How Long Commutes Impact Your Health

August 2, 2020 0 Comment
heal your body, chronic pain, neck pain

How Long Commutes Impact Your Health

Long commutes to and from work can feel like a pain at the time. Studies now show they are actually causing more damage than you think. There are a plethora of health risks associated with long commutes and depending on if you have pre-existing issues, could be worse. 

Research done by Royal Society for Public Health said the average commute is about 56 minutes. This study showed people who commuted an hour were 33% more likely to suffer from depression and 21% more likely to be obese who commuted longer than an hour and a half.

lab testing, commuting causing high blood pressure

What Does a Long Commute Do to Me?

Long commutes can seriously hurt your overall health. Whether if it’s every day or couple times a week — the factors are not in your favor. 

  • Driving more than 10 miles one-way can raise your blood sugar levels, which can lead to pre-diabetes and diabetes.
  • Again driving more than 10 miles one-way can lead to higher cholesterol, which can lead to heart disease.
  • More than 10 miles one-way can also lead some commuters to have a higher chance of developing depression, anxiety, and social isolation.
  • Most people that take commutes usually have their happiness and life satisfaction go down in proportion to the length of the commute.
  • Your blood pressure can spike during stressful traffic jams, and your blood pressure rises over time, which can cause heart disease and strokes.
  • You’ll feel more exhausted even after getting many hours of sleep.
  • Finally, your back will start to suffer because of hunching over in the car seat for such long periods.

What Can I Do to Improve my Commute?

Find a Closer Job

While you can’t make your commute shorter besides getting another job, you can improve how it goes. Although if your commute really has you bogged down, you may want to consider if this job is really worth it.

Take Frequent Walking Breaks

You need to get up more, you sit in the car, you sit at work, and you come home and sit. This can put so much stress on your back and hips. Try to move around at work some, or park your car on the lowest level of parking and take the stairs, or if you use public transit get off a few stops early and walk the rest of the way.

Change Your Route

If your commute has you bored, try taking a different route maybe once every week. While most of us get into autopilot when we drive to work — its beneficial to stimulate the brain. By changing your route, you can keep your brain active and entertained. Many traffic apps will have you going through crowded lanes of traffic, so why not take a slightly longer path through a wooded area.


Try stretching every so often when it’s safe to do so and before and after the drive. Taking 5 minutes before and after the drive to stretch out some of the tightness and loosen up, it does wonder for getting rid of pain or preventing any health problems.

Set an Appointment with MASJ

We see many clients who pass through San Jose from San Francisco to Gilroy, Morgan Hill, or even Santa Cruz. Setting an appointment on your way home can break up your commute and solve any pain ailments you have. Want to give it a try? Schedule a Free Consultation.

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