HMMR Podcast Episode 140: The pit crew (with Michael Lepp)

Stereotypes of NASCAR might not bring to mind physical preparation, but motor sports have joined in the training revolution over the past decade and NASCAR is leading the way. On this week’s episode Michael Lepp of Joe Gibbs Racing joins us to talk about the role of strength and conditioning in motor sports, the mental side of preparation, and more.

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Notes and quotes

Lepp comes from an endurance background and came to the world of motor sports more than a decade ago. For that whole time he has worked with Joe Gibbs Racing, one of the most successful teams in NASCAR. During his tenure the team has won 113 wins in the Cup and XFINITY series. He was part of a Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Championship with the No. 18 team in 2015, as well as four other championships in the NASCAR XFINITY Series. He also won two pit crew championships during his tenure at JGR. Currently his role is Senior Athletic Advisor.

In the interview he explains how he got into NASCAR, how physical preparation has changed over that time, what they do for training, and the mental side of training for such a high-pressure sport.

Athletic development in motor sports
Mental performance and dealing with pressure
Training specifics and related topics
  • 31:30 – Training in an environment where you are competitors and teammates.
  • 34:45 – Detailing a week of training.
  • 38:15 – Fitness for drivers.
  • 43:00 – Learning a feel for the road.
  • 50:00 – What a typical gym sessions contains.

To hear more on these topics, listen to the full episode above. Also be sure to subscribe to our podcast and review it on iTunes.

Further reading

The following links were referenced in the podcast or provide some additional reading material on the topic:

  • Join HMMR Plus to get access to more resources on training, including videos, articles, podcasts, and more. Our most recent member video details trainability assessments, including practical demonstrations and sport-specific case studies. And our member hangouts let members exchange ideas, such as in January’s hangout where we discussed ideas for a testing framework for a rugby club. Become a HMMR Plus member to get access to all the content. Support the podcast and don’t miss out on all the great content we have on HMMR Media.
  • You can follow Lepp on Twitter (@michael_lepp) or Instagram (@mlepp).
  • You can learn more about Joe Gibbs Racing on their website.
  • Lepp’s approach has been covered by various media outlets, including SC Now, NASCAR, and Sports Illustrated.