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Keeping Fit On the Road

Trucking lifestyle is both lonely and sedentary. The only required movement you do every day is your daily walkaround inspection and the time you stop to refuel, get food, or find a restroom. There is a certain truth to the stereotypical "dirty overweight trucker". A 2014 study of long-haul truckers by National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health found that 69% are obese and an alarming 88% have at least one risk factor of high blood pressure, smoking, or obesity.  It is up to you to keep yourself healthy. Today, we'll go over four equipment-free exercises you can do in your sleeper cab or outside to keep you fit on the road, and you only need 10-15 minutes a day.  

  • Push-up
  • Plank
  • Sit-up / Abdominal crunches
  • Burpees

Each of these exercises requires no equipment other than room to stretch out. You can do this outside the truck with an exercise mat or even some clean cardboard.  Rotate through these exercises until you reach your personal goal of 10-15 minutes. 

Push-up

Lay face down on the floor, then place your palms flat on the floor, and push your own body mass off the floor without moving your legs. If you are starting off, you can just use your knee as the pivot point rather than the tip of your toes. Try to do a set of 16, then switch to the plank. 

Plank

The plank exercise is very similar to a push-up but trains your core muscles. Start in a position similar to the push-up, but with your elbows and forearms on the ground, and your hands clasped together. Now raise your stomach and knees off the ground, and just HOLD there, for as long as you can. When you're tired, turn over and switch to the abdominal crunch.

Abdominal Crunch

Lay face-up on the floor, and raise your knees to your chest. Leave your lower back on the floor, raise your upper back off the floor and bend as far as you can. Do at least 16 of these, then switch to burpees.

For variation, you can try to keep your hands behind your neck, or cross your arms on your chest, even try holding some free weights. (See improvised dumbbells below). 

Burpees

Stand up, 1) squat with hands on the ground, arms straight, knees bent. 2) kick out both feet until you are doing an extended plank (arms still straight), 3) bring your feet back in until you're back to the squat, and 4) Stand back up. Do at least 8 of these, then switch back to push-ups.

If you don't get it, here's a Wikipedia video on how to do a burpee

If you got bored with these four exercises, here are 46 more body weight exercises you can try. But find some exercises you like, and keep doing them. Remember, you are the master of your own body. Stay healthy and stay trucking. 

BONUS: Improvised Dumbbells 

There are plenty of things in your vehicle that can serve as improvised dumbbells. Who doesn't have a gallon jug of water or motor oil around? They are perfect for improvised dumbbells. Lift one while your driving to keep your arm strength up, or mix it with your crunches to add more impact.


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