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Old 20th October 2011, 14:14   #16
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Default Re: Why can't one Sleep well before a long drive?

Good to see so many people experiencing the same rush before a long drive. I try to hit bed by 10:30 before an early morning (3:45 am) start. The check list keeps me up. As mentioned by MAS, frequency of such drives brings down the butterflies by a margin. But the fact that we are all car/drive lovers, these butterflies will be there even if it is our zillionth long drive.

I consider it to be positive energy. One must ensure that this positive energy doesnt encroach in the much required sleep territory before the long drive though.

Happy driving!

DM
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Old 20th October 2011, 14:29   #17
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Default Re: Why can't one Sleep well before a long drive?

And what a day to start this thread. I am driving 4500 from Bangalore to various places in Gujarat and back starting on this Saturday.
I have a severe problem with sleep like all the other folks here when it comes to long drives.

Its mostly the excitement part coupled with a few tensions on making sure if I have ensured that everything is checked.
This time however, I have packed my bags a week before, ensured to keep a bag of essentials for the car in the car on yesterday itself and got it washed as well.

Still, the very thought of the drive itself is holding my sleep since more than 2 weeks now.

And yes, it does make sense to have such drives on a regular basis to get rid of this sleeplessness. When I was in Pune in 2009, I used to drive to Bangalore every fortnight and though there was excitement, I never missed on proper sleep then.

May be its the case only when you are starting early mornings.
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Old 20th October 2011, 14:44   #18
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Default Re: Why can't one Sleep well before a long drive?

I usually start in the late afternoon on my long drives. That way I can have a straight run of about 5-6 hours and then we check into a hotel and get a good night's sleep. Wake up next morning refreshed and attack the daylong drive with a vengeance!

For Pune-Mumbai runs, I prefer mornings- wake up at 6, head out before 7 and reach home in time for breakfast.

I am planning a 4 am start drive (Bangalore via Hampi) next weekend. Need to be fully rested before a long drive, so what I do is try to catch a longish nap the previous afternoon. Then even about 4 hours sleep doesn't feel inadequate.
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Old 20th October 2011, 15:45   #19
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Default Re: Why can't one Sleep well before a long drive?

Surprisingly this does not happen to me as it is the case with everyone else. Never have had sleep problems, and hopefully will never have.

The day before we plan to drive (Which is usually at 5am in the morning), i hit the bed at 2130 and sleep, wake up without any help at 4am (my daily wake up time is 430am) and never need an alarm to get up at that time. Freshen up, make tea for wife and then wake her up, post her freshening up we start driving, usually both mom and kiddo keep sleeping at the back seat and before they wake up (by breakfast time which is about 830) we would be half way there to our destination.

Off course if the start has to be before 5am then i might have some trouble, haven't tried it.
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Old 20th October 2011, 16:29   #20
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Default Re: Why can't one Sleep well before a long drive?

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Originally Posted by mayankjha1806 View Post
Surprisingly this does not happen to me as it is the case with everyone else. Never have had sleep problems, and hopefully will never have.

The day before we plan to drive (Which is usually at 5am in the morning), i hit the bed at 2130 and sleep, wake up without any help at 4am (my daily wake up time is 430am) and never need an alarm to get up at that time. <snip>...</snip>
That explains it perfectly. Most of the people who keep awake till late night and ha the habit of getting up by 8-9AM will have this sleep problem. People who used to get up in 4-6AM range will not feel this issue.

When our body clock is adjusted with a pattern, making some changes adds lots of anxiety and worries.Thats the reason.

Best way to avoid this is to practice a pattern like 10PM-6AM and start your drive adjusting to that pattern. Another one is ,more travels. This will make you perfectly ready on the previous day. You will have everything set, all luggages perfect and you know exactly where you will have breaks,lunch etc. Once you have a clear pattern on your drive, you will not have much to think on the night.

Having a nice dead sleep and driving at early morning is something beautiful Experience it.
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Old 20th October 2011, 16:42   #21
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Default Re: Why can't one Sleep well before a long drive?

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Originally Posted by mykal shoemaker View Post
That explains it perfectly.
I guess you are right, but there are other parts of the story as well. As i don't do any packing so don't have to worry about that. By 0930-1000 when she finishes packing all i do is carry it down if needed and put it in trunk. The other thing i have to do is make a bed out or rear seat with pillows and sheets so as both can sleep peacefully. So nothing much to do at night other then have dinner and sleep.

There are a lot of downsides to this pattern as well, like no late night movies (or maybe less late night movies), No overnight drives (the max we have done is arrive at 11-12 midnight at home). The positives are, good sound sleep (Always feels like i have slept only for 1 second and its already 4:30am), morning 1 hour for badminton (have never compromised on this).
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Old 21st October 2011, 09:12   #22
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Default Re: Why can't one Sleep well before a long drive?

When I go on a holiday trip, I start according to the time I have to reach. On the other hand, on intercity drives to hometown or to visit someone, I prefer to start at 0000-0100. The advantage is that my day's work would be over by then, all the intercity buses would have started atleast 2 hours prior and would be spaced well so when I overtake them it is not stressed. Also the fear of pedestrians and 2-wheelers is much lesser. And on a 6-8 hr drive, If lucky, i'll miss the rush hour at destination.
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Old 21st October 2011, 10:50   #23
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Default Re: Why can't one Sleep well before a long drive?

Hi,
Even if the trip is planned with every detail into consideration the fear of "what if something goes wrong" keeps me up most of the night. I usually exhaust myself the previous day so that i fall asleep at a appropriate time and usually skip the afternoon siesta. This seems to work for me. I would not advice using restyl unless under prescription. Its a drug called Alprazolam and it is a sedative and anti anxiety agent. Google it and you will know. Plus the main draw back of this drug is that it does not improve the NREM phase of your sleep cycle and even if your duration of sleep is adequate you might not feel well rested the next day. Casual use of restyl is not advisable. Cheers
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Old 21st October 2011, 11:31   #24
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Default Re: Why can't one Sleep well before a long drive?

Very interesting topic. I have always experienced this.

I have a slightly different take on this subject.
The body is an amazing machine and calculates what is the right amount of rest it needs automatically on a daily basis. We tend to feel bad about our hectic lifestyle and therefore many-a-times overestimate the amount of rest/sleep we need.

Let me explain. Even when I have had only 3-4 hours of sleep before a long drive, I never feel drowsy either during the drive or during the entire day when I am busy visiting new places and clicking snaps. My interpretation of this is that, although I get 'just' 3-4 hours of sleep, may be that is the 'right' amount of sleep the body needed in the first place. Otherwise, the body would have protested during the day. So when people say that "I did not get good sleep", it is most likely what there brains are telling them (rather than the body).

I realized this a few years back, when I was attending a 3 day "concentrated" program in Pune. I was a strict "10 O'clock to bed" person that time and was a strong beliver that the body needs 7-8 hours of sleep. On day-1 of the training, the presenter kept us engaged via a lot of interesting stuff interpersed with role-plays, case studies, group-activity etc. Sessions continued till 9PM. Post dinner, there was a small regroup session where to my surprise a homework and lots of reading material was given to be completed before 7AM next day! The whole day as well as the homework and reading was so engaging that I kept on working till 2:30AM and still got up before time. I was pretty sure that I am going to doze off during the day. But nothing of that sort happened as the second day was also as engaging.

The body listens to what the brain tells it. Short term spurts in the body's performance are easily doable if the brain is conditioned to send the right messages to the body.

Another example: After landing in Mumbai at 1:30AM from Germany (after a 3 day visit), I was at home by 3AM. Packed my stuff and started with the family for a long drive at 4:30AM.

Last edited by SDP : 21st October 2011 at 11:34.
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Old 21st October 2011, 12:31   #25
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Default Re: Why can't one Sleep well before a long drive?

I guess it's all about excitement/expectation levels. If any kinda long drive gives you a kick, well sleep would be hard to come. But tell me to drive down to a place I don't like and I'd doze off right on time. But if it's a holiday drive, I do something else. My modus operandi; say I gotta leave 4 AM Friday, so on Tue & Wed I make it a point to sleep/wake up early. Voila, come Thu night I am feeling sleepy by 10 PM and in wonderland by 10:30.
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Old 21st October 2011, 15:45   #26
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Default Re: Why can't one Sleep well before a long drive?

Quote:
Originally Posted by SDP View Post
Very interesting topic. I have always experienced this.

I have a slightly different take on this subject.
<snip>...</snip>
Different studies conducted recently ,don't agree much with your theory.
Refer:
http://www.nytimes.com/2011/04/17/ma...17Sleep-t.html
for a good read on this.

Last edited by mykal shoemaker : 21st October 2011 at 15:49.
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Old 21st October 2011, 16:03   #27
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Default Re: Why can't one Sleep well before a long drive?

Well, it's the sheer excitement that gets the better of you and prevents you from sleeping. Over the past few years, my dad and I have shared the driving between us during our long drives. So it helps when you can't quite get good sleep the previous night.

But remember. Never ever be fatigued or sleepy during a long drive. It can prove to be quite dangerous and is strictly not advisable at all.

if you are driving alone, start later in the afternoon. If you know that you'd need shut-eye for a few hours, then start in the morning. But only if you have someone who would be ready to take the wheel.
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Old 21st October 2011, 23:38   #28
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Default Re: Why can't one Sleep well before a long drive?

hi everybody
I think it is the excitement that keeps people awake
why only a car journey?even for a train/plane holiday you find difficulty in sleeping.thoughts are rushing throughout.
the new york times link provided by mykal shoemaker should not be taken lightly.
Best thing to do is to start the first day late and then keep on starting earlier the next day.The first days driving will definitely make you sleep earlier.
In bombay my normal bedtime is after 2.30 am but when i am driving i have slept as early as 11PM
regds
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Old 22nd October 2011, 08:22   #29
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Default Re: Why can't one Sleep well before a long drive?

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Originally Posted by faustus77 View Post
hi everybody
I think it is the excitement that keeps people awake
why only a car journey?even for a train/plane holiday you find difficulty in sleeping.thoughts are rushing throughout.
Thatís true, I get similar rush and lack of sleep before an early morning flight. I think itís the excitement and the sub-conscious thought of not to get late for the journey.
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Old 25th October 2011, 10:23   #30
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Default Re: Why can't one Sleep well before a long drive?

I don't know about others but for me its always the excitement (and lots of nervousness at times, maybe even fear) that makes me restless and it would take me a good one hour (or two) on the bed with lights off before I actually doze off. Though unlike others I never wake up before time, I wake up exactly when the alarm rings and feel like a zombie for the next 10 minutes, trying to come to my senses.

Reason for excitement everybody understands but why the fear? Well I & wife have taken our swift to places where usually only 4x4s or high GC vehicles venture so there's always a fear of getting stranded in the middle of nowhere in not so comfortable weather conditions.

Now what did not help? At least this will tell people what not to try

1. Getting wasted the night before - the hangover was worse than feeling sleepy the next day
2. Getting wasted drinking only beer - though no hangover, I still felt like $hit on waking up early
3. Working out hard the night before - I felt more sleepy than otherwise
4. Playing games on PC the night before - caught on even less sleep trying to break that high score

What did help?

1. Packing up two days prior to D-day, only the vital few to be packed at the last moment
2. Hitting the bed early than usual

I've always seen people doing otherwise, packing the luggage at the eleventh hour and then realizing that something important's either missing or broken. Not to mention this only makes one hit the bed LATER than usual.
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