Setting small, achievable goals is the key to creating a consistent, healthy routine

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Start your strength training by doing one set of 12 to 15 reps per body part. If you do not have weights in your truck cab, carry a couple of extra 1-gallon water jugs (this investment will cost less than $3). Bob Perry demonstrates this in the photo shown above.

It’s common knowledge that exercising and eating healthy is beneficial to your health. In some cases, it can even be lifesaving. So why isn’t everyone living the healthy lifestyle? While reasons for not attempting an exercise and healthy-eating program (or failing at one) vary from person to person, many Americans simply lack the “know-how” to begin and stick to a healthy lifestyle.

Here are some steps to help you mentally, physically and nutritionally on the road to better health.

Set a goal.

Sit down and write out exactly what it is you want to achieve. The goal could range from weight loss to building strength and endurance, or even to relieving depression. Be honest with yourself, and make your goals realistic. Everyone is made differently. Never compare yourself to someone else; it is genetically impossible.

Make a plan.

Once you have a goal, write down the steps you are going to take to get there. It is impossible to reach a higher level without taking one step at a time. Picture your goal as a flight of stairs. Without steps, it is impossible to reach the top. Your small goals could range from losing 1 pound a week to increasing your cardiovascular exercise a few minutes each week — or your plan can be even easier. Keep it basic and simple by planning out steps that are accomplishable.

Start it up.

Begin your workout routine slowly; two to three times a week is great. Your workout should consist of both strength training and cardiovascular exercise.

Start your strength training by doing one set of 12 to 15 reps per body part. If you do not have weights in your truck cab, carry a couple of extra 1-gallon water jugs (this investment will cost less than $3). For a water-jug workout program, email me.

Never work the same set of muscles on consecutive days. Start your cardiovascular exercise at five to 10 minutes and build up to 30 to 45 minutes. You could also start off by simply walking from the back of the parking lot or taking the stairs instead of the elevator — anything that gets your heart rate up. Starting off slowly will help you from burning yourself out before you really get started.

Stay motivated.

Consistency is the key to long-term success, but you also have to know how to motivate yourself over time. Adding some spice to your routine is essential to change. Change up your exercise routine every four to six weeks. Your muscles will adapt to a certain repetitive motion and will not progress. Not only do your muscles need to be “shocked” again but learning new exercises will also help prevent boredom. That applies for cardiovascular exercise, too.

Here are a few additional tips to get started on the road to a healthier lifestyle.

  • Drink some water the next time you are feeling run down. Chances are that you are dehydrated.
  • Protein is the building block of every cell in your body and should be the foundation of every meal.
  • Apples offer vitamins and minerals that are vital to a healthy vascular system.
  • The next time you get hungry on the road, try some nutritious, protein-filled nuts. Almonds, pecans and cashews are good options.

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Bob Perry
Bob Perry has spent nearly the past four decades on a mission to educate professional drivers and share life-changing products and services to help them live healthier lives while on the road. Recognized throughout the transportation industry, from bus drivers to over-the-road professional drivers, Bob Perry has played an important role in creating a paradigm shift helping regulatory agencies, private and public sector entities, and consumers understand the current health challenges of the professional driver. He has participated as a wellness advocate in several roundtable discussions, large audience groups and small forums as well as going "curbside" through a national truck stop tour. Bob’s articles have been featured in The Trucker and a number of other national transportation industry publications and is the host of a weekly wellness call produced by Rolling Strong. Bob has been a regular guest on RedEye Radio and Land-Line Radio, and is often an invited guest on Sirius radio shows. He has been featured in the New York Times, Men's Health Magazine, Drug Store News, American Road Magazine, WSJ, NPR, ABC National Radio, as well as hundreds of daily newspapers. He has appeared on television news shows across the nation, including a featured TV segment on ABC NightLine News.
For over 30 years, the objective of The Trucker editorial team has been to produce content focused on truck drivers that is relevant, objective and engaging. After reading this article, feel free to leave a comment about this article or the topics covered in this article for the author or the other readers to enjoy. Let them know what you think! We always enjoy hearing from our readers.

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