How to Stay Alert on Long Road Trips

If you're getting ready to drive across the country or even across the state, then you're probably looking up things like how to avoid overheating and other problems, and how to stay alert on long road trips. This is especially true if you're going to be the only driver the whole time. For people like this, the vision in front of you can get a little monotonous and cause you to get that tunnel vision that highway drivers suffer from after driving for so many hours. However, there are some things you can do to make this a little easier on yourself and keep your eyes and mind alert to what's going on around you. This is important for the safety of you and your passengers, as well as other drivers on the road.

Convenient Snacks and Drinks

One of the snack ideas that many people find helpful when you're going a long way is sunflower seeds. It's something easy to snack on that doesn't really require a lot of movement with your hands and it is just enough to keep your brain alert while you get a healthy snack. Obviously, if you don't want the shells in your car you can always throw them out the window because they are natural and biodegradable. If it's too cold outside for that, you can just keep a little cup nearby and put the empty shells in the air. Other great snacks include gum and anything you can pop in your mouth that doesn't require you to hold it for long periods of time.

Keeping a drink handy that is either ice cold or nice and warm with some caffeine will be helpful. If you're going to do this, then either use something with a straw or with a vehicle safe lid so it won't spill on your lap. Both of these can be disastrous in terms of causing an accident and creating major problems. If caffeine is a problem for you, then sometimes just ice water will be enough to help your brain stay awake and help you be more aware of your surroundings. Anything that offers your body a jolt of refreshment should be enough to wake it up out of a stupor and make you more alert.

Bringing Your Favorite Music

Music is another great choice, especially if you love singing along. Even when you're at your most tired, cranking up the radio and singing along to your favorite song is going to go a long way in terms of helping you stay awake. Music is so motivating all around, even when you think you're tired of exercising, and it's a big help for people who are driving several hours at a time. If you're not sure you can find what you like on the radio, then take along your favorite CD or MP3 player and make up your own mix.

Of course it always helps if you have someone to talk to, and if you do have a road buddy, make sure they're great conversation. Sometimes, just having a discussion to take your mind off the road can be enough to keep you alert after a long day. Just be careful you don't get so deep in your conversation that you don't pay attention to the rules of the road or other vehicles. It's helpful if you have this other person for a driving buddy as well so you can switch off. One last tip for staying alert on long road trips is to take little cat naps along the way for 20 minutes at a time and really help refresh your mind much more than you might imagine.

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