Hitting the road is an excellent way to vacation. And taking a road trip across America is a dream for citizens and tourists alike. The country has so much to offer from unique monuments and natural formations to stunning scenic drives. And the best time to do this for most people is when the weather gets better, and the kids are off school. If you’re thinking of hitting the road for an adventure this summer, here are some top tips to stay safe and healthy on your travels.
Prepare Your Vehicle
One of the most important things you can do to stay safe and healthy on a road trip is to ensure your vehicle is in great working order. It will also reduce the chance of losing precious vacation time in a mechanic’s shop. Some basics include:
- Make sure you have the right insurance.
- Consider getting roadside assistance.
- Check your battery charge and cables.
- Examine drive belts and hoses.
- Clean filters and replace fluids.
- Check the headlights and brake lights.
- Give the brakes a test.
- Inspect the tread of your tires.
Sadly almost 40,000 people are killed on the roads of the USA each year. Many of these are entirely preventable since they are caused by distractions like texting. But a great deal is also caused by car owners not ensuring their cars are safe. So take a few minutes, and save a life.
You’ll also want to do the same for your RV. Check out this article we wrote on DIY RV care and maintenance.
Check Your Vehicle’s AC Before You Leave
Air conditioning is crucial in the summer, so we’ve made this its own item. Heat stress is a genuine danger when driving. If you get too hot, you may become tired and irritable. Driving with the windows down may help if it’s not too hot out, but we all rely on our AC to really control the temperature and maintain our comfort. So give it a check and have it serviced before leaving if needed.
Pack Healthy Snacks
Who doesn’t enjoy a snack while driving on a road trip? It’s tempting to buy packaged foods from a gas station along your route. But these are full of calories and high in sugar. So while they will taste great and satisfy your urges, they will undoubtedly suck your energy and make you feel even more hungry in a short while. And the cycle continues. However, you can beat this by packing nutritious and healthy snacks. The best snacks to take are nuts and dried fruits, grapes, bananas, and protein-fueled jerky.
Eat Healthy on Your Trip
If the roads of America are known for one thing, it’s the delightfully delicious pit stops along the way. Diners, drive-ins, and BBQ pits are among some of the best food places you can stop at. But as satisfying as these classic dishes are overindulging leads to a host of problems beginning with fatigue on the road and ending with unwanted pounds. Follow these tips on eating healthy on travel days:
- Start with a simple breakfast.
- Pack healthy snacks.
- Use your RV kitchen or grill to eat healthy foods at the campground.
- Save your dining out days for real treats.
Pack Plenty of Water
You will get thirsty when driving, especially in the summer when it’s warmer. But popular drinks like soda, coffee, and tea are diuretics. This means the ingredients actually dehydrate you rather than giving your body the water it needs. They also typically have a lot of sugar and other additives. Pack plenty of water for your road trip. Water keeps you hydrated as much as you need. But it also helps your brain function and cell division. This means you will feel more energized and focused if you stay hydrated. Far superior to any energy drink on the market. And if you want a little flavoring, just toss some flavoring drops like Mio in your bag.
Get Enough Sleep the Night Before
Of course, you can assure a good start to your trip by simply getting enough sleep before you leave in the morning. Both at home and while on the road. Without adequate sleep, you will almost certainly begin to tire pretty quickly. When exhausted on the road, you will not be able to stay as alert as you need to be, putting everyone in danger. Additionally, you will have to make more frequent stops, delaying your itinerary. If you need to, pull over and get the rest you need. Also, don’t be tempted to drive too long in a day. Many folks rush to reach their destination, but there’s something to be said for taking time to find the hidden gems along the way.
Exercise Before Driving
Driving a long distance can be grueling and a bit of a challenge. And no matter what time you set off, you will need an energy boost. It might be surprising, but exercising can give you that boost. Some light exercise will get your blood flowing for more energy and loosen your muscles for a more comfortable ride. Additionally, you will get a serotonin boost to your brain, making you more excited about the drive ahead. Take the time to do a few stretches and even walk around the rest stop or gas station.
Protect Your Skin
When the sun’s beaming, the road is clear, and the radio is on, there’s nothing quite like opening the sun roof or rolling down the windows to soak in some rays. We all know the sun’s rays can be harmful if you aren’t careful, but we overlook the need for sun protection on drives and short hikes. Always be sure to wear appropriate sunscreen (SPF 30 to 50). I prefer skin care products that include SPF. Fortunately, you can get fantastic face creams and moisturizers from THE ICONIC that do a great job contributing to your overall skin hydration.
Take Regular Breaks
As they say, the road is long. And the US has some of the longest roads in the world. Route 20 alone crosses 12 states across 3,365 miles. Stretching from the Pacific Northwest to New England, it’s a beautiful drive full of stunning sights and scenery. But with everything to see, you will become tired. So it is vital you take regular breaks when taking a long-distance trip. If you’re taking a scenic road or byway, stop at some of the overlooks or even short hikes along the way.
Be Aware of other Drivers
Even if you do everything mentioned here, you cannot account for the errors of others. The road can be a dangerous place if you’re not practicing defensive driving and being aware of your surroundings. Other drivers are often not aware of the dangers or cutting off an RV. Try to stay mindful and vigilant when driving. Because it’s more than likely there’s someone out there who won’t.
There’s nothing quite like hitting the road. Each year, over 100 million Americans take a vacation with their families. And the classic road trip or one of the most exciting ways to see the states. However, the road is dry with dangers, so you need to stay healthy on a summer US road trip. You can start by checking if your vehicle is fit for the journey. You should also protect your skin. And nutritious food and hydration are crucial to beat tiredness.