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Truck Driver Health Vitamin C What You Need to Know Mother Trucker Yoga Blog

Truck Driver Health: Vitamin C What You Need to Know

Attention Drivers… Get your Vitamin C!

Out on the road, healthy foods can be hard to find, and that means that you may not be getting all the vital nutrients you need to stay healthy as a truck driver. Remember that old saying, “An orange a day keeps the doctor away”? OK, maybe it was an apple, but oranges are often a fruit that is readily available at most truck stops, which means you can get your Vitamin C on anytime, anywhere. And your body will indeed thank you!

Vitamin C is a water-soluble vitamin and is something our body does not store. Vitamin C is also known as Ascorbic acid and is found in fruits, vegetables, and animal products.

I can’t stress enough over how important it is for our health! It would be best if you had it daily to manage the physiological functions of your body. Yet so many people, truck drivers included just aren’t getting enough Vitamin C. Education plays a big role in making healthy choices. If you don’t know what foods contain certain vitamins, then how can you work to consume them. And furthermore, how can you prepare for your trip ahead if you don’t know what you should be buying, preparing, and packing? Don’t worry, Mother Trucker Yoga’s got your back!

Mother Trucker Yoga Blog Vitamin C

Why do we need Vitamin C?

Vitamin C is a potent antioxidant and immunity booster that promotes cardiovascular health, growth of bones, wound healing, development and repair of body tissues, and skin rejuvenation. When we are stressed we lower our immune response, so make sure you are also practicing healthy stress relief habits. Check out Mother Trucker Yoga’s 10 Ways to Reduce Stress. And don’t forget to breathe, your body depends on it.

But Vitamin C is also critical in the production of collagen, L-carnitine, and some neurotransmitters. It helps metabolize proteins, and its antioxidant activity may reduce the risk of some cancers. There are so many benefits to Vitamin C, and boy oh boy, does it taste good! If you are worried about the looks of fine lines and wrinkles, age spots, or losing that youthful vibe, then fear not; Vitamin C should be on your list of must have’s to keep your whole body healthy and in check. But this vital vitamin isn’t just for our youthful appearance; it also helps with muscle function, tone, and vitality. Our tissues feed on protein, water, and Vitamin C, and you need all three to keep your physical tone, strength, and elasticity healthy.

Did you know that Vitamin C helps produce collagen? That super important component to anti-aging and skin elasticity and is the main component of connective tissue and the most abundant protein in mammals. Roughly 1 to 2% of muscle tissue is collagen. And it is an important component in fibrous tissues such as:

  • tendons
  • ligaments
  • skin
  • cornea
  • cartilage
  • bones
  • the gut
  • blood vessels

Getting your daily dose of Vitamin C will leave your tissues happy and healthy but don’t forget about the importance of stretching! When your tissues get the vital nutrition they need those aches and pains will start to fade away with a few good Mother Trucker Yoga stretches.

Types of Vitamin C

Other than natural Vitamin C found in fruits and vegetables, ascorbic acid is frequently used in supplements. Other Vitamin C types include:

  • Mineral ascorbates (Calcium ascorbate, sodium ascorbate, etc.)
  • Ascorbic acid with bioflavonoids
  • Other blended different forms (Ester-C containing ascorbate, dehydroascorbate, calcium threonate, xylonite, and lyxonate)

Don’t stress if you can’t get it fresh, as a truck driver you may need to supplement often and that is OK.

 

Required Daily Amount of Vitamin C

Age RDA
Infants (1-3 years) 15 mg
Children (4-9 years) 25 mg
Adolescents (9-13 years) 45 mg
Teens (14-18 years) 65-75 mg
Women (>19 years) 75 mg
Men (>19 years) 90 mg
Pregnant women 85 mg
Breastfeeding women 120 mg

 

“5 Vitamin C.” Institute of Medicine. 2000. Dietary Reference Intakes for Vitamin C, Vitamin E, Selenium, and Carotenoids. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/9810.

Health Benefits

If you are going to eat, you might as well eat something that packs a powerful punch with it. And foods that contain Vitamin C are nothing short of a POWERFUL PUNCH for your entire body’s health. Knowledge is power and when you know what your food can do for you, then you can make those healthier choices!

Boosts Immune System

Vitamin C is the core member of the fighting team against microbes. WBCs (Leucocytes) includes a group of cells (Neutrophils, innate lymphoid cells, monocytes, eosinophils, basophils, and natural killer cells) whose function is to attack or engulf (phagocytosis) and then kill the pathogen.

But the actions of these warriors require the help of Vitamin C as its key function there is Phagocytosis (engulfment of a pathogen) and cellular mobility.

Heart Sweetheart

Vitamin C loves our heart and supports its health unconditionally. Research shows that adequate intake of Vitamin C lowers the LDL (bad cholesterol) levels and its antioxidant properties fight off the free radical damage.

Research shows that it can control blood pressure, heart rate, and blood sugar levels. As it carries the enzymatic reaction that synthesizes norepinephrine (from dopamine) which controls all these functions.

Boosts Energy Levels

Vitamin C levels in the body are directly linked to that of L-carnitine (amino-acid), which plays a huge role in energy production in the body.

Vision Patron

Research shows that Vitamin C promotes the health of retinal blood vessels. Vitamin C helps in maintaining connective tissue and collagen in the cornea of the eye.

Its daily adequate consumption (300mg) prevents cataracts and shows promising results in reducing the progression of macular degeneration into later stages.

Radiant Skin

Vitamin C has a crucial role in collagen production present in our skin. It hydrates the skin, fights wrinkles and aging factors, and makes your skin healthy and blossomy.

Mother Trucker Yoga Blog Trucker Health Vitamin C what you need

Sources of Vitamin C  

You can find this critical vitamin in lots of different foods and my advice, try to eat a variety of them. As a truck driver access to certain foods may be challenging at times so don’t stress if you cannot get guava or kiwi fruit into your daily diet. My approach is to reach for the lowest hanging fruit (hehehehe) so you don’t end up stressing yourself out over not getting a large enough variety. What is available to you right now? What foods can travel well? What can I bring from home? 

Fruits Serving Milligrams per serving
Lemon 1 fruit 44.5
Orange 1 large fruit 97.5
Kiwi fruit 1 fruit 64
Papaya 1 small fruit 97.6
Guava 1 cup, raw 377
Grapefruit juice 1 cup 93.9
Pineapple 1 cup chunks, raw 78.9
Mango 1 cup 60.1
Strawberries 1 cup, sliced 97.6
Tomato juice 1 cup, canned 170

 

Vegetables & spices Serving Milligrams per serving
Red Bell Pepper Per 100 gm 80mg
Kale 1 cup 180mg
Broccoli 1 cup, raw 81.2
Potato 1 large 72.7
Brussels sprouts 1 cup, raw 74.8
Cauliflower 1 cup, raw 51.6
Cabbage 1 cup, raw 44 mg
Thyme Per 100 gm 160 mg
Green chilli 1 green chilli 109 mg

 

Animal sources Amount (mg/100 gm)
Lamb liver (fried) 12
Lamb heart (roasted) 11
Lamb tongue (stewed) 6
Calf adrenals (raw) 11
Human milk 4
Cow milk 2
Goat milk 2

Your health is your responsibility and that doesn’t need to be a scary thing. That can be a sweet opportunity for you to improve your health and turn lemons into lemonade!

STIFF Mother Trucker Pain Relief Cream Wake Up Feeling Great

Chiropractor Care Mother Trucker Yoga Blog

Benefits of a Chiropractor for Travel

Benefits of a Chiropractor for Travel

 

Natural and holistic therapies have taken the whole medical field on a roller coaster. There are many therapies under natural healing, which is commonly known as Chiropractic.

The seekers for back pain treatment are mending their way to chiropractic manipulation. 35 % of about 22 million Americans are visiting a Chiropractic practitioner with a complaint of backache. The reason for this can be any injury or long hours sitting jobs like truck drivers, office workers, etc. Going on a vacation can become such a painful nightmare is not good at all.

There are ways you can prevent this problem like exercising, adjusting posture, using Backshield, etc. But the effective treatment for back pain lies in a chiropractic practitioner’s hands.

 

I first experienced chiropractic care 15 years ago at the suggestion of a naturopath. I had hip issues and chronic back pain and I was only 19. After my first visit, I had no idea what was all twisted up and it all made sense. I had twelve vertebrae out of alignment for what appeared to be some time (because they did not go back willingly) and a twisted pelvis which explained my mysterious hip alignment issues. Coupled with specific yoga stretches and strengthening exercises over time I have been able to resolve the majority of my body’s alignment issues. Chiropractic care is not a fix-all, but when implemented, with a credible and knowledgeable doctor of chiropractics correctly and coupled with more specific lifestyle changes you can feel better, wherever you are. 

 

What is Chiropractic?

 

Chiropractic is an alternative or complementary medical practice that manages or treats the musculoskeletal system problems with the primary concern being the spine.

People generally refer to it as “Chiropractor Adjustment.” This adjustment is a quick yet gentle thrusting action or movement performed at spine areas in spasm, painful, or can’t move properly.

 

Benefits of Seeing a Chiropractor Before Travel

 

Spinal manipulation is no-joke. It is a fantastic trick to prepare the back for the activity beforehand.

Imagine preventing or fixing a problem before its onset. How thrilling and enticing it would be? Chiropractic treatment works the same way.

Chiropractors search for the red zone areas to remove any obstruction in the way which manipulates the spine into a different exercise.

Starting the visit beforehand will make your trip more relaxing and luxurious.  

And I understand that some may feel different about chiropractic care and to that, I will say that there are good and bad to everything. And I suggest you research who you go to see prior to your first appointment. 

 

Benefits of Chiropractic Care After Travel

Chiropractor spine care mother trucker yoga blog post

Traveling leaves us feeling lethargic, muscle soreness, bearing backache, and unenergized. It takes days to get back to the norms while our body is readjusting itself into its old shape while not completely adjusting in the travel mode.

 

Vacations are fun only when we are healthy. It is no fun to return from the vacations with a burden of pains and soreness. And for truck drivers, when everyday travel, every day you are at the wheel, and every day you are sleeping on the road, pain, and soreness seems to be a regular part of life. 

 

Here comes the Chiropractic therapy for your rescue. If you didn’t visit a chiropractic practitioner before going on vacation, you could do it after returning home. It is better late than never. If getting in to see the chiropractor isn’t on your list of things to do prior to going back out on the road, you may want to consider that tune-up before leaving. 

 

If you didn’t know, TA Petro has chiropractors on duty at several travel centers. For a list of truck stops with these amenities, they have that available on their site! Take advantage of these amenities when you can. It can be tricky trying to do things like what appears everyone else is. But when you live over the road, that isn’t possible. Take refuge in the services others are doing their best to provide for you. A chiropractor, while you fill up with fuel, sounds like a win to me. 

 

Dissolving the Knots

With prolonged sitting, muscles of the neck or back tend to get kinky and painful. A chiropractor can help dissolve those knot-like structures and reduce the pain. Think of those knots as a ball of rubber bands that has been a ball for so long that the rubber bands are not sticking together. A good chiropractor will not only put your bones back in place but also access the muscles and tissues that surround those misaligned bones and work to release and reduce those boulders in the roadways of our tissues. This is one reason why I love techniques coupled with a chiropractor like a massage, or self-massage and stretching. 

 

Unwind the sore muscles

Traveling for some people means the restriction of their mobility. Continuous sitting for an extended period puts much pressure and strain on your muscles to adapt, which leaves them sore after all the hard work. The average person sits for 12 hours a day, and the fourth leading risk factor to mortality is physical inactivity or being sedentary. That’s 3.2 billion people each year dying from physical inactivity. 

 

A chiropractor can effortlessly remove the restrictions hindering the body’s mobility. The manipulation will make you feel like you can move freely and have no muscle tension while stretching them. And in addition, seeking out chiropractic care can help reduce symptoms, pain, discomfort, and even eliminate issues like sciatica, piriformis syndrome, cramping, plantar fasciitis, neck or back pain, sleep issues, and more. 

 

Sound sleep

We know the backache has got no chill, no matter in the day or night time. Overstock here is that it gets worse at night when the body starts to relax and rewind. Even if you are feeling fine in the day, it will catch up to you at night.

A chiropractor can help with your sleeping problems by relieving the strain and pressure on your body. The adjustment makes you feel relaxed and pain-free. And those adjustments can help with blood flow, the release of pinched nerves which all control different aspects of the body. So your sleep issues may not be just because you are an over the road traveler. 

 

I want to encourage you to do your research, educate yourself, and talk to people who have experienced chiropractor visits. Listen to their experience. Like anything in life, there are good and bad. People that have the touch of an angel and those that should not be doing what they are doing. I am certain there are truck drivers out there that should not be behind the wheel, yoga teachers that should never step foot on a mat again at the risk of hurting someone. But your health is really in your hands, and when given the opportunity to let someone else’s hands assist down that path to health and happiness, I want to encourage you to give it a try. 

 

Have you read…

 Can yoga help with back pain for travelers? – Blog

Have you tried it?…

STIFF Mother Trucker Pain Relief Cream!

6 Rules for Over the Road Fitness

6 Rules for Over the Road Fitness

6 Rules for Over the Road Fitness

 

The idea of over the road fitness is not the norm for some. And for others, they think of it only as taking their traditional workout with them. And that is great. But for the rest of us, being smart and looking at how you can add movement, fitness, health into your day, even while doing what you always do is what I call over the road fitness. And fitness in your everyday life!

 

Long drives can trigger multiple health issues! Old News!

We can pull through the long-distance travels effortlessly!

Good News!

Let us take look at

“How can we avoid backache on the way?” Back pain is not new news, but the reality is there is a large group of people who have back pain, or any pain and it doesn’t bother them enough to make a change. There is a story that a mentor told me some years ago. 

 

There was a cat laying on a nail crying meow. 

And the owner’s friend asked, “why is the cat meowing?” 

And the owner said, “oh, she’s laying on a nail”. 

And the friend said, “well, why doesn’t she just get off the nail?” 

The owner said, “Because it doesn’t hurt that bad”. 

 

The moral of the cat story is some people’s pain is only bad enough to complain about it. They don’t actually want to do something about it. Where is your pain? Where is your desire for being healthy and improving your fitness? We won’t change anything we don’t want to change. Here are a few road rules to help you stay healthy, fit, and happy while traveling, driving, rolling down the open road. 

 

Forestall the trigger

Each time you enter your car or any vehicle, open your door wide. Use your hand to hold the seat, keep your back straight, bend your knees, and take your seat at your near edge of the seat while facing the vehicle. Then, in one move, lift and swing your legs together and place them on the car’s foot-mat.

 

Adjust your seat accordingly.

You just can’t fix your seat where you can see everything clearly to feel like a boss on the road and let your back handle all the discomfort in the world.

Setting your seat at a height that your hips lie in the same height as of your knees is more befitting.

Are you in need of a new truck seat? Many drivers think they can’t afford a supportive truck seat. But can you afford years of pain, spinal damage, and discomfort from years of driving? Invest in yourself before things breakdown- that includes your body! Check out the AIR CHIEF STANDARD STYLE ON-HIGHWAY TRUCK SEAT from Bud and Tony’s Truck Parts.

Standard Features to this seat include:

Air Chief Seat Mother Trucker Yoga blog

  • 20” Wide Soft Seat Cushion
  • Height Adjustable Headrest (can be removed)
  • Fully Reclining Backrest
  • Triple Chamber Air-Lumbar Support System
  • 3-Position Seat Cushion Extension & Tilt Adjustment
  • Fore & Aft Slides (7 Inch Tracks)
  • Poly-Dynamic Air-Suspension™
  • Integrated Isolator
  • ICP -moves with Suspension & Isolator
  • Bellow

 

 

Relax Your Body

Easy Stretches for Travel with Mother Trucker YogaDo not sit like a statue and try checking regularly, reminding yourself to relax your arms or legs while driving. Not only will it trigger back problems but will also hamper with blood circulation. Muscle cramps and stiffness. Let’s be honest, we get lazy and even though we can move while driving, we don’t. So make it a point to move more while driving. Need help getting creative with movements? Check out Mother Trucker Yoga’s Audio Easy Stretching for Travel: Safe Yoga While Driving Download.

 

 

Arms position and pedal distance

Your arms should be bent at 20-30 degree angles while your legs should bend at a 45-degree angle. It will prevent you from slouching and support your spine. Look for your sweet spot and commit your driving for a lifetime to it. This may require you to purchase additional support tools for your truck or vehicle. 

 

Lumbar Support

This invention is no less than a blessing for people suffering from backache—use quality lumbar support to keep your back in a right and comfortable position. BackShield is lumbar support designed for a comforting cushioning effect to your back and improves your posture. It is conveniently portable and can nicely fit in cars, trucks, and R.V.s. Purchasing yourself a BackShield is a profitable investment for your lifetime. Use our code at checkout: MTY10

In case you don’t want to buy lumbar support, you can roll a towel and place it in the back near the lumbar vertebrae. But take it from me, it won’t work like a BackShield. 

BackShield for RV Driving

Mirror Positioning

Position your mirror at the right angles to avoid unnecessary twisting and turning of your neck and back. And when you look out at your mirrors use your whole body, look at that mirror peek as a movement for your body too. 

 

Other Important Points

Take small intervals

If you travel a long distance, it will help your body relax from stiffness in your muscles. Stretch your body, walk for a few minutes, and restart your journey.

Hydration

Keep yourself hydrated on your way. Generally, our mind and body are on autopilot mode while driving, and our blood pressure tends to lower down a bit, and we start to feel off. To maintain your blood pressure, you need to hydrate your body frequently to stay in a conscious state and a good mood.

Music Therapy

Listen to your favorite music album. It will help your nerves to calm down and relax your entire body.

Fuel your body

Don’t let your stomach starve. Give it proper nutritious food because, “When the tummy is happy, nothing is crappy!” when you are in a good mood, it will fight the stress hormone released in your body.

Drive Safely

Last but not least,

“Drive Cautiously”

“Follow the traffic rules.”

“Don’t get a ticket for speeding.”

 

Being fit is not an overnight change. And in my mind, it’s not based on weight, size, or gender. It’s based on how you feel. So ask yourself: “how do I feel?” And don’t be afraid to answer. So many people deny that they need to work harder, improve themselves, and pay more attention to their fit-ness in life. These road rules are meant to help you see the options available. You probably noticed that the rules above are not based on squats or hundreds of push-ups daily or running a couch to 5k. These are rules to help you improve the quality of your life! 

 

  • See more clearly where the road is taking you. 
  • See more clearly where it is you want to go. 
  • See more clearly how easy it can be to change lanes in your fitness and health. 

 

This post is sponsored by:

Bud and Tony's Truck Parts

Bud and Tony have known each other for over 50 years (brothers – from another mother you could say) and have been in business together for over 30 years. They have always believed in our economy thriving and work hard to make sure it continues upward. They both know the trucking industry has and will continue to be the backbone of our economy. With this in mind, they came together to be a part of this ever-growing, ever-changing but steadfast, and traditional business that will always keep moving American and the world forward.

Travel Workout resistance bands mother trucker yoga blog post

A Truckers Workout: Resistance Bands Exercises

Resistance Bands could be a trucker’s best workout.

Exercise comes in all forms and using resistance bands is one quick and simple way to stay fit!

Movement, working out, exercise, call it what you want, it and I (is that how you say it-the English language) have a very special relationship.

Movement is partly what saved me from a life strangling eating disorder. And when I’m not moving, long story short, it is often a slippery slope to the land of sorrows, depression, and anxiety.

And there is something so amazing about feeling strong, feeling alive, feeling in my body.

I love exploring movements, I love being creative and pushing myself in a way that can best serve my body.

But too much of anything can be a bad thing-even exercise. As I get older I’m more conscious of my joints, my bones, and trying to stay pain-free, not just trim and fit.

And about two years ago I took a very bad fall and it landed me a slow recovery and a body that felt like it was well into it’s 70’s or 80’s. Muscles wouldn’t let go of the trauma and I started to develop imbalances that were wreaking havoc on my body I fought so hard to keep living in.

Rediscovering resistance bands was one thing that jump-started my body’s recovery and really began to heal my injuries and imbalances without pushing it too hard (and I had no intention of being as big as the Incredible Hulk).

In my eye’s resistance bands are a very unappreciated piece of exercise equipment. So many get sucked into believing that the more expensive the better, and then never use it. But truth be told, bands are great, think of them as one step up from bodyweight exercises and super nurturing to your joints!

resistance bands easy workout guide blog post mother trucker yoga

10 Benefits to a resistance bands workout:

  • 1) They improve the quality of your exercises.
  • 2) They help to focus your control, form, and function.
  • 3) They recruit your stabilizing muscles.
  • 4) They’re fundamental for functional training.
  • 5) A great alternative to machines.
  • 6) They’re lightweight.
  • 7) They’re designed for compound exercises.
  • 8) You have control over the angle.
  • 9) They help you feel your muscles working or not working
  • 10) They work your muscles differently than the use of free-weights

Variety is the spice of life. Stop thinking you have to do the same old thing every day. You can easily add in a resistance bands workout that lasts 5 minutes and you can get an amazing workout in no time!

How do resistance bands work?

Unlike weights, resistance bands don’t rely on gravity. The more you stretch the bands, the more they resist your movement, want to work harder, increase the stretch in the band. That means that if you work with a free weight you can only go as far as your joint will allow, but with a band, create more resistance and you have just increased your workout. And I love resistance bands because you can get creative, way more creative than you can with weights.

Here are some of my current favorites when it comes to working with resistance bands.

Resistance Band Exercises

Foot Work with Resistance Bands

Place a tied resistance band about the length of your forearm and place it over the balls of your feet. Stretch the band just enough so there is no slack. Keeping a tall body (no rib thrusting or booty pushing), start to march in place. Really work to lift your knee without leaning back or tipping forward. March in place 30 times.

Next ground into one leg and keep a strong neutral rotation on the leg (pit of the back of the knee pointing back and on dumping into the hip), engage your glute, and press out with the opposite leg for a lateral lift. Think about kicking out with the heel, not the toes (almost like internal rotation). Do this 10-20 times on each side.

Resistance Band Arm Workout

Standing strong in neutral, feet grounded and no rib thrusting. Place your fists inside the tied off resistance band. First, anchor your elbows at your sides and press out with both fists (the movement comes from the elbow) on an exhalation.

Try this for 10-20 times. Next to keeping your upper body strong and stable pull one fist up and one fist down, like your arms, are marching in place. Do this 10-20 times. Finally, pull your fists diagonally and then back to center 10-20 times. Notice which arm is stronger and tune into making sure you don’t dominate the movements with that stronger arm.

 

Resistance Band Exercises for Hips and Glutes

This was a lifesaver for me because my left hip and hamstring weren’t cooperating and my right glute was weak (very unstable pulley system). Place the tied off resistance band around your ankles (shoes optional) and walk 30 paces forward and back in the following ways:

  1. Wide Monster Strides (pull the band as wide as you can comfortably and walk forward and back)
  2. Normal Walk (Walk in a normal hips distance and stretch the band with enough resistance when you walk)
  3. Diagonal Walk (Step to the right one foot at a time, then to the left, alternating forward and back)
  4. Sideways Walker (Create a slight squat and step foot to foot to the right, then to the left)

Leg Strength with resistance bands Mother Trucker Yoga blog

So many think their workout has to be at the gym in workout clothes and X minutes long to be “worth it”. But here’s the thing, I carry my bands with me in my car. Yes, I do a three-minute workout here or there and it all adds up! To step out of the box, you have to start to think out of the box!

And you might as well add resistance bands into that thinking too!

Don’t have bands? I got you covered! Grab this kit and join me! 

Want more great moves like these? When you buy our mini travel resistance bands kit you get: 

  • One Large Physical Therapy Grade Resistance Band (Medium or Heavy Resistance)
  • Two loop bands with varied resistance
  • Door Loop to attach your bands to your truck cab door or door at home for an easy portable workout
  • 13 Page Resistance Bands Guide for easy go-to workout ideas!
    Mother Trucker Yoga Resistance Band Travel Set - Medium

    Perfect travel workout resistance band set.

     

And after a great day of movement with your new-found love of resistance bands. Don’t forget to help your muscles recover with our exclusive pain relief cream made for drivers… STIFF Mother Trucker.

STIFF Mother Trucker Pain Relief Cream for Travel

Truck Driver challenge with RoadPro and Mother Trucker Yoga

Going the Distance Challenge for Truck Drivers

Going the Distance Truck Driver Challenge starts July 27th! 

Truck drivers are one of the largest underserved communities. And with truck drivers’ health continually at risk, something needs to change. Other challenges have been displayed to drivers before and mostly they focus on weight loss. And although many drivers could serve to lose weight, that doesn’t mean they are healthier. It’s about the small building block changes that build the biggest results.

For truckers, that number is 14%. Why do truckers suffer from diabetes at a rate of ost 50% higher than the rest of the American population? They have more risk factors, according to physicians. Drivers smoke more; about half of truck drivers smoke compared to 19% of other adults.

The CDC stated that:

By law, drivers of commercial vehicles and trucks are permitted 14 hours of duty per day worked. They are required to take a mandatory 10-hour break before they can drive again for work. As a result, long freight delivery routes often require them to sleep away from home. Life on the road makes it more difficult to live healthy because of:

  • irregular schedules
  • long hours
  • little physical activity
  • limited access to healthy foods on the interstates
  • stress

And that has left our drivers with issues like heart disease, obesity, hypertension, nd diabetes. HOWEVER, most drivers hearing this is nothing new. And it is my belief that we must FIRST address the underlying causes of these issues which are: Air, Food, Water, Sleep, and Movement all in small bite-size practices.

Going the distance truckers health challenge 5 elements mother trucker yoga blog

Interested in learning some tips to feel better while on the road or at home? If so, join us for Going the Distance Health Challenge. This is a 1-month completion challenge for professional drivers. The St. Christopher Truckers Fund has teamed up with Mother Trucker Yoga to show you how making small, simple changes in your daily routine can result in big health benefits. The challenge is based on five elements needed for survival: water, food, sleep, air, and movement.

How is this health challenge different than those you may be familiar with?

First, it is a completion challenge. Each person who stays engaged in the challenge for the full month is a winner and will receive prizes from various sponsors. Second, it is a two-part challenge. The first part consists of a short 5-day challenge. Everyone who completes the 5-day challenge is eligible to move on to the 2nd challenge. This challenge lasts four weeks and each week will have a specific health focus.

What are the benefits of joining this challenge?

We will explain why each task (drinking more water, eating healthy foods, incorporating daily movement, breathing with intention, and getting adequate sleep) is beneficial instead of just telling you to do something. We will offer real support and accountability. We will provide a place where you can ask health questions and get answers. We will cover the five key elements of survival and how to utilize them successfully. We want you to not only survive but thrive!

Who is running this challenge? 

Hope Zvara of Mother Trucker Yoga who has worked with thousands of people just like you over the last 20 years reclaim their physical, mental, and emotional health through yoga and other mindful practices and now primarily focuses on the trucking community. With her expertise in functional movement (everyday movement and lifestyle) and pain, he is a powerhouse of knowledge and inspiration.

“I believe anyone can show you exercise in front of a truck. That anyone can tell you to do this or that, but changing your health has to be more than that. It must take you back to the beginning and show you how to make real change. Help you understand why behind what you are doing and are asked to do and then show you the way.”

And Julie Dillon of the St. Christopher Truckers Relief Fund. Julie is a TNC (Total Nutritional Counselor), her knowledge on food, nutrition and lifestyle will aid this challenge to inspire and help drivers build a knowledge base as to why we need certain foods and what happens when we eat or don’t eat them. Julie’s ability to break this process down into bite-size pieces will help every driver participating make great strides at the end.

Trucker Challenge with Mother Trucker Yoga

What is the investment for joining this truck driver challenge? 

This health and wellness challenge is absolutely free! Joining our challenge, our accountability group, and learn alongside experts in the natural health, fitness, and wellness arena cost you nothing. Other challenges require you to buy their product or join their subscription. Not here. We are 100% here for you and all you need to do is say YES!

How can someone register for Going the Distance, and when does it start?

Registration will start on July 6th. Phase 1 of the challenge is July 27-31. Phase 2 is August 3rd-28. Participants can register below. You must be a truck driver to win any prizes during the challenge.

What’s Next?

After registering, please join our Facebook Group, for daily/weekly engagement. This is where most, if not all, the information will be shared. If you do not currently use Facebook, create a “mock” profile for yourself and delete it after the challenge is over. While not mandatory, it is crucial for your success in this challenge to have a Facebook account.

We are encouraging everyone to have a buddy to sign up along with him/her to offer support and accountability.

Prizes will be provided by Road Pro Family of BrandsTA Petro, and Mother Trucker Yoga. STIFF Mother Trucker, Bill Weaver Music, Chrome & Steel Radio, Jacks Chrome Shop 

If you have any questions about the truck driver challenge?

Please contact Julie Dillon at:

Julie @ truckersfund.org or Hope Zvara at hope @ mothertruckeryoga.com

Constipation Blog Post Mother Trucker Yoga

Constipation: 3 Ways to get Relief on the Go

Constipation. Not exactly a conversation ANY of us want to have. But yesterday I spent the day with drivers at the Petro in Wilmington, IL and the topic of fiber, digestion, and constipation just kept coming up.

It struggles for anyone who travels to try to stay regular. There are so many factors that play into your body not playing along. But for a truck driver, the challenges can be even steeper than that of the average person.

With little access to “just run into the store” and limited to prepurchases before you (yes, you the truck driver) leave for a run and what is available at the truck stop, you better leave stocked up or you might find yourself in an uncomfortable situation.

I just want to first start out by saying it is not under any circumstances normal to not be emptying your bowels every single day. If food is going in, then food better is coming out. If your body is currently not operating in this manner than I urge you to imagine where that eaten food is then going? Fermenting, decaying, not leaving your body.

Gross right? Exactly.

The average truck driver’s diet is often less than what someone would consider healthy, but with a little preparation and thoughtfulness, you (yes, I’m talking to you again) can get things running more smoothly (see what I did there).

3 Ways to Help Fight Constipation:

First things first. Water. We all absolutely, positively, without a doubt need to be drinking water. Your body is made up of more than 60% water and it is your job to keep the river flowing. As a driver, you are constantly racing against the clock and each stop you take works against you. So my suggestion is always to drink smart.

1-hour before you wake up, drink AT LEAST 8 ounces of water, I have some drivers now downing 10-20 ounces before their feet leave their truck. That hour will give your body time to make a way through you. Plus, by drinking water in the morning you cleanse your body from yesterday’s leftovers. Add lemon and you can also help boost and balance your pH (more on that later). So drink up my friend, your body depends on it.

Get your greens in. For anyone who travels it can be difficult to get a balanced diet each and every day. And for some drivers, cooking on the truck every day is just not a reality for them. So to help boost your body’s bottom line and get in what you just can seem to consume through food each day consider grabbing a greens powder to take every day.

Dark greens are essential to our daily diet. They help keep the bloat away, act as a means to detox the body, improve digestion, and elimination. Plus, provide you with essential nutrients that you just aren’t getting from that chicken sandwich with lettuce and tomato or that iceberg salad. Couple that with daily movement with Mother Trucker Yoga and you have yourself some healthy bowels!

Do the best you can with what you have. But sometimes, you have need more. Greens travel and store well, and all you need to do is mix them with water (I take them at night and in the morning) and drink up.

Here are a few of my favorite brands.

Finally, finding fiber, or better yet, finding foods with fiber is another challenge some drivers may not even fully be aware of. Fiber is essential for your body. Its role is to help your body eliminate what is no longer necessary in the body and get it out. If you are lacking fiber in your diet, then you are more than likely lacking bathroom visits as well.

Add fiber too much too soon and you have a constipation problem all over again. So start small and start with real foods when it comes to adding more fiber to your diet. Consider beans, avocados, blackberries, chia seeds, bran and getting in your veggies. Good news, things like bran, chia seeds, and beans all travel well. That means you can take them with on long-hauls without the worry about spoiling.

If you have never used chia seeds before, they are amazing! Put them in yogurt, add them to your drink, smoothie, you can even put them into your baked goods. My favorite is to soak them in warm water for 10 minutes then add them to coconut yogurt- YUM!

Even then, traveling and living on the road can make even accessing the food suggested above challenges. Consider traveling with fiber you can easily add to a drink or mix with water and take daily. If you find yourself in need of adding supplemental fiber into your diet try some of my favorites:

Don’t let the challenges of being a truck driver keep you backed up (hehe- constipation). Instead, pack the essentials. Not just want you truck would need if you broke down, but what you need so you don’t get backed up! Without a healthy you- there is no truck driving.

Want more? Check out our blog post on Healthy Foods on the Road

Are you following us on Facebook? Hop over and check us out!

Egg in a basket Mother Trucker Yoga

Egg in a Basket (Egg in an Avocado)

Egg in a hole, egg in a basket, toad in a hole, hen in a nest, one-eyed Jack. Until recently I had never even heard of some of these crazy names for food. But no matter what, it doesn’t change the deliciousness of our dish we are sharing with you all today. 

Egg in a hole Mother Trucker Yoga

Call it what you want. Egg in a hole is about to go to a hole new level. Skip the bread slices today because we are changing up the recipe today and giving your taste buds a makeover. 

 

No need to bake this dish in the oven, you can throw it together and use RoadPro Family of Brands frying pan. And let it cook while you get your coffee and get ready for the road. This dish may just stop traffic!

 

It can be tough while living over the road to eat healthy. But most certainly not impossible! First things first, stop telling yourself you can’t eat healthy over the road. Second, stop telling yourself you can’t cook healthy over the road. 

 

This dish was featured at GATS 2019 in my presentation Fueling Your Rig, Fueling You- Eating Healthy Over The Road. And my new trucker friend Travis whipped (literally) this dish up in eight minutes. 

 

Why eight minutes? Because, that is the amount of time on stage I gave him. And heck, if he could really make a dish in 8 minutes. I want to share about it!

 

And alongside our other featured dishes: Mongolian Beef, Asian Salad, and Spring Rolls this was a huge hit!

 

Egg in a Basket (Egg in an Avocado Basket)

 

I didn’t know what that was (full disclosure). But I did know what Egg in a Hole was. And the parameters I gave Travis was no bread and must be healthy. 

 

Wow! His tweaks were out of this world HOME RUN! And I want to share that with you today!

 

This isn’t just a simple breakfast, this could be lunch or dinner. Anytime, anywhere, and yes, over the road, made in your truck! 

 

EGGS IN A BASKET

Like this recipe?

Please share this recipe out with all your over the road friends! 

 

For many breakfast is their favorite meal. But one reason I love this dish is because it could be lunch or dinner. And if you are intermittent fasting, or focusing on getting healthy fats and protein, this dish is for you!

 

Busy? At home? Or on the road, you can make this dish.

This is a really healthy and filling breakfast, and take it from Travis, it only takes 8 minutes, and less than that to eat!

 

Ingredients for Eggs in a Basket 

3 🥑 Avocados 

3 crushed tomatoes or 1 jar of chunky marinara sauce 

1 bag of spinach 

1 onion chopped (don’t have onion tried dried onion flakes)

1 green pepper chopped 

1 tbsp minced garlic (no garlic, try dehydrated garlic)

1/2 cup of Parmesan 

1/2 cup of feta cheese 

Basil to taste/ garnish with diced tomatoes

1 carton of eggs 

Mother Trucker Yoga Egg in a Hole Blog

HOW TO MAKE EGGS IN A BASKET AVOCADO

 

  1. Make sure the griddle is hot in order to get the bread nice and crispy.
  2. Start with a ripe avocado, you can check how ripe it is by noticing if it is firm yet you can squeeze it a bit. And also notice if the belly button (where the stem used to be) is poking out. If it is, the avocado is ripe. 
  3. Slice lengthwise and pull the pit out. 
  4. Scoop out the fruit. And then cut the avocado into slices so there is a hole to put the egg into once in the pan. 
  5. You can choose your thickness depending on how many you want to make. 
  6. Pour the marinara in frying pan and add spices.
  7. Place avocado slices in the marinara.
  8. Crack eggs carefully and place eggs into the holes of the avocados.
  9. Use fresh eggs, preferably Organic eggs. Kwik Trip and Kwik Star Stores sell fresh eggs which is fantastic for this recipe. 
  10. Salt and freshly cracked black pepper.

HOW TO SERVE EGGS IN A BASKET?

Freshly cracked black pepper is enough, but you can also drizzle some sriracha on top while serving.

 

YUM! I prefer crispy bacon to go along with my meal. You can also serve it with our delicious Asian Salad

 

Tools used to make Eggs in a Basket

 

Griddle: We recommend Road Pro Family of brands frying pan.

You can often find them at participating TA-Petro Truck Stops. 

 

Now this portioning will easily feed you and your trucker friends. 

So feel free to reduce the quantity in half to meet your needs. 

 

This is a delicious way to still enjoy Eggs in a Basket without all the bread and empty calories. 

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!

 

 

7 Yoga Poses for Bedtime Bliss for Truckers

Sleep Over the Road: 7 Yoga Poses for Bedtime Bliss

Have you ever tried to get sleep while traveling over the road? If so then typically bedtime is not something you would describe as bliss by any means.

But what if there was something you could to to help even just a little bit, take the edge off falling asleep?

Would you try it?

What about for one week, seven nights, to see if it would help you fall asleep?

It can be difficult to sleep anywhere, but when your sleeping quarters consist of a small cubicle on wheels parked next to an idling truck or busy highway. It can be even more difficult.

I have been working with individuals for nearly 20 years with all sorts of ailments, issues and concerns and sleep is one of the top complaints. Yoga or yoga like practices can help dramatically help those choosing to practice fall asleep faster and sleep more restful.

We all need a few minutes each day to decompress, clear our mind, but even more so, stretch and relieve tension from our physical body.

When we choose to not do those things it can be difficult to turn our mind off, relieve that nagging back pain that will keep you up all night. And most importantly we all need some sort of practice to help our central nervous system relax and reset as well.

Or we may end up reliving today, tomorrow all over again.

Here are Mother Trucker Yoga’s Top 7 Moves For a Better Sleep Over the Road:

Bedtime Yoga Pose #1: Standing Stress Relief Forward Bend

Trucking Standing Forward Bend Bedtime

Standing Stress Relief Forward Bend

With soft knees, exhale roll your body forward clasping opposite elbows, allowing your head to hand heavy.
Remain here with your eyes soft (or closed) for five to ten breaths. Inhale, gently roll up.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bedtime Yoga Pose #2: Daily Devotional

Trucking Back Stretch Bedtime

Daily Devotional

Feeling gratitude for the day exhale, sit back towards the heels, knees as wide as comfortable, outstretch the arms and relax the head, feel your breath and you continually soften your entire body from the day. Remain here up to one minute. (Feel free to place a rolled blanket or block between the heels to sit on)

 

Bedtime Yoga Pose #3: Bound Angle Bedtime Back Stretch

Trucking Bound Angle Back Stretch Bedtime

Bound Angle Bedtime Back Stretch

Place the bottoms of the feet together.

Exhale roll your body forward allowing your arms to reach outward feeling length and release through your hips and entire spine.

Don’t worry about how far you can fold or reach.

Remain here breathing calmly for up to one minute.

 

Bedtime Yoga Pose #4: Driver Hip Flexor Release

Trucking Hip Stretch Bedtime

Drivers Hip Flexor Release

Place block or stack of hand towels or even a pillow placed under your sacrum.

Gently draw your right knee in to your chest as you reach out through the opposite heel.

Working to keep your hips stable. Feel length and release in the hip flexor (front of the hip), remain in the stretch breathing calmly for up to one minute.

 

Bedtime Yoga Pose #5: Bound Angle Bedtime Bliss

Reclined Bound Angle Trucking Bedtime Pose

Bound Angle Bedtime Bliss

Place a block or stack of hand towels or a pillow under the sacrum.

Let the knees fall open and the bottoms of the feet come together. Adjust the feet from the pelvis to accommodate the knees.

Breathe deeply and your body falls away from the stress of the day. Remain here for one to two minutes.

 

Bedtime Yoga Pose #6: Taming Tension Release Breath

Trucking Bedtime Tension Release

Taming Tension Release Breath

Seated, draw the arms outward from your body.

Inhale through the nose and mindfully drop your breath into your heart.

Retain the breath and silently repeat “I willingly and consciously release all harmful tension”.

Now exhale visualize the tension rolling down the arms and out the palms like toxic waste.

Repeat this for three to six times and then take three to six natural breaths. Repeat as necessary.

 

Bedtime Yoga Pose #7: Full Body Bedtime Breath

Relaxation Pose Trucking Bedtime

Full Body Bedtime Breath

Lying on the floor or in your bed, separate your legs and turn your palms to face up; inhale and imagine drawing the breath up through your feet, legs, pelvis, abdomen, throat and to the crown of the head.

Exhale and draw the breath back down the entire body being mindful of each body part the breath travels through all the way out the bottoms of the feet. Repeat this three to ten times feeling more and more deeply relaxed.

And make sure you are doing this on a quality mattress. Because every driver deserves a better bed. Good night!

You may have read this and are thinking “I can’t do yoga”. Then I want to encourage you to not look at it as yoga. But look at it just like brushing your teeth. The long term effects of not brushing your teeth are, you will lose your teeth.

The long term effects of not giving yourself even just five minutes of stress relieving, sleep educing activities will leave you sleepless, agitated, and at risk of getting into an accident because you are not fully able to drive that eighteen wheeler down the road safely.

To help you even further check out Mother Trucker Yoga’s audio made just for relaxation of body and mind.

And for reading and sharing this blog post you can grab it:

>>>HERE<<<for FREE by using the code: MTYSLEEP

Count Breath Meditation

Benefits of walking mother trucker yoga blog post

Attention Truckers: Step It Up with Interval Walking

Attention truckers let’s stet it up with interval walking.

This is a perfect way to increase your efforts to add more movement into your day?

Maybe you are getting the toning or even stretching you need, but the cardio just isn’t there.

And it can be challenging. As someone who travels on and off quite a bit. The neighborhood can look a bit sketchy when it comes to getting out for a walk.

I have no trouble hoofing it in the airport with a roller bag in tow. But I know what you are thinking. Hope I’m usually pulled over in a truck stop parking lot, where do I go now?

And that’s a great point. Good news! Truck stops like TA Petro have roughly had 211 truckstops and of them have 171 have walking trails!

So depending on where you are located and where you drive regularly. At least you know there are some options made available!

But no matter what:

  1. You’ve got feet.
  2. You’ve got asphalt/parking lot
  3. A few minutes to burn on a break or parked for the night.

On an average day, you want to walk close to 10,000 steps. However, the average American barely walks 3,000-4,000 steps per day. Which is roughly 1.5 to 2 miles. The Department of Health and Human Services recommends you walk an average of 150 minutes a week!

Let’s do the math. That’s roughly 21.7 minutes PER DAY! That’s it!

So between you and me. We got this! And let us turn up the heat a bit so you can get the most bang out of your stride every single time!

Interval Walking Check List:

Protocol: Start small and simple. Try 5 minutes of easy walking. Next, you want to increase intensity only about 15% for 4 minutes. And continue to do so every 4 minutes. Keep going until you reach your maximum amount of available walk time. And don’t forget to include a 2-5 minute cool down walk as well.

Example: 5 minutes of easy walking -> 15% increase for 4 minutes (total time 9 minutes) -> 15% increase for 4 minutes (total time 13 minutes) -> 15% increase for 4 minutes (total time 17 minutes) -> 15% increase for 2 minutes -> decrease to original pace for 2-5 minutes (total time 21-24 minutes)

Walking is a simple yet often overlooked form of exercise. If you don’t want to end up in a wheelchair when you are older. Then get out of the chair now! This doesn’t mean you have to go out and get a gym membership, become a yogi, or join Cross Fit.

NBC News.com posted an article discussing how walking is the MOST underrated form of exercise. And I couldn’t agree more. “Walking can be as good as a workout, if not better than running,” says Dr. Matt Tanneberg, CSCS, a sports Chiropractor and Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist in Phoenix, Arizona who works with elite athletes. “You hear of people ‘plateauing’ when they continue to do the same workout routine and stop seeing results. I see patients all the time that plateau from running, they will run the same distance, speed and time, day in and day out. You need to constantly be switching up your exercise routine in order to get the maximum benefit for your health.”

What should the level of intensity be?

1 being no exertion at all

15 being maximal exertion

Start at about a 5 – “Light”. Much like a warm-up in an exercise class.

And each increase, bump yourself up one exertion level.

Think of the goal to get to 10- “Hard”. Where the workout feels difficult, but you can keep going.

Every little bit counts.

Can’t do 20 minutes straight? Consider five minutes and increase rate each minute after minute for 3 minutes, with a cool down minute at minute five.

Interval walking is great for weight-loss. And if increasing your interval like above seems a bit much. Reduce the time and consider adding in 30 second rest periods.

In that same article NBC News posted John Ford, certified exercise physiologist, who runs JKF Fitness & Health in New York City. commented that: “In fact, walking is the suggested workout over running for many people. For example, those with knee, ankle and back problems and also for people who are overweight to obese. Walking is a lower impact exercise and can be done for longer periods of time.”

The only excuses are the ones you make up in your head. It doesn’t matter if all you can do is one minute of walking and then you have to take a break. Because it all adds up. And the biggest critic is the one inside that head. And I want to tell you it’s all lies. You can do this! Walking can be fun. And it’s free!

When we tell ourselves we need to exercise or workout, what we are doing is putting that into a box. And in that box are stipulations around how that box should or should not be used. I want to encourage you to take exercise out of that box and see it has movement. Challenge yourself every day to move more. And do not mistake walking as just something you do. Because without walking the world is no longer accessible to you in the way you want. Walking is your independence, your freedom, your gateway into the world on many levels. So get out and walk today. The more you do it, the more you will want to do it!

References:

https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/fitness/in-depth/10000-steps/art-20317391

https://www.verywellfit.com/how-to-use-interval-walking-to-lose-weight-3495456

https://www.nbcnews.com/better/health/why-walking-most-underrated-form-exercise-ncna797271