T Nation

Road Trips- How Do You Do Them?


Starting last Saturday I took a road trip down to Alabama. I'm not much for longer road trips and usually prefer to fly if possible, but that wasn't really an option. The wife and I had maybe two days to plan and prepare for it, not much cash on hand for accommodations, and our one year old boy to tend to while traveling.

Once packed up we hit the road with new tires and an oil change, a big bag of snacks, and a thermos full of very strong coffee. All went well enough with directions and navigation. The kid needed to be re-diapered every couple of hours, but that also made for some nice rest stops to get out stretch the legs and decompress. It also extended the time the trip took by quite a lot.

Had a nice stop for the night at around midnight at a Comfort Inn in northern Tennessee, then finished up the drive by mid-afternoon in northern Alabama. Over all not bad, and met some decent and interesting people along the way. One guy was a talent scout for the Colts and was heading down to some smaller southern universities to gather info on some prospects. Travelling with a baby was also a great ice breaker. Many people came up to talk as he toddled around and expended some energy which made the trip more interesting.

Same on the way back too, except an incident at the hotel we stayed at in Kentucky. There was a spazzed out couple in the hotel room below us. After a little observation I surmised they were meth heads so we moved our car away from where they were buzzing around. They next morning I struck up a conversation with the guy as he was milling around the lot and he was lit up like a Pink Floyd concert.

As we were talking a truck pulled in and he walked over, made an exchange, then strolled back. That was my cue to get going and I went back to get packed up and hit the road. Turns out that the guys in the truck were narcs and as we exited the room the place was stormed with state troopers. One started questioning me about why I was there (next to meth dealer) and after a few minutes moved on in the sweep of the place.

After that though, it was smooth sailing back to PA.

So, how do fellow T-Nationers do road trips? What kind of tips, tricks, or tales do you all have from your travels?

Any good strategies for lodging, vehicles, or other various or miscellaneous ways that you go about road trips?


I don't smoke, and never have, but I suck on nicorrette-minis if I have to drive more than 3 hours (which is commmon due to oilfield work -- all over NM and West Texas).

I also listen to the BBC or NPR on the radio. They are such bed wetters I scream at the radio, and its keeps me awake.


My gf and I did a 9 hour one way trip this summer, listened to the zombie podcast, kept me awake driving 9 hours straight. Think they're approaching 40 hours worth of their story, so I still have a ways to go.


I do smoke, but for inside the car I kept a pinch of Copenhagen in for the majority of the time.
We also did forget to bring along some good listening material. My wife had some Stained and a few other cd but I can't take a whole lot of that or top 40 dance type stuff without wanting to throw myself under a passing tractor trailer.


Get high as shit and enjoy the ride....


You must take tall shits.


Get a car that doesn't rattle along. That shit will tire you out way before boredom does and your irritation builds.

Nothing beats a car that purrs along and makes your child doze off.


make sure your gps is up to date




Centralia (town the movie was inspired by) is just a little to the east of my sister in law.

That might make for a spooky Haloween trip.


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Suck it up.

You going to visit JoeGood while you are there?

I drove the family from Johnson City Tennessee to Houston in one day, I drove all the way, this was 2 years ago.



I used to live in a van, could tell you all kinds of things.

Here are some tips for long distance driving:

Wear ear plugs and turn the music up. The road noise causes drowsiness.
Wear sunglasses if it's anywhere close to being bright. Eye strain causes drowsiness.
Lay off the energy boosters till you really need them.
Take the 15 min power nap if you have the ability. For me, the best way to do this when really tired is to move as little as possible when pulling over, making sure not to get out to piss at the rest stop, and sleeping right away. If I get up to pee, I'll be too awake to fall asleep immediately. I've also found this is possible while riding a bike. If you move slowly, you can put the kickstand down, lean back, feet up on the handlebars, and be asleep in seconds. With a nap or two, I can do 600+ miles a day on a bike.

Longest I ever drove was Pittsburgh, PA to Austin, TX in about 26 hours in the van while dragging a trailer. That was a long day.


I love road trips, I am a road nazi. I can out road trip anybody! My records consist of:
- Atlanta to Bozeman, MT - 33hrs strait.
- Knoxville to Atlanta - 2hrs 40 mins.
- Steubenville, OH to Atlanta -10 hrs flat.
- Boston to Atlanta -16 hrs, with kids.


Glacier to Yellowstone in under 4 hours, just made dinner at the Livery House.


I typically like to get on the road in the middle of the night because around here (DC area) any other time there is traffic.

Pulling a trailer has got to be the most draining thing ever especially when it's an open trailer and you're precious motorcycle is back there. I was too worried the whole time.

How was the baby on the trip? When my son was still in his infant seat we would leave around 2am and make the 6hr trip to relatives and he would sleep the whole time. Now that he is a little older that doesn't work as well. Luckily our SUV has DVD in the back of the seats so when gets crazy we can zombie him out.

I'd pretty much just have some snacks, good tunes (stream some music from your phones?), a drink or 2, and hit the road. Probably the most crucial thing for me is actually heated seats. My back and hips lock up after sitting for that long and that helps me get another few hours


I make the 9 hour trip between NC (where I live) and NY (where my parents live) multiple times a year. While the trip takes 9 hours without traffic it has also taken me over 13 hours multiple times because of traffic (fuck DC and Jersey). Folk Metal and Caffeine. Without those two I would never make it.


I like to turn the radio off and just enjoy the sound of the road. It's a great time to just think.


He was probably as good as a baby can be. Not much fussing at all and occupied himself really well. One neat thing my wife did was set up 2 back seat mirrors so that when he looked at them he could see us. Every so often he'd start laughing and I or the wife would look back into the mirror and we'd play peek-a-boo with him.

My sis in law lives about 4 hours away and her son screams for the entire 4 hours she's driving, so I've heard the horror stories. I'm really glad that ours wasn't one of them.

The requisite diaper changes and letting him run around a little were actually pretty nice. Gave us a chance to do the same.