Staying healthy can be a challenge as the temperatures turn colder and winter sets in. As a truck driver who spends many hours on the roadway, this time of year can present even more challenges when it comes to maintaining your overall health. Thankfully, there are some steps you can take to reduce your risk of getting sick and keep yourself healthy throughout the winter:
Common Cold-Related Illnesses
The winter months bring along an increased risk of various types of illnesses for us all. However, as a truck driver, you might be more vulnerable to some of these factors than people in other professions. For example, problems like the following can be something you experience while working in frigid temperatures:
- Frost Bite
Tips For Staying Healthy as a Truck Driver: Winter Wellness Tips
Thankfully, by following the healthful tips listed below, you can decrease your chances of experiencing any of the ailments mentioned above or other winter-related problems. Keep them in mind, to ensure you remain healthy throughout the winter trucking season:
- Stay Warm: When outdoors working on your rig or performing any trucking-related tasks, make sure that you are wearing warm clothing designed to keep your body temperature at healthy levels. Layers are great, so you can remove them if you warm up. Also, wind-resistant and water-resistant clothing are optimal. If you are inside your truck, you can even add a warm blanket to the mix.
- Stay Hydrated: It might seem counterintuitive when you are cold, but during the winter, you must ensure that you get enough water and your body stays hydrated. Be aware that tea and coffee can actually have the opposite effect on you and dehydrate your body.
- Exercise Regularly: Every adult should aim to get at least 150 minutes of moderate exercise on a weekly basis. When it is cold outside, maintaining a good workout regimen can become challenging if not impossible. In many cases, you have to shift to indoor workouts to get your heart pumping when exercising outdoors is not ideal.
- Eat a Healthy Diet: All throughout the year it is important to eat a good healthy diet. However, during the winter it can be even more important as it can reduce your risk of getting sick and/or gaining weight from being more sedentary. Aim to eat a diet full of low-fat dairy, vegetables, fruits, and lean proteins. Avoid or limit excess sugar and saturated fats.
- Get Plenty of Sleep: It’s important to get the correct amount of sleep even during the winter months. It can be tempting to almost hibernate when the temperature cools, so try to maintain a healthy sleeping pattern that allows you enough sleep to function properly.
- Get Your Flu Shot: One easy way to reduce your risk of getting sick this winter is by getting your flu shot. This will boost your body’s immunity to the flu and if you do end up getting it, make your recovery easier and quicker.
- Practice Proper Hygiene: These rules that we all learned as children are just as important now if not more so when it comes to fighting back against winter colds and the flu. Make sure you are doing the following regularly to keep yourself as healthy as possible:
- Wash your hands often with warm water and soap, especially before eating.
- Sanitize the surfaces you touch frequently.
- Do not share utensils or cups with anyone else.
- If you are in a crowded indoor space, consider wearing a mask.
- Maintain a six-foot clearance from others.
- Go Outside at Least Once Daily: Due to the short days and the cold, frigid temperatures, many people will experience a vitamin D deficiency throughout the winter months. To counteract this and ensure your spirits stay up, get outdoors as often as you can, but aim for at least once daily. Of course, make sure that you are protected from the elements when doing so, but make a daily dose of natural sunlight a priority.
Keep all the tips listed above in mind to keep yourself healthy this winter as a truck driver. Add to this, being safe on the roadway and ensuring that you have an emergency bag packed in case you are stuck, and you will be ready for anything winter throws at you!
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