeping your body loose and limber. Every truck driver should make a point of getting 20 to 30 minutes of exercise every day. Rather than watching television and eating junk food, go out and get some exercise. Start slow with brisk walking or some gentle calisthenics. You can eventually work your way up to more strenuous forms of exercise. Whatever you do, do something. Even if it is walking or running laps around the truck stop when you finish working for the day.
Managing your weight as a trucker comes down to changing the way you think. For too many of us, it is easy to neglect our health because our entire lives revolve around our work. The healthy trucker is one who looks at trucking jobs for what they are: a tool for earning the money one needs to pay bills. He or she is one who values their health as much as the paycheck.