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10 Steps to Goal Setting for Truck Drivers

10 Steps to Goal Setting as a Truck Driver

Goal setting can seem like a mountain to climb, but it doesn’t have to be. So much of what we want to accomplish, achieve and get to is available to us. But it is in m experience that if we right from the start don’t set ourselves up for a successful path it’s going to be less than blissful and may end up being one of the 92% that give up on their New Year’s Resolutions.

I don’t like resolutions, I prefer goals because rather than telling myself I’m bad and suck here so I should change. I like to look at what I want, and how to get there.

Seven months ago I closed my yoga studio of 14 years. It was hard, and for two to three years prior I talked about doing it. I knew deep down it was what needed to happen for me to reach my bigger goals and dreams, but I was scared. Yep, long story short, I was scared and afraid. I chased my tail, stood still and felt lost, I wasn’t taking action, I never created a plan of how to get there. I just floated through mad because I wasn’t there yet. And frustrated because I saw others making changes I wanted to make and I couldn’t figure out why it wasn’t happening for me.

I know now. I want to share with you what I figured out when it comes to goals, changes and dreams. What I wasn’t doing and should have been. What I recognized I did do in other areas of my life but I wasn’t applying to this particular situation and once I did, everything changed.

10 Steps to Setting Your Goals and Reaching Them:

    1. Choose ONE goal. Yes, choose just one goals. You may have many, but today just choose one to focus on. If you can’t decide, write them all down in a notebook. Yes, buy a notebook and write all of this down in ONE place. Write down all your goals and then looking at them choose one. What you may discover is that many of then feed into each other. So it will help to see them down on paper. When you choose one goal you will accelerate the process faster. You can only put so much energy into something at once time: exercise, studying for a new career, learning how to food prep, etc. For now, just choose one.
    2. Know where you are staring from. There is a reason addicts that truly hit rock bottom are the ones that make it out and fully recover. Because in that moment they decided to get well, they knew exactly where they were starting from. I tried for years to “get better” get into recovery, and it wasn’t until I truly hit rock bottom that I saw my life as it actually was and I didn’t like it. So I stepped through my anxiety, and guilt and got help. Real help.
    3. Make a timeline. A time line gives your goal an end date. Now be realistic, where are you right now and what would it take to get to where you want to go? Once you decide that…WRITE IT DOWN. Yes, don’t just think it in your head. If that method worked you would be there already…am I right? Yes, of course I am. In that notebook you invested your all of $2 to buy, write down your goal and an end date next to it.

  1. 10 Stepping stones. What are ten things that need to happen in order for you to get to your goal, your dream? What has to happen today, tomorrow, a month from now to get there? I like to work backwards. To lose 100 pounds I need to be working out five days a week and clean eating. Well I don’t recommend doing all of that all at once like a magic trick. Work backwards. Well to clean eat, I need to stop eating at the truck stops so much. Well to do that I have to buy healthy food. Well I can’t do that until I buy a frig to fit in my truck. Well I can’t do that until I reorganize my truck. See the path. This is not to cause frustration, but rather help you see a clear path to get to where you want to go. The same can be true about exercise. Because you know you need to do that to get to your 100 pound goal in one year. Decide if food happens first or second to exercise. Once you do that, working out five days a week. I need to figure out what to do. I need to enlist an expert or follow and work with Mother Trucker Yoga (shameless plug). Then I need to map out my days, even if that means I do it always the night before because my days are different (no excuses right). Research what truck stops have fitness centers and walking trails. Call my buddy and ask to walk and talk at 5pm each day. See what I did there? You can do this too!
  2. Once you set that path, ask yourself what is is achievable today? What can I do today to influence the outcome tomorrow? And just start. No more BS, just start!
  3. Recognize that 70% of the choices we make are actually habits. Yes! Habits! Not choices. You keep saying you are going to walk once you park each day, but you don’t. Instead you eat, shower and watch T.V. Why? Well, because it’s a habit, it’s what you have always done. You are choosing it before you even see it is a choice. So set your alarm, change your shoes mid day so you are ready for action. And when you park, hit the Jon, but don’t take in your wallet and get your a$$ moving and start walking. Call your buddy and chat it up for 30 minutes while you walk and talk. Make a new habit.
  4. Remember it’s a decision. You are not “trying”. When you try, you are giving yourself an out. You are saying that if you fail, it’s OK. A decision is a decision. There is no going back. You are all in. So when you look at your goal in your notebook each day (yes every day) and write it down like it happened each day- you are not “trying” you have decided!
  5. Write it down EVERY SINGLE DAY. Yes every day you have to write down your goal and write down what step you are on like it has already happened. Remember that sub-conscious part of our brains, well we remember things too. So do you want your brain to remember that you are “working on it”, “trying” or ARE there?
  6. Motivation comes from within. If you are waiting to be motivated by someone or something, you will be waiting for a long time. I love inspiring people, helping others to see things differently, but ultimately I cannot “motivate” you. I can’t force you out of bed. This is exactly why rehab doesn’t work for those who aren’t ready. They aren’t yet in a place of motivation. They have not set a goal. They don’t yet see the point. But you my friend, you do.
  7. Balance is bull sh!T. Yes, here is a yoga teacher by trade telling you balance is bull. It is, having balance as a goal in life will drive you bat sh!T crazy! I tried this path for more than ten years and just felt like a failure. It’s about learning to ride the waves with grace and swing with the pendulum. Some days life will take you one way and you learn to adapt. Other days you will swing the other way, and just go with it. Because now you have a clear goal, you have a plan and know where you are. So no matter what, nothing it going to get in your way. And if it does, get up and begin again.

Goals are for the motivated. Goals are for those who want more than what they have. If that isn’t you, no worries. Keep loving life exactly where you are! Love that! When I get to my end goal, I will surely do the same. But for those of you who are ready. Let’s jump in. First things first, buy the darn notebook. Buy a pen just for that notebook, and write down your goals.

Don’t think you have any? I beg to differ, I bet you a steak and salad that you have goals, you just have never taken the time to ask yourself what they are and then given yourself permission to write then down and see them with your own eyes.

I’m over here, believing in you. Cheering you on. You got this. You got this because you now have an actual goal. With an actual end date. With an actual plan and steps to get there.

You got this!

4 Tips to Start Eating Healthy for Truck Drivers Mother Trucker Yoga Blog

4 Tips To Start Eating Healthy Today

Eating healthy in today’s world seems to be similar to solving a complicated murder mystery with multiple conflicting witnesses.

The people over here say this.

The people over there say that.

The people up in front are saying no to both the above and claiming that simply thinking good thoughts about your food is good enough. (Insert humor here)

I like to think I am a simple person in that the more someone makes something complicated, the more I actually don’t want to follow their advice. Have you ever been there?

Coming from an eating disorder food was a HUGE DEAL. I mean we kinda need it to survive, it’s fuel, and we shouldn’t feel guilty for enjoying it. HOWEVER…too much of a good thing truly is too much of a good thing.

Today I want to encourage you, no matter where you are, to start small. Let’s not go and try to move the biggest most HUGE-NORMOUS moutnain in front of you today. Were just yesterday you were not even prepared to pack a bag for the big climb.

Instead, how about we take this one step at a time. Build momentum and ride the wave of little successes turning into big ones.

Here are my 4 Tips to Start Eating Healthy Today:

  1. S-L-O-W D-O-W-N. Yes, you heard me, just slow down. Studies show that your eating pace DOES play tribute to how much weight you will put on. Fast eaters are 115% more likely to be obese than slow eaters. – YIKES!
  2. Drink More Water. You have heard this 9 million, 700 thousand, 41 times already. But if you still aren’t drinking your adequate supply then it might be time to consider this to be the mountain to climb. People who consume adequate water each day consume 200 less calories per day than those who don’t. And you didn’t even have to “diet” to do that. Score! Not to mention that those who drink more water tend to burn more calories per day than those who don’t.
  3. Try At Least One New Healthy Recipe…each time you hit the road with your next haul. Yes, there is a little bit of preparation involved. But when you have some skin in the game you are more likely to follow through. Living on the road is complicated at times, but with a little preparation- YOU CAN DO THIS. We often choose unhealthy foods when we feel frustrated, lonely, and in a pinch. Diffuse the situation before it happens, and drive prepared. If you haven’t yet, try the InstaCart App and have groceries delivered to you even at the truck stop!
  4. Eat Your Greens First. Did you know that eating greens before your carbs has been shown to have a positive affect on your blood sugar levels? You can take that information right to your plate. Eating your greens is one simple step on the eating healthy train we all can take together.

I want to encourage you to not let your mind over complicate this. Weight-loss may be your goal. But you didn’t get to where you were overnight. This was a process that likely took years. So be kind to yourself and let’s create new habits that will last you the rest of your life. Truck driver or not, the food isn’t the problem, it’s our relationship with it. Let’s change how we look at food. Buy food. Prepare food. And put food into our bodies.

Mother Trucker Yoga believes in small simple changes. Those changes when done correctly can and will make a huge impact on the rest of your life. Mainly because you will be doing them for the rest of your life. Let your relationship with food be no different. Eating healthy does not need to be complicated. Make sure you aren’t the one complicating it.

 

BreakTime Health and Wellness Discussion with Mother Trucker Yoga

BreakTime: Fitness Time with Hope Zvara

Have you heard? RoadPro Family of Brands has kicked off a drivers only private forum (chat room) where truck drivers can come ask questions, answer questions and hang out with fellow drivers in a virtual setting. This isn’t a place to complain or post rude comments, but rather a place for drivers to motivate one another, give and receive great information, take fun quizzes and win free products and swag.

RoadPro launched this online offering back at GATS (Great American Truck Show) back in August 2019 inviting drivers to come and join.

“I love the idea of BreakTime for truck drivers as it gives those who may not be on Facebook a place to connect with other drivers and say up to date on what is going on. I know I am not a driver and never claim to be one. However with nearly 20 years in the fitness and yoga world and a traveler myself, I get it. I grew up around the trades, and had drivers, family members of drivers and company owners of trucking outfits all as students over the 14 years I owned and operated a yoga studio in my home town. I have a real passion for helping drivers and am excited to help inside BreakTime. My expertise is movement, fitness, and lifestyle. My focus is making it super-duper easy, accessible, quick and fun.” -Hope Zvara

Ask questions, gain insights, inspiration and a kick in the pants to start your health and fitness journey over the road alongside Mother Trucker Yoga and Hope. Have back pain? Neck pain? Stressed? Can’t sleep? Wondering where to start? Hope will answer all those questions and more. But for now you can check out one of Mother Trucker Yoga and Hope’s recent blog posts all about back pain.

On Tuesday, January 14th 2020 at 7pm EST

(6pm CST, 5pm MST, 4pm PST)

Come join Hope Zvara, CEO of Mother Trucker Yoga for a private chat, Q & A and some fun giveaways inside BreakTime.

To join it’s fast and easy, no need to give your blood type, your first born child or take out a small loan (insert humor) it’s FREE to drivers.

At Mother Trucker Yoga we hope you come join in on the fun over at BreakTime with Hope. There are already questions posted waiting for your comments in BreakTime for Tuesday nights chat!

See you there!

BreakTime Chat with Mother Trucker Yoga

Meditation for Truckers

Benefits of Meditation — And Simple Ways To Start Meditating

When your profession demands for you to be on the road for the majority of the year, your physical and mental health can take a turn for the worst. As previously mentioned on the Mother Trucker Yoga blog, “while out on the road, movement can be limited and stress can be high.”

Thankfully, Mother Trucker Yoga has brought mobility and good health back in drivers’ lives. But if you would like to practice another stress-relieving method in addition to our easy workouts, consider adding meditation to your daily routine.

You might be asking yourself, why choose meditation? Can’t I just take deep breaths whenever I feel stressed? Though a post on Pain-Free Working indicates that simple breathing exercises could temporarily alleviate stress, practicing meditation strengthens the mind to cultivate inner peace and improve mental well-being in the long run.

The Benefits of Meditation

The benefits of meditation are limitless, and given the sedentary lifestyle of truckers, there’s a lot that can be gained. The road is long and lonely, and it can negatively affect your state of mind and physical health. However, with the help of meditation, truckers can get the job done while still taking care of their mind and body.

Based on scientific studies, here are the benefits of meditation, as shared by Healthline:

  • A good way to manage stress
  • Minimizes anxiety
  • Improves self-image and promotes a positive outlook on life
  • Increases self-awareness
  • Increases your attention span
  • May decrease age-related memory loss
  • Promotes kindness
  • May help battle addictions
  • Improves sleep
  • Helps manage pain
  • Can decrease blood pressure
  • Can be practiced anywhere

Different Forms of Meditation

Believe it or not, there are numerous forms of meditation; so if one form doesn’t work for you, there are still plenty to choose from. One of the more well known forms is yoga meditation. The controlled breathing exercises and postures focus the mind on the practice and calm the mind, all the while promoting flexibility. Yoga is also a type of movement meditation, which is where you draw mindfulness from movement. Tai chi and martial arts also fall under this category. Spiritual meditation is often a huge part of Eastern spiritual traditions, such as Buddhism, Hinduism, and Taoism. For religious meditations, this often involves prayers to a divine power. For non-theistic traditions, self-awareness and self-actualization are the focal point of the meditation.

Another form is zen meditation. It can be part of Buddhist practice, where meditators must be mindful of their thoughts without judgment. At the same time, focus on their breathing and maintain a
comfortable position. According to Medical News Today, zen meditation requires more discipline and practice, and practitioners often prefer to study under a teacher, considering all the steps and postures that must be followed. With that in mind, this may not be the best meditation form for truckers. To see what other meditation forms could potentially work for you, check out this blog post on MindWorks.

Tips for Beginners

As straightforward as deep breaths in and out may seem, meditation is not as simple as you would think. But by starting off small and practicing every day, you’ll get the hang of it, and eventually you’ll open your mind and body to new techniques.

To help you get started on meditating, here’s what you can do:

1. Designate one area, a comfy chair or cushion for meditation

Getting into the habit of meditating can be difficult; however, creating a small relaxing environment can help set you up for a successful practice, whether that’s just a chair in your living room or a cushion next to your bed. Cushions are definitely recommended for truckers since you can take them with you wherever you go. Eventually, you’ll have the ability to meditate anywhere, but for now, setting up the scene will help you get in the right headspace.

2. Start with just two minutes every morning

Before you go about your day, begin your morning with meditation. Doing it first thing in the morning will naturally become part of your daily routine, giving you a positive mindset to tackle the stressful drive ahead. As for the meditation itself, rather than following a specific type or technique right away, just spend two minutes listening to your own breathing. Take note of the movement of your body as you breathe in and out. When your mind wanders, and it will, just bring your thoughts back to breathing. You could even count each breath. Do this for the first week or two, increasing to five minutes in the following, then possibly move on to guided meditations.

3. Stay connected with a meditation journal

A journal is a great way to track your progress, as your entries offer clarity and insight on how you might need to adjust your meditations and how far you’ve come since the beginning. Daily journaling gives an opportunity to reflect, gain perspective, and most importantly, be positive and kind to yourself. As for the entry format, it’s entirely up to you. It can be as simple as including the date, type of meditation, and comments on the practice, or you can use a guided format. With all these benefits and tips in mind, it’s clear that regular meditation is an easy way to achieve a good work-life balance, practice gratitude, and maintain a positive mindset as you trek across the country on your own.

 

Article written by Mandy Rudd
Only for the use of mothertruckeryoga.com

Pelvic Tilts Best Move For Truckers with Back pain Blog Post

Pelvic Tilts: Best Move for Truckers with Back Pain

When back pain is on the rise, Pelvic Tilts are here to save your back!

Pelvic tilts are an easy and very effective movement anyone and everyone can do, especially truck drivers when dealing with back pain.

 

I watched my father for years try to rearrange himself in his vehicle prior to his drive from Wisconsin to Indiana Sunday nights. He would be gone for the week and back hopefully on Friday night. 

 

I remember watching him try to adjust his seat. Those weird roller balls he had hanging over his seat. But mostly I remember his face when he would get (and out) of his vehicle anticipating that long drive or coming back from it. My father wasn’t a truck driver, but he laid sewer pipe for a living and drove all over the Midwest to do it. He lived in his little Horizon car. A 6’2” rough around the edges man tooling all over the open road to then climb down into the smallest, most dangerous spaces every single day. 

 

To say the least his body was his wrecking ball. Both on the drive and in the hole. But now in his 60’s, practicing a bit more self-care could have saved him one of his greatest assists…his body. 

 

I got into yoga nearly 20 years ago. And as I got older, I began to feel back pain of my own and realized that now more than ever I really needed to zone in on what works. And pinpoint movements that I could do within my daily life. Because time is precious and why not make the most of those in between moments. 

 

I believe that pelvic tilts are one of the fastest ways to reduce back pain and increase mobility. Plus, you can do them while you are driving. 

And the best part is drivers can do simple exercises just like this and then get out and stretch their legs. Afterwards, go into their favorite TA and take a look at the StayFIT Menu for a meal that is just perfect for them. The StayFIT Menu has dozens of healthy options on it made to order. So there is no need for fast food. Just another way to feel better, wherever you are. 

 

What are pelvic tilts?

 

Pelvic tilts are a super simple movement that asks you to tip the pelvis back and forward at varying degrees to help release tightness and also build resilience and strength in the pelvic area, lower back and abdomen.

 

Pelvic tilts are my #1 go to move for just about anyone with lower back pain. They are a simple yet effective exercise for those seeking back pain relief.  

 

As a truck driver time is of the essence. You have miles to get under your belt and a deadline to meet. So I like movements where you can double up. Moves that can be done safely while you are driving. 

 

While sitting many people struggle so much because their spine and pelvis sinks backwards into the seat. Taking their spine from an “S” curve, to a “C” curve, causing you back pain. And to further cause pain, that “S” curve is designed to help absorb impact, when you begin to lose that curve, pain begins to increase. 

 

Where can pelvic tilts be done?

  • Standing
  • Seated (in your truck)
  • Lying down (in the sleeper or on the floor)
  • On a large exercise ball 
  • In a Tabletop (all fours) position
  • In any of the Fitness Centers in the various TA’s located across the US.

 

Easy how-to pelvic tilts instructions:

  1. Sitting in the driver’s seat of your truck, sit upright and tall. 
  2. Notice your pelvis upright (sitting bones underneath you). 
  3. Take one nice full deep breath, in and out. 
  4. Inhale, and work to arch your lower back away from the truck seat (feel your belly drop forward). 
  5. Exhale draw your navel in and round your lower back towards the seat. 
  6. Inhale again and arch the back really exaggerating the arch and try to spread open your sitting bones underneath you and spilling your belly in-front of you. 
  7. Exhale and breathe out fully, rounding out your lower back. Imagine tucking your tail bone between your legs. 
  8. Repeat this for one to five minutes. As time goes on you should notice the stiffness dissolving and more mobility increasing. 

Pelvic Tilts Blog - Anterior Tilt

Pelvic Tilts Posterior Tilt Blog Post

Crossing Your Arms is Optional

I hear from many drivers it’s the discomfort while driving, but then those few minutes once they get out that they really notice the stiffness. And doing pelvic tilts regularly will dramatically help with that stiff feeling you get when getting out of the truck. 

 

Remember to breathe!

 

In anything that you do breathing is essential. The average person breathes 21-24,000 times per day. Imagine what merely tuning into your breath could do for stress, anxiety, fatigue, and yes, reducing physical pain. 

 

Shallow breathing can be linked to fatigue, dizziness, and anxiety. But it can also make using your physical body more challenging. Muscles need oxygen, breathing makes that possible. 

 

You’re Using Your Core Incorrectly

When you engage your abdominal muscles, make sure to focus and really engage them. Don’t just push your belly out or suck it in as you perform the movement. You’ll feel deeper muscles (transverse abdominus) working once you’ve fully engaged your core. Still not sure if your core is kicking in? Take a moment and with your hands on your waist cough and feel your core muscles contract as you do so. 

 

Need a Modification?

There are several ways you can practice pelvic tilts.

When you are laying down ready to go to bed, bend your knees and practice pelvic tilts. Inhale and work to arch your back away from the bed like there is a pin behind your lower back. Exhale and press the pin into the bed without lifting your hips. 

 

You can also try this standing. Either lean against the wall with your feet angled out. Or standing, bend your knees and plant your hands on your knees bracing yourself. Now move through the pelvic tilt sequence several times.

 

While standing and kneeling pelvic tilts can be a little more of a challenge, they’re a better option for people who are pregnant or unable to lie on their backs.

 

Always check in

As always, check with your doctor before starting or intensifying a workout routine, especially if you have conditions, injuries, or are healing from surgery involving your neck, spine, abdomen, or pelvis. And if you are wanting to lie down and practice pelvic tilts, check out one of TA’s various indoor fitness centers available to you along with other great health and fitness options through TA-Petro’s StayFit menu. Just don’t forget your mat! 

 

Why this works

Trucking can wreak havoc on many drivers bodies, particularly your lower back. Long-term sitting and poor posture is a recipe for many drivers leaving them with pain, stiffness and unwanted injury not because they didn’t exercise. But because they weren’t moving the body enough during the day. 

 

Pelvic tilts are an easy movement that keeps the lower back and hips mobile, increases circulation in those areas and reduces stiffness when you get out of the truck. And practices like yoga are a great way to help decrease the effects of back pain and stiffness many drivers are struggling with. 

 

Try It Out

Pelvic tilts can be done anytime, anywhere. No need for fancy equipment. No need for a gym membership or a personal trainer. All you need is your body, driver’s seat and an intention to move the body more. 

 

Making the commitment to insert just a little more movement into your day will make a big difference when you do it consistently. Every move counts. And it’s about the consistency. Can you see yourself doing this regularly as you drive? While you are laying down in the sleeper before you go to bed? Wherever you are. 

 

This simple move could be the difference between you throwing your back out, you getting out of the truck stiff and immobile for three minutes while you try to go from sitting position to standing. Pelvic tilts could be the one simple change that you make that takes you down the road to an improved routine of your personal self-care. 

 

Where do you see pelvic tilts fitting into your day? 

I challenge you to add them in today.

Want to learn more?

Join Hope with Mother Trucker Yoga, alongside TA-Petro and St. Christopher Truckers Fund for all things truckers and health at participating TA-Petros this week and throughout the month of September!

Check out Travel Centers of America’s Facebook Page for details on each of the upcoming events!

 

 

Healthy Recipes for Truckers

Healthy and Simple Recipes for Truckers

On the go: healthy and simple trucker food recipes. Anytime, anywhere.

I just trucked 18 hours home from GATS in Dallas, Texas back home to Hartford, Wisconsin. We team drove our RV and made it back safely.

Many of you came to see me (hey all, Hope here) at the Landstar Health Stage to learn more about how to live a healthy life over the road. And one of Saturday’s presentations was: Fueling Your Rig, Fueling You: Eating Healthy Over The Road Made Easy. Sponsored by RoadPro Family of Brands

GATS Fueling Your Rig Fueling You Presentation

Cooking at GATS 2019

The presentation was a hit! We had just enough food, and no one left hungry!

Everyone at the event loved what we not only talked about but ate.

  • I believe that you can eat healthier on your truck.
  • I believe it’s about small simple changes, not big huge leaps that will help you change your life’s current route to health.
  • I believe you can do this!

It’s not about getting up and doing a complete 180 (although no one is saying you can’t). But what I am suggesting is to start small.

If BIG HUGE DRASTIC changes worked so well, more than 8% of New Years resolutions wouldn’t fail!!!

Eating healthy on the truck and over the road starts with you saying to yourself, “I can do this”.

At GATS we discussed the notion of GOOD, BETTER, BEST. And with this idea we recognize the opportunities to improve in little ways, and when you do that consistently, it add up.

Instead of a soda with every meal, how about you eliminate one soda a day. Or better yet, just one soda, one day a week. I want you to make changes you can stick to. Not changes you give up on because you did too much too soon.

Why I’m so passionate about this approach is because I struggled with an eating disorder for YEARS. Almost half my life.

Every day I would wake up and say:

  • “Today I’m not going to over eat.”
  • “Today I’m not going to binge and purge”. 
  • “Today, I’m going to magically be changed”. 

And not even one hour into the day and I was back in the cycle of no return…

Sound familiar?

It wasn’t until out-patient treatment and their encouragement of one minute at a time. One hour at a time. And one day at a time, that inspired me to break down my changes into micro-changes.

And that (along with healthy movement and yoga) got me out of that deep dark hole of self-destruction.

During our Fueling Your Rig, Fueling You presentation, I wanted to show every driver out there that eating healthy on the road CAN and IS easy. And wanted to turn everyone on to healthy options and simple recipes that actually taste good, and are easy to make!

Men and women were nodding their heads in the audience as they munched away. Loving the food that was going into their mouths.

And everything we made for them we made there! That day! In less the time it takes to take a 30 minute break.

I want to share two of the recipes we made at GATS that were top on the request list. Which also happen to be cheap, easy to make, and healthy on-the-go food for truck drivers.

Recipe #1: Spring Rolls for on the Go!

  • Spring Roll Rice Paper
  • Lettuce or Cabbage leafs (cut into small pieces)
  • Shredded carrots (you can buy them pre-shredded too)
  • Cilantro or Mint
  • Shrimp (or any other meat or tofu)
  • Lime Juice (optional)
  • Sticky rice or rice noodles
  • Plate size dish & cutting board or flat surface to roll spring rolls up
  • 8 oz of water

Demonstration of how to make spring rolls recipes

Directions for Spring Rolls:

  1. Put water in plate size dish.
  2. Take out one rice paper sheet and place in water for 30 seconds or so.
  3. Until the entire sheet is soft.
  4. Take the rice paper and lay it on a dry flat area.
  5. Take lettuce leaves and lay in a line at the end closest to you.
  6. Lay shredded carrots inside lettuce
  7. Now put rice noodles or rice on top.
  8. Squeeze lime over shrimp before adding.
  9. Add shrimp and cilantro or mint.
  10. Using the end closest to you, begin to roll the contents one time.
  11. Now take the two sides and fold them in and over the contents sticking the rice sheet sides to the folded end.
  12. Keep rolling, making sure the sides stay tucked in.
  13. Roll all the way to the end and the rice paper will stick to itself, keeping the contents inside.
  14. For dipping sauce use Thai Peanut Sauce, Sweet & Sour Plum Sauce, or Chilli Sauce and enjoy!

Option:

I bought the lime cilantro shrimp in the deli at Costco pre-seasoned and ready to be served. I cut up the shrimp and then added it to my spring rolls. You could also squeeze the lime and mix the cilantro or mint with the shrimp and marinade before use as well.

Keep chilled. Will last for a few days.

Spring Rolls are a great alternative to sandwiches, and a whole lot healthier. Be creative and play with other ingredients. These two are simple recipes you can make anytime, anywhere while on the go. Let us know what you come up with!

Hope Demonstrating How to make Simple spring rolls recipe

Recipe #2: Asian Slaw Salad

  • 1-Packet Beef Ramen Noodles
  • 1-Bag Shredded Cabbage
  • Grapeseed Oil
  • Natural Sugar
  • 4 Green Onions-chopped
  • Sun flower seeds (unsalted), pistachios, pumpkin seeds, sliced almonds, crasins

Directions for Asian Slaw Salad

  1. Mix grapeseed oil, sugar, onions, and beef seasoning packet (see below for homemade seasoning) together.
  2. Break up noodles into small pieces.
  3. Mix noodles and seeds together. You can store them together for easy travel.
  4. When ready to eat take noodle mixture, cabbage slaw and liquid and mix together in a bowl (or container with a lid for easy storage afterwards.
  5. Once mixed, enjoy with a fork!
  6. The longer you let the ingredients sit together the noodles soften and you get a whole new crunch.
  7. Stores perfectly in a 12 cup container.
  8. Keep cool in cooler or frig.

Homemade Beef Seasoning (I like Wilhelms Kitchen version):

Mix together and store in air tight jar. Use 1-2 TBSP per packet of beef seasoning. Simple Asian Slaw Salad Recipe for Truckers Mother Trucker Yoga

Beginning to eat healthy starts with one small simple change. Simple recipes you can make right on your truck. It doesn’t have to be extreme, fancy, or expensive. What if you simply make your own food once a week? Then one day a week? Then two days a week, and so on. This does not have to happen over night. But my hope is you begin to see that YOU CAN DO THIS!

I believe in you. And I believe you can stay healthier over the road one move at a time. One meal at a time.

Please try out these simple recipes and comment below telling us what you think!

Share your photos of your food creations on our Facebook Page – Mother Trucker Yoga

Join our family here at Mother Trucker Yoga!

Mother Trucker Yoga and Backshield

Mother Trucker Yoga and Backshield

 

Mobility Exercises for Truck Drivers Blog Post Hope Zvara

Fit for Driving: A Truck Drivers Assessment

Have you ever been questioned if you were “fit for driving”?

Has it ever come to mind that someone, anyone, you, could be unfit to drive?

This is a reality not just for truck drivers, but America. Driving may be a sport for some, and leisure for others. But for a truck driver it is there life line, their job and for many their passion.

So what does it mean to be fit for driving?

How can someone increase their overall health to become more fit for driving?

Taking into consideration like functional mechanics- how you move or should move, quick reactivity, mobility, whole-body coordination all while driving. The question becomes: “do you know what the signs are? And are you up to speed?”

It use to be more of an aging conversation, when you get to X age then you will have to stop doing this. Or you will no longer be able to do that. But more and and more research is indicating, and heck, just look around you, it is obvious that we all need to get up to speed with our health and it may serve us all to check in with our ability to drive. For not only our own safety but the safety of others.

Similar to the freedom of walking, the thought of not being able to drive is daunting. Yet I have worked with tens of thousands of individuals and many still aren’t motivated to make even the smallest changes until it is almost too late.

Why wait until you can’t walk to see it as important.

Why wait until you get your license revoked, or you get into an accident to decide it is a necessary privilege.

The AMA in 2010 stated that lack of mobility is something that doctors take into consideration with older adults when assessing weather driving privileges should be taken away.

But here is the reality check: How many of you reading this honestly feel you move like a senior (75+) but most definitely are not one?

So many of us consciously refuse to take care of our bodies like they are made of steel. That they will just keep taking the beating. That they will jump up upon request no matter what situation, what age, what variable.

Mobility Concerns to Consider While Driving:

Grip strength for simple things like opening the door and pulling it closed

Looking back while backing up (although review cameras are great, this is a basic function we must not lose sight of) requires neck and torso rotation. And good eye tracking.

Varying degrees of hand, elbow and shoulder coordination while handing the steering wheel. And good hand eye coordination.

Gas and pedal breaking which uses ankle mobility and control.

For my truck drivers multiple hand-eye-foot coordination functions combine with fine motor skills while shifting, breaking, and turning.

It is easy to say these things are not a big deal. Until we can no longer do them. And it then becomes hard to say as to when it is those fine motor skills were lost. Technology has rob many of us of basic movement patterns. Where now we have to work twice as hard to keep to it or we will surely lose it.

But as a truck driver, driving a big rig takes a lot of handing, not to mention the loading and unloading that comes with the territory but can wear on the body overtime.

Now you may be shaking your head saying this is all nuts and you move just fine. But the thing is, basic mobility patterns like the above are often what are first to go and can often go un-noticed. But it is often the overlooked issues that can cause the greatest concerns later on in life when they slowly begin to take the things we love most away from us in a blink of an eye.

Take the Fit for Driving Test:

The Ankle Mobility Test:

Get into a lunge with the front foot’s big toe roughly 4 inches (3 inches if 5’2″ or less) and without allowing the heel to pick up. Try to lunge the front knee into the wall.

Ankle Range of Motion Test Mother Trucker Yoga

Having trouble?

You may want to tune into the notion that this mobility has everything to do with you coming off the gas or break easily accident free.

Exercise: Two Part Calf Stretch

(LEFT) From a standing position place one foot up on a half dome (or something firm and rolled up). Anchor the heel down and do not let it lift. Align the outer edge of the foot with something parallel with it. Keeping tall, and not allowing your pelvis to tip forward. Begin to walk the free foot forward. You should begin to feel a stretch. Hold that stretch for minimum 30 seconds.

(RIGHT) Standing tall take a casual step back with one foot. Not allowing the pelvis to tip forward, bend the front knee. Now work to bend the back knee without lifting the back heel. Hold that stretch for a minimum of 30 seconds.

On both stretches notice if the inner ankle collapses or the knee bends inward. Try to keep the knee forward and he ankle in neutral.

Mother Trucker Yoga Fitness Test Calf Stretch

Hand Mobility Test: 

Hand Corrective Exercise Proper Way Mother Trucker Yoga

Correct Placement

Hand Corrective Exercise In correct

 

Get down on all fours (oh, there is more to this test than just your hands). Spread your fingers out wide with the middle finger pointing forward and the thumbs pointing at each other (feel free to help your thumbs). Is is tender or difficult to flex the wrist in a 90 degree angle?

Is there space under the palms or are your fingers curled up (flexion) off floor? These are warning signs that gripping tension which is a common occurrence and needs to be counter acted. This is a road that will lead to immobility in the joints of the wrists, fingers and thumbs.

Exercise: Flexion and Extension

Wrist Stretch Mother Trucker Yoga

Forearm Stretch Mother Trucker Yoga

Shoulder Mobility Test: 

Get down on all fours and plant your hands as done in the Hand Mobility Test.

Work to draw the thumbs out as close to 90 degrees from the middle finger as possible. Can you do this without the folds of the elbows turning inward? This will clue you into excessive tension between the shoulder, elbow and wrist. As a driver this is critical to assess, as one needs all hands on deck and this could be a shoulder issue.

Sitting Twist Test:

Sit in the drivers seat or in a chair with both feet flat on the floor and pelvis evenly planted. Work to rotate like you are reaching for your seat belt (but keep hands on lap) and try to first rotate with your rib cage only. No lifting your hips. Can you see behind you yet?

Next try to rotate your neck? Can you see over your shoulder now? At what point to do you need to cheat and lift your hip? Or maybe you need to use your hand to force the rotate due to tight muscles?

Exercise: Seat Belt Grab Sit and Twist

Sitting in the drivers seat or on a chair practice rotation daily. And don’t forget to incorporate daily stretching in that release tight back muscles and neck muscles like in Mother Trucker Yoga’s online membership site. 

Seat Belt Twist Test Mother Trucker Yoga

Intrinsic Muscle and Nerve Foot Test:

Take off your shoes and socks  and try to spread your toes apart.  Can you separate each toe?

Can you give yourself a “thumbs up” with your big toe?

Issues like these can be a big indicator of intrinsic foot muscle atrophy, or weakness in the muscles of the foot. This is an issue because this could mean nerve issues in the lower leg (many of which come with lack of use like from long-term sitting).

Foot Health Mother Trucker Yoga

Exercise: Toe Piano & Dancers Feet

Get your shoes off daily! Yes daily! Move your toes around, stretch your feet. Roll on an acuBall! I’m going to get a lot of flack for this, but don’t listen to people who tell you to keep your shoes on when your feet hurt. That is part of the problem! Would you keep a casts on after you injure your arm, or leg, or even foot? Heck no!

acuBall mini for foot pain

Shoes are casts, and the longer you wear your casts, the bigger the issue becomes.

Taking care of your body has less to do with how many push-ups you can do and more to do with asking yourself “can I still do all the things I desire to do every single day?” If not, then something has to change.

And most people swing far left and go off the handle with implementing things that quite possibly aren’t necessary. Now that is not to say that deciding to run a marathon or exercise for 2-hours each day is a bad thing.

But if at the end of the day we all simply want to age gracefully and keep doing the things that are necessary, and love. Then I recon we start there. But keeping the physical body healthy. Your muscles and nerves working optimally is also an internal thing. And as the saying goes “you are what you eat“. So equally ensure you are fueling your body with the same care you are your rig.

Are you fit for driving? 

Let us know how you fared out with our test?

Need help?

Contact Hope via email and she can help you get fit for driving today!

 

Trucking Meal Planning Rice Wraps Blog Post Mother Trucker Yoga

Rice Wraps: Delicious Meal Option for Truckers

Rice Wraps are a delicious meal option for anyone, but for a trucker on the go it is the perfect meal option no matter where you are.

Eating healthy can feel complicated at times, but when you remember vegetables and fruits combine with lean proteins first, eating can get a lot simpler. And when looking for meal options for anyone it is vital that you also look to the ingredients list.

How may real ingredients are there listed on the package. And in the case of rice wraps, there is no wrapper except for what you are about to eat.

As someone who by choice does not eat much meat, I was on the hunt for something fun, healthy and easy to make. Plus when I travel I wanted to have something that wasn’t going to be messy or smelly or complicated to eat.

Rice wraps are delicious and anything goes when making your wrap.

Make a dozen at home and pull them out when you are looking for a quick meal option. Or make them on the truck for a no fuss meal.

Try pre-cutting your veggies, and if considering adding meat or tofu, pre-cut it into skinny strips to easily add to your rice wraps when you settle in for the night.

Delicious Rice Wraps Recipe:

  • Rice Wraps
  • 1 Handful of Spinach
  • 1 Tablespoon of hummus or mashed avocado
  • 4 slices (skinny) red bell pepper
  • 4 slices (skinny) carrots
  • 4 slices (skinny) zucchini
  • 2 slices onions
  • Optional: 1-2 slices of chicken, tofu, or pork, or crab meat
  • Try seaweed as a wrap as well
  1. Soak rice wrap in cool water for 8-10 seconds (use a plate or circle dish/pan).
  2. Remove from water and place on wet counter or plate/cutting board.
  3. Put a layer of spinach down on the rice wrap, then hummus, then veggies/protein.
  4. Roll like a burrito. Wrap will stick together as it dries.

Eat with your favorite dipping sauce: sweet and sour, bragg liquid, or balsamic vinegar, oil and honey.

And don’t forget that eating with a fellow trucker is always more fun. Offer someone else a rice wrap and dine together with these delicious rice wraps make fresh, made simple, made delicious.

For more recipes like this check out Living in Rawality Cookbook!

Worried about breakfast? No problem we have you covered with our delicious and healthy granola recipe!

Remember, don’t over-complicate healthy eating or healthy living. Just take it one day at a time and one meal at a time. And before you know it! You will be fueling yourself in the best way possible! And you will feel the difference!

Recipe for Quinoa for Trucker Drivers Mother Trucker Yoga Blog Post

The Best Healthy Trucker Travel Lunch Recipe

Are you in need of better travel lunch ideas? Here’s our best healthy trucker travel lunch recipe.

Because I know you know you need to make healthy changes. You know you have to head out on the road. And you know you need to eat. But yet how do you make changes? Where do you start? What do you make? What do you eat?

It’s all so confusing at times I know. The moment I want to change something in my own life my old self would get instantly overwhelmed and see a mountain. All I would notice is obstacles, and talk myself out of the simple solutions right in front of me because I was programmed to only see struggle.

And when it comes to food, health, and changes I know many can relate.

I like to approach anything one step at a time. One box checked on my check list at a time. For some it works to just bulldoze down their old life, habits and choices and replace the with new ones. However, I caution you to this only because without the necessary insight as to why you ended up there in the first place you could find yourself faced with more unnecessary struggle.

O.K. now lets talk food.

As a truck driver I get it, you are on the road, limited resources, limited time, and plenty of unhealthy food options. In a recent conversation with TA-Petro they shared with me that their StayFit meals are of the lowest bought food items in their stores.

So that means one of two things: one, you aren’t buying them because you don’t like them; two, you aren’t buying them because you are cooking on your truck.

And quite possibly there is a third, fourth and tenth reason, but that is not the point. The point is. We need to change that. And since truck stops aren’t going to be changing anytime soon. That means you need to make the change. And that means you have to supply yourself with healthy, fueling, delicious food options so you don’t walk into the truck stops hungry and hangry.

Quinoa

Quinoa is one of my FAVORITE food options. It tastes good, it’s super easy to make, it’s filling, and fueling because it’s packed with nutrients.

But don’t take my word for it. The Medical News Today posted an article talking about the health benefits and nutritional components of quinoa and it is amazing!

They stated that:

“Quinoa is naturally gluten-free. One cup of cooked quinoa, weighing 185 grams (g), contains:

  • 222 calories
  • 8.14 g of protein
  • 5.2 g of fiber
  • 3.55 g of fat, of which 0.42 g is saturated
  • 39.4 g of carbohydrate
  • Magnesium – 30 percent recommended daily allowance (RDA)
  • Manganese – 30 percent RDA
  • Folate – 19 percent RDA
  • Phosphorous – 28 percent RDA
  • Copper – 18 percent RDA
  • Iron – 15 percent RDA
  • Zinc – 13 percent RDA
  • Potassium – 9 percent RDA
  • One cup also contains more than 10 percent of the RDA of the vitamins B-1, B-2, and B-6, and traces of vitamin E, B3, and calcium.
  • Additionally, quinoa contains a healthy dose of fatty acids”

And that is just it! You need fuel. REAL fuel to super charge that temple of a body of yours. And sugary snacks, energy drinks, and potato wedges just aren’t going to cut it.

So to help make your life a little bit easier here is a SUPER EASY and QUICK recipe you can make at home and travel with while out on the road!

Healthy Meal Prep Ideas

Pair the quinoa with grilled chicken breast, or lean turkey, or even salmon and you are on your way to a delicious meal.

Trucking Lunch Quinoa Recipe Mother Trucker Yoga

Cool Quinoa Salad Recipe for a Great Travel Lunch:

  • 1-2 cups left over or cooked quinoa
  • corn
  • peas
  • chopped broccoli (steamed lightly if desired)
  • tea seed oil or extra virgin olive oil
  • fresh, diced garlic
  • salt (to taste)
  • black pepper (to taste)
  • non-fortified nutritional yeast (if desired, I love this it’s like a cheese topping)
  • optional: shredded carrots, chopped peppers, greens, or fresh fruit or onions, cumin, turmeric

Mix all ingredients together and pre-pack serving size containers for travel lunch success.

 

That’s it!

Super easy and super simple healthy truckers lunch for on the go healthy eating!

And remember, anything new can be scary, hard and confusing. But Mother Trucker Yoga has your back (literally). Take it one day, one meal at a time and before you know it you will be read to go with the right fuel and right focus because you are what you eat. Or better yet, you are what you digest.

For more recipes like this check out Karen Urbanek’s Rawality Recipe Book

Trucker Walk Tips Blog Post Mother Trucker Yoga

10 Quick Tips to Improve Your Walk

Do you need to improve your walk?

You can tell a lot about a person by the way they walk. If you ask anyone that knows me the will tell you I love to watch how people move.

Not to poke fun of them. But it’s like a puzzle to me. Why does this not move?

Or why does that go that way when this goes this way?

See how they swing their leg when they walk, but only on the left side?

All these little things started from something.

An injury. A pattern. A pair of shoes. A particular lifestyle choice that has now rearranged muscles and tissues all around their bodies and as a result. Things just don’t move quite right when they walk.

Most people are unconscious of these issues when they first start. And many go unnoticed until an injury or pain occurs. And when this then happens, the moment it occurred is usually blamed for the reason of the issue or injury. When more than likely what caused it has been an accumulation over time, you adapting to your environment.

Walking Blog Post Mother Trucker Yoga

What is the environment your feet are kept in on a daily basis? How long do you keep those casts on your feet also known as shoes? Have you ever flipped over those casts of yours and looked at the worn down tread underneath? Check out VeryWellFit.com  article on reading the tread on the bottom of your shoe.

A fair amount of people unfortunately wear ill fitting shoes and shoes that do not communicate well with the rest of the body. And it is only a matter of time before your body tells you it does not like it’s current situation.

Wondering how you can improve your walk today?

Here are 10 quick ways to improve your walk today!

1. Check the current state of your shoes. Flip those babies over and check the tread. And take note. Is the tread worn off on the edges? Heel? Only one side? Do your feet spill out the sides of your shoes? This will give you insight as to how your foot strikes the ground. But more importantly how your hip and foot communicate.

 

2. While walking feel and tune into how and when your foot actually meets the ground. Do you feel a slight skid or drag on one or both feet? Do you constantly stub your toe on only one side? Do one or both of your feet point any other direction than forward? The moment you become more conscious of something is the moment you can begin to create a pathway to change.

 

3. Try to walk with your feet forward. I know it may sound basic. But it can often be easier said than done. Focus on rolling through the middle of your foot for a complete take off. Not only will this improve the function of your feet, but it can ease pain on your knees and hips brought on by how you walk. As I tell all my students: “If you are going forward, your feet should be pointing forward”.

 

4. Have someone watch you walk. Sounds silly I know, but they can offer you feedback in real time as to what you are doing and you may not even know it. And have them assess your entire body. Do you swing only one arm? Lean forward. Limp? Swing your left leg? Drag your right foot? Are you a speedy walker? Do your feet cross the mid-line? Feedback is key to assessing for a change.

 

5. Can you extend your hip? What is your hip range of motion? Do you only walk with your legs in front of you? Do you walk from your knees down? Practice hip extension by practicing lunging, or practice walking and make sure your leg actually extends behind you when you walk. This doubles as a stretch after all that sitting. (Those that sit often struggle with this) Check out this video to find out more about how to improve your walk.

 

6. Take your shoes off. Yes. your shoes, your casts need to be removed! And even if that just means relaxing or hanging out in your rig barefoot. Do it! Or better yet, log into Mother Trucker Yoga’s online studio and do some yoga!

 

7. Roll out your feet. Your body is held together by a sea of tone. Also known as fascia! And that fascia is either like a piece of plastic or elastic. Wearing shoes all day do not help turn that plastic back into elastic. Try a acuBall to help break all that plastic up. Have plantar fasciitis (check out this article I wrote on MindBodyGreen on the subject)? Then you don’t want to skip this step. Check out this video for how to roll out your feet. And grab your acuBall in our MTY store.

acuBall mini for foot pain

8. Stretch your hip. A pain in your hip can mess with your gait (fancy word for walk/stride). Every morning when you wake up take 30 seconds on each side and stretch your hip out. Be ready to feel some tightness, but what you will feel afterward is relief! Mother Trucker Yoga suggests trying the seated Figure 4 stretch!

Trucker Walk hip stretch Mother Trucker Yoga

9. Stretch your calves. Your calf is not only the hydraulic pump to pump blood flow back up to your heart. But they also serve as a springboard in your walk and and releasing them will give your knees, arches and ankles relief. Try hanging your heels of the step of your rig for a quick once over!

 

10. Challenge yourself and walk on different surfaces. We live in a concrete jungle so whenever you get the opportunity, change it up. Grass, gravel, dirt, rocks. And ask you walk tune into how your body responds to the ground beneath you. Not only will your feet enjoy the change of pace. But so will the rest of the muscles in your body.

Improve Your Walk Surface Blog Post Mother Trucker Yoga

It is vital to not over-complicate the changes you want to make in your life. But also don’t just think about the changes you hope to make. Don’t say you are going to make the tomorrow. Start today! Start today, it doesn’t have to be perfect. It doesn’t have to take up all your free time. It just needs to happen. Let your allies at Mother Trucker Yoga support and help you along the way.