At MitoQ, we’re big fans of Integrative Nutritionist Kaytee Boyd. Before launching into a career that serves the wellbeing of others, Kaytee was a pro track cyclist (and by pro, we mean she’s a World Cup gold medalist). These days, when Kaytee isn’t supporting clients on their wellbeing journeys at The Boyd Clinic, she can be found advising the Breast Cancer Network Foundation, running cancer masterclass workshops or investing in her own wellbeing with a surfing session, dog cuddles or an adventure or two.
Typically, Kaytee’s days involve hundreds of emails, diagnostic testing reporting, patient consultations, working on online platforms, running a fasting longevity program, completing dietary and treatment protocols and generating cancer genetic reports. All in all, Kaytee’s day-to-day life is extremely busy. We caught up with her to find out how she manages it all alongside her own wellbeing, and how you might be able to apply some of her knowledge and expertise to your own life.
Create a routine that sets the scene
Admitting that her days could get quite stressful if she let herself focus on how much she has to do, Kaytee says she has a few rituals that keep her focused and help to set the scene for the day.
- Write it down: “I wake up and do a quick refresh look at my diary. The night before, I write three things I need to get done tomorrow, both professionally and personally.”
- Focus on gratitude: “I write down three things I am grateful for. It helps set the scene and reminds me why I do what I do - and stops negativity creeping in. When I am feeling grateful, nothing is a problem.”
- Start the day with energy: “I have MitoQ and a huge glass of water - and then it’s all go: walk dogs, train and then work. I could not be without MitoQ now. It really does make a big difference to my energy staying consistent over the whole day.”
- Multitask: “I’m a big one for using time wisely and love listening to podcasts while walking the dogs.”
Find your balance
“We all feel out of balance from time to time, and that’s okay”, says Kaytee. “The key is to not approach it with a perfectionist mentality: this means letting go of control - which is key to letting things fall into place on their own. Sometimes you have to lose balance to find it, right? Balance to me means staying happy, healthy and social, which promotes a state of wellbeing. It’s enjoying taking care of yourself, without the feelings of guilt or selfishness. Taking care of your wellbeing is a major priority, it flows into every other part of your life.”
Kaytee’s suggestions for finding balance include:
- Enjoy some YOU time: “Enjoy going for a walk, a meal, other’s company or just practicing a hobby. Managing your time includes scheduling in YOU time.”
- Step out of your comfort zone: “Be open to taking risks. Try something different.”
- Balance your work hours: “If you have to stay at work after hours, take some time off another day.”
- Take some time out: “As humans, we literally need to “recharge” on the regular or we start the slow decline into burn-out, that's an unbalanced life. Book some time out in advance if needed. That’s how I manage my mental, emotional and physical wellbeing.”
Reach your goals by removing distractions
Kaytee, whose workday can often start at 6am and end at 9pm, has got goal setting down to an art form.
“The key for me is staying organized. My next big goal is an online support system for 1. my cancer patients - somewhere they can go for education, information and support to take them through their journey, and 2. women like me who are starting to head into perimenopause and menopause and are struggling with what to do.”
When trying to achieve a large goal like this, Kaytee focuses on:
- Starting early: “A big help to me is waking up super early - which means a reasonable bedtime. No one disturbs you and it’s an incredibly productive time for me.”
- Decluttering: “If my desk is messy, shit doesn’t get done!”
- Writing it down: “List, if needed, and work backwards. It has to be well defined and clear.”
- Switching it off: “I will turn off my phone. It’s the biggest time-wasting technology known to humanity! (For me, anyway).”
- Ask for input: “I have learned that enrolling those around me has been really helpful, they offer ideas and have been brilliant for brainstorm sessions - which also keeps me motivated!”
- Chip away at it: “What doesn't get done goes on the to-do do list for the next day.”
Create a wellbeing toolkit
Especially if you live a fast-paced life, your health is the foundation that could make or break your daily pace and aspirations.
“I couldn’t manage such a huge clinical workload if I wasn’t feeding my body and brain quality food, or exercising”, confirms Kaytee.
So, if you were to reach into Kaytee’s wellbeing toolkit, what would you pull out first? According to Kaytee, some of her top priorities are:
- Exercise: “It absolutely makes me a much more well-rounded, happier, healthy person.”
- Eating clean food: “Spray-free, organic - when possible.”
- Fun and adventure: “Part of humans being in a “happy place” is new places, experiences, creative expression and human connection. It is something I have had to book time in my diary to maintain as life seems to be getting busier and it is too important to me.”
- Having a purpose: “That sets the scene for me - feeling like I am of value and service.”
- Spending time with furry friends: “Did I mention the AMAZING benefits animals provide? My dogs give so much joy and help keep things balanced.”
- Support your energy needs: “I could and would not have the energy to be giving out so much energy to everyone and “be” in my purpose without topping up the “energy bank account”. This is where MitoQ has become a very important part of me being able to achieve high energy day in and day out.”
Work exercise into your routine
While exercise is an essential part of Kaytee’s wellbeing routine, she understands as well as anyone that fitting it into the day can be a mission. She’s got some great tips for that too.
- Look at your routine: “What are you prioritizing? Can you improve or change your daily commute? Can you park somewhere else further away from work or stop the bus a few stops prior? What about getting out of the house a fraction earlier? The same applies to the evening.”
- Figure out your WHY: “When you are clear on WHY you want to exercise and move, it is easier to make it more of a priority.”
- Swap your gym membership for YouTube: “YouTube has tutorial videos - I have a number of clients that will do a training video online before they watch Netflix in the evening to wind down.”
- Multitask: “While you’re sitting on the sofa and catching up on your favorite show, add some squats or lunges during commercial breaks. No gym membership fees or sweaty people!”
- Make it a social event: “Find a workout buddy. They can help keep you motivated and accountable. A client of mine has started a competition with his family. In the evening, every ad break they choose an exercise to do.”
- Break it up: “It doesn't have to be 30 minutes in TOTAL. If you think you can’t devote 30 minutes of your time to exercising, remember that you can always break down the time throughout your day, allowing you to meet deadlines, hang out with your friends, return a phone call and stick to your original plans. It will only be a matter of time until it becomes part of your routine!”
Figure out what helps you wind down
“For perimenopausal women like me (over 40!), winding down properly after a long day is important”, says Kaytee. “We can’t produce great quality hormones if we are rushing around all the time and don’t take care of our energy reserves.”
Things that help Kaytee wind down after a long day include:
- Eating early: “We usually try very hard to eat early. That sets me up for a great sleep!”
- Quiet time: “A little quiet alone time before the onslaught of home life and preparing dinner etc. Sometimes I will sit in my car for 5 mins before I get out and into the house.”
- Limiting alcohol consumption: “While tequila would be my ultimate choice, in all seriousness, alcohol is the worst thing for women of my age. We start the slippery slope into perimenopause/menopause, and it becomes difficult to lose weight, sleep well, recover from a stressful day and maintain muscle mass. Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE a few drinks, but if I want great sleep and high energy tomorrow, it’s not at the top of my list.”
- Going outside: “Taking the dogs to the beach or basically anywhere outside in nature always helps me defrag.”
- Laughing: “It’s so good to watch something funny like YouTube, Netflix or anything online which has comedians. We can get so stuck in our own thoughts and that helps me to remember to not take myself too seriously.”
- Writing it down: “Writing my thoughts and concerns in a diary and getting clear about what I can and can't control.”
- Using a Chi Machine: “It is really strange, but it’s been a revelation and helps me relax. I bought it years ago after researching lymphatic drainage and it literally gently shakes you from side to side.”
- CBD oil: “I LOVE CBD oil. It’s only accessible via prescription in New Zealand. CBD helps to relieve anxiety throughout the day and can help relax and aid in quality sleep.”
- Slow beats: “Listening to music with slower tempos helps me take a load off after a tough day of work.”
Unfortunately, for many of us, staying in touch with loved ones can easily fall through the cracks of a busy lifestyle. Kaytee’s solution? Design your schedule consciously.
“As structured as this sounds, I book time out in my diary and calendar. I have a list of “my people” in my head and work on ensuring I cover them all off every few weeks so they know I love them dearly. My friends and family all know me well and we work on catching up with a meal or adventure in mind. Building memories is something that's really important to me.”
When it comes to maintaining a connection with those who don’t live locally, Kaytee does the following:
- Write: “I make time to write fun letters and postcards from wherever I am in the world.”
- Call: “I make a point of calling (not texting) at least one or two of these awesome people a week for a decent chat, even if it’s on the way home from work.”
- Meet for a holiday: “What seems to work well is booking surf trips away or weekends learning something new. Take them on a course, go surfing together on the weekend, make chutney with my mum - or something creative. I love new experiences and adventures so I do my best to plan things around what we all might like.”
Live your best life!
Finally, Kaytee emphasizes the importance of being guided by what’s important to you.
“Make it a priority to know what you really want out of life. Are you living your best life or stuck in a rut, not tuned to your values? UCLA researchers have found that happiness derived from a purpose in life has a healthier genetic effect than pleasure-seeking. For me, my purpose revolves around being of service to others - to help as many people as I can live happier, healthier lives by tapping into their true potential using the right food and nutrients, lifestyle changes and helping them realize what’s been holding them back (it’s usually past stories that would have helped keep them safe at some early stage of their childhood).”
Kaytee’s tips for finding your purpose:
- Get to know yourself: “Figure out what your needs and values are.”
- Find a coach: “Finding someone who is trained in facilitating and being able to extract some of your key “reason” or “why” has the propensity for constructing a solid foundation in realizing your purpose in life.”
- When in doubt, ask YouTube: “There are some fantastic supporting YouTube channels which can help!”
- Know your own capability: “You have the power to change anything because you are the one in control of your thoughts and you are the one who feels your feelings. Value the process when you begin this adventure, it will help create a very fulfilling life.”