Many truck drivers find it difficult to work out on the road. More and more truck stops are including gyms among their amenities, but they are still few and far between. Fortunately, there are exercises truck drivers can do that will give them the same benefits and results as a strenuous cardio-fest at the gym.
As soon as you stop for the day, the best thing you can do to get on the road to becoming a healthy truck driver is to take a walk around the truck stop. Walking is one of the most effective truck driver exercises because it can be done anywhere and requires very little equipment – just some good shoes!
Walking is completely free, and the benefits that come with such a simple exercise can do wonders for your health. Pair a walking exercise with a healthy, nutritious diet, and it won’t be long before you start seeing results! Staying healthy on the road can be done, you just might have to be a little more creative with it.
Check out the Healthy Trucker video from our health guru Eric Banter, and keep reading for 4 benefits of walking!
1. Walking improves oxygen.
Time for a Biology 101 lesson.
Your brain needs oxygen to function. Oxygen reaches your brain via blood vessels. Thus more blood flowing through those vessels equals more oxygen.
Do you follow me?
“How do I get more blood to my brain?” you ask? By exercising of course! Exercising will get your heart rate up, enabling more blood to reach that big brain of yours.
Walking at a slower pace is one of the best exercises you can do to improve your oxygen levels! You see, your body transports oxygen most efficiently when you’re working with your flow of air. Walk at a pace where you could still talk to someone comfortably without gasping for air in order to fully maximize the amount of oxygen that’s being carried through your blood vessels.
2. Walking improves your circulation.
A second benefit to walking is that it will improve the circulation in your feet and legs.
Proper blood circulation helps to transfer nutrients and oxygen to various parts of your body. A lack of good circulation can lead to diseases, so it’s important to ensure that your circulation levels are normal.
Fortunately, good blood circulation is easy to maintain with regular workouts. Exercise strengthens the heart muscle, which improves the efficiency in which it pumps. This will increase your blood circulation and lower your blood pressure.
3. Walking stretches your muscles.
Your legs can get all kinds of cramped up sitting in a confined truck cab for so many hours on end. This is reason enough to get out when you stop for a break and take a nice, leisurely stroll around the truck stop!
Make sure to walk with proper form to get the most out of your workout. Your foot should roll from heel to toe. Push off with your toes to walk faster and burn more calories.
4. Walking improves mental acuity.
Regular exercise can keep that big ol’ brain of yours sharp as a tack!
How does walking improve mental acuity? Well, it’s a whole bunch of medical mumbo jumbo. It increases blood flow to the brain, improves the development and survival of neurons, and promotes the production of nerve-protecting compounds.
Exercise gets your heart pumping more blood to the brain (you DID remember that from above, right?) which reverses any cellular deterioration.
In layman’s terms, exercise encourages your brain to work at full capacity and protects your nerve cells from damage.
Did you know regular walking has been proven to stave off Alzheimer’s in middle-aged and older folks? What a simple prevention to such a devastating disease!
Walking is an exercise that can easily be done anywhere. With these benefits, it’s easy to see how so many people have gotten healthy both physically and mentally with a workout as simple as walking.
If you’re unsure how to begin your walking regimen, set a schedule! Walk a mile a day. Don’t know how to measure a mile? Walk laps around your truck! Thirty-five laps is approximately one mile. If you don’t want to commit to a distance, set a goal to walk something like 30 minutes every day at a comfortable pace for you. Any little bit helps, and fortunately, walking is one of the many truck driver exercises that’s very simple to get started on.