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Destinations, Dreams and Dogs - International adventure with a fast-track family (& dogs) of Old World values, adopting the Russian-Italian-American good life on the go…!

9 Ways to Stay Awake on the Road

road-trip-etiquetteAny long, holiday drives ahead of you?  College students and families heading to visit family and friends….

Recently, Petya and I made a couple of long treks as he drove six hours back to one house and then I drove the two of us eight, long hours to our second house. It should have taken seven, but whenever we stopped for gas or restrooms, they had just closed for the night, sending us on yet another quest. Other than that, my biggest challenge was staying awake on the road.

Here are a few tips that could help you keep alert during your holiday travels. This is what I did:female worker asleep at desk

Try to grab a nap before the trip. I closed my eyes for about 15 minutes, but had so many texts coming in that I finally gave up. It would have been much better to bank an hour or two prior to driving all night.

Drink an energy drink. You know, those powerful little shots of citrus- or berry-flavored oomph. Reading the ingredients, they have almost no calories or other bad stuff, but generally pack a wallop. Unfortunately, they did nothing for me this time. I drank one. Waited an hour. Drank another. Two hours later, Petya gave me one of his. Plain juice might have worked more….

energyGet out and walk around. We drove on a very cold night. Warm and toasty inside the car, my son said to turn down the minimal heat. Even with it slight cool in the car, I felt my eyelids dropping. Stretching the legs helps.

Pull over and sleep. The two of us headed enroute to a large, well-lighted parking lot we knew. I turned off the engine and settled back in my seat. Couldn’t do it. One minute before, I had seemed so lethargic, now I just wanted to hit the road.

Red Bull. Mountain Dew. Unfortunately, or fortunately as the case may be if you care for your health, in the middle of the night, convenience stores could be sold out of these sugar-and-caffeine-laden drinks.

Slap your face, pinch your arms. You can arrive at your destination looking battered in addition tocoffee sleep-deprived-!

Coffee. God bless that coffee chain that happened to be open 24 hours at a rest stop. That doppio (double espresso) macchiato helped me more than anything. Regular coffee is too liquidy (in terms of spilling & also needing a bathroom) for my needs.

Talk or listen to music. Forgot all of my CDs, but my teen son stayed up with me most of the way. I wanted him to sleep, but was so glad that he helped.  The time passed quickly.

Just stay home. Not always an option, but very tempting….

Your mileage may vary. Be safe and enjoy! (Tomorrow: Holiday Security Tips)

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