5 Ways to Sleep Better on the Road
March 26, 2020
By Hope Zvara yoga & lifestyle expert, CEO of Mother Trucker Yoga
The trucking industry runs 24/7/365. As a trucker, you sleep when you can and wherever you can. Bedtime is not something that would be described as bliss by any means. Getting a good night’s sleep needs to be a priority but it isn’t always easy--especially when your sleeping quarters consist of a small cubicle on wheels parked next to an idling truck or busy highway.
Poor sleep patterns decrease your reaction time which then increases the chance of accidents occurring when you are on the road. Obviously, this isn’t a good thing for anyone. Check out these simple changes you can make today to start to increase the quality of your shut-eye on the road.
Tip 1: Relax
Easier said than done, right? I know--sometimes I need to take my own advice. However, music is an easy tool that you have at your disposal that can help you relax when you are on the road. Music can really help your body relax and prepare for sleep. Adults who listen to 45 minutes of relaxing music before bed fall asleep faster, sleep longer, wake up less during the night, and rate their nights as more restful than when they don't listen to music. Music will help you to relax before bed so that you can enjoy a longer, more restful night’s sleep.
Tip 2: At Night, Skip The Caffeine
Although caffeine may help beat a lack of sleep, the effect is only temporary. High doses of caffeine can make it hard to fall asleep and stay asleep. One study also found that caffeine can delay the timing of your body clock. These effects will reduce your total sleep time. Caffeine also can reduce the amount of deep sleep that you enjoy. Try to avoid caffeine (e.g. coffee, tea, soft drinks, chocolate) at least 2 hours prior to your scheduled bedtime to help reduce restlessness throughout the night.
Tip 3: Move
You can move wherever you want, however you want, and whenever you want BUT you just need to move! I’m not saying you need to try to park your rig at a gym or yoga studio but a stretch here, a squat there--it all adds up and it all matters. Exercise and mindful movements are the easiest way to effectively reduce stress and improve the quality of your sleep.
Tip 4: Drink Up
Water that is. Many people realize that their level of hydration can affect the way they feel and function throughout the day but hydration also plays a critical role in how well (or not) you sleep at night. You should be drinking half your body weight in ounces of water per day. In order to help avoid a million bathroom breaks, try getting up an hour earlier and start guzzling 10 ounces of water. Then an hour before you stop for a break, guzzle another 10 – 20 ounces. Get the point?
Tip 5: You Are What You Eat
Well, not literally, but what you eat does play a big role in how well you sleep at night. A diet low in fiber and high in saturated fats takes a toll on your sleep by decreasing the amount of deep, slow-wave sleep that you get during the night. Meanwhile, eating too much sugar could result in waking up more throughout the night. A healthy balanced diet that's high in fiber and low in added sugars can help you to fall asleep faster and sleep longer. Check out Mother Trucker Yoga for some awesome, healthy, recipes for truckers, that help you create the balanced diet your body needs!
Hope is a yoga, movement and lifestyle expert who is also a nationally recognized speaker and best-selling author and is the CEO of Mother Trucker Yoga®. She also hosts radio show titles “A Daily Dose of Hope” and focuses on the well-being of truck drivers implementing programs that speak to both the body and mind. Providing drivers with a more fulfilling lifestyle by improving their health, mobility and mental point of view. For more information visit www.MotherTruckerYoga.com