Health Nut: Safe Holiday Driving

As I drove 10 hours (instead of the predicted seven) to my cousins’ house in New Jersey last night, I finally figured out what my blog would be about today–safe holiday driving. Because being alive is a big part of being healthy. has many excellent tips for safe driving. Here are a few that stand out for me after my long trip.

1. Be a safe passer. I got passed on the right many times, and not because I was going too slow (I set my cruise control at 10 mph over the speed limit, in good conditions). There was plenty of room to pass on the left, but the drivers thought this was too much trouble. It just made me nervous, and was dangerous for the right passer because he or she could have collided with someone passing on the left.

2. Start rested. Always begin a long trip with plenty of sleep. It could be worth your life just to sleep one extra night at college instead of leaving just after that final you pulled an all-nighter for. On the road, drink plenty of water (dehydration will make you more tired), take breaks, and eat energy loaded, low in fat, food. At the end of the drive, eat crunchy things to keep you awake, like pretzels and peanuts.

3. Exercise courtesy. I needed to get into the EZPass lane, which meant venturing into the far left lane. This lane was crowded, and I didn’t have much time to spare, so I put on my signal and waited for an opening. They were hard to come by. I finally moved into this lane, only for blinking headlights to welcome me. This gesture is one of my pet peeves. Especially in this situation, when everyone should be slowing down to 15 mph anyway, and it is obvious why I needed to move over.

(Graphic courtesy of

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