Its simplicity belies its value.
Take a break.
Get off the bike and rest.
Taking a break after riding for a while helps us to become more alert when we get back in the saddle. Particularly after we’ve become hungry, tired, hot, cold, thirsty or cramped. Anything that can distract us from the road can reduce our safety and riding enjoyment.
So, get off the road, get off the bike. Get something to eat. Take a little walk. Take some photos. Hang out and chat. Get warmed up. Cool off a little. Whatever works for you as a break.
Heck, when needed, I’ve taken naps in all kinds of places when I’ve been on the road long enough to wear me out.
Restaurants, gas stations and actual rest stops are the most common places to stop. But if those aren’t available when you need a rest, just pull off the side of the road — obviously in a safe place — to stretch some muscles, grab a drink of water or a snack. You did bring some water and a snack, didn’t you?
Speaking of snacks, those of you who are health conscious already know that sugary snacks, including most so-called protein bars (which use clever packaging to get you to believe they’re healthy) are actually not a good food source at all to maintain your energy, even if they give you a temporary lift. Having said that, they may at least be a step above candy bars.
And just to state the obvious, if you’re going to take a break to grab some grub and something to drink, you already know that alcohol is not going to help your cause of actually getting rejuvenated.
Anyway, the simple message here is to take a break. Get off your bike and rest, so that when you’re back in the saddle a little bit later, you will be more alert.