Eat right for healthy muscles
This could be the hardest one to stick to, but stay away from high sodium and fatty foods. It may taste incredible, but there’s nothing like good fried chicken to draw moisture away from your muscles and cause cramps and back pain. If you can’t stomach the idea of reducing fats and salts, at least increase your pure water intake. Fruit juices are a close second, but straight water without the additives and flavors can go a long way to flushing your muscles and keeping you limber.
You may also want to add a multi-vitamin or at least a magnesium supplement to your diet, which will promote good blow flow and muscle elasticity.
Proper cab settings
It’s the sitting still for hours on end that’s doing your back wrong, so making sure your cab is as comfortable as possible should be your focus. The steering wheel should be adjusted in conjunction with the wheel so your arms rest comfortably on it without having to hunch over, so pull the seat forward if you have to. Keep the seat at a level where your calves just barely overhang to reduce pressure on them, and you are sitting up straight with less stress on your spine. Don’t set and forget your seat adjustments- fine tune them to get the right feel.
Mirrors are part of your walk around check, and you want them working so you don’t have to lean forward or at odd angles to see what you need to see. Your mirrors should be set so you can simply turn your head (from an upright posture) to eliminate undue stress on your neck.
Rest stop exercises
You don’t have to make a fool of yourself by doing a Jane Fonda workout every time you stop, but even walking around the rig a few times to loosen muscles and get your blood flowing will do you a world of good. Stretch out your arms and legs, and use the grips on your cab to stay steady when stretching your back. A few minutes of this at each and every pull over will do you a world of good and keep you comfortable and healthy when you climb back in the cab.
Back pain may always be a consideration of truck driving, but if you keep it in mind, you can keep on the road longer without long terms health effects. Do yourself a favor and do right by your back.