Behind The Best Podcast

Hosted ByDr. Jay Cavanaugh

The Behind The Best Podcast is a behind-the-scenes look at the people, mindset, and secrets behind the best athletes in the world.

Interview with Dalen Vernazza of Phoenix Racing Honda – Mechanic for Coty Schock

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 . So when you’re working with a professional athlete and they fail, things do not go the way they want, and you are the first person they see when they get off the track. How do you manage an athlete when that vibe and energy is off? Knowing? That the night’s not over. Like it could be practice, it could be qualifying, but there’s more work to do.

So you gotta get them back to a levelheadedness. What’s kind of your strategy to get your athletes back to center and back to, uh, a frame of mind that can serve them better than the one they come off the track with? So honestly, the, the, the biggest part is to, um, get them to realize what they’ve done.

and the faster you can come, I don’t know, you should say, you can come to conclusion on what they’ve done wrong is the faster they’ll move on. So like, okay, I did this wrong. Well let’s fix it. And the biggest thing is leave what’s already done in the past. Because if you sit there and you dread on it all day, you’re not gonna.

That’s so true. So we’re guys, we’re here with Daylen Ver Naza. He is a mechanic, uh, for motocross Supercross team called Phoenix Honda, based in North Carolina. Works with an athlete by the name of Cody Shock. Real, fun, loving guy who, uh, we’ll talk about as, uh, as we go on. So, um, just to a follow up with that question, uh, relationships are interesting because in your sport, Supercross, motocross, which just to be clear, motocross is dirt bikes outside competing.

Usually a gate of about 40 riders. Supercross is most of the time the same athletes for the most part, but competing indoors, but only 22 athletes. You’re spending a lot of time with these athletes, you with Cody, how do you guys find balance? Because it’s almost like dating, you know? I mean, you’ll probably spend more time with him than you would with your girlfriend, and same with him.

How do you manage just the balance of it all? I mean, do you guys have certain boundaries or certain like, Hey, for three days after a race weekend, I just don’t wanna see you. Don’t text me , how’s it goes? No, hon. I can’t avoid ’em like that because we live together . So, uh, no, the, our, our relationship is definitely different than, than most other riders and mechanic that only see their guys on the weekend.

Um, I’m not saying all guys and mechanics races are like that, but Cody and, and, and I, our relationship’s pretty tight. So we live together. I mean, should we eat dinner together? We’re at the track all day together. If. , uh, you know, I’m in the shop doing bike work or whatever I gotta do. He’ll pop in, Hey, what are you doing?

Like, he’ll hang out for a little bit. We also have a gym here at the shop that all the rider come and use. So there’s literally not a day that goes by that I don’t see him. So, no, it’s definitely like when we’re working and like on a Saturday for example, it’s, it’s strictly. Um, yeah, ev like, I mean, with Phoenix and all the guys, like we have our laughs and everything like that, but when it’s, when it’s crunch time and it’s time to get work done, everybody knows the, the serious side.

And um, as far as, even with Cody, it’s like we have work is work and then when we’re home during the week, we, we do our own thing. Like, Hey, you wanna go to the mall? Hey, you want to go watch a movie? Hey, you wanna, cause there there’s also times. . I mean, him and I, we want to get away from Moto in general.

Yes. So like I work, I’m here at 7, 7 30 and between the day of riding and all that, going to club and back, I’m not back at the shop till four or five, wash, prep a bike and get ready for the next day. I’m not home till six or seven, so like by the time I get home I don’t want to talk Moto and he knows that.

So. , we’re either watching Netflix or playing video games. Honestly, call of Duty or whatever the case may be, just to do something different. But yeah, it’s just we have our relationship where works work and, and friendship is our friendship. But at the same time, he’s more, he is more of a friend. It’s kind of like, like a brother.

So we definitely get along in that aspect, which is. . I love it. Deb, you guys got hooked on the Drive to Survive series yet on Netflix? Not yet. Ooh, not yet. You know, honestly, what we watch is like, uh, Like outer banks, all American or what’s that show like? Too hot to handle with all the girls in one house and then they’re bringing different guys and they all try to have relationships and all this nonsense and it’s just like, who’s going to survive in the house for this money prize at the end of the, it’s all like catchy stuff.

Yeah. And it’s so funny cuz even myself, I’m, I’m pretty intense. I mean, I’ll wake up at four o’clock. And I’m coming up with plans cause I’m a mental performance coach. I’m coming up with my plans for my, uh, one-on-one athletes. I also have a bulletin, a news bulletin, and you know, I’ve got a group coaching program, so I’ve got a lot of moving parts and it’s.

It’s interesting because to your point, you know, I wake up at four 30 and then I’m usually full bore for like seven hours, you know, till like 1130, which at that point is almost a full day. But then at that stage, I know I need a break. I’ll go to the gym and I’ll come back to work for a couple hours.

Yeah. But it’s so true. Like when I go to the gym, it’s like I just want to break free and just Yeah. Like you, yeah. Like not, I mean like Motocross River Cross, like everything’s great. I mean, I grew up racing a little bit my whole life, and I stopped racing in 2017 as an amateur and all that stuff. But it’s like I, I liked it so much.

I wanted to stay in the industry and I, I love bikes and like, for example, Cody loves bikes and it’s kind of all we know. And at the same time, like it does get old sometimes you do have your days that are just like, damn, like, honestly, dirt bike sucks sometimes, you know, but you, you have the thought. It’s just like, , let’s get away for a little bit.

Or like, let’s go to top golf, or let’s just do something else other. than bikes just clear the mind, so. Oh, for sure. But no, honestly, it’s fun. It’s fun. Yeah. And it’s funny cause you even think about it like in life in general and everything’s about balance, right? Yeah. Like things, things are born every day and then things die every day.

Yeah. There’s night and there’s, you know, there’s daytime, there’s snow, there’s fall, you know, there’s all these different, uh, things that come into balance, you know, and it’s a big thing, you know, cuz you realize that most of the time. You can find that your unhappiness or maybe some of the lower vibes that you have oftentimes point back to you just being outta balance.

You know, think about it, if you work too much, um, or you don’t like your job and you’re just, it’s like full bore. When you’re at work, you burn out. You start to realize that balance is a huge thing. So, Let’s talk, let’s move things to a track situation. I’m very curious cuz I’m, I’m a big proponent of setting the tone.

Matter of fact, I set the tone with my athletes and myself before our two feet hit the ground out of bed every morning. That’s always my goal, is to have like a feeling based intention and just really be intentional about setting the tone for the day. How do you and Cody and your team, Even manage vibe and energy in setting the tone.

When it comes to a race weekend, is there anything that you have done or that seems to work or are there things even that don’t work that you try to avoid in, uh, let me gimme a little bit more ideas on what like a morning would look like and how you manage a vibe on a team like yours, the Phoenix Honda team.

Um, so honestly we have, um, between riders and mechanics, we have a solid, solid group of guys. Um mm-hmm. , we. Uh, Chris McCracken, who’s Culin Parks mechanic, um, col Lamb, Bradwell’s mechanic. And then you have Heath Harrison. Who’s Jason? I’m Cody’s. And the, the best thing about us is we all get along. So having a relationship where everybody gets along makes it that much easier.

Um, everyone’s willing to help one another when, when needed and, and all that stuff. As far as like with Cody and, and keeping. , the vibe’s high, like you’re saying, is Cody’s will have a good day on a dirt bike as long as he’s smiling. Interesting. So

dirt bikes make him happy. Riding his dirt bike makes him happy. If he’s not riding his dirt bike, he’s not happy. So as long as I keep him high excited, happy high vibes, he’s he’ll, he’ll have a. . Nice. So not every day goes as planned. Yes, but most of the time, as long as he’s happy and focusing on himself.

He’ll ride his dirt bike. That’s huge. You know, and you start to realize that Yeah. Like athletes that don’t focus on themselves and they ship their focus on someone else. Yeah. It’s almost a guarantee that it’s gonna throw things off. How do you, how do you keep Cody focused on himself when he’s tempted to focus on another athlete or, or maybe even, um, be thinking in the past, so, I have as many as, you know, like Cody and his injuries this past year.

Um, it brought him down a lot. So just between, uh, myself and when we were in California, when all this had happened before moving here full-time, um, his mechanic, Tony Archer and 2021, it was, is like his best friend, a brother to him as well. Um, it was just a matter of being there for him every. and yes, I mean he was in, he brought himself down to a dark place, but it’s, it was us being there either, whether it be getting him out of the house or going to eat lunch or going to do something just to, to be with other people.

Cuz where it really hit him the most was when he was about to go to bed, when he was hurt. And it’s when his mind was just thinking and thinking and thinking and coming off the strong year, he had in 2020. , he almost felt like he was forgotten about. And for me, I don’t like to sugarcoat anything. So in a sense it’s like, yeah, technically they have, you’ve missed a full year of racing, but you have to accept that and the quicker you can accept it, it goes back to what I said before, you can move.

even like you said, like if they come off the track and something’s not going as planned or they’re frustrated between free practice or qualifying one, you still have qualifying two, uh, heat race and the main event. So you have to regroup, forget about what’s already been done and fix it. It’s so true.

You know? And, and I love how you say that because you know, you’re one of the people that, and that’s why I wanted to interview you. With mechanics in your sport. Yeah. You guys are oftentimes the one that has the most influence over the vibe, over your athlete, their ability to let go. It’s almost like you’re this onsite mental coach that also has like, you know, uh, some really good skills on how to work on a motor.

You know, it’s like you have so much power and influence over them. Um, how, what kind of like little tricks or tips have you. To influence his vibe or shift him in, you know, away from a, a state of overthinking things. Um,

honestly, like I said, like it’s more so not holding on to what, what has been done, but keeping it fun at the same time, keeping it fun and still doing. With Cody and I works really well. Like we’ll jam out to all kinds of music or we’ll joke around literally all day long. But I’d have to say the biggest thing is trust.

Interesting. There’s, I have a lot of trust with Cody and, and, and he, and he trusts me as well. So as far as his bike and giving him, like, I’ll never let him ride a bike, that’s obviously not safe or anything like, and he knows that. So I feel like having a solid relationship and trust keeps him from overthinking that side of like, oh, well what could go wrong with bike?

Or, or, or something like that. Like god forbid something were to, um, just to keep everything a hundred percent. So the trust kind of eliminates in his mind, okay, well I don’t have to worry about that. . So mainly try to keep everything, if he’s gonna think about anything about himself mm-hmm. . And when it’s about himself, it’s in the beginning, like when he was coming back from riding, after being injured and all that stuff, he, uh, he would like to compare himself to other riders right off the bat.

Well, when you compare yourself to other riders off the bat, you start making mistakes yourself, and then that leads to something else happening. So, It, it all just goes back to main focus of being you focusing on yourself and even coming back into riding after injury. Like before Houston won, we had four weeks on a bike.

When we moved here from California, second day of Supercross, he broke his jaw. His jaw was wired shut for six weeks. Oh, I was not aware. Oh, yeah. So he, it wasn’t really a bad crash or anything. He. , he ojd one of the rhythms by like a foot inside the, the, the transition of the pocket and just ate the, ate the bars and yeah, he was wired shut for six weeks.

So then he was on a liquid diet and all that stuff and he was actually losing weight cuz he wasn’t consuming enough food. And he’s already light as it is. So like the. Week we tried riding with like an outdoors track with his mouth wired still. And he was good for about 10 minutes, 10, 12 minutes. And then when he’d come off, he couldn’t fuel his body fast enough, so it was like, okay, like I need to just get this stuff off and then go full swing.

So like in the Houston one, every weekend, just been a building, building round. So, um, Yeah, it’s, it’s been tough, but I wouldn’t change it. Yeah. And I, so, all right, so tell me, cuz I, it’s, I love how you said that, that through all of the challenge Yeah. You wouldn’t change it. Why wouldn’t you change it?

I wouldn’t change it because, um, I mean, shoot all the hard work and everything is taken to come back. even for him. And, um, I was fortunate enough to be there alongside of him through it all, and seeing his hard work and everything. And for example, this weekend, getting eighth at Daytona, like, it, it showed a lot.

And he still not, he’ll tell you himself. He’s like, listen, I’m not back to where I need to be just yet. every weekend is, is he’s building and building and building and it’s, it’s step by step, right? So he, in the beginning, a lot of people are like, oh, well you’ll get back to the guy you were in 2021 and this and that.

Well, it’s like, okay, well the ball’s dropped at the end of the year. It’s so new year. What’s happened is over. And the easiest way to break it down for Cody to be a better version of Cody Shock is, one, be the best version of you. And two, what’s happened has happened. You need to start over. It’s, it sucks to say that, but you need to start from ground zero again and, yeah.

Well, you know what’s wild too that, that you said that I thought was interesting is that he had success in 2021, and so the narrative. And the story is you need to get back to where you were in 2021. But you know, there’s a part of me, it was interesting. I. I thought something different that I wanna share with you is when you said that I said, no, no, no, no.

Wait, because we’re g because we face this challenge and we expect to grow from this. I’m actually gonna be better than Cody shot 2021 because that is like putting a governor on him. Yeah. That’s saying, hey, uh, if the best you got was, I don’t know, fifth, what was, what was he in the final, uh, standings at the end of 2021?

Do you recall? Uh, I don’t remember. I think one of his best finishes you. , one of his best finishes was sixth or seventh. Sure. Yeah. And so what’s interesting is if you think about it now, if he is aiming to go back to that, that becomes the new limit. And it’s like, well, wait a minute. No, we wanna go higher.

We wanna go further. Yeah. I wanna be Cody shocked. 20 23, 20 24. You know? And so it’s interesting how, but a big part of getting there is starting over literally from nothing. Yeah, so, and that’s honestly the only way to do it, you know, so, . So what, what was like the biggest obstacle, other than the obvious, you know, the pain, uh, and, and you know, the, the physical side of it.

You know, obviously the, not just the pain, but like physically not being able to do certain things. What do you think was like the biggest obstacle, the coming back from injury and what was the one thing that seemed to work best? Um, in that process for both of you together, cause you guys are almost like one.

Um, what do you think was the key to you recovering and coming back so strong, especially given, uh, the results and the, uh, the strength that he’s now had so early in this season? I mean, you know, daytona’s a, a big deal and, uh, it’s not an easy RA race. That’s an event that tests you. Um, you know, walk me through that a little.

Shoot, that requires me to think real quick. . Um,

honestly, the, the biggest I’d have to say is, I mean, obviously more so for him.

I don’t know. Shoot, so, so maybe like, gimme an example of like what was one thing, was there a moment? Was there something that sticks out your mind when you think back where you’re like, wow, that was so challenging? Or was there also a moment where you’re like, whoa, we are heading in the right direction.

This is. This is good. Like we’re back. Like when, when did you know that? Wow. Like we’re heading in the right direction and we’re back. Maybe that’s a better question for you. Um, I mean after injury and all that. I mean, I guess I can start with, so being with a part of Phoenix last year and only going two rounds mm-hmm.

um, before him getting hurt, I think that a big drive to being excited and the comeback and race was getting confirmation. He had a home and so did I coming back to Phoenix and when, originally, when we were started with Phoenix, just Cody and I were in California, so we were kind of separated from the team and, uh, kind of did our own program and then coming back it was like, okay, like you guys move here.

And, and being all together in one. I definitely was excited to go racing again, knowing that I was already here and kind of knowing everything, what was going on and, and all that stuff. But something that I think Hmm. Sticks out kind of like we’re back is him just progressing day by day. Mm-hmm. and, and going at his own.

I like that. Yeah. And you know, you think about it, there’s, there’s not always this defining moment. Yeah. Sometimes it’s just stringing together that 1%. You know, and even the athletes I work with, it’s always like, Hey, what can we do to gain 1% today, not tomorrow, not this week, not. , just let’s be better 1%.

Cuz that’s very open-ended. If I say, Hey, Dalen, you know, let’s find something you do to become 1% better. Well, there’s no timeframe to it. And so because I mean, I like where you’re going with that because with me, I, I’m always trying to get my athletes. Every single day I talk to my one-on-one guys. I’m like, where’s the 1% today?

Yeah. Like, and it sounds like that you guys had a version of that where there was this daily progression and it was always looking and finding the answers as to where that 1% lied. Yeah. So like before the first round, um, obviously he was strong, but he was still trying to get his fitness back and like a fif, we do a 15 minute plus one at club and like 10 minutes will come and.

He’s, he’s dead. That’s tire. So come building up to the first round, and even now going into Indy, it’s like, okay, well now going into Indy, we’re a little bit better. From Daytona, obviously a little bit better, but at the practice track every day was trying to last another lap. So taking it literally lap by.

That’s crazy. Yeah, yeah. Like literally, not even figuratively, like literally like, all right, we did 14 laps last time for 10 or eight, whatever it is. Yeah. Now we’re aiming for nine. It’s like, wow. You know? Yeah. But you know what’s great though, that I love about that? Is it, you know, that’s, I think where people get stressed out and that’s where people kind of spiral outta control, or sometimes even procrastinate.

You know, like if all of a sudden, let’s say you’re making a, you know, I don’t know, a hundred grand a year and you wanna make 200. . That’s a great goal to have, but you’re reminded every single day that haven’t hit 200, haven’t hit it, haven’t hit it, haven’t hit it, haven’t hit it. Whereas if you just break it down and be like, all right, well, in order to get to 200, let’s just say you sell a certain widget.

All right, well, I got 10 bucks for that widget. Well, how many do I have to sell? It’s like, all right, well, so. Try to sell one widget every day more than the day before. Yeah. And then it becomes so much more attainable, so much more reasonable, and your vibe raises up because at that point it’s completely manageable.

It’s like, wait, so all I need to do is do one more lap. All I need to do is drop one 10th, or All I need to do is. You know, stay a little bit lower, you know, if you run like a lip pro or something. Yeah, I just need to decrease my air time by like two seconds, you know, a session, like, that’s huge. It’s, it’s all, it’s all kinds of stuff.

So like you break down a super cost track, it’s like a 10th here, a 10th here, a 10th there, all within a lap. You then are like, wow. Like that’s a second. And it’s like in qualifying at Supercross, you’re like, okay. A tent could either put you in the show or it could not. Ah, it’s so wild. So, so, so close. So walk me through like, so to this point, and I love this and I love that you highlight that because I, I do feel that it is a game of tents and it’s also a game of misses.

You know, it’s trying to be mistake free as well. Imagine you guys just came off a free practice or maybe even q1. Yeah, we’ll call it q1. So qual, so in your sport, uh, in Supercross, there are two qualifying sessions and you need to qualify for a main event, right? Yeah. So we need to qualify top 40 to then what you watch on TV to the night show.

And then you have your two heat races, which is top nine out of both. Mm-hmm. , and then top four from L CQ to make a 22 man for a main. . Perfect. So give me a little bit of a rundown as to, let’s say your athlete Cody goes out for qualifying one and finds that he’s not maybe nailing a rhythm section, not really feeling comfortable, and maybe not even in the, the lap time range that he needs to be in order to put himself in the best position.

What’s your process? The moment you guys get off the track, maybe walk me through a little bit of like what that process looks like to find those tents. Yeah, so honestly the, the first thing is, um, I’ll ask him if there’s, if there’s anything he wants to change bike wise, going into the, the next session that’ll, , help him be more comfortable.

Mm-hmm. , um, Cody’s very, very simple. Most of the time he doesn’t want to change anything. Um, or like Daytona, he did. So some, sometimes it’s okay, like either raise the rear or lower the rear a little bit more, or let’s try dropping the forks of mill or stiffening, softening, opening, closing, rebound, whatever the case may be.

Um, and then the next thing is, The track, we’ll talk about a rhythm or the track or even go on live timing and break down segment times. So like, okay, second segment times your, for example, your fifth, but you know, you do a whole lap in your 15th. So like, what are you doing here but not here? Mm-hmm. or just honestly se segment times and, and breaking down the track with your rider talking.

Trying to get him as comfortable as possible is, is I’d say the, the biggest thing. Mm-hmm. . And at the end of the day, as a mechanic, you can only do so much, so the rest is on them. Mm-hmm. , and don’t get me wrong, sometimes you have those, like at the Triple Crown, sometimes you have those, those Hail Marys that you just gotta go for a.

and, and see what happens like in Arlington this past year, coming back to a stadium where he got hurt last year, as much as he probably didn’t say it, he was definitely nervous. Um, and the biggest thing there was keeping him calm, just cool, calm and collective the whole day. Mm-hmm. . And, you know, we went out free practice.

He was like, he was almost riding like over his. Almost like trying too hard. Not really like, like trying too hard, but trying to nail everything off the bat. And yeah, like, yes, you want to do that. But also, um, we had made, uh, a bike change after free practice, um, of, of the rear shock, and he went out and proved the time and then went out for q.

And just went like for a hail Mary lap with two laps to go. And we were 19th overall and outta Triple Crown. As you know. They take 18 and he, he put it P nine, like his name disappeared. And I’m like, oh no, like where? Where’d we go? And then I’m look up, I was like, oh, snap. Like he put it p and then he qualified I think 11th overall, which was his career best.

Wow. So, and Supercross. Yep. And it’s like, wow. Like, okay. Like sometimes Hail Marys are needed, you know? So, but then we go to Daytona and it all goes back to the beginning of the conversation. Him and I were both frustrated after qualifying one and two, like he qualified, I believe 22nd overall. Mm-hmm. and.

that shouldn’t be because at that point you go into a night show mm-hmm. and you’re gay picks 11th. So, okay. Like, we got lucky there was a gate open inside of the box, but most of the time you’re on the outside and they get a jump from out there, you get pushed and all that stuff. But I told ’em like, he was so fired up after qualifying.

It’s like, okay, we’re in the show. Yes, well go out and, and do work. Now what? What’s happened is, Fix it. And he went out, got a start, was running third, I think he ended up six in the heat race. And then, uh, in the main event he got, his jump was okay, but it was dry. So he got a little bit of wheel spin and I think he was like 20th on lap one.

Mm-hmm. . And he honestly just put his head down and was just rotting. And we were seventh and then I think blows got him with two laps to go and. P eight, so I’ll, I’ll take it again. Still building and, uh, just keeping them happy. , you know, it’s so true. You, you know, when you start, you know, you and I both work with professional athletes and it’s just interesting because.

it. It sometimes is the simplicity. So at one point you’re getting to the complexity of, what do I need to do to find a 10th in this turn, or two tenths in this section? But then the next moment it’s like, Hey, how can I just make this guy smile ? It’s almost like you need both. Yeah. You know ho like honestly, um, Cody will not ride his dirt.

to his full potential if he’s not happy. Mm-hmm. . And it’s something I’ve, I’ve noticed like he loves riding his dirt bike and not being able to ride. All of last year he was down and it’s just, it’s just a fact. And even from day one back on a bike, he was like, God, this feels good. You know? So, um, high vibes, all the.

Oh, it’s huge. Well, I always say if you can’t see it, I don’t know if you can see in the back, but it says the vibe, mindset hanging up right there. That’s my other brand for, cause I, I work with the professional athletes, but I realized I wanted to help like everyone. So I take a lot of the lessons I have and I have a separate business.

Yeah. Which is called the Vibe Mindset. So I’m with you a hundred percent. Honestly, this sport is mental. It is, it is. It’s a mental game. So down to everything, , there’s so much you could talk about it as far as the mental side. I mean, you and I both know how that goes, but, oh, yeah. Um, keeping them on top is honestly the, as far as Cody is probably one of the best things.

So let me ask you this. There’s a lot, um, if you’ve noticed, so just to give a little background on myself, start off as rack racing. Yeah. Uh, r a k, random x kindness racing, we’ve changed to behind the best. And the reason why we did that is there’s been a lot of resistance mm-hmm. to mental coaching in Supercross, motocross, and even with some other motor sports athletes.

So you see it all the time. Yeah. And you know, I won’t name any name, any names, but there are some athletes. Are at the top of their. And the mistake, the difference between them being in, let’s say third, fourth, fifth, and the guys that are winning, in my opinion, which I’m sure is somewhat biased, often seems to come down to mental errors, mental mistakes or mental optimization.

Um, do you feel that there’s resistance to people talking about the mental game and improving the mental. Uh, cause I mean, you and I are on the same page that it’s a big factor. Um, do you think guys are using mental coaches or do you think that it’s like one of those things where it’s a sign of weakness if you needed someone?

Um, no. I definitely, I believe in a mental coach as far as like, I mean, I obviously don’t, don’t talk to one. Um, but I know like one of my good buddies from California sh Mota, um, for a while he talked to a mental coach. , Jace here on our team. Owen, he also has a mental coach. Um, I think it’s, if you’re a rider, see, I don’t even know.

I wouldn’t really call it, I mean, I guess you can call it overthinking to, to an extent, right? Mm, mm-hmm. . Um, obviously I’m not a writer anymore. I don’t know what, these guys will only tell you what they want you to know until you talk. to your mental coach or whatever the case may be. Mm-hmm. . So I, I definitely do think it, it helps.

Um, I don’t really know what they talk about the majority of the time, but I know it’s definitely a positive. I wouldn’t be, I’m not against it. I don’t say, oh, like, wow, you’re, you’re, you’re weak. You need a mental coach. Like, no, I wouldn’t, I wouldn’t say that. I’d say it’s definitely a positive for certain people and I, I do believe it doesn’t work for every.

yes. But that’s anything in life. So, um, yeah, you know, you know what’s funny? I always laugh. I, I think about like weight loss, right? Yeah. Everyone’s always like, oh, geez, you know, how do I get six pack abs? How do I do this? How do, and I’m like, there’s been a couple times in my life when I, when I’ve been in really, really good shape.

And people ask me like, dude, what’d you do waiting for me to reveal some crazy secret? And I’m just like, I took the amount of calories that went into my mouth, dropped them, and the amount of calories I burned I brought up. That’s it. Like nothing different, like cannot co. They’re like, well, what’d you eat?

I’m like, I’m not answering because it doesn’t matter, you know? Yeah. And so what’s interesting is we do have a tendency to. Overcomplicate things, overthink things like you were saying, and I think sometimes I wonder if we’re doing it just to avoid taking action, right? Because. Changing who we are and how we think and how we respond is more challenging than people think.

You know, we tend to be creatures of habit. I mean, 95% of our day is a habit. It’s a habitual set of responses. And you know, there’s a trigger, a response and things that I do and say, and. Preferences I have. And you start to realize that we just don’t wanna break the habit of being ourselves for the most part.

And so I think to your point, I agree that there’s a lot of things, uh, whether it’s mental coaching or you know, a bike adjustment, but a lot of us just don’t like. To adjust, and you see that a lot with athletes in your sport who are always chasing the elusive word comfort. They’re trying to feel comfortable on their bike, but yet you wonder how much of comfort is perception versus reality.

In other words, is the bike the problem or are you the problem? Where is this lack of comfort coming from? It’s a very interesting and fascinating subject. So, yeah, I mean, co like, I mean, I’ll say over and over again. Cody will ride anything. I love it. You know, like, um, that’s huge. And he is been like that his whole life.

Like he’s never been picky. And so I’m, I’m very lucky to, to deal with a rider. pretty calm about everything. For the most part. The only thing, uh, he likes is the front break to be super, super touchy. Um, but that’s really the only thing he has. Um, yeah, so I definitely, I definitely see where you’re coming from.

I know cuz there, there’s a lot of riders, riders that will blame the bike over anything else, which as a mechanic. can be frustrating as well. And then it’s like, okay, you fixed that problem. Well now he’s still not comfortable. Well, what’s the problem now, ? I love it. I love that one. Yeah. I fixed the problem and you’re still not comfortable.

Yeah. So what’s the problem now? Yeah. Uh, so I definitely agree with you there. It could be you and it could be the bike, or sometimes it’s. Not the bike, and it’s not physically like you doing something, it’s you overthinking, which goes back to the mental game again. So, yeah. Yeah. Interesting stuff. Well, we’d love to keep talking more, but I know that you have a haircut set up in 12 minutes and it’s seven minutes away or whatever.

So, uh, we gotta keep you looking pretty because you probably are, you know, sounds like you getting some TV time is coming up soon cuz your momentum in your trajectory with both you and Cody, uh, continues to be heading in the right direction. So, um, thank you so much for your time. If anyone wanted to reach out to you, connect with you, how can people best find.

Um, honestly, social media, Instagram, it’s just, uh, Dalen Verna. Um, if they had any questions or anything like that, they could just send a message, kind of like what you did. Um, and honestly, that’s probably the, the best way. Yeah. And thanks for sharing some great insights. I mean, I think there was a lot that you shared today.

That can help families and student athletes, parents, coaches in any sport because, you know, we’re all basically battling, I feel against ourselves first. Then we’re battling, you know, the, the competition or you know, the actual fundamentals of the sport itself. So thank you so much for your time. I really appreciate it.

Thank you. Thanks for having us on.