Starbucks are everywhere in the US. It is important when you wake up with the intention of driving for 7 hours to get some caffeine into your system as soon as possible, or at least change out of your dirty socks. No matter how far you have to drive that day, it's well worth a bit of your time in the morning.
Wash up in the bathroom
Starbucks has the cleanest and most private bathrooms of any chain stores we've seen on our travels. Ignore the impatient stock broker pounding on the door and take the time to wash up. Bring in a travel bag to brush and floss your teeth, wash your hair and face in the sink (or strip down completely and go at it with moist paper towels--whore's showers aren't the most comfortable of cleaning patterns, but they do make a difference), use the toilet, and change your clothes. GIRLS: STARBUCKS IS THE ONLY BATHROOM GUARANTEED TO HAVE A WORKING ELECTRICAL OUTLET FOR HAIR STRAIGHTENERS AND BLOWDRYERS. The time you take here could improve your entire day.
Use the internet
Plan out your trip, check your email, message your friends. Starbucks has free wifi for everyone in case you've been living under a rock. Arrange pit stops and sights to see before you head out on the road--or at the very least check the weather.
Buy on the cheap
Coffee and pastries there adds up. Spend as little as you can or even nothing if you have the willpower for it. I almost always lose in the end and I end up buying at least a small cup of coffee. If you do have to buy something, use gift cards so you can reap the rewards program. Splitting the contents and cost of a large mocha in the morning while using the internet to plan out the drive makes the day go a whole lot easier. If you don't like coffee, you can always get a banana for under a dollar for some quick but nourishing energy. Also, they give you free water. Who could ask for more?
You do NOT need to buy anything from them
Yes, after hanging around for a while the smell of coffee is a strong temptation and there's even a hint of guilt that you're just freeloading off of their hospitality. Don't worry though, they're a hugely successful global corporation. They'll survive.
Chat with the locals
If you'll be in the area for a while then take the time to chat with people near you. They know about the best locales better than any travel guidebook. You may even make a couple friends!