Smart Athlete Podcast Ep. 37 - David and Megan Roche - THE HAPPY RUNNER - Part 3 of 3

So, I'm gonna dive a little bit deeper down the rabbit hole. So, we're talking about like basically the stories that are being told and part of that is like, the stories that we tell ourselves about who we are that helps drive us. But I kind of wonder, this is the part where we dive off the edge.
Smart Athlete Podcast Ep. 37 - David and Megan Roche - THE HAPPY RUNNER - Part 3 of 3

Go to Part 1

Go to Part 2

JESSE: So, I'm gonna dive a little bit deeper down the rabbit hole. So, we're talking about like basically the stories that are being told and part of that is like, the stories that we tell ourselves about who we are that helps drive us. But I kind of wonder, this is the part where we dive off the edge. I kind of wonder about earlier I mentioned that my business mentor and friend often says there is no meaning so we imbue meaning upon our own lives. But I also sometimes struggle with is there a larger meaning to life, and I want to kind of your thoughts on if the purpose of humanity and the existence that we live is to create. DAVID: So, meaning of life Megan, you’re up. MEGAN: Oh, shit. ?? 00:56> DAVID: So, I mean, I think it could be. I think that again, it all depends on personal framework, spiritual background, and things like that. But I think that if there is a pressure to create as a meeting that also drive-- like pushes against what we're trying to say of like from this inherent quadrillion of atoms all bumping against each other in semi-random ways, like from that you can find self-love and acceptance. I think if we're saying you have to-- If creation is an element of that, then yeah, maybe that's supported by like, spiritual frameworks. But maybe you look at the universe, and you're like, well, we got infinite expansion going on here, and it's all going to cool to nothing. But yeah, so I think like, essentially, I don't know, I would say that creation is-- it's really interesting to think about and maybe that's like the Spiritual end like the, what we're looking with not what we're looking for is creation. I could see that. I mean, I'd love to hear what you have to say. In fact, I should have asked that first. So, what are you thinking when you're saying that? JESSE: Okay. So, let me explain a little bit more. And you guys fit in this framework, which is why I went there. So, philosophically, when I'm thinking about, like entrepreneurial ventures or like trying to make money, some people will frame it in the context of like, if I make money I'm stealing from you, right? That's a very negative, like bad way to frame it, and I don't think it's true. Whereas, I think of it as when say, in this context, when a transaction takes place, I have given you more value than it requires you to give me in the form of money. Money is just stored value. So, in essence, I have created more than I have received for that transaction to take place. That being said, to come from that place where you're saying, I'm creating value, you are coming from a place where you are trying to build up and create something out of nothing; products, software, in particular, software is almost like magic because you're writing code and you're making something happen that didn't exist before just because you're using your brain. There's no like, I'll say, there's no physical thing involved, but that's obviously not entirely true since we have computers. But I'm coming from the place where basically, I think you guys come from a place of love, and trying to share that with people. And there is a creative, and I don't mean creative in an artistic sense, but creative in the building up sense of allowing people to become more than they were previously when you come from that place of love and are trying to not just make them better runners, but make them better people. I think that's part of your aim. You're welcome to correct me. So, that's when I think of humanity as a creative process and the purpose as a creative process, not necessarily because there is a big M playdough, and big M meaning, but because that is somewhat inherent in our existence, that when we get together as a society as a culture, and we create together and give value to each other, that we all become more because of that process. That's kind of where I'm coming from. MEGAN: That's interesting. So, I think for me, I think about like value and the creative process as kind of all being in the eyes of the beholder. So, I think that's like a very, I think for everyone, that process looks very different. And for some people, it might be like, maybe you're the checkout person doing groceries and the value in the creative process that you're adding to the world is smiling at every single customer that comes in and making jokes, and being that like the life of the grocery store and being that awesome person. And so I think it's truly about giving your full authentic self to the world in a way that lifts other people up. And that's where that like collective creativity comes in is it doesn't have to be like these, like personal actions or like these to-do lists or these like set products that get released to the world. It's just about like, creating love and joy and building up other people in that process. DAVID: Yeah, and I mean, I think the hard part here is like, we haven't found transcendence. And there are people that describe what transcendence feels like to them, whether that's like Jesus or Buddha, or it's like the-- I don't want to butcher the names. But the more new age type things or even the people that have like, hallucinogenic experiences or whatever. And they almost all are trending towards this idea of like, oneness, whatever that means to them individually. And so I think that that creation and like, the giving in that element is inherent in all those things. And the fact that it does overlap across all these different backgrounds is so cool and interesting. And I don't think anyone really gets it fully unless you've like, had that. Unless you're like one of those beings that has had that moment. And so it's super cool because we're all trying to talk about something that can only be explained in metaphors, essentially. And that's where what we try to do is instead of telling people how to feel necessarily, we're just trying to be like, hey, just know that this is all a metaphor, and from there, you can derive your own meaning to the mystery or whatever. And we're not going to give you that because we don't know it at all. And so I love the idea of creation because my guess is that's how it manifests to an entrepreneurial spirit like you, like that's where you find it. And it might be how you describe the same thing that Megan’s saying at the checkout counter. JESSE: Right. It's like, well-- So, I talked about this sometimes too, and I ask people like, do you speak in another language, often no, but if you learn another language and I guess I'll say I'm passable in French, you kind of begin to understand a different way to look at things. Because the way our language is structured is part of the lens in which we view the world and communicate with each other. So, German is a good example. There's tons of words in German that are very, very specific to a very specific situation and feeling that we just don't have in English. So, we have to, like fumble around and try to describe that experience without a word. So, it almost forces your perception into a particular box, depending on which language you speak, because you don't have the tools available to you to describe those nuances sometimes. DAVID: That’s so interesting. Yeah, I mean, it reminds me of like the Michael Pollan book about hallucinogens or I-- Like we've never done them. Maybe we should with all this talk, but-- JESSE: Yeah, I keep thinking that like, I generally I'm pretty anti-drug, I don't drink soda, I pretty much don't drink alcohol. And I'm like, maybe I should do mushrooms. MEGAN: ?? 08:14> they cause like mass amounts of vomiting sometimes, and I'm like, eh, I don’t know. DAVID: But I think we should give hallucinogens to Congress, that might help. And but no, like one thing that's interesting in coaching is you get windows into a lot of people's lives. And over time, you can often build pretty close relationships, like lots of intimacy. And sometimes when like, when people just seem to get it, like whatever it is, in a way that even like I would strive to, I'll ask them that and like, “Oh, yeah, I definitely had some hallucinogens back in my day, or whatever.” And I think it's so fascinating. This is probably the same idea, right, that for-- It obviously varies by the person and experience, but some people have these experiences where it lets them escape the constraints of the language we know of like, the language of being a meat sack, essentially. And then, yeah, so it's funny because I feel like what we're trying to do is translate things we've heard third hand and apply it to athletics. So, it gets complicated sometimes to describe it in a way that's super actionable. So, I'm not saying take mushrooms, but I am saying read what really smart people have to say on these issues like listeners not to you. Because I think like, the thing to find there is not like this is the answer. The thing to find there is that not knowing the answer is the answer. And so that's kind of the journey we try to use athletics as the lens through which we can help people on. And so yeah. MEGAN: I like that. DAVID: Yeah, thank you. I needed that. I was like-- JESSE: It kind of reminds me of, I don't know if you're familiar with this metaphor, there's a metaphor in Buddhism about that the lesson is the finger pointing to the moon, not the moon itself. Like people get wrapped up in the metaphor and thinking that that is the lesson. It's like, “No, it's just showing you where the lesson is. I can't show you the actual lesson.” DAVID: Yeah. Yeah, I totally agree. And I imagine that's how all teaching works, all-- whether you're, I guess how a good CEO needs to work and all that. And I think the hardest thing in coaching in particular that we've, I think both had to learn over time is that you're not in control. You're not trying to micromanage someone's lives. Like it's the opposite of what Alberto Salazar did with his athletes, that's the idea of the bad coach, even though they had results for whatever reason. Like that is someone that tried to explore every little thing, control it and manipulate it and as a result ruined people. MEGAN: Yeah, ?? 11:05> because I think that micromanagement is only possible in the short term. So, again in the long term, it's like impossible to control all those things or it's like it's so against the nature of the human that they like ultimately explode. And so I think that's really like a short term results-focused oriented mindset. JESSE: You guys explore this in the book and actually funny enough I had this interview coming up and I didn't even necessarily put the two together, but I just did a video on why run. And I often talk about-- I use the metaphor about it's a bag of whys, it's the best way I can describe it. Like you need more than a singular why to define how you do it. But do you guys have like a practice you go back to when one why is not fulfilling you anymore? And you're like, you know that why is that very strong anymore; do you have something concrete that you go to? Or do you just kind of let another why organically come to you or your athletes, I guess? DAVID: I really like people to think about it really explicitly as much as possible just because it gets back to the same discussion we're having that these unexamined questions. It's not that you can ignore them, it's that if you ignore them, it all just blows up in your face eventually. So, you just pushing it-- kicking the can. So, yeah, we just like athletes to have this why that's grounded in like, internal positive reasons like internal self-love oriented reasons. And so what we really try to motivate is a why that's focused on the day to day process is one that you choose because of the type of person it lets you be. Because I think running for running to feel good or whatever is a terrible reason to run. Because running freakin’ sucks sometimes. And often it sucks. And so it has to be for reasons that might like also accommodate like the fact that it is really not-- it's difficult sometimes, it's super difficult sometimes. So, I think both of us have whys that is really grounded in like let's just have these loving thoughts, let's just turn down the volume inside our heads a little bit. And, so yeah, I mean that's where it comes from for us. But even if it's not that something that like, does this similar mechanism that adds to your life rather than subtracts and adds unconditionally. MEGAN: So, I think getting back to that point, I think it's really helpful to like, have a good understanding of who you are and feeling authentic in that process. But I also think just trusting your intuition, it's like for me personally, I know that I'm happiest when like things are light-hearted, things are funny, there's a lot of comedy and humor and so it's like a lot of my why goals are focused on finding that lightness. It's like focused on like laughing at myself laughing at the situation, and I think once I have that framework for what truly makes me happy, what lights my soul on fire, it's a lot easier to then say, “Hey, this is my why this is what I want to be doing.” DAVID: Yeah, I mean, we encourage athletes like to take their phones on runs, just so that they're always able to take photos. Like, as weird as that little why is like it just engages you with what you're doing a little bit. And it starts-- MEGAN: And to play Space Jam. DAVID: Yeah, and to play Space Jam soundtrack all time great. MEGAN: On repeat. DAVID: On repeat. But yeah things like that, like that the narrative and that's why we draw the narrative away from results. Because if that's the narrative, if that ends up being the why that always ends in disaster, always eventually. It's just a question of when. And so sometimes it can work for a really long time. And those people I think, would say would call BS on this and maybe they're an exception, but usually it's just a ticking time bomb. JESSE: Megan, before we run out of time, I want to pick on you a little bit. MEGAN: Yeah, sure, go for it. I like that. JESSE: I think in the book, you kind of describe being very motivated, even as a young child ?? 15:17> now. I think David earlier had mentioned that you're working on your Ph.D. MEGAN: Yes. DAVID: And she's doing a startup, a startup that does genetic testing for athletes, and she's doing a ? 15:32> and she's coaching and she’s… JESSE: So, when you have to get to why. Why like I mean, you already have your MD, why are you doing your Ph.D? What's the why behind the kind of path that you've taken? MEGAN: Yeah, so it's both, I think it's both like intuition-based like that is honestly what lights my soul on fire and both practical based. So, I'll start with intuition. Like, I honestly just love learning, like I love being in the classroom I love like, learning, I love challenging myself and school is a very convenient environment for that. And in a Ph.D you actually get to get paid and go to school. So, for me, it's like a dream job. And I'm doing research related to running. So, it's kind of all synergistic in terms of like, the things I love, it supports the athletes. Like the information that I'm learning in the Ph.D directly support SWAP, which is really fun. And then I think from a practical standpoint, so I went to med school thinking that I wanted to be an orthopedic surgeon. I got into med school and very quickly realized that 100 hour work weeks are just not my jam. Like I am happiest when I have time to be out in nature, when I'm running on the trails, when I have time to spend with loved ones, with Addie Dog. And going on to do residency and like clinically practicing medicine was just not conducive for that. And that was where like the Ph.D just made so much more logistical sense. JESSE: Okay. MEGAN: Yeah. JESSE: So, I was just curious like how people take these paths because I guess I'll say as children, I'm oversimplifying, but as children we have some semblance of thinking I'll be a doctor, I'll be an artist and you look at it as almost like, linear progression, especially in the case of a doctor, gotta go to high school, graduate high school, then I'm going to go to college, do pre-med, and then I'm going to get into med school and do that and I’m gonna do res-- Like it's very laid out. But often, especially for people like you guys, myself as well. Life kind of wiggles and waggles and it isn't quite as straight as you think it's going to be. MEGAN: Well, Michelle Obama actually her book is so good, but she talks about the power of swerving in a career and in life. And I feel like my life has very much swerved to kind of fit around what I find most joy in like what my like base core priorities are. And I think it's really helpful to like to, like know these core priorities and make all of your decisions surrounding that. So, for me, it's like I want to run, I want to spend time with family, I want to do these things that I enjoy and so it's like, work has to fit within that framework, and I'm going to swear work around so that it sort of actually works out. Yeah. JESSE: Well, thanks for answering. As I said, it’s a personal curiosity, but I had to ask before we ran out of time. MEGAN: Yeah, no, it's awesome. JESSE: This is the question that I asked everybody. You guys may have seen if you’ve watched the other episodes, but I like to ask everybody because this is universal. If after a hard workout or a hard race, you are choosing a recovery food and you can only choose one food for the rest of your life, what do you choose? Food for recovery. MEGAN: This is a great, great question. I would probably go with pepperoni pizza. DAVID: This is why we're married. MEGAN: We didn't even plan that ahead of time. Okay, the bigger question is is like where would you get your pepperoni pizza from? So, we've had a lot of pepperoni pizza-- DAVID: Well, Legends Pizza. MEGAN: Yeah. We go to this place called Legends. It's in Cupertino, and they've got some other places in California. But literally, when you lift the pizza up off the pan, it has like a cheese vertical. So, like you can lift the pizza up high. There's like a three feet of cheese that's just like trailing the pizza as you're lifting it. DAVID: Yeah, yeah, we should probably do more blood tests to make sure our cholesterol is all good. MEGAN: ?? 19:07> DAVID: But yeah, no, that place is, I think I could do that every meal for the rest of our lives. MEGAN: I totally agree. JESSE: That’s-- I love people's answers because like I get a mix of like pizza or beer or ice cream. I love ice cream. And then also get like, like a PC answers like some people with 4 to 1 carb-protein ratio. It's just I love seeing everybody's different answers. I'm hoping-- I don't know that I'll put it into a book, but I am eventually gonna like compile everybody's like answers into something, maybe an infographic or something to see-- MEGAN: I’d love to see like personality tests in the like food answers and get to like match them. Like I feel like you could really predict that. Yeah. DAVID: Yeah. Might be a good way to see if we're if like, we aren't for someone is like if you say celery, probably not going to ?? 19:56>. JESSE: Probably not the best match. MEGAN: ?? 19:59> carb ratios, yeah. Yeah, we're just all about like the cheese ratio-- DAVID: Yeah, yeah. It’s how we judge all foods, it ends up being a little weird but-- MEGAN: Yeah. JESSE: Okay, guys. So, if people want to find you, find out more about SWAP, pick up the book, obviously, where can they do all that? MEGAN: Probably the most important place is Addie Dog herself. So, Addie has a big voice in the book. She's our furry dog friend. And her Instagram handle, which is also David's Instagram handle is AddieDoesStuff. I am MegRunsHappy on Instagram, the book’s on Amazon, our website is SWAPRunning. DAVID: And that's it. MEGAN: We're generally Google-able. DAVID: Yeah, exactly. Our email’s out there. And so if anyone's listening and ever has a question about literally anything, even if it like has nothing to do with coaching or anything like that, we'd always like to try to help an answer and yeah, get to meet you. JESSE: Sounds awesome. Thanks for spending some time with me today and allow me to prod you guys a little bit. MEGAN: This was so fun. DAVID: You’re so amazing. Thank you. JESSE: Take care. Go to Part 1 Go to Part 2

Google Pay Mastercard PayPal Shop Pay SOFORT Visa