I think I understand what you mean...I use Maya, but for animating complex movements like that I've found the easiest way to do it is by using a group hierarchy.
So take your object, and group it to itself. Name that group Translate. Then select that group and group it again and call it Rotate. Now if you key the translation of the translate group, and rotation of the rotate group... they should work in sync.
So your outliner would look like this;
- Random shit
- Random shit
Not sure how much it'll help you. As an example for where I used it, I had to animate a UFO. So in my first group I animated it revolving 360 on the spot, then in the second group I animated the translation of it, then in a final group I animated banks on the corners. That way it stayed constantly spinning, along the path, whilst still banking properly.
I hope that helps, sorry if it's totally unrelated.
Also, general tip for animating... don't key all attributes. In Maya, you can move an object and hit S and it'll key everything (translate, rotate, scale, visibility etc etc). You end up with a lot of useless keys on your timeline and graph editor, in Maya you can use a shortcut Shift+W to key the translate, Shift+E for rotate, and SHift+R fir scale. Keeps it neater. So only key the translate on your translate group etc.