6 Tips for a Fun and Safe Road Trip While Pregnant
i was feeling pretty nervous about taking a 20-hour road trip while pregnant, especially in my first trimester. i did a lot of research on how to make this the best it could be for both myself and my husband, especially since our road trip consisted of hauling all of our wordily possessions from oregon to colorado. i am no medical professional so please be sure to check in with your midwife or doctor before you hit the road.
here is what i found most helpful to have a fun and safe road trip while pregnant!
1) keep hydrated
we all know we should be drinking 8-10 8oz glasses of water even when our wombs are empty but these is even more important once you are growing a human! throw traveling on top of that and it’s even more important since we are sitting for extended periods of time.
my mother-in-law bought me this amazing metal cup (mine is white) for my birthday since i am trying to avoid drinking from plastic. even though you can find plastics that are BPA-free, my sometimes-conspiracy-theorist-mind keeps imagine them replacing the BPA with other potentially harmful ingredients and i don’t want to risk it.
keep a water bottle or cup filled your entire trip and keep on drinking those fluids. we bought jugs of water along the way so i could keep refilling my cup. staying hydrated will also help keep you from feeling gross and groggy as the hours pass.
2) make frequent stops
since you are consuming all that water, this won’t really be an issue of making frequent stops on your road trip. we generally stopped every 3ish hours because my bladder demanded it and a quick walk around the parking lot does a body good.
that’s the fun thing about a road trip – you control your travel time since you aren’t on a schedule to catch a train or a plane! making frequently stops will also help your blood circulate and give you and your fellow travelers some breathing room.
3) get compression socks + move your legs!
i’ve been using ones similar to these for years after i started running and they were perfect for my road trip! compression socks are important because pregnant ladies are more prone to developing blood clots. they can also help to relieve swelling and pain in your legs too so get a pair of these socks to wear even around the house!
my husband was very paranoid about me getting a blood clot so he started a friendly reminder happening about every 10 minutes. after the third time of this, i was getting annoyed so i started announcing any time i moved my legs, hips or feet to him so he would know i was moving my legs. i was in control of the announcements, which moved to about every 25 minutes.
4) bring your own pillow
traveling in a car is rarely the most comfortable place to sit for hours but then throw in the famous pregnancy backaches and woooof. i grabbed a smaller, rectangular pillow from our coach and threw it in the cab of our truck. that helped to alleviate some of the discomfort for my lower back and was also quite helpful around 3pm each day when i could no longer keep my eyes open and had to nap.
5) take some quiet time to yourself
i will not speak for all pregnant women because each woman is different but for me – my hormones can get a little crazy. i am not always rational (though in my mind i am absurdly confident in my mood swing) so there was a moment in our road trip when every single thing my husband did was annoying, irritating and just got under my skin. i am sure the exact same was true for him about me.
in order to keep the peace so neither of us actually threw the other from a moving vehicle, i simply put on my headphones and listened to a part of an audiobook. this allowed us both time to ourselves (as much as that is possible when you are are 3 feet apart in a car) and let my hormones mellow out so i could be a much more pleasant wife and road trip companion. it’s totally fine if you need to do something like this in the midst of your road trip because every single minute most likely isn’t going to be perfect.
6) pack healthy and delicious snacks
most of our choices for meals on the road aren’t the healthiest so this is where you get some control over the snacks you pack. we packed a small, soft cooler (we have this one but in a less happy color) and i filled it with grapes, carrots and a few cans of 7-up should i need to settle my stomach. we had reusable freezer packs that we refroze in our hotel rooms during the night and it worked great!
of course the snacks your want/crave are up to you but go easy on the less-than-healthy things because chances are your main meals won’t be healthiest. my absolute favorite snack during our last road trip were yogurt covered pretzels. is there a better salty/sweet combination? i think not. plus, i only needed a few at a time and they satisfied that craving. also look for ‘whole grains’ in some of your favorite snacks like crackers or cheez-its!
most of all though, have fun! this is a great way to get away while it’s still the two of you so make the most of your road trip while pregnant!
what are your vital road trip snacks and how do you ensure a good road trip, pregnant or not?