You won’t believe the weird workouts this woman’s job demands

This treadmill training is actually the most normal.

Pictures: [email protected]

Simona De Silvestro’s day job sets her heart racing – between 150 to 180 beats per minute for two hours at a time actually – so being physically and mentally fit is pretty much top of the job description.

Oh, and the hours, aren’t actually 9-5.

“It’s demanding on your coronary function, because everything happens fast, you have to be really alert, and think fast while your adrenalin is pumping,” De Silvestro tells myBody+Soul.

You may have guessed it by now, the 29-year-old Swiss expat is actually a racing car driver – one of only two females competing at the high level.

“People are always surprised that I’m a girl who races, but also about the physical demands,” she says.

De Silvestro, who now calls Melbourne home, between touring the circuit, has a pretty crazy training schedule to get her race fit.

“Racing is really demanding on your core, and you have to be pretty fit, especially when everything happens quickly,” she says.

Quick, as in 290km per hour, quick – that’s the supercar driver’s top speed.

Her fitness regime ranges from her trainer throwing balls at her unannounced while doing other exercises – that’s the reaction stuff – to leg training, as the constant braking gets tiring when applying that much force she says.

“My trainer and I will be in the gym two to three hours a day doing a mix of weight and cardio training,” the Harvey Norman ambassador says.

It’s endurance cardio – like running on the treadmill, cycling on the stationary bike, and then there’s the core work.

De Silvestro admits the most awkward body part to exercise in front of other gym goers is her neck. You see, it has to be able to withstand two to three times her body weight in g-force.

“It always looks weird in the gym when you’re attaching your head to elastic bands,” she laughs.

There’s no cruising in her chosen profession or even slow day really. In fact, it’s incredibly demanding, stressful and risky – her hairiest moment came during practice for the 2011 Indianapolis 500, where her suspension failed resulting in a fiery crash.

“It’s fairly intense. The strange thing is I don’t really deal well with stress in day to day life, but on the race course, I’ve learnt how to handle it. I’m in my element – it’s about delivering all that pre-work,” she says.

And deliver, De Silvestro has done before, earning a podium finish in the Indy car – something she cites as her proudest moment, alongside winning the 2010 Indy 500 Rookie of the Year.

As for the Supercars? It’s an achievement in her sight.

“I want to be running up front at Bathurst, I’m working towards it.”

FOX SPORTS has live and continuous coverage of the Supercheap Auto Bathurst 1000 on a dedicated 24/7 pop up channel, FOX SPORTS 506.

MOTORSPORT: Simona De Silvestro is the first full time female driver in the V8 Supercars. Matt Suleau interviews her about 2017.

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fitness | body+soul