Losing Weight as a Truck Driver
Losing weight as a truck driver is hard. Gaining weight, not so much. Many truck drivers – especially long-haul truckers – struggle with weight gain. Packing on the pounds in your abdominal region comes with specific risks to your overall health. You spend hours, days, and sometimes weeks in your rig without much time for anything else.
Lacking quality time for exercising is not the only issue for truck drivers trying to lose weight. Compounding matters is the fact that a truck driver’s diet is not the best. Trying to prepare healthy meals while on the go is difficult. It can be tempting to shovel fast food and calorie-laden snacks into your mouth to avoid making too many stops along your route. High-calorie diets and sitting for extended periods are the perfect recipe for gaining weight.
Giving up and living with the extra weight is neither reasonable nor healthy. While the trucking life poses unique challenges to weight loss, it does not make it impossible. You must be willing to go the extra mile to stay in shape and keep excess pounds from creeping on your middle. Here are some practical ways to stay in shape while on the road.
Truck driver weight loss plan
A truck driver weight loss diet can help a truck driver lose weight. Exercise plays a role in losing excess pounds and maintaining a healthy weight. It is only one part of the equation. Diet is far more important in weight loss than exercise. Research shows that cutting calories promotes weight loss more effectively than exercise. Known as the 80:20 rule, you should aim to make nutritional changes and reduce caloric intake as 80 percent of your weight loss plan. The other 20 percent is getting in a combination of cardiovascular and strength training exercises.
Since every weight loss journey is different, you must come up with a weight loss plan that works for you. A great place to start is by talking with your primary health physician. Asking for a physical that includes information about your weight, plus any pre-existing conditions like diabetes, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol, can help you choose a diet and exercise program suited to your needs.
Once you have an updated health report, consult with a dietician and a trainer to come up with a nutrition and exercise plan optimized for the best results. Make sure they understand that you work as a truck driver so they can come up with realistic plans that align with the number of hours you spend on the road.
Truck driver weight loss program
Weight loss for truck drivers is difficult but not impossible. An effective truck driver weight loss program that fits with your lifestyle can help you lose weight and improve your overall health and well-being. While working with a dietician and personal trainer is the best way to come up with a truly personalized truck driver weight loss plan, there are some popular weight loss programs that also may work well for you. Here are two suggestions:
- Flexitarian Diet emphasizes fruits, veggies, plant-based protein, and whole grains. For those of you who love your steaks and other meat, this diet does not require you to totally give up meat. To reap the most benefits from this nutrition plan, focus on eating less meat and more veggies and whole grains. Give into that burger or steak craving when it hits (so long as it is not hitting every day).
- Weight Watchers has been around for a long time for good reason. It works. Truckers who use this diet do not have to eliminate or restrict any foods. They simply must follow a point-based system. Every food is assigned a point value. It makes it easy to stay within guidelines without being super restrictive on what you eat (which can be challenging on the road).
Truck driver weight loss tips
Although diet is more important than exercise when losing weight and keeping it off, that does not mean you should ignore physical activity. Exercising in short breaks has benefits beyond weight loss and maintenance. If you are a long-haul trucker who works overnight, it can help keep you awake.
One of the most efficient ways to get some heart rate-raising, calorie-burning exercises in on the road is with a kettlebell. It does not take up much space and is versatile. Another sneaky way to get in some cardio is with a mini-trampoline. Like kettlebells, they do not take up much space. If you would rather not haul one along, then get yourself a jump rope and alternate between jumping rope and doing jumping jacks for 5 to 10 minutes.
Looking for something that helps you stay motivated by mixing things up? Consider downloading The Active Trucker app on your smartphone or another mobile device. It is available for Android and iOS.
A final word on truck driver weight loss
Losing weight is hard. Driving a truck is hard, too, but you mastered that skill. Exercising and eating well are important to your overall health. With a little ingenuity and a lot of motivation, you can stay fit while on the road.