The Truckload Carriers Assn. (TCA) is issuing a challenge to truck drivers and other workers within the trucking industry: lose weight.

TCA has partnered with Lindora Clinic, a provider of a medically based weight-loss/management wellness program, to create the “Trucker Weight Loss Showdown.” The contest, which will accept applications for participants from Oct. 15, 2011, through Nov. 30, 2011, will officially begin on Jan. 24, 2012. Winners will be announced at TCA’s Safety & Security Division Annual Meeting in May 2012.

“When we first heard the startling statistics around driver health, we knew we needed to get involved immediately. The trucking industry plays a vital part in our national economy. Unfortunately, the challenges they experience have created an industry health problem that has implications for all of us. [That’s why] we are very excited to partner with the TCA to make a difference in the health of drivers,” said Cynthia Graff, executive chairman, Lindora Clinic.

Lindora has experience working with the Las Vegas division of TCA member Knight Transportation, putting its employees through its 10-week, medically based Lean for Life on the Road program that stresses a low-carbohydrate, moderate-protein, low-fat diet; exercise; nutrition education; and lifestyle changes.

“What our team found so appealing about Lindora is how quickly they learned about – and were able to adapt their program to – the lifestyle of truckers,” said Kevin Knight, chairman & CEO of Knight Transportation. “We have unique challenges that other weight-loss programs simply don’t account for. A driver might be in a remote part of the country with no access to a grocery store, no gym and a tiny refrigerator that is too small to hold much specialty food. He spends many hours at the wheel, for extended periods of time, with little physical activity. This is not your typical weight-loss situation. Lindora’s program helps truckers face their obstacles so they can finally be successful at improving their health.”

Five fleets will be accepted into the challenge, TCA said.

Carriers participating in the “Trucker Weight Loss Showdown” will receive a 25% discount on Lindora’s weight loss support services, which include weekly one-on-one personalized nurse sessions, the “Learn-on-the-Road” CD library, copies of the company’s Lean for Life Phase One: Weight Loss book, food journals, some food supplements, and extensive online support tools. In addition, Lindora has agreed to donate a portion of the proceeds to a charity of TCA’s choice.