The move I love to hate: Drag racer Leah Pritchett's up-and-down plank
Race car driver Leah Pritchett depends on strong arms and a rock solid core to maintain control of the 11,000-horsepower machine that she drives at speeds topping 330 miles per hour. The 30-year-old got her start in drag racing at just 8 years old in the NHRA's Junior Dragster program, and after stints in Pro Mod and Funny Car, she found her groove in the Top Fuel division.
Now entering her seventh year racing Top Fuel, Pritchett closed out the 2018 season with a championship title in the Factory Stock Showdown Series, as well as a fourth-place points finish in the Top Fuel class.
As she prepares to kick off the 2019 season at the NHRA Arizona Nationals on Saturday, Pritchett shared the move she swears by to keep her core and arms in top form.
How to do it: Start from standard plank position with your palms flat on the ground. From there, tighten your core and drop down to your right elbow so that your right forearm is now touching the ground and your body is wanting to sink to that lower side. Then you drop your left arm that was currently extended to the same bent position so that you're on both of your forearms.
Extend your right arm and push all of your body weight back up with your right arm and follow that with your left arm to return to standard plank position. Repeat as a fluid motion for one minute.
When I do it: I do this move around three times a week, either in one- or two-minute increments. Those minute or two-minute increments equal one set, and I'll usually do three sets. I'll also incorporate other moves in between sets. The second minute is when it gets really killer.
Why I do it: I like this move because it's a spin on a traditional plank and it exercises my arms in the specific areas that I like to focus on. This targets my biceps while at the same time working the abs because you never release your core. This exercise is one of the most comprehensive strength training moves you can do within a short time span.
Why it's so killer: You want to go fast, and when you go fast it gets your heart rate up. But at the same time if you try and slow it down, it makes it even harder. It activates so many muscles in the body outside of just your arms and core. You can really feel that burn throughout your whole body.