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It’s not a sprint: Advice from a 20-year Schneider OTR truck driver

OTR Truck Driver Veteran Joe

From staying safe on the road mile after mile to sticking to his running regime, Schneider Over-the-Road Driver Joe is a master of routine.

Joe grew up in Wausau, Wisconsin, with a tight-knit family. After building and selling homes with his dad for 12 years, Joe was ready for something new.

“I’ve wanted to drive truck since high school,” Joe told his dad.

“Oh, Joe. You’ll never like it,” his dad replied.

After discovering that Schneider would pay for his tuition to acquire his Commercial Driver’s License (CDL), Joe set his sights on driving for the Big Orange.

With 20 years and more than 2 million safe miles on the road, Joe’s still holding his tongue from telling his father, “I told you so.”

Lacing up

While many OTR truck drivers love driving for the sight-seeing, Joe elevates his experience by swapping his driving boots for a pair of running shoes.

Joe has an established routine of getting up and driving early, so he can make time to run for 20 to 30 minutes in the evening. Contrary to his instinct for repetition, sometimes he may drive a longer distance just so he can run in a new area.

“I don’t think I ever run the same route twice,” Joe said. “New is always better when I’m out on the road.”

Running has been in Joe’s blood since childhood.

“When I was younger, I strictly ran 10k races. Since it’s a little tougher to track now when I’m driving, my new goal is to at least run a 5k each year — usually back home where I live now in Minocqua, Wisconsin.”

Family first, second and third

Joe’s home time is essential to him.

“The first six months of driving were the toughest,” Joe said. “But things got easier and home time with family definitely helped.”

Joe’s close family includes his brother and sister. His sister and mom bond over the hometown 5k race each year, while he and his brother prefer fishing and hunting together.

Family time doesn’t stop when Joe hits the road, either. No more than a day or two goes by without getting on the phone with his parents and hearing them say the words every concerned parent tells their children: “Be careful out there.”

Part of something bigger than himself

Two million miles of safe driving doesn’t happen without being careful, smart and trusting your gut. Joe’s motto is to take it slow and if in doubt, get out.

“If you’re ever not sure about something, whether it’s when you’re backing the truck into a spot or anything else in life, get out and look over the situation.”

Joe has an insatiable curiosity and a clear excitement for delivering products to different places.

“A lot of these products I deliver end up on the shelves for others to use,” Joe said. “In my eyes, the work I do keeps the world moving.”

Thanks for keeping the world moving, Joe, and for doing so with us!

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Schneider Guy loves the "Big Orange." He's passionate about the trucking industry and connecting people to rewarding careers within it. He's been the eyes and ears of our company since our founding in 1935, and he's excited to interact with prospective and current Schneider associates through "A Slice of Orange."

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