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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:

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Count Breath Meditation

Health Blog Post Mother Trucker Yoga

7 Little Changes Drivers Can Make To Improve Their Health

There are changes every driver can make when it comes to improving their health.

Taking charge of your health no matter how you are and what you do can be daunting. But it doesn’t have to be. I have been helping individuals and companies make healthy changes for almost 20 years and just because your job take you over the road is no reason to feel that your health has to be left at home.

Most of the time we over think the changes we can start making today. And as a trucker, over the road or not, I can imagine that your health can easily take a back seat to what is on the road in front of you.

7 Little Changes for Drivers Health Mother Trucker Yoga Blog Post

Here are 7 little changes you can start to make today to start living life a bit on the healthier side of the road.

  1. Park further away. I am certain someone has told you this before. But I am going to tell you this again. Park further away! When you pull in for the night, if it’s available, find the furtherest parking spot available that will make you have to walk a few extra steps into the truck stop. Those extra steps add up.
  2. Drink up. Time is of the essence. But so is your health. And considering our bodies are primarily made up of water, it is best you start get to drinking. Water that is. You should be drinking half your body weight in ounces of water per day. And to help avoiding extra bathroom breaks, try getting up an hour earlier and start guzzling 10 ounces of water. Then an hour before you stop for break another 10 – 20 ounces. And then an hour before you unload and stop for the night…well you get the picture.
  3. Do something while you are driving. Now please don’t take this the wrong way. Be safe! But what about a hand weight, or resistance band, or shoulder rolls, or something! Better yet, tune into Mother Trucker Yoga’s 42 minute audio track that guides you though simple movements you can do while driving!
  4. Take a deep breath. Before you roll out of bed, take two minutes and breathe deeply. Your breath is the engine for your metabolism. Yet few look to this when it comes to getting healthy. Place one hand on your belly and one hand on your chest and just breathe as deeply and calmly as you can. Stress wrecks havoc on your body. Here’s one way to curb that. And try Mother Trucker Yoga’s audio track for better stress free breathing.
  5. Container eating. Sounds silly I know. But portion control can be one way to help control what you put in your mouth. It’s easy to all of a sudden have eaten that entire bag of chips. Or even though it’s healthy, an entire plate of rice, veggies and chicken. Most people eat when they are not even truly hungry. Here is what I ask myself daily: “Hope, are you head hungry or really hungry?” Most people are head hungry and not truly looking for nutrition. Make sure you know the difference.
  6. Add more movement in. I’m not saying you need to try to park your rig at a gym or yoga studio. But start to notice the moments in the day you have down time. The moments you are doing something, but nothing all at the same time. The moments you could be moving! Somehow moving. A stretch here, a squat there, it all adds up. And don’t forget to log into Mother Trucker Yoga’s online studio to get fit anytime, anywhere!
  7. Finally, start to believe you can live healthier. Visualize yourself a healthier, happier you. I use to think that was silly. Visualizing myself that way, and writing it down. Now that was ridiculous. But when asking people who have made big changes in their lives what they all did. The one thing they all have in common is they visualized themselves already there and they wrote it down. So, if anything, today, start here.

Don’t over complicate health. And believe that you can feel better than what you do now. But you, yes you have to make the first step.

The first step is usually the hardest, and after that, well that is why Mother Trucker Yoga is here. We got your back!

Trucking Food and Fitness Tracker

5 Reason Truckers Need A Food & Fitness Journal

When is the last time you saw someone advertising to a truck driver to keep a food journal?

Have you ever kept a food journal?

Have you ever tracked what you eat, when, and in what quantities?

 

You might be surprised to find that most Americans eat more than what their brain cares to remember.

Some of you may or may not know, but I found yoga as a means to step into recovery from a long battle with an eating disorder. One that I was told, best case scenario is I would “learn to function in the world on medication.”  But something in me said that would not be my future.

Having a food and fitness journal helped me establish a healthier relationship with food, fitness and myself. I used food to not have to deal or feel with anything in life. Maybe you can relate better to the word numb. I wanted to be numb.

But if you want to change anything, and I mean ANYTHING, you must first be aware of it. Aware of what it is you desire to change. And then be willing to step back from your excuses and loaded reasons as to why you are the way you are (be them true or not) and see things as they actually are.

I have worked with thousands of people over the last nearly 20 years and trucker or not, most of us have a skewed perception of what and how much we really eat and do over the course of a day.

Drinking that Diet Coke and Monster at 10 AM every day is so automatic that you most days forget you even do it. But when you don’t have it. Watch out world, things might get ugly.

And when it comes to moving more (some call it fitness or exercise), well we all know the response. I’m to BLANK. Or I do move a lot (except it’s only in small bursts one to two times a day straight off of sitting for several hours behind the wheel.

So what is the benefit of keeping a food and fitness journal?

Well, its really quite simple.

Eating is for fueling, not feeling.

When you track what you eat. How much you eat. Alongside how you are feeling or why you are eating what you are eating. It is important to point out that food does not fix how we feel-talking from experience. And many of us are eating out of boredom, loneliness, oral fixation, sadness and so on. And when we can see on a piece of paper right in front of us what is really going into our mouths only then can we start to do something about it. And when you tie in how you are feeling, well Dr. Phil we may have just found a very important piece to the puzzle.

It is easier to create a plan when you have data.

Trucker Food Journal

Have you ever tried to plan a route to get your load from point A to point B but it’s your first time running the load? So that initial time feels like a shot in the dark.

Hoping things go smoothly.

Hoping there are no delays.

Hoping you didn’t miss or forget something.

And because you have no real data to compare to, it’s shot in the dark. It’s only after you run the load that you gather data and then for future loads you can become more and more effective. Food and fitness are no different. Journaling (logging) what you eat and how much you move daily, as much of a pain in the ass as it may seem will only help you be more effective in the changes you desire to make. Those shots in the dark can easily become frustrating. And what if some of the changes you decided to implement weren’t even necessary? And could have been avoided having first collected data. AKA what you ate, and how much you moved in real time.

Fitness really can be at your finger tips. It really can be. It’s available to you each and every day. Except you and everyone else struggling with working out. Is just that, only looking at fitness as exercise. Hitting the gym, heading to a yoga studio or dying as you try to keep up with a P90X video that seems to have skipped absolute beginner mode. And if you are still wondering what yoga can do for you here are 60 benefits for truckers to read up on.

Fitness to me should be an equation incorporating your every day life movements.

Downward Dog Stretch while filling up with fuel + Core Marching while in the drivers seat waiting to unload + wrist stretches while driving + ANYTHING else you can throw in there = WAY more than you would be doing otherwise!

The little things can easily go unnoticed.

Three little packs of ketchup (sugar) here, sugar added to your coffee over there. Sweetened Ice-Tea at 2 PM, and on it goes. All those little things DO ADD UP! And all those little things are usually packed with sugar, preservatives, and you just don’t need it. Let me say that again. You just don’t need it. You want it, it’s a habit, extra ketchup, mayo, sugar, sweetener, and now your body craves it because it’s addicted to it.

But trust me when I say the world will keep turning when you opt out. But in order to opt out, you have to have a true sense of of much you are opting in on those condiments in the first place. So say hello to your food journal. How many ketchup packets, how many sugars, how large is the sweetened ice-tea and what are you feeling when you reach for them?

You might be doing better than you think.

When I talk to people about how much they are moving and what they are eating it is not uncommon to have a slightly slanted view of how good you really are doing. It’s easy to let the few not so great choices cloud our vision of success (talking from experience). Writing down everything can help you gain a better sense of where you truly are in your journey. Trust me when I say lying to yourself will not get you anywhere. And it is vital to celebrate the little wins, and acknowledge what you are doing right.

It is easy to want everything to change tomorrow and when it doesn’t we can easily get frustrated. But let’s be real for a moment and say where you are, and how you are did not happen over night. When I was going through the early stages of recovery I would have a slip up or bad day and think I just suck, and am doing everything wrong. But I had learned how to live this way over the course of 10 + years. So it was unrealistic to allow myself to think that I would be all good in a week, a month, even a year. And to be really honest, it’s been 15 years and and I am STILL working on things. Layer by layer.

Where to start.

Where to start? Seriously, where to start? Overwhelm can easily set in and before we know it we are complaining to our friends that this and that, and the other thing just aren’t working. Maybe it’s because you never really, truly laid out a plan. You never really figured out where to start because you never really stopped and took a week to figure out where you are.

This is a big mistake I see many people make. keeping a food and fitness journal can help you create a clear focus of where you truly are. But you have to be truthful and honest with what you write down, and don’t miss a thing. The will be a part of your brain that will say “this is dumb”, “just give up”, “you don’t need this”. My advice: “throw down some cuss words and do it anyway”. (that was my humor again). You got this. You really do.

So now what?

Well, you start to write it ALL DOWN! EVERYTHING. Don’t miss a thing!

For how long?

No less than three days, but ideally an entire week! And don’t forget to write down what you are feeling as well.

Here is a quick cliff notes sheet of everything to write down in your food and fitness journal:

  • Date
  • Time
  • Feeling/Emotion Connected
  • Are you truly hungry
  • What did you eat
  • How much did you eat
  • Movement: when, how long, how you feel

And most importantly, go easy on yourself. This is day one, step one on your journey to a healthier and happier you. And if anyone gives you grief. Just have them answer to me!

Here are a few suggestions for paper and pen food and fitness journals that could help get you started.

Not a paper and pen kinda person? Try texting to yourself your data. Look for an app. Whatever method you decide, commit and be honest. Because tracking your food and fitness in a journal is step one. And if you can do this, you and I, my friend, can do anything!

 

Mother Trucker Yoga Benefits of Yoga for Truckers

60 Benefits of Yoga for Truckers

Yoga has been around for more than 5,000 years, but it has transformed into many things over the last decade.

So what is yoga?

To some it is exercise and stretching.

To others is quiet time, and relaxation.

And to others it looks like a contortion practice that they will never be able to achieve.  

To me, it is a lifestyle. An opportunity to get quiet, move your body, and listen to something I believe many of us are lacking and craving in this overstimulated world. Yoga is something that any truck driver, making long hauls day after day, could benefit from.

 

For the average trucker, who couldn’t use a little time to stretch, relax and decompress?

 

Yoga for Truckers - Warrior II

Here are 60 Benefits of Yoga for Truckers (Reasons to Make Mother Trucker Yoga Part of Your Daily Life):

  1.   Yoga improves flexibility
  2.   Strengthens muscles, conditioning us from arthritis and back pain
  3.   Aids in realigning the spine & help to distribute weight evenly
  4.   Yoga moves all 300 joints
  5.   Helps to keep your spinal disks supple giving them the nutrients they need.
  6.   Yoga offers natural weight-bearing exercise, increasing bone density
  7.  Gets your blood flowing, getting more oxygen to your cells and helps boost hemoglobin & red blood cells.
  8.   Assist in increasing the drainage of lymph, helping to destroy & fight cancerous cells
  9.   Yoga gets your heart rate up lowering the risk of heart disease
  10.   Yoga gets you breathing
  11.   Lowers blood pressure
  12.   Yoga lowers cortisol levels, helping with long term memory, also fighting depression
  13.   Turns up the heat to help to burn calories
  14.  Gets you to become more conscious of your being: eating, social, presence
  15.   Can lower blood sugar & LDL & boosts HDL (“good” cholesterol)  
  16.   Improves coordination, reaction time, memory and even IQ
  17.   Helps you to relax, shifting from the sympathetic to the parasympathetic nervous system
  18.   The practice can aid in increasing body awareness
  19.   Yoga reduces chronic tension, muscle fatigue, soreness in the wrists, arms, shoulders, neck & face.
  20.   Becomes a way to cope with the business of life
  21.   Can improve immune function
  22.   Helps to expand lung function and breathing capacity above the normal 18%
  23.   Yoga and meditation help to build awareness
  24.   Helps to reduce anger and replaces it with compassion
  25.   Yoga helps to change self-image
  26.  Helps you stand and sit a bit taller
  27.   Can assist you in breaking free from dependencies in life and addictions
  28.   Can help release emotional tensions
  29.   Assists one break away from the ego
  30.   Can naturally lubricates joint
  31.   Yoga increases the recovery rate of the body
  32.   Reduces the effects of aging
  33.   Helps with increasing coordination
  34.   Is an effective ways to cope with stress
  35.   Improves endurance
  36.   Teaches you nothing is impossible and everything is attainable at some level
  37.   Can help to warm the extremities
  38.   Increases heat that can then kill bacteria in the body
  39.   Can normalizes and stimulates endocrine glands (thyroid) activity by compression & decompression of the neck)
  40.   Increases the serotonin to the brain lifting your mood
  41.   Teaches you how to build and attain goals
  42.  The practice invites what is unconscious to the surface so it can be integrated into conscious awareness
  43.   Helps cultivate self-love
  44.   Works on all 700 muscles: strengthening, stretching, toning
  45.   Can aid in regulating hormonal activity
  46.   Assists your meditation practice
  47.   Yoga can teach us how to act without judgment & help us to truly flourish in life
  48.   Yoga helps reduces the risks of heart disease
  49.   Can assist in stimulating the organs of elimination, promoting regular bowel movements
  50.   The nervous system is toned an the lumbar nerve plexus is stimulated, promoting overall vitality of the kidneys and reproductive organs
  51.   Can be a natural way to reduce and eliminate bloating, abdominal discomfort and fatigue
  52.   Helps release shoulder tension
  53.   Helps cultivate body awareness
  54.   Promotes self-discipline, only you know if you are challenging yourself or not
  55.   Refreshes blood flow to the brain refreshing our thinking process and mental attitudes
  56.   Helps to regulate menstruation, reducing pain, discomfort & mood fluctuation  
  57.   Can help assist women through the transition into menopause naturally and easily
  58.   The practice helps cultivate contentment
  59.   Can be practiced anywhere
  60.  Finally, yoga is about you a practice ultimately created by you, for you and to benefit you-a lifestyle approach

 

Let’s not forget the opportunity that yoga has to offer you.

While out on the road, movement can be limited and stress can be high. So it could be a natural solution to both. Time to decompress and breathe, all the while stretching and meeting some of the daily movement requirements of the body.

More than 80 percent of truckers who started on a yoga exercise plan reported reduced stress as a result of practicing yoga. Read more about the benefits of yoga and statistics related to the trucking industry here.

Mother Trucker Yoga isn’t fancy. And it’s no where near complicated. Mother Trucker Yoga is created with simple, easy moves that directly target a truckers biggest concerns while sneaking in some much needed stress relief, breathing and enhanced sleeping opportunities.

Because honestly, who out there doesn’t want to feel at least a little better than they currently do?

What if 3-5 minutes could make all the difference?

And when you do it regularly, imagine how you could feel then?

Don’t be shy about considering adding a little yoga into your life. Because Mother Trucker Yoga wants you to keep on trucking. And one of the best ways you can keep on trucking, is with a little (Mother Trucker) yoga in your life!

Yoga for Truck Drivers | Mother Trucker Yoga

 

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