Road Trip Health Tips for Staying Well on a Road Trip
Road trips are wonderful experiences. Being able to leave everyday life behind and break routine for days or weeks at a time is a gift, one that not everyone gets to enjoy often. However, while breaks from routine are indeed welcome, there are some downsides associated with them. Chief among them is your health. If you’re planning your next road trip now, here’s how you can go about making sure it’s a healthy one.
In your daily life, you likely have a standard of what you’re going to eat, when, and when you are going to exercise. All of that might go out the window when you are on the road, simply because the logistics don’t allow for such consistency. On top of that, there are health dangers specific to being on the road that you should watch out for.
Have a hydration plan
Hydration is very important. Not only does water help maintain your health, but it also has a direct effect on your mental alertness. Your brain needs lots of water to function, and the first signs of dehydration are usually mental ones. Dehydration symptoms include brain fogs, fatigue, focus issues, depression, stress, and a lack of mental clarity.
To make matters worse, all of the above symptoms can also be caused by spending too much time on the road, especially if the journey has been stressful. This is why it’s important to have plenty of water in the car and be ready to refresh with water when needed. If needed, plan to drink a certain amount of water every hour just to make sure you don’t forget it because you were distracted.
Avoid junk food roadside snacking
Eating junk food from roadside stops may be part of the fun of a road trip for you. If that’s the case, don’t go wild; once in a blue moon won’t kill you. But if your goal is to be as healthy as possible on the road, eating actual meals or bringing food with you from home is probably the best solution. If you have food on the car, make sure it’s properly refrigerated; bad mayonnaise can ruin an entire trip.
Move your body around
The cramped confines of a car are bad for your joints and your circulation from sitting too long. To keep yourself healthy and prevent discomfort, try to take a break every few hours in order to stretch, do a bit of walking and maybe do some light warmups. Those can be done at a rest stop, or by parking on the side of the road. If you’re in no hurry, you can plan stops at parks and hiking trails that are close to the route you’re traveling by. That will keep you healthy and give you a chance to take in more sights.
Go easy on the caffeine
Coffee keeps you awake, but it also boosts the levels of stress hormones in your bloodstream. It’s best to enjoy caffeine in moderation while on the road. Try to drink only your usual amount of coffee — assuming you’re a coffee drinker, of course. If you really want to be alert, drink fifty percent more than usual.
When staying in publicly shared environments like hotels, motels, and eating at rest stops, viruses and bacteria are always a concern. This is especially true in 2020, but some basic precautions are healthy even when there isn’t a pandemic going around. It’s a good idea to carry hand sanitizer, sanitizing wipes, and an alcohol-based disinfectant or gel in order to clean surfaces you come in contact with. After all, catching a cold or some other infection is a great way to ruin a holiday.
Be wary of alcohol products left in the heat. Hand sanitizers, for example, should not be left in hot cars.
Get good rest
Before the trip and during it, make sure you let your body get as much sleep as you need. Proper sleep helps regulate everything from your mood to your hormonal levels, and maintaining will help you stay healthy through the trip. If you find yourself too excited to fall asleep the night before the trip, consider a natural calming remedy, like CBD or another natural sleep remedy. CBD does have side-effects, though. If you aren’t aware of them, you should check this Cibdol.com guide.