So what happens when years of drive, force, determination, and focus suddenly and violently in a split second collide with a giant oncoming goose at 24 mph while racing downhill on a bicycle? Welcome to the Brad Cooper Story!
In this episode of the Remarkable People Podcast, Dr. Bradford Cooper (PhD, MSPT, MBA, ATC, triathlete, ultracyclist, CEO, researcher, author, speaker, and more) shares with us his remarkable story of not only competing in the Race Across America, but winning it after sustaining severe injuries that would have kept most humans in bed for weeks.
Listen now to learn Dr. Brad’s Thrive philosophy, champion life habits, and how success starts by not comparing ourselves to others, but by simply racing ourselves. Check out this episode of the Remarkable People Podcast and learn how to start making your tomorrow better, today!
EPISODE PROUDLY SPONSORED BY:
- CreationToday.org – Your #1 Resource for Creation, Apologetics, and Evangelism truth, tools, and training today!
- “Don’t compare yourself to others. Race yourself.” – Dr. Bradford Cooper, PhD #BetterThanYesterday
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GUEST BIO & CONTACT INFO:
- BIO: Dr. Cooper is a human performance junkie, seeking out insights to optimize reality for individuals, teams and organizations for over 35 years. His engaging, information-rich keynote presentations emphasize the practical application leading to optimal performance and draw from his established background around mind, body and business.
- Website: https://drbradfordcooper.com/
EPISODE CORE THEMES & MENTIONS:
- Core Themes: Resilience, Mental Toughness, Grit, Decision making, excuses, depression, journaling, reflection, prayer,PhD, Wellness Coach, wellness, BetterThanYesterday, education performance psychology, finishing your race, cycling, Race Across America, ultracyclists, bicycle race, encouraging, podcast, RPP, Remarkable People, Real, True Story, unscripted, unedited, self improvement, personal development, inspiring, motivating, hope, self help
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Read the Full Transcript
The Remarkable People Podcast Episode 24 aka S2E2 The Dr Bradford Cooper Story
[00:00:00] David Pasqualone, Host: [00:00:00] Hello friends. This is Dave Pasqualone with the Remarkable People Podcast. Season two episode two, the Brad Cooper story,
Intro/Outer Reel: [00:00:09] the remarkable people podcast. Check it out. the remarkable people podcast. Listen. Do. Repeat. For Life!
David Pasqualone, Host: [00:00:32] Ladies and gentlemen, thank you for being here today. Not only am I excited about this particular episode, but I’m just so thankful that we get to do this show and life together. I know there’s over a million podcasts out there, and you have many choices, and the fact that you take this time to spend together with me and our guests.
To learn, to grow together, to just be better people. It means a world to me and I’m so thankful that you’re there. I’m so thankful that we can bring you content that’s valuable and I’m so thankful that you’re going out and growing and apply. Applying it to life and growing. It just is fulfilling. And I keep using the word, but I’m just thankful.
Now, today’s episode with dr Brad Cooper is amazing. It is going to help you grow in a way that’s not just physical, mental, or spiritual. It’s all three in one because all three work together. Brad’s going to share his incredible story. Of how he’s not only a CEO, he’s not only a, has a PhD and an MBA. He’s not only a researcher and a triathlete, and he a marathon runner, but he entered the race across America and in the race across America.
He has an amazing story because not only did he go into this race, but he won it. And the conditions in which he won the race are truly remarkable. So he’s going to give you the practical tips and insights, the way he thinks and approaches life to help you succeed and achieve your goals. Now, before we get there, last week we had the Pedro Pena story.
What was your favorite part of that episode? Go to our Facebook page and check it out in the show note link. And let us know, let us know what the highlight was of that episode, or maybe some of your other episodes. And remember, even though the remarkable people podcasts, we’re on season two and soon, we’ll be on season seven and then we’ll be on 27 every season has remarkable guests.
They’re all dealing with different topics at different points in life. So one season isn’t better than the next. The guests are all. Amazing and remarkable, and they can bring value to my life and your life and our friends and family’s life. We just break it up and seasons for organization and the little break in between.
So right now, before you get into Brad’s story, I want to take a minute and thank creation today. Creation today is an amazing resource. For all things, Bible evolution, anything to do with questions about where did that come from? What’s the origin of life, what’s real and what’s fake? You’ll hear the term apologetics, that’s Christians defending their faith.
All of these topics. They get the best of the best materials and put them on creation today. And then in addition to these books and magazines and articles, they now have classes and these classes are done online. Some are live, some are pre recorded. You can get dozens of topics, sit down with your family, sit down with your spouse, sit down with yourself and really understand not just what do I believe.
But why? So checkout creation today.org again, I’m putting a link in the show notes, explore the page, look at the classes, and trust me the material, all the material I’ve seen and encountered is top notch, straightforward. Great biblical doctrine really helped me grow. I know it’ll help you grow too. So check out creation today.org.
Now let’s get to the Brad Cooper story. Grab your pen and paper, get on the computer if you’re next to one, and then put down the action steps that dr Brad shares with us so you can move forward [00:05:00] and then write us and let us know how this episode helped you. So again, this is Dave with the remarkable people podcast.
Enjoy season two, episode two, the Brad Cooper story right now. Hey Brad, how are you today?
Brad Cooper, Guest: [00:05:17] Hey, it’s great to be here. Thanks, David.
David Pasqualone, Host: [00:05:18] Man, I am so excited that we literally met momentarily. What was it? A massive, 120 seconds.
Brad Cooper, Guest: [00:05:26] That’s probably about the extent of our conversation out of the gate.
David Pasqualone, Host: [00:05:29] Yeah, man, I just so the listeners know, what happened was Brad and I were both coming back from a conference down in Orlando, a pod Fest 2020.
And I saw him sitting there, super happy guy, very easy to talk to, and he had his iron man triathlon shirt on. You can tell he’s a stud and in good shape. And I was like, and then I think you actually said hi to me first,
Brad Cooper, Guest: [00:05:50] right? I don’t remember. But you had one of those friendly faces that made it easy.
David Pasqualone, Host: [00:05:55] Yeah, man. So we just both, I guess, talkers and started talking to each other and then like 60 seconds later as I’m getting on the bus or as I’m getting on the bus to go get my vehicle to go home, he’s like, yeah. And he starts telling me about who he is, and I’m not going to lie to you. A lot of times when I tell people who I am and what I’m doing, they want to tell me their story to be on the show.
But Brad has a truly remarkable story. So I got his name and I put it in my head, and as soon as I got back to the car, I looked him up online. We reconnected and now he’s here to share his story with you. so Dr. Bradford Cooper has a PhD. He has a whole career. I’m not going to steal his thunder that he can expand on as the interval interview goes through.
He is the lead at catalyst coaching Institute. And he does wellness coaching and that has a whole world of awesomeness in itself. And at this time, Brad, I’m going to literally turn the reins over to you because we have a show where you can go in the format of your past, pick an obstacle that you’ve had to overcome, how you did it in practical steps for the listener, and then we’ll transition to where you are today and where you’re going.
So we, as the listeners can help you. Now I know you have. The M, the movie God, speed race across America. I’m sure the listeners would love to hear about that, especially the challenges you had, how to mentally, I’m sure even more than physically force yourself through to finishing that. you, you had a career change, a corporation, you started, so imagine you wanted to start with a race where, where do you want to go with that?
Brad Cooper, Guest: [00:07:29] Sure. That’d be fine. Yeah. back in 2014, a buddy of mine came to me and said, Hey, do you want to do the race across America? And I was a triathlete. I’ve done iron man 11 times. And that’s, I think why he was recruiting me. He knew I knew what a bike was. But I literally looked at him and thought, dude, no, I don’t even know what this thing is.
And when, as he explained it, it didn’t become even any more appealing because it’s a 3000 mile bike race from Oceanside, California to Annapolis, Maryland. It’s to two riders. So you’re trading off 24 seven running clock, and the goal is to finish in about seven days. So you’re averaging about 240 miles between the two of you every day.
Go just weather, rain, heat, the whole deal. And, but this guy’s pretty convincing. And so eventually I said, let’s give it a go. And training’s going. Well, everything seemed to be dialed in. We were six weeks out from the race, which is in June, and I was out at the local, there’s a reservoir about five minutes from us, and I was out doing some time trial work on my bike and a goose flew into my bike and I woke up.
The ambulance is looking over me. I ended up going in, have eight fractures to the pelvis, ribs, clavicle. And a concussion, and again, six weeks before the race and super fortunate, I thought it it immediately I thought, and actually my teammate was on the phone trying to find a replacement for me right away, but it worked out.
My pelvic fractures were non-displaced, and so the physicians allowed me to train. As long as I would only train in my basement, I was not allowed to be outside because another fall. Would fracture, the wood would take those fractures and just shatter them. So I was allowed to train indoors. But the last six weeks picture that you’re training for a 3000 mile race.
And you have to do it in your basement for the last six weeks. So what happened is that shifted my focus from being what I thought was gonna be a physiological challenge to being a cognitive challenge. And the race went well. We ended up winning it. Yet the movie was, it was a lot of fun. I don’t have any specific involvement with it, but if your viewers do want to see it, they can pull it from iTunes.
I think it’s, it’s like four 99 to rent or something. But it’s Godspeed the race across America, and it is, it was a cool event. It was in 600 theaters across the States in 2016 so some of you may have seen it. but that’s,
David Pasqualone, Host: [00:09:44] I’ll put a link in the show notes too, so they can just click on and go,
Brad Cooper, Guest: [00:09:47] Oh, sure.
Yeah. That sounds great. Thank you. I think they enjoy it, but it goes through that whole process, not only the struggles with that wreck, but then what happens in the midst of the race and how. Things [00:10:00] take a turn for the worst, and we almost decided to go sidelines for a while, and then some things changed.
So it is obviously I’m prejudice, but it is, it is a fun film. And we got a great response to that. that experience as I think you, your listeners have learned too, from listening to so many other guests. It. It was a reminder that what we have planned and where we’re actually going are often two very different things.
I, I thought this was a physiological challenge. As I mentioned, it was much more cognitive and as a result of that, a few years later I went back and pursued a PhD to study this concept of mental toughness and find out is it something that you can control? Is it something you can modify as it’s something you can grow in.
And most of the research to that point, that published research said, you have it or you don’t. You know. David Goggins is a great example. He’s, he’s this guy that everybody thinks, you know, he wrote the book, can’t hurt me. He’s a Navy seal. He’s just super tough dude. People love him. He’s got 5 trillion followers on Facebook and Instagram and all that.
But, but if you talk to people about him and you say, Oh, that’s really cool, what are you modeling about what he does? And people are like, Oh no, I can never do what he does. And to me that’s, that’s. That’s not the aunt, like that’s, how does that help? Like it’s cool, he’s a Hollywood hero basically. But I want to be the guy who says, look, just look at me.
I’m an average dude. But if you implement these strategies, you can develop your mental toughness. And so the goal of that research was to find out what could we be doing? Any of us, anyone that doesn’t matter who you are, what you’re doing, what your situation is, how mentally strong or weak you think you are.
What can we do to enhance that? And that’s what led to pursuing that at PhD in performance psychology and the research. It was, it was pretty fun. It was interesting. And I don’t know, we didn’t talk about this before, but I do have a website, Dr. Bradford, cooper.com where all the research has posted.
Because a lot of that research has restricted access. So if you have a library, you know, through a university, you can get it. But if people are into that, into the idea of mental toughness and what can you do to develop it, that might be a good place to go.
David Pasqualone, Host: [00:12:12] Absolutely. And we’ll put all that in the show notes and yeah, let’s, you just, you just really unpack a lot.
Brad Cooper, Guest: [00:12:17] So if you,
David Pasqualone, Host: [00:12:18] if you don’t mind me slowing down a bit, you are a triathlete. You never slowed down.
Brad Cooper, Guest: [00:12:23] No transition time.
David Pasqualone, Host: [00:12:25] Alright, so for the listeners, if you have pursued a higher education. You go from, you know, your high school to associate’s, to bachelor’s, to master’s, to maybe something in between to PhD.
So you take in that commitment. Brad is amazing to say, this intrigues me so much and I want to be an expert at it. So much to help people. What a commitment and passion you have, man. I applaud you and I’m thankful for men like you who step up because I’m sure PA getting a PhD, it might have been interesting, but it wasn’t easy right.
Brad Cooper, Guest: [00:12:57] It was a tough path and there was no question about it. And I was so, so fortunate. I had two professors that were just off the charts, and for anybody out there that’s pondering a PhD, my advice to you would be your school, kind of important, your degree, kind of important. Your professors ultimately important.
Like that is the solution. If you get a professor and she is not connected with you or he’s not that connected with you. It can be a long road. And I was really fortunate, both of the gentlemen who were my supervisors were amazing, incredibly accessible. Great follow up. Just to throw out a name, Dr. Mark Wilson and Dr.
Martin Jones. Just a huge thanks to them cause you read horror stories about people that. It’s, it’s a disaster. So yes, I, I, I’ve always found that’s the answer. I don’t have the answers, but it’s out there. The books that are available, you know, if you take any pursuit that I’ve gone after, whether I enjoy running and I re I still have the first running book I ever bought.
When I first fell in love with running, I was 1617 years old. I went out and bought the competitive runners handbook and I digested that thing, and now we have literally a thousand plus books in our library. My wife and I are both big readers, and the next step of that is. The school piece, so you’re not just reading, but you’re investing in that.
And so yes, I’ve got a bachelor’s in biology, a master’s in business, a master’s in physical therapy, and a PhD in performance psychology. And my wife’s very similar. She’s got a bachelor’s in psychology, a master’s noti, and a master’s in counseling. So it’s just something we do together. And I think. She’s had a huge impact in my life and I think we encourage and model for each other as well.
David Pasqualone, Host: [00:14:39] All right, well, let’s talk about this then. When you were injured training for that race, you are well versed in the psyche and in the way the mind works. When you got injured, you had feelings and thoughts and feelings and emotions all tie together. So maybe you [00:15:00] get HIPAA had goose go from there. Do that break down in slow motion of what’s going through your head and what was the difference between you staying in bed and giving up because everybody in the world would have understood.
And you pulling it together and persevering and making it happen and winning the race. That’s incredible.
Brad Cooper, Guest: [00:15:19] I think it’s just a decision. It’s not, I don’t even know if it’s a decision. It’s almost like a character trait and you know what I mean? Some people are looking for an excuse to stop other people.
They are just in tears if they have to stop. And I happened to be in the second category, and I remember going in for the MRI. What happened? We didn’t know the pelvic fractures were there. we, we knew the clavicle. Was broken. We knew four ribs were broken. I went in for surgery, I think about 24 hours after the accident.
I had a connection with a surgeon. He got me in right away. When you correct, when you fix the clavicle, you, you stretch it out a little bit. And so that freed up the ribs just a little bit too. And so I couldn’t swim. Obviously I couldn’t run. And we can talk about. The Ram was the first part of three things I did race customer, Erica, and then try to qualify for the white Ironman world championship and then try to run a sub three hour marathon all within a five month period.
But that, so if you wanna get into that, we can, but so I couldn’t swim. I couldn’t lift weights. I couldn’t do any of that stuff, but I could slowly ease into an Aero position on the bike and start pedaling. And I did that in the first Friday after the accident and after the surgery. So this would have been about eight days after the accident.
I was on the bike. I don’t remember if it was eight hour ride or a 10 hour ride or 600 ride. It was a long ride, and I remember. Four or five hours into it, something just wasn’t right. And so I called the doc, I called another doctor, buddy of mine. We got an MRI. And I remember thinking, here we go, what’s, what’s going on?
And it turned out it was the pelvic fractures in four places. And, they huddled together for a couple of days. But I remember being on eggshells, like, I gotta do this. I gotta do this, I gotta do this. And, and I think there’s some negative to that too. you know, when you’re that focused, you can make decisions that aren’t the right decision.
And so what we did in that case is we took it out of my hands, put it in the surgeon’s hands, and let them make that decision.
David Pasqualone, Host: [00:17:15] All right, well let’s, let’s rewind a little bit now because. To have that kind of mindset didn’t just happen. And I think, and you correct me if I’m wrong, but I believe that everybody is born with a certain skillset and you have certain skills and different levels of each skill, like singing versus athleticism.
You know what I mean? I have zero on singing. I’m like negative. I am a great listener though, right? But no, but this is the deal. I believe that we’re all given God given gifts and abilities, and we can build upon those. But it would be foolish of me to try to go and be a great opera singer when that’s not a gift.
You know, I might be able to, if I’m a level zero or one, so I might be able to get to level three and spend 20 years doing it. But the same thing with that mindset. You have a Champion’s mindset, you have a mindset of steadfastness and perseverance. And I do believe that our mindset can be changed because the Bible talks about how we can renew our minds.
So that’s something where I think a lot of listeners may be struggling with depression and sadness, wanting to quit. They’re hitting hard times. Businesses are suffering right now, while we’re recording this. You may listen to this three years later and it has no app. No, you have no idea where Tom will.
But right now, the, covert 19, the Corona viruses are outbreaking and hurting businesses. So people losing income. Go back to your childhood. Did you have a great childhood? You have a crappy childhood. What kind of upbringing did you have that built this mindset into you?
Brad Cooper, Guest: [00:18:49] It’s a great question, and I’ve pondered that.
I would say I had a very average, childhood. It was, my folks did a good job, but they weren’t, you hear a lot of people that have that resilient mindset coming from really tough upbringing. I didn’t have that. I had a, generally, nobody’s has a perfect upbringing, but generally a very good upbringing.
so I don’t think it came from there. It’s interesting. So you didn’t mention resilience, but a lot of people do. Resilience is literally, people are misusing it a lot, but it’s really what you’ve come from. It’s your history. It’s what you bringing from your past into your present. grit is Angela Duckworth’s big term.
If you haven’t seen her book, her Ted talk, she does a great job with that. that’s really future oriented. That’s the longterm commitment to what you’re doing. And the reason I want to study mental toughness is it’s the now. It’s what can I do now? So I think if I, it’s, it’s hard to answer your question.
I’m kind of going circular here. Sorry about that, David. But the, the things that we learned in the research that lead to mental toughness, I can see how those things develop. A simple example, if you’re, one of our research studies was on sleep. If you sleep higher quality [00:20:00] more consistently. You’re fine.
You’re what’s we call functional mental toughness bank will be higher. This it, it came out in the research, and not everybody, but most people, if you use, if you learn to use effective self-talk, it’s higher. We just did a study with 800 meter runners and the results were so fascinating. They, they did between 12 and 15 800 meters over 10 week period where they were separated by at least two or three days in between.
And. We give them a self-talk strategy. After the third or fourth one, they improved by six, nine and 12% six 900 coffee. To give you an example of a comparison point, coffee is a performance enhancer. The best we know in terms of a legal performance enhancer, it’s a 2.3% improvement. So our personalized self-talk improved their performance by six, nine and 12% think about that.
So those types of things, I think I learned early about the value of. Of positive self talk or positive perspective, and I think that help a wreck like that. You don’t come out of it and without saying, Oh no, what’s going to happen? But you also. You gotta keep your head up, you gotta think, okay, I can still do this.
We’re going to be okay. I’ll be like a long taper. We’re going to make this happen. So I think a lot of things that came out of the research probably drove where I am, but, but it’s also your support system. That was another thing we found out in research. And my wife is amazing, like you couldn’t, I can’t, like, it’s impossible for me to have a more incredible woman that I’m married to.
And that’s a big part of why that resilience is there too. If you’re, if you’re trying to. Get above water all the time. You don’t have that support around you. Well, you probably don’t have that mental toughness because you’re using it just to survive.
David Pasqualone, Host: [00:21:42] Yeah, and that’s. So true. I mean, again, you hit on like 18 points, I think.
Geritalk I’ve talked to a lot of athletes and you’re an athlete, but I remember specifically there was one athlete and his name was Greg Lytton, and I don’t have like a buddy buddy relationship with him, but he lives in this area and I’ve met him a couple of times. She seems like a great guy, but I remember talking to him about hitting.
I believe he hit a grand slam in the world series to win the whole thing for the San Francisco giants. And I remember him telling me that in his mind, as the ball was thrown at 95 miles an hour, it was just in slow motion and all the time it’s a consistent thing for these athletes of all sorts. He could actually see the ball turning in the threads on the ball.
So while I’m talking to you, I’m thinking super successful, strong guy, physically, mentally, emotionally. But I think this is so. Such a gift for you, that to slow it down for us to grab it seems simple to you, but it’s really not like we’re all listening and we’re like, man, we’re in bed. We’re just like, how do you stop the pain?
Or, Oh yeah, statistically I’ll never be able to walk. Right. Let her finish this bike race in six weeks. So was there a moment even in your mind. Where let’s say we’ll use the term fear and negativity came in your head because right there, I’m sure every human would have it even for a moment, but the question is, what was your second thought?
How did you smash that fear? How did you smash that negativity and go right back to the positive so you could recover so fast?
Brad Cooper, Guest: [00:23:21] I don’t have a, an easy answer to that. I don’t remember. Okay. My perspective was if they let me, I’ll be on that starting line and so maybe that’s it. It was if allowed to all be there and then I just had to wait out what they allow me to.
David Pasqualone, Host: [00:23:41] But did any thoughts come in your mind that I can’t do this or it’s not going to happen, or was it literally down to, if I’m allowed, I’m going to do it?
Brad Cooper, Guest: [00:23:50] If there was never a second of doubt that if I was allowed. That I would do it. There were a lot of, I remember sitting in the MRI waiting for the results and just thinking the it, this is it.
This is it. This is when we find out, are we doing this? We not, so there was never a doubt. If possible, will we get it done in the movie? You’ll see it there. There’s a section about two thirds through where the team’s like, maybe we should dial it back. I’m like, no, this is a race. We’ve got to go. And give it everything we got.
So there’s, there’s a negative side to that too, David, and I don’t want to present this as Brad’s got it all figured out, cause I clearly don’t if you follow me around for 24 hours. But
David Pasqualone, Host: [00:24:35] all of that, man, we all got
Brad Cooper, Guest: [00:24:36] on absolutely. Well, but the focus piece, the, the, the, all in, that’s probably the best way to define me.
Once I’m in, I’m all in there. There’s no. You know, maybe I’ll try that by grace. We’ll see how the clavicles feel and know we’ve got a team counting on me. I need to be there. We, I’ve trained all this time. Let’s see what happens.
David Pasqualone, Host: [00:24:55] Yeah. So again, I keep going back as a listener on this side of the mic, [00:25:00] I keep thinking your reactions and your positivity and your thought.
Like the Bible says, as a man thinketh, so is he, and you know, as iron sharpens iron, so the man of countenance of his friend, and I’m thinking of all of these Bible verses exactly what you’re saying. And I don’t know about you, but I believe all truth comes from God. We can repackage it and have somebody else deliver it and put a twist on it.
But if it works, it’s the Bible. And when you’re telling me these stories, I’m still thinking you have this magnificent gift. And the more we can slow it down and unpack it, the more, other people can experience these victories. Cause there’s so many people struggling with depression and quitting and they’re having a hardships happen.
And you’re a guy who’s like never even seeming to consider quitting. And that’s awesome. And it’s admirable. So,
Brad Cooper, Guest: [00:25:44] well, let’s, let’s pause there for a second, because I, you know, I said, if you follow me around for 24 hours, she’d be like, Oh, dude, what’s your deal? if you, if you’re following me on from month, you would find that about once a month for about 24 hours, sometimes twice a month.
I just go through this law where I’m just, I just, I’m, I’m, I’m just flat. I just don’t have the energy. I’m not. It’s just, it’s not gone. And I’ve learned, I’ve started doing a lot more journaling, and I’ve learned that that tends to, the switch will flip within 24 hours. So if today’s a rough day, I’m almost positive from experience, tomorrow’s going to be better, maybe great.
so I do struggle with those and, and I think maybe to slow it down, like you’re doing a great job here in saying, let’s slow this down. Let’s talk about a couple of specifics. I think that’s one of the things I loved about our research is it identified very specific things. The model that we came up with was threefold.
It’s thrive, prepare and activate. And probably don’t have time to fully dig into those, but that makes it simpler. That makes it easier to sit back and go, okay, I’m having a rough day today. I don’t feel energized. I don’t feel like I’m ready to rock and roll. But what would be one thing I could do? You know what?
I could go to bed 30 minutes earlier tonight, David. There is nothing. It makes your life better than sleep if you are depleted a little bit in your sleep. The research over and over, over sleep improves everything. Everything.
David Pasqualone, Host: [00:27:14] I agree a hundred percent and I remember it’s ironic cause you’re from Colorado.
I had a good friend named brother Tim Tutton and his wife. I wasn’t at his house one time and he was cranky cause he was tired, working hard and his wife looked at him and said. Tim, the most spiritual thing you can do right now is go take a nap. And I laughed so hard. She didn’t argue. She didn’t fight for you.
She could. You could. But what she said was exactly what you’re saying. It’s so true. Sleep changes things. So if our listeners are taking practical steps, this is perfect. You’re seeing that even you once a month, it’s like a cycle. You’ll get a low, but you know in your head and you focus on the tomorrow will be better.
You journal your thoughts, you get extra sleep. Keep going, man, this is beautiful.
Brad Cooper, Guest: [00:27:58] Well, I just, I’ll throw out a few of the other tips that came out of the research. so under the thrive category, it’s basically move fuel, rest, connect. So we talked about the rest and that may not just be sleep, that might be recovery.
Today was a complete day off for me. I’m training for iron mans again, and, and I’ve been putting in some good miles. I’ve been traveling a lot, and I just had a lot of work stuff to do. And I said, you know what? I’m just going to take today as a complete recovery day. So sometimes the rest is not literally sleep.
It can just be. Recovery. How are you doing with recovery piece? move. It doesn’t mean run a marathon. Doesn’t mean do a triathlon. It’s just get moving. Again. Maybe it’s as simple as stand up. Every time you pick up your phone, every time you’re on a conference call, every time you check your Facebook page, you never do those things sitting down.
So that if you’re always sitting, maybe that’s a simple way to get moving again, that’s going to help elevate what you’re doing in your life. the fueling piece, it’s, this is a different way of looking at eating. Eating is satisfying the tongue. Fueling is purposeful. Fueling says, I want to be a better person.
I want to have a bigger impact. You can’t have a bigger impact eating junk food. It just doesn’t work. So if we fuel, if every time we put something in our mouth, we ask ourselves, is this fuel or is this food? Oftentimes you don’t need any of these fancy diet plans. Just do the, do the fueling question, and that’ll change what you eat and then connect.
We need to be connected with the others. So with connect, you know, I get it. I’m an introvert too. it doesn’t mean you have to be out with people all the time. You don’t have to always be with big groups. Connect comes in different forms, but we, we’re not islands. We, we, we, we benefit from time with other people.
David mentioned iron sharpens iron. That’s a huge component of anything that we’re doing. So those are the three, the four main aspects of thrive. prepare are those things that you’re doing in advance. So I mentioned the, the journaling I’m starting to do, that’s a form of preparation. It allows me to reflect on what am I feeling, what am I experiencing?
What am I thinking about? What am I focused on? And then the why behind that. And then something I love to do, and I guess this isn’t visual, but I am looking at here to my right, I do a, an annual. Personal vision, once a [00:30:00] year, and I’ll spend six weeks doing that. It’s not a one hour process or a one week process and it’s, it’s not the Y, you know, you hear, who was it?
Simon Sinek talks about, start with why I think Simon’s amazing and he’s brought up a great point, but I think he’s one step off. I think instead of starting with why we should start with who. Who is the man that I want to become? Who is the woman that I want to become? Who? And then once that’s clear, the why tends to take care of itself.
And the what, which is the goals you’re setting, absolutely take care of itself. So once you’ve defined that vision, that can, that can drive, that can be the powerhouse, the engine to all these things that you’re trying to accomplish.
David Pasqualone, Host: [00:30:39] Oh, that’s really good. All right, well thank you so much Brad, that that really, I think is going to help people slow it down and and see that in their own life.
We all struggle with this, but you said about one day a month. It’s like a cycle. You get that low, but there’s other people who it’s like one day a month I’m happy, but if you’re listening out there, what you need to realize as you practice these skills, as you get good rest, as you go through what Brad?
The mute, the move, the fuel, the rest, the connect. You start going from 29 bad days to 28 to 26 to 20 and then sooner or later you’re just having that one, two bad days, and we all get them. You know, it’s life, it’s, it’s human. And sometimes we go through bad seasons. You could have a really bad stretch of time, even up to years, but eventually, you know, where there’s showers and flowers or bloom.
So, okay, bread and let’s do this. You’re in this race. We can watch the movie and go download. I’ll put a link in the show notes and incredible perseverance. you get a PhD. Talk about your company now. So you move forward and you start not only being a wellness coach, but you’re a wellness coach, a wellness coach, and a training and a certification board, correct.
Brad Cooper, Guest: [00:31:46] Yeah. So I CA, I wear two hats and my wife and I do this together. So she gets at least half the credit here, if not more in many of the cases, but us corporate wellness, we provide employee wellness services organizations nationwide. So if a company says, we want to help our employees improve their lives, you know, create behavior change in a positive direction, that’s what we do with us.
Corporate wellness catalyst coaching Institute, and that’s where our podcast stems from and that’s the catalyst health, wellness and performance podcast. The catalyst coaching Institute is all about helping coaches develop. So we have one of the nationally board certified. And accredited programs for people that want to become a nationally board certified coach.
And then we provide continuing education and we do an annual coaching retreat to help there. There’s nothing out there for coaches there. There’s all kinds of wellness conferences and benefits conferences and HR conferences. And we looked around and there’s just nothing for coaches who said, I want to get continue education.
How do I get refreshed and rejuvenated? So we created this Rocky mountain health and wellness coaching retreat up in Estes park, Colorado. I’m incredibly beautiful. September. It’s at the YMCA camp. Beautiful spot. Doesn’t cost a lot to be there. So, so that’s the catalyst coaching is too. It’s the education and training and development of health and wellness coaches nationally.
David Pasqualone, Host: [00:33:04] And I’ve been to Estes park. What a gorgeous, really beautiful.
Brad Cooper, Guest: [00:33:07] My friend.
David Pasqualone, Host: [00:33:08] Yeah. You’re blessed to be there and to go that whole, that whole area of Colorado is just magnificent. But Estes park is like, when I drove there the first time, I was like, Whoa. Yeah. Yeah. So if you’re a coach, sign up now. We’ll put a link in the show notes.
Get up there and you can, you can tell us how right we were. Alright. All right. Well then companies that are listening. Do you work international? Machinal only? Is it online? Is it impersonal? Only? Tell us how this works.
Brad Cooper, Guest: [00:33:35] Yeah, so it’s primary national. We’ve done some things internationally, but our core 99 plus percent is national.
let’s say you had a company with 800 employees and you said, I want to help our employees move forward in a positive direction. Now, a lot of the wellness programs out there are very, check the box. They’re very, we’re going to set up this website and you’re going to go in and check off that. You’re.
Walking this many steps and you’re eating this many vegetables and. I don’t know about you, David, but I’ve never, Oh, and by the way, we have a portal where we do those things if they want, but we’ve never looked at that as the centerpiece. We’ve taken a different approach as an organization in that we make coaching the core, so it’s the center of the target, and then we offer those other things to support that.
Most wellness programs, they have the technology at the core and then, Oh yeah, if you want to do coaching, it’s out here in the periphery somewhere, and six of their employees use it.
David Pasqualone, Host: [00:34:30] All a test right there. The only time I’ve seen corporate wellness programs work where it’s like that online track. Your steps do this, do that is when you have competitive people involved, the competitive people will engage in the competition and it doesn’t matter what you put in front of them.
You could say, how many frogs can you catch? And competitor. People are going to catch frogs, right? But then everybody else is going to get further behind and discard. So that coaching is huge and I’m glad you’re doing it.
Brad Cooper, Guest: [00:34:52] It is. So that’s the focus for that organization.
David Pasqualone, Host: [00:34:55] So for a company listening, and you know, they love their people and they want to help them [00:35:00] grow.
What does a normal procedure package plan look like? Like what’s the everyday work with you look like? What,
Brad Cooper, Guest: [00:35:08] what we typically do, cause it keeps it affordable, but it still keeps it personalize, is we’ll set all of their employees up. They’ll incentivize their employees to participate in coaching and then the coach will connect with that person on a quarterly basis with.
A prescheduled phone call and talk through whatever they’re working on. Not to tell them to eat kale, not to tell them to buy running shoes, but to find out. So David, what are you working on? What’s going on in your life? What’s, what’s a struggle that you’d like to kind of overcome right now? And it’s amazing.
Most people come into it, they have no idea what wellness coaching is, and they come out of it sand. Wow. That was really helpful. So that’s the approach the coach is not telling. They’re drawing out and then they’re helping support that person come with ideas, provide some friendly accountability, that kind of thing.
And then they’ll communicate with them via email in between those sessions. So some companies will do much more than that, but that’s kind of the standard program that allows them to keep that relationship. It’s not a call center, they don’t talk to some random person. Your coach is your coach and you stay with that person for as long as you’re in the program, unless you want to change.
David Pasqualone, Host: [00:36:14] Well, let’s do this and let’s talk about wellness. Cause that is a term you’re using, but it can be interpreted so many different ways. And right now, you know what? I’m not joking with a third to 50% of the economy, it can be literally categorized into, you know, people want to live forever. They want to look beautiful.
They have to take meds cause they’ve ate junk food for their whole life. And myself included, man. I mean, how many problems do I have physically because I battle tested my body and I got through, but with scars right. So somebody may be listening and they’ve gone off, you know, die. I hate dying. I don’t believe in dieting person.
I think you need a lifestyle change. And you can, again, correct me if I’m wrong, but if someone’s been dieting their whole life on again off again and saying, why can’t I lose the weight? To me, wellness encompasses the physical, the mental, the spiritual, the emotional, the professional, all the things that go into life.
Is your wellness correct? Is that how you define wellness?
Brad Cooper, Guest: [00:37:10] Yeah. Yeah. A lot of people come into it thinking it’s food and fitness, and it can be, yeah, but it’s, it’s, it’s a better life. It’s, we use the term better than yesterday or hashtag better than yesterday. That’s how do we, because you and I, we might have a lot in common, but the way we would approach even the same.
Goal might be completely different because we have different histories, different backgrounds, different support structures. we’ve, we’ve tried different things in the last year, in the last 20 years, we’ve, one of us says a knee injury, the other one doesn’t. The other one hates swimming. The other one loves skiing.
So where wellness comes in when it’s done well is we’re not telling people what to do. We don’t have the answer. And that’s, we have a lot of clinicians that go through our certification, like physicians and physical therapists and counselors, and, and I’m a physical therapist, and I had the same problem.
We’re so used to being the expert. We’re so used to the person coming to us to get the answer. And a one’s coaching coach doesn’t provide the answer. The wellness coach helps that person find out what are they looking to do and how can we enhance that and the research on autonomy. Man. It is huge. If you are involved in the process of your life change, you are so much more likely to have be successful than if I tell you what you should do.
Unbelievable. Like it’s not even close.
David Pasqualone, Host: [00:38:27] Oh, agreed. Agreed. Again, well I think we’re tracking exactly. Cause I think we’re talking reality. You’re not trying to sell drugs and products. You’re trying to speak to help people. Let’s do this. I want to respect your time and I know that we’re. We schedule a certain amount of time for this interview.
I’m so thankful you’re here, Brad, and we could go on for hours, but let’s do this. Let’s right now, look at, I think I see statistics. 70% up of people in America right now hate their job. They’re not doing what they’re passionate about. That’s part of wellness. Probably higher than that. They’re not happy with their body.
They’re not happy with their finances. They’re not happy with really any part of life. So they’re engaging in gorging and social media and movies and entertainment to take their mind off this, that person in their heart, they’re a good person. They want help, and you know, good meeting. Nice. You know what I mean?
Only God’s good, but you know what I mean? Anyways, those people who are listening, they’re, they’re wonderful people. They have great intentions, but they really are just beaten down and they’re looking for certain courage. Mint. They’re looking for that step one and then step two, and then after that they’ll call you for more.
What would you say to them?
Brad Cooper, Guest: [00:39:42] I would say regardless of what situation you’re in right now, you’re one step away from better, and that’s why I liked this concept of better or better than yesterday. It’s not you. You’re not trying to become someone else. You’re not trying to become the old you. You’re not trying to become your spouse, your best friend, your boss, whatever else [00:40:00] you’re trying to make tomorrow a little bit better than today.
We can all do that. That’s not intimidating. It’s not scary. It’s not outlandish. It’s not out of reach. It’s one step away. It could be as simple as I drink seven Cokes a day and today I’m only going to drink six. Now a dietician would look at you and go, dude, you can’t be drinking six. That’s better than yesterday.
That’s good. And you’re going to notice a difference. And what you find is in this, in this triad, this mental toughness triad, they all influence one another. So if you go from seven Cokes to six to five to four to three, maybe staff at three, you’re still having three a day. And some people are like three a day.
Are you psychotic? What are you doing that’s less than half what you were doing a month before. Now maybe you feel like. I think I’ll go for a walk at lunch. Not a run. You’re not signing up for a race. You’re walking for 12 minutes over your lunch hour at you eat something, maybe junk food, but you’re walking.
And then it’s just, it’s, if we just make each day, I’m going to do one thing to make life better. I’m not going to change my life. It’s not gonna change overnight. But one thing. Now there’s power behind that because then you get the momentum. Now you get the success. And then the other piece that I think is critical is coming back to that vision.
If I don’t know who it is that I’m wanting to become a who who is, that’s why I present PAC. I looked forward, I’m 50 I’ll turn 54 in a few weeks here. I looked forward and said, I’m getting injured. As an Ironman, that is a big part of my life. What am I going to do to have a big impact when I’m 75 if I’m not running, if I’m not racing, what could be an opportunity?
And after a lot of thought and reflection envisioned creating, it came down to this is the answer. And that’s what led to the PhD. So that I think get clear on who it is you want to become. And that vision process can be huge with that.
David Pasqualone, Host: [00:42:02] Man, thank you so much. And then one thing you just said. I love, love, love how you’re telling people, you know, consistent steps moving forward.
Just each day a little bit better. Like, yeah, we don’t want you drinking three sodas cause that really is poison. But if you’re backing off seven, that’s incredible
Brad Cooper, Guest: [00:42:21] and it’s awesome.
David Pasqualone, Host: [00:42:22] Yeah. To quit cold Turkey can be done. I don’t want you to put a line in your head that it can’t be, but most people like a ramp down period and your body can have addiction from soda for other things.
You can be addicted to anything. But. There’s a difference between right versus wrong and what works for you. So when Brad’s saying is you’re finding what works from you, like obviously cracks bad, there’s no right in that you’re gonna hurt yourself, right? I mean, there’s no good that can come from it.
Soda, probably not the healthiest choice. But if you’re saying, I got to literally walk and run 30 seconds and then walk for 26 minutes, you know, and then build up to get to that five K. Do whatever it takes. You don’t compare yourself to anybody. Find what works for you. Exactly what Brad saying, because then you’re just making yourself better each day and eventually like Brad’s vision board, you’re going to be that man or that woman, or you’re going to have that business or that organization that you dreamed of by that daily consistent practice.
So Brad, thank you so much, man. Anything else that you want to share. Whether it’s, Hey, this is a, you know, this came to my heart. This is a good tip for the listener. Or, Hey, this is not, I want to talk about that really helped me in life. Anything else that’s going on right now?
Brad Cooper, Guest: [00:43:38] We’ve kind of talked around it, but don’t compare yourselves to other people.
Compare yourself to you race yourself, that that is, that’s huge and it doesn’t matter what we’re talking about. Business, school relationships, sleep pattern. Don’t try to be somebody else. That’s where we get off track. As soon as I, it doesn’t matter. Okay, so you’re always talking about where did risk across America Ironman qualify for Hawaii in a sub three hour marathon?
That sounded cool. That was a goal I had set is to do those three things in one year. But you know what? There are a lot of guys faster than me out there. There are a lot of guys with more endurance than me. There’s always somebody better stop. Stop comparing yourself to somebody else because it just depends on where you’re at.
What were you yesterday and are you better or did you backslide? Ellen? By the way, we all backslide. So this is not something that is a constant ramp going upward. You’re going to have two, three, four good days, and you’re gonna have a day that kind of stunk. And then you’re gonna get back on track. One of the things that we had a client mentioned during a, what we call the celebration of success a few years ago, I never forget, she called it never miss a Monday, and I was like, what?
What do you mean you never missed a Monday? She said, well, yeah, never missed a Monday if, if I, she wasn’t working out and she was trying to start working out and [00:45:00] she found if she worked out Monday. She’s good to go. If she didn’t work out Monday, then Tuesday it was a little bit easier to say, ah, miss yesterday already.
Maybe I’ll back down and by Wednesday you’re like, ah, man, I’ll just wait until next week. Whereas if she hit Monday. It didn’t matter if she missed a Tuesday or Wednesday, she’d already had a start to a good week. So strategies like that come up with what works for you, what? What is your never miss a Monday.
They can get you on the right track. Maybe you track something. I track like I’m, I have stomach issues when I use coffee in a race. And so this year I’m racing caffeine free. Well, I like caffeine for some of those nights that sleep doesn’t go so well, or the big workout is waiting for me, and so I’m tracking my caffeine.
I just jot it down on my daytimer. I had four ounces a day at six ounces a day at eight outside zero ounces. It’s amazing what simply tracking things. Results in. So if you’ve got something that you’re working on, maybe it is soda, maybe it’s walking number of minutes walking. Maybe it’s, what time you, how many times, how many times during the week you are in your bed lights off at 10 zero zero versus 10 Oh five 10 1510 30 whatever it is.
Simply tracking it, and literally the word simply fits here because it may just be a jot on a white boarder, a little posted note you keep track of. It’s amazing what just tracking stuff like that can do in terms of moving you forward.
David Pasqualone, Host: [00:46:25] Oh yeah. I don’t, I agree with you on every level that we’ve talked about.
Man, this is awesome stuff. And as the listener, if you have any questions, you know Brad’s notes. I mean, Brad’s information will be in the show notes. you can reach out to him. we can always continue the conversation. Do you have a blog, Brad? I know you have your podcast.
Brad Cooper, Guest: [00:46:45] Do you have a blog? The podcast is really, we’re actually launching something pretty cool with the podcast next week called the Monday morning catalyst, and it’ll really be kind of the format of a blog.
It’ll be five minutes. Our main episodes post on Wednesday morning, but every Monday morning we’re gonna have a five minute. Just life-changing, motivating idea, optimizing reality, taking where you’re at, moving to the next level. So we’re really excited about that, and that’ll be kind of the format of a, of an audio blog, if you will.
David Pasqualone, Host: [00:47:14] Excellent. Excellent. So again, we’ll put that in the show notes. Reach out. And Brandon, man, I appreciate you being here today. Thank you so much.
Brad Cooper, Guest: [00:47:22] Yeah, this is fine. David. Thanks for doing this. You do a great job.
David Pasqualone, Host: [00:47:25] Oh man. Now we’ll keep improving. Keep growing together. Right.
Brad Cooper, Guest: [00:47:28] Better than yesterday.
David Pasqualone, Host: [00:47:29] That’s right.
That’s right. But for season one to season two, huge difference.
Brad Cooper, Guest: [00:47:33] That’s right.
David Pasqualone, Host: [00:47:34] So what season are you in your podcast, by the way?
Brad Cooper, Guest: [00:47:36] We are season three. We just recorded episode 77 man,
David Pasqualone, Host: [00:47:44] congratulations.
Brad Cooper, Guest: [00:47:45] It’s coming along.
David Pasqualone, Host: [00:47:46] Congratulations. It’s such a growing field and so much fun. So as a listeners, thank you for supporting us.
Thank you for listening to our shows. If we can help you in any way, please reach out, connect with us online, shoot us an email, give us a phone call, and we love you. We’re here for you. I think Brad’s heart and my heart is both just to help you grow, glorify God on the way. And so Brad, thank you. What’s your next adventure?
How any, any big triathlons coming up. Yeah, I
Brad Cooper, Guest: [00:48:14] am jumping back in this year, so I took four years off to pursue the PhD. I’ll be in Lubbock, Texas for the 70.3 in late June. And then Ironman Arizona this fall to kind of test it out, get used to doing them again. And then in triathlon and running, everything happens with the new age group.
So I’ll be in the 55 to 59 age group next year. And so that’s the year I’m hoping to really dial it in. So this year is kind of get the feet wet again. Remember how to do all the transitions, get used to training, build that into my schedule, stay healthy, figure the stomach out. Race, Ironman, Arizona, do the best I can there, but really focus on next year as the target to get back to why and see if I can podium there.
David Pasqualone, Host: [00:48:52] Awesome. Well, we wish you the best and we’ll be checking those results. Keep you accountable.
Brad Cooper, Guest: [00:48:56] Dad’s great.
David Pasqualone, Host: [00:48:57] Love it. Alright. Alright. Love you Brad. Thanks for being here today. And to the listeners, we love you. Thanks for being here and remember, don’t just listen, do and repeat so you can have a great life.
We love you and catch you soon.
Brad Cooper, Guest: [00:49:09] The remarkable people podcast, check it out.
David Pasqualone, Host: [00:49:22] podcast.
Brad Cooper, Guest: [00:49:24] Listen, dude, repeat for life.