Everyone thinks that driving a car is easy….and it’s NOT! Sure, if all you are doing is driving little Johnny to school in the morning, or going for groceries, OK, not so tough. But if you are taking a car to it’s limits, in any situation, it’s one of the most complex, ram using, hard drive taxing, endorphin creating, and adrenaline pumping activities we humans engage in. It’s physically tough and mentally strenuous…
And the higher level of driver you want to be, the more it takes out of you. There is just soooo much going on that you have to think of….all while literally being directly responsible for your own life and the lives of everyone around you. It’s taxing.
I’ve done some sports in my life that have been tiring. Like climbing, mountain bike racing, martial arts, skiing. But nothing has made me more tired than sitting behind the wheel of a car. There have been three days in my life that I can remember clearly when I was completely drained….tired beyond tired….
One was a 4 hour mountain bike race. The other two were driving.
The first one was a one hour race at the Molson Indy Vancouver. I got out of the car and didn’t know whether I was going to throw up, or pass out… The next was a mountain bike race called the Test of Metal. 68 kilometers of mostly single track, same thing at the end as the Molson Indy, but I had been riding hard for FOUR hours, not just driving for one. The last one was a day the driving school I was working for. We had an introduction to the new Porsche 911’s. We (the four instructors) spent the day letting dealer principles and prospective buyers take a couple laps of Westwood Raceway, (an incredible racetrack that is now a freakin’ golf course….) then we would take them for a few laps as fast as we could go, to show what the cars could really do. Well, I got home from that day at 6:30 and was sound asleep by 6:35…..comatose until 7 the next morning…..
I guess the point I’m trying to make is that to drive at a high level, to take a car to the edge….takes a lot out of you. One of the things you keep an eye on as a professional stunt driver is how tired you are that day, and what kind of shape you’re in. One of the best things you can do to be a better driver is to work out your cardio. Having your heart in good shape gives you two major advantages while you’re out driving. First, your mental clarity is enhanced. Your mind thinks faster, more clearly, and it’s easier to focus (especially if your workout needs focus). Second it gives you endurance to drive faster, longer.
So go out and get your heart in shape and you’ll drive faster!
Be fast, be safe, be precise….