Phase 1, Day 15: Seeds of Change

I woke this morning to my trainer moving the truck to the drop location (which was only a couple hundred feet from where we parked for the night). There were trains running by the truck all night, but it didn’t really affect my sleep because I had collected a couple pairs of earplugs at one of the warehouses where we made a previous drop. Earplugs are a wonderful thing to have on-hand as a trucker.

After making our drop today, we learned that our next load would take us to Illinois, which meant I wouldn’t return to Murray today. Perhaps tomorrow? I’m flexible, whatever happens, and I know I’m still going to get paid for the miles, so I don’t mind. Like I said before: it’s important to be adaptable.

We reached our pickup destination at 1, then waited for them to give us a dock. My trainer decided to quit smoking today, and I support his efforts. I just hope the waiting doesn’t stress him out too much.

One thing about addictions is that they are often associated with patterns and environments in your day. Many people have expressed that it was easier for them to quit smoking when they moved to a new home or got a new job. Even by changing your daily routine you can fight addictions easier. But when your home is your truck and every day is the same routine of load, drive, unload, it can be challenging to fight those patterns.

My trainer has decided to try chewing sunflower seeds to see if it’ll help him curb his habit. We’ve heard of people using it as an aid in kicking the habit (by replacing it with another one that still involves the oral fixation and the movement of hand to mouth), so hopefully it’ll help. I’m glad to see him seeking positive change in his life.

I’ve got some habits of my own I’m seeking to change. When I’m driving long distances, I tend to keep snacks around and graze throughout the drive. My favorite snacks are dried fruit, seeds and jerky. But after driving six hours, I can polish off an entire bag of trail mix or jerky (or both) in a day. And at $7-13 per snack, that’s about $50-100 a week I’m spending on snack food, not to mention the calories I’m taking in! In order to stem this tide, I’ve taken steps to reduce my grazing and spending habits. First, I’ve started chewing gum. It’s flavorful, keeps my mouth busy, I can chew it for an hour or two before it loses flavor, and it’s inexpensive. Second, I’ve started using my Camelbak (a water pouch you can wear on your back — or, in my case, attach to the back of my driver’s seat). Since most hunger is actually thirst misinterpreted, and since it’s hard to keep hydrated on the road, my Camelbak has helped to eliminate both problems. And third, instead of snacking on trail mix and jerky, I’ve started chewing sunflower seeds, which are only a couple bucks a pack and can last multiple days. The only real concern now is the high sodium content of sunflower seeds. Thankfully, there are low-sodium seeds available, if I can ever find them…

So it seems my trainer and I will be avid supporters of the sunflower seed market henceforth. Maybe we should buy sunflower stocks?

After four hours we were finally loaded and ready to roll out. We were about eight hours from our drop off in Illinois, and my trainer and I swapped at our fuel stop after 3.5 hours, leaving me with a five-hour drive before we would reach our destination.

Our ETA is about 2am in Illinois, if everything goes according to plan. Since that’s not til tomorrow, I’ll go ahead and wrap up my post for today. I hope you’ll be back tomorrow for the (hopeful) conclusion of my first phase of training!

Until then, goodnight.

4 thoughts on “Phase 1, Day 15: Seeds of Change

  1. If you are “grazing” does that automatically include walking? I think not! You are driving and grazing vs walking and grazing. I believe you are familiar with this semantic debate.

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