Road trips are a great way to spend your vacations when you’re taking time off from work or school. The open roads, gentle breeze and natural beauty you experience on a road trip remain unparalleled.
While you may have to be confined to your seat if you’re taking a flight to a far-off destination, this is not the case for a road trip. A road trip is a much more scenic and interactive experience. Throughout the journey, you are surrounded by sight-seeing opportunities and the best part is, you can stop to admire whatever you like, whenever you want. Road trips truly bring out the explorer in you and if you like to go to adventures, you must try it at least once with your family or friends.
Mental and physical benefits of road trips
Not only are road trips a fun escapade for you to embark on, they also have several mental and physical health benefits. However, note that while they have their advantages, road trips also have very real, but easily avoidable hazards too.
The most prominent health benefits of road trips are psychological ones. Road trips are a great way for you to escape from the daily grind and monotony of work. You put all your stress and worries on hold and unwind. You focus on the natural beauty around you and this helps improve your mood and re-energize and reinvigorate your mind.
Roads trips, just like any other pleasurable activity, increase serotonin and dopamine levels in the body and cause a sense of elation and happiness. On a road trip, you spend a lot of time with your family in close quarters. In today’s world, where everyone is busy with their lives, road trips are a unique opportunity for you to bond with your family and connect with them in a meaningful way. This improves the family dynamic and environment at home, resulting in lower stress levels and a higher sense of contentment.
On a road trip, you get to experience new places and cultures. You explore and gain knowledge about historical sites. This education and exposure to new surroundings make your brain work, helping its hippocampus grow. This improves brain functioning and has long-standing benefits.
Road trips also have a few physical benefits to go with the mental ones. We live in cities that are largely polluted by fumes and harmful gases such as carbon monoxide, Sulphur dioxide, and unburnt hydrocarbons. These gases can cause a wide range of illnesses including respiratory problems, cardiovascular problems, and even cancer. Road trips take you to far of places, away from these urban centers. You are exposed to a fresh and uncontaminated atmosphere and breathing this air helps improve your respiratory system’s health.
During a road trip you are out in the open for long periods of time. This means you receive an adequate amount of exposure to sunlight, which helps your body produce vitamin D. Vitamin D is needed by the body to absorb calcium and is thus vital for healthy bones and teeth. This is why road trips are a welcome change from our daily, indoor-oriented routine.
Potentially dangerous consequences of road trips
It’s important to understand that road trips do have potential dangers as well. Perhaps the biggest risk during road trips are chances of car accidents. In a road trip you often drive through all sorts of roads, in different environmental condition. Some of these conditions are quite difficult to maneuver through which is why it is important to have a seasoned driver in control of the vehicle at all times.
Not only should the driver be experienced, he should also be well rested and alert. While it may not seem so at first, driving for long distances can be quite tiresome, both physically and mentally. If the driver loses focus, car accidents are all but a certainty. This is why it is necessary for the driver to have appropriate amount of sleep the night before travel.
Indeed, studies have shown that lack of sleep has a similar impact on a driver’s reaction time as consuming alcohol. It would be best if there is more than one designated driver so that they can take shifts without needing to make too many stops. However, regular stops should still be taken for rest and food.
Speaking of food, one common bad and potentially dangerous habit is eating snacks while driving. People do this to save time without realizing that this means the driver is not 100% focused on the road and could have delayed reaction time. This small blunder could be fatal.
Other problems that can arise are lack of muscle activity during the drive. Cramps are a very real possibility, especially if the car isn’t spacious enough and lacks leg room. Due to the absence of activity of leg muscles, blood pools towards your feet causing swelling and even clots. All this can be avoided by taking regular stops to step out, stretch and walk around for a bit.
Although your personal car might be suitable for your daily use, it may not be ideal for long road trips. You may need to rent a car- an appropriate car is vital for an enjoyable road trip.
If you are someone who takes road trips regularly, selling your current car to a value my car free company and buying a new one is a better option than renting a car each time.