Your health in general is going to impact your success as a driver in no small way. The demands of the truck driving lifestyle require that drivers be on top of their game at all times.
The way you handle stress, the types of foods you eat, your level of physical activity, and the amount of sleep you get will all have an influence on how well you are able to perform your duties as a truck driver.
There's no question that drivers are under a lot of stress, constantly. From making sure that their vehicle is in tip-top shape, to managing their hours correctly, making deadlines, getting enough sleep, safely operating the truck, and navigating legal and regulatory hurdles, truck driving can be about as stressful a job as there is.
Most of a drivers success will depend on how they handle the lifestyle and deal with the stress of trucking. You have to learn to "roll with it", or you won't last long as a truck driver.
Article - A Story About The Highs And Lows Of Life On The Road
One thing I've learned in the past few months of being solo is that this job running OTR will give you such a great high one day and completely tear you down the next.
Article - My Recent Trucking Adventures - Quite A Challenge
As terrible of a trip as this sounds, it was also a very rewarding one. I enjoy the challenge of these difficult situations. Many times I don't necessarily enjoy the stress as it's happening.
Forum - The Least Stressful Job For A Rookie Driver
I'm going to be the first to say "If you're CDL, you're always going to be stressed" You could try local company's, your local lumber yard, cement co. etc... BUT, the customer is going to want it his way.
Industry-wide, the overall health of the drivers has been a problem pretty much forever. Most common are issues such as obesity, sleep apnea, and high blood pressure. As in civilian life, poor diets and lack of exercise are the main factors contributing to poor overall health.
Wiki - Sleep Apnea, Truck Drivers, & BMI Calculator
The FMSCA offers no specific guidelines on who should be tested for sleep apnea, or what specific measurements should prompt a Medical Examiner to recommend testing.
Wiki - Hypertension (High Blood Pressure) Guidelines & Advice
In a nutshell, Hypertension is high blood pressure. Blood pressure is the force of blood pushing against the walls of arteries as it flows through them.
Article - Losing Weight As A Truck Driver
For several months, I was able to actually feel myself getting fatter. I could literally feel how my stomach was changing. How it felt different as I sat in the drivers seat. I could even feel the extra padding in the seat.
Where there's a will, there's a way. Short answer is yes, most drivers can find time to get some exercise, inside the truck and out. One popular way that many truckers get exercise is by running or walking around the truck or the parking lots. Small weight sets, kettle bells, or resistance bands will allow you to work out inside the vehicle, if necessary or preferred.
Fun Fact: 32 laps around a 18 wheeler = 1 mile
Forum - Getting exercise as a truck driver
Freightliner, Peterbuilt, and Kenworths are all super easy to strap a bicycle on the back of, Internationals take a bit more work. All you need are a couple of bungee cords and a U-lock.
Forum - Exercising while trucking?
I used to be an avid runner. Slowly, I am getting back into it. My question is, when you are on the road is there time and opportunity to exercise. Would it be possible to go for a run on your breaks?
Forum - How To Get Exercise On The Road?
Since I spend a great deal of my time delivering goods to Walmart, I take full advantage of their typically huge parking lots. I usually use my 30 minute break to do a lap around the store, and then I am on my way.
I have the BodyLastics resistance band system, and I highly recommend them. I have been using them and they work great. You can use them anywhere, probably a good number of exercises in the truck itself