You know those couples that are relentlessly successful, kind, energetic, and so annoyingly in love that you crave their presence? We interviewed that couple today.
Megan and David Roche are a powerhouse duo who have had very successful running careers and coach others to have the same. They recently wrote “The Happy Runner” which is a perfect title for what their mission is all about. Their coaching business is called SWAP which stands for some work, all play. To David and Megan, it’s about finding success while focusing on “long-term fulfilment.”
If you want to enjoy every day and sluff off the negative feelings that come with overwhelming tasks, listen to this podcast. You’ll be sure to find a few things that change your outlook on what’s important in your running life, while maintaining or increasing your results.
Finding Joy in the Journey
David and Megan believe in what’s termed the Arrival Fallacy. This is an idea we have covered before where focusing on the end and believing the end is what gives us happiness, stops us from enjoying the present. “No matter what your finish line is, you reach it and you realize nothing changes,” says David.
The solution to this fallacy? Continuously inject energy into your life.
Easier said than done right? David and Megan have found that their dog Addie is the perfect example of finding joy in the journey. Think about it. All happy dogs are ALWAYS happy. Every time you come home your dog is excited to see you. It doesn’t matter how long you’ve been gone. Boundless energy is sure to come. For those focused on the future or past, try being excited and grateful about the now. Picturing an open-mouthed dog might do the trick.
For the cat lovers, there is another solution. You can get away from focusing on the finish line by changing your goal. Reframing their athletes’ goals and making sure they are internally focused is a major part of David and Megan’s coaching. Let yourself be okay with failure by setting goals that are most meaningful to you.
Let Hard Things Have an End
Along our journey we are sure to run into hard things. Not every moment can be bliss, and if it were it wouldn’t feel that way anyway. You can maintain a consistent positive outlook by acknowledging the hard things and putting them out of mind by giving them an expiration date. Sometimes just knowing when a challenge will end allows you to move forward contently.
A good example in Megan’s life was when she was in medical school. Balancing a budding running career with medical school compelled her to train at 3 a.m. This exhausting period of her life was difficult, but she was able to maintain her work load by seeing each four- or eight-week block of school as an end point.
Just like breaking down your race by telling yourself to make it to the next tree, you can try this approach to things in life. Focus on accomplishable tasks and give them an end.
All Food is Good Food
We’ve discussed food frequently on this podcast, ranging from a balanced nutrition to eating disorders. Today we stepped even further back to evaluate food as a whole. Not only are David and Megan against getting on the scale or counting calories, they are generally opposed to looking at food negatively at all.
“With athletes, we always try to emphasize that all food is good food,” says Megan. Of course, David and Megan recommend a healthy diet, but it’s about getting back to the fact that all food gives us energy and life. It’s okay to eat the sweets and fatty foods you enjoy. “Food is really fun!” says David. Have moderation, but be excited and happy to eat those things you love.
Another coaching emphasis of team SWAP is to love your body the way it is. Everyone has unique genetics, so it is impossible to judge the health of one person based on weight. The focus here is to be healthy, not to weigh the perfect amount. Megan emphasizes this by saying, “It’s always important to err on the side of being a little heavier than being a little lighter.” Give your body enough good food and it will do the rest.
More from This Episode:
Learn how impulsively adopting a dog from the side of the road changed their life and set them on a path to start their coaching career. Who is David’s hero? What is it like being each other’s coach? And as always, the Running for Real Four where David and Megan give life advice, tell a Running for Real Moment, and recommend a few people they love to follow on social media.
Listen to the Running for Real Podcast here:
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Thank you to Megan and David, I look forward to hearing your thoughts on the show.