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Showing posts with label Trucking Stress. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Trucking Stress. Show all posts

Friday, December 16, 2016

Are You Healthy Enough To Keep On Trucking?

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One of the biggest concerns on the road is safety. Everyone passes accidents big and small, and we’re sure you have a good amount of stories of about the crazy things you’ve seen happen on the road, that caused traffic to back up for miles. We’re also sure that you don’t want to be the reason for or involved in one of those accidents.

Truckers need to know when to drop off their last load and hang up their keys, before their health declines and affects their driving. Know the health risks associated with aging truckers in order to be able to live a healthy lifestyle, and when to call it quits to spend the wonder years with your wife, children, and grandkids.

Health Risks Associated With Aging Truckers Include:

Sleep Deprivation

Sleep deprivation, which we know, eye roll, you’ve heard about how driving tired is dangerous your whole life, and they hammered that fact home in driving school, but it actually leads to a lot of issues behind the wheel.

Most truckers get 6 hours of sleep or less a night, which is fine for the young bucks who remain energized and alert, and you might say well coffee helps you stay awake, but with age comes exhaustion.

Driving while exhausted impairs judgment, visions, decision making, affects short-term memory, increases aggression, and more. If you’re too tired you don’t need to be filled with road rage, leaving skid marks all over the road. Make sure you get the rest you need to have the energy to safely keep driving.

Obesity

The next one, obesity sneaks up on you. One day you’re enjoying a super-sized meal as per usual, then the next day your jeans are too tight. Now it’s great to be fat and happy, we aren’t body shaming. Heck, it’s even healthier for some people to have meat on their bones. However, there’s a fine line between fat and happy and at risk.

Obesity takes years off of the life with all the pressure it puts on your heart and leads to heart attacks, high blood pressure, strokes, and more. Now we aren’t saying do a 100% diet change and run 10 miles a day, simply make a few changes here and there.

Go for something healthy like fruit or nuts to snack on instead of chips and sweets. Don’t go for the burger and fries and steak every time, pick a salad, wrap, or grilled chicken option instead. Places like Denny’s and Waffle House do have smart heart options.

Also, try to get your blood pumping a little. Take a 5 to 10-minute walk around the truck stop store every time you stop to use the restroom and look up ways to do light strength training in or around your rig.

Smoking

Do you smoke? Over half of truckers do, so there’s over a 50/50 shot that you do. We won’t bore you with the usual facts you’ve heard over the years about smoking causing cancer, ruining your skin, and taking years off your life, but there are a few things for smokers to consider.

Smoking ruins your sleep. On average smokers sleep even less than nonsmokers do, increasing levels of exhaustion and driving impairment. It also raises your blood pressure, leading to an increased risk of heart attacks and strokes. So, if you want more energy to add more years of safe driving under your belt, with a healthy heart consider kicking the habit.

Also, are you prepared for the ill effects of smoking? If you do get cancer or one of the other major health risks associated with smoking can you handle more time in the doctor’s office for treatments and less time on the road due to being sick? Will your insurance handle the bills and will your family be alright financially if something happens to you?

At the end of the day take a look at your pack of cigarettes and ask yourself if those death sticks or worth harming your quality of life or not.

Depression

You may not have realized it, but some truckers are sad. With long hours on the road that are often spent alone, they get disconnected from other people. Then with added factors like obesity, sleep deprivation, and a smoking addiction can lower self-esteem.

Can you handle the hours alone on the road, or are you ready to retire and spend quality time with your family? A few ways to entertain your mind and keep your spirits high include talking to your loved ones. Call your family daily and see what they’re up to. Develop good relationships with your dispatcher and fellow truckers.

Plus, to feel good about yourself you can listen to educational podcasts or add some reading material to your routine before bed to learn and entertain your mind. This way you won’t feel like you’ve wasted your brain with endless hours of boredom.

You can also eat a little healthier, take a walk in the sun, or add a little exercise to your day to naturally feel better with some nutrition and by getting your blood pumping a little. You’d be surprised by how much better you can feel by making a few minor change to your routine.

Keep on Trucking!

We know you aren’t ready to give up the freedom of the open road. Heck, trucking is in your blood, what would living be without it? However, your health and family are also things to consider. Make sure you’re taking good care of yourself to add more years on the road under your belt, and to have a long time enjoying quality time with your family during retirement.

Be sure to share with us your tips on staying healthy while on the road in the comment section below and learn more tips about trucking at ExpressTruckTax.com.
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Wednesday, October 14, 2015

#WellnessWednesday: Managing Stress on the Road

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Driving a truck can be among the most stressful jobs out there. Being responsible for up to 80,000 pounds of metal moving at speeds of 70 MPH or above places severe demands on your brain for attention, and produces rigorous tension in your body. Then there are other drivers, deadlines, (including tax-filing deadlines) adverse weather conditions, and the grueling number of hours on the road. It’s no wonder you truckers are constantly feeling enormous amounts of pressure and stress!

But did you know that stress actually triggers a number of health problems? Problems such as headaches, upset stomach, heartburn, high blood pressure, chest pains, and difficulty sleeping can all come from stress. Untreated stress can also contribute to diabetes, heart problems, skin conditions, asthma, arthritis, depression and anxiety. And believe it or not, 75 to 90 percent of all visits to the doctor are for stress-related illnesses.

Since stress is so prevalent in the trucking industry, and its effects so serious, one of the best things you can do for yourself as a trucker is to learn techniques for dealing with stress. Here are some great methods you can use to ease your stress and make each day on the road more peaceful.

  • Exercise. This is perhaps the most effective method for dealing with stress. The movement of exercise can release the pent-up energy that stress can cause. It may be difficult to find the time and a place to exercise while on the road, but even a 15 or 20 minute walk will do wonders towards relieving your driving stress.

  • Healthy Diet. Another difficult thing to manage while driving long distances is your diet. There aren’t a host of opportunities for healthy eating at most truck stops, but a healthy diet is a crucial factor in controlling your stress level. It boosts your immune system, making you more resistant to the effects of stress. Eating a variety of fresh fruits and vegetables and drinking plenty of water are two important ways to maintain a healthy diet.

  • Sleep. Getting adequate, restful sleep can do wonders for your stress level. If you’re getting enough exercise, you’re probably already sleeping well. Making sure you get plenty of restorative sleep keeps your mind in optimal condition, and will leave you better equipped to deal with whatever stress you may encounter during the day, and eliminate the unneeded stress that comes from not being well rested.

Other methods of managing stress include meditation, breathing techniques, and using smart strategies to eliminate any unneeded stress from your daily routine and activities.

We don’t have to tell you how stressful it is out there for you, Trucking Nation. But we can help you keep your unnecessary tension to a minimum, and using the above strategies will help you deal with the unavoidable pressures of the road.

As always, we’re here to answer any questions you may have about using ExpressTruckTax. You can call us Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. at 704.234.6005, and email us any time at support@expresstrucktax.com. Don’t forget to like us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter, and to let your family and friends know about ExpressTruckTax and the helpful tips you get from this blog!

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