Health haps at MATS include walk, cook-in-the-truck summit

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Trucking Solutions Group member operators Linda Caffee and Tom Kyrk are hosting a brand-new health event at the Mid-America Trucking Show Thursday, March 26, at 8 p.m. in the Papa John’s Parking Lot at Cardinal stadium in Louisville, Ky. The “Cooking in the Truck Summit” will get under way there at the Freightliner hospitality trailer. It’s aimed at helping drivers capitalize on what organizers say has been a marked recent increase in the number of drivers who cook in their trucks as resources proliferate, from websites to truck-specific cookbooks, among others.

Road Tested Living founder and driver Tom Kyrk, hard at work on a recipe challenge during a September 2014 stop of the Rolling Strong Driver Wellness Tour at the Petro in Carlisle, Pa. “The recipe I was cooking,” Kyrk says, “was based on a challenge given to me to make a meal with ingredients found solely in a truck stop. It was a beef-jerky stir fry, with veggies from the salad bar.”Road Tested Living founder and driver Tom Kyrk, hard at work on a recipe challenge during a September 2014 stop of the Rolling Strong Driver Wellness Tour at the Petro in Carlisle, Pa. “The recipe I was cooking,” Kyrk says, “was based on a challenge given to me to make a meal with ingredients found solely in a truck stop. It was a beef-jerky stir fry, with veggies from the salad bar.”

Kyrk himself, with Stevens Transport of Dallas, Texas, is founder and chief writer for the Road Tested Living website, which proceeds from Kyrk’s own journey toward better health on the road. His bio at the Trucking Solutions Group page spells out his own weight reduction from a high of 305 pounds. Kyrk and Caffee want to stress that “cooking on the truck does not have to be hard, complicated or expensive.”

The purpose of this Summit is threefold, the organizers say:

1) To discuss ways to encourage and promote cooking in the truck.
2) To share ideas on storage and recipes.
3) To discuss ways to work with the various companies in the trucking industry to help them understand drivers’ needs with the hope that, by doing so, products and services drivers use will become more widely available as well as economical.

Anyone with an interest in cooking in their truck, or grilling outside, is encouraged to attend. Email roadtestedliving@gmail.com to signal your desire to participate, including information about any group you may be affiliated with. “If you have personal information or pictures of your cooking tools or storage ideas please feel free to submit it as well if you will be unable to attend,” organizers say.

The Trucking Solutions Group’s health walk at MATS in 2013 drew the participation of FMCSA Administrator Anne Ferro. Find coverage of that walk in this past post to the Channel 19 blog.The Trucking Solutions Group’s health walk at MATS in 2013 drew the participation of FMCSA Administrator Anne Ferro. Find coverage of that walk in this past post to the Channel 19 blog.

Health awareness walk-and-talk on again this year
The event directly follows the March 26, 7 p.m., Trucking Solutions Group annual health walk at MATS, originally spearheaded years ago by Caffee and others of the TSG as a way to promote better health in an industry where average age of death fell far below U.S. averages.

The group plans to meet at 7 p.m. Thursday at the stage area in the Papa John’s parking lot. As during last year’s walk, the group will stroll over to the Churchill Downs raceway, home of the Kentucky Derby, and back.

Any driver interested in joining need only show up: “All are welcome,” organizers say, to join the 1.5-mile walk to promote driver health. TA Petro is again a sponsor and has pledged to provide 500 Ultra One points to those walking.