Staying Healthy on the Road

Disclosure: Consideration has been provided for publishing this article. These are great tips to remember before you head out the door! 

Whether you’re taking a road trip, visiting family that lives out of town, or traveling for business, you’ll want to stay healthy. Traveling puts your body through extra stressors such as jet lag and unfamiliar food, and you don’t want to get sick during your trip. Follow the tips below to keep yourself in top shape while you’re on the road.

Keep Up Your Fitness Routine

Image via Flickr by Phil Roeder

Depending on your itinerary and fitness level, walking through the city and climbing stairs all day may be enough exercise. If those activities are not challenging enough for you — or if you’re mostly lounging on the beach — you’ll want to follow a fitness routine.

Many hotels and resorts have on-site fitness centers that you can use for free, or you can research the area to find gyms. If you’re at a beach destination, look into water sports such as stand-up paddleboarding or surfing. Are you into biking? Look for city biking tours so that you can put in a workout while checking out the landmarks. Other options include working out in your hotel room with body weight exercises, going jogging, or bringing a jump rope for a quick and easy cardio routine.

Get Enough Sleep

While it is important to enjoy the area’s attractions and nightlife, it is also important to get enough sleep.  Too little sleep weakens your immune system, and you want to ensure you stay healthy throughout your travels and when you get home. A 2015 study found that people who get less than six hours of sleep each night are more than four times likely to develop a cold than people who get at least seven to eight hours of rest.

Avoid the sniffles by getting enough sleep. If getting your rest is not possible at night, try fitting a nap into your daily schedule. Keep in mind that your body will also be tired from the time zone changes and from long days of sightseeing.

Proper Hydration 

When you’re walking to and from different attractions all day, you’ll want to stay hydrated. As you likely already know, drinking bottled water is safer than drinking tap water while traveling. You should also be aware of the dehydrating effect of alcoholic drinks and sugary or caffeinated beverages such as coffee, soda, fruit juice, and caffeinated tea.

You don’t need to avoid those drinks completely, but you’ll need to supplement them with water. Foods with plenty of fluids, such as cucumbers and watermelons, can also help with hydration. Eating bananas can also help replace some of the potassium you lose through sweating.

It’s a good idea to keep track of your water intake to avoid dehydration symptoms such as headaches, irritability, muscle cramps, and low blood pressure. The recommendation for women ages 19 and older is at least 72 ounces, which is about 9 cups, of water each day. This number increases for women who are pregnant, breast-feeding, or are living in or visiting a hot climate.

Make your next trip enjoyable by following the tips above and staying healthy. You’ll feel better while you’re traveling, and you’ll come home with great memories.

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