At Minimax Express, we care about the health and well-being of our drivers. We know that driving a truck for a living requires a lot of endurance, focus, and strength — and we do everything we can to support our drivers in achieving a happy, and healthy, routine.
Here are some helpful tips on how to stay healthy on the road:
We know that it can be challenge to eat healthy food when driving for many hours each day. It’s tough to predict when and where you will have the opportunity to take a break and have something to eat.
In 2012, McMaster University Health Sciences conducted a study of Southern Ontario truck drivers which illuminated the challenge of healthy eating while on the road.
“Parking is an issue so you can’t get proper food. You go to a truck stop you know,…and look at the menu. Everything drips with grease’. And if they do offer fresh fruit…it’s way over priced.”
We recommend that our drivers plan ahead and pack healthy food items the night before their shift.
Planning and preparing healthy meals and snacks ahead of time will help you to:
- Eat healthier items than can be purchased at truck stops en route.
- Save money.
- Consume more fruits and vegetables to stay healthy and strong.
- Snack when you need to — instead of waiting another two hours to get to the next stop.
Eating and drinking healthy food at regular intervals will help to keep you energized and focused — and this is very important for drivers.
Get Your Rest
Staying alert while driving is vital. You need to be aware of your surroundings at all times and able to react quickly. The best way to stay alert is to ensure that you are getting enough sleep every night.
When you are fatigued you can have:
- Decreased reaction time.
- A reduced ability to retain information.
- Difficulty with judgment and vision.
- Daydreaming, which can lead to not paying attention to the road.
Being tired at the wheel significantly increases the risk of having an accident.
Try and plan to go to bed at a time that will allow you to get a minimum of eight hours sleep. If you find it difficult to stay alert on the road, consider taking a 15 minute cat nap at a truck stop — sometimes just a few short minutes with your eyes closed can make you feel rejuvenated.
We know that sitting for many hours at a time can take its toll on your body. The ergonomics (how things are designed) inside a truck don’t always have the human body in mind.
We recommend trying the following seating adjustments, if possible:
- Adjust the height of your seat so that you can see at least three inches over the top of the steering wheel, making sure that you can also see your mirrors properly.
- Adjust your seat so you have 1 ¼ – 2 ⅜ inches between the back of your knees and the cushion. You don’t want your seat to push against your knees which can cause poor blood circulation.
- Adjust the position of your seat so you can push the pedals all the way down with your whole foot, and not just the tips of your toes.
- Adjust your backrest to that you feel support through your entire back.
- Adjust the lumbar support to eliminate any gaps between the seat and your back. You want to have support all the way from your hips to your shoulders.
- Adjust the headrest so that the top of the headrest aligns with the top of your head.
- Adjust the steering wheel to be one foot away from your chest. You want to be a safe distance away from the airbag.
At Minimax Express we are committed to having a healthy team, and we regularly promote healthy living through through education. Click here to learn more about our core values.