Wellness is highly personal. What works wonders for one person may not be a great fit for the next.
Over the coming weeks we’re reaching out to our PSC Wellness readers to inquire how they practice self-care and what their daily routines look like. We then turn to our wellness and nutrition expert, Dr. Chinara Tate, to ask - what does the science say?
This week we’re checking in with Kyjah Coryat, a former D1 fencing athlete with a masters in art/media management from The New School and PSC’s social media guru. Her seemingly limitless optimistic energy is infectious, so we thought we’d get her to share some secrets with you.
At A Glance
What gets you out of bed? My dog, Yé, plus habit of early rising as a D1 athlete
Healthy Habits - Daily probiotics, brief ‘me time’ breaks, making feel-good playlists,
Vices - Guilt-free snacking, recreating Princess Diana biker-short outfits, wine with dinner
One piece of health/wellness advice - There is a snowball effect with wellness trends on social media. Don’t feel like you have to try all of them. Your digital wellbeing is important so be mindful in choosing the trends that are right for you!
Kyjah’s morning routine
I’m used to waking up pretty early from being a D1 athlete in college. I have a tight 20 for doing my morning essentials, including a shower, brushing teeth, washing my face, making a coffee, and sending memes to my friends.
By 6:30am, I take my dog Siberian husky, Yé (pronounced as yay), out for an hour walk around Harlem Meer Lake in Central Park.
When I’m back home, I stretch with my foam roller, take my daily Trader Joe’s Advanced Strength Probiotic with room temperature water, and make breakfast, which is usually something like:
Sunny side up eggs with salt/pepper and garlic
Avocado toast (with chili flakes and caviar)
Canadian bacon on top of a flax waffle (LOTS of syrup)
At this point, I’m operating at about 75% of my battery power. To get to 100% awake, I put hydrating cream on my face/neck and rub it in using a gua shua stone.
It’s now 8:45am- I catch the last 15 minutes of Good Morning America, maybe put a load of laundry in the washing machine, set my liter of water next to my lamp and get ready to fully dive into work.
Taking a 15-minute pause to do something non-work related, whether that’s reading an article, fine-tuning a recipe, or watching a make-up tutorial.
Making playlists always helps me relieve anxiety and stress. It is a great way to refocus and capture a moment as a memory!
✔ Verified. Play music for the mood you want, not the mood you are in!
Guilt free snacking - yes, we need food to live but there is so much more to food than that. It is an experience so you might as well eat something that’s enjoyable! This may or may not be a quote from the Ratatouille movie.
✔ Verified. Food is indeed meant to be enjoyed! Restriction and guilt can lead to binge and other disordered eating behaviors, particularly in susceptible individuals. Instead of strict, good vs bad rule-based eating try a more flexible, intuitive and guideline-based approach to foods.
Trying to recreate as many Princess Diana crew neck and biker short outfits as possible.
✔ Verified. Again, shifting focus away from work to take a break and do something fun and creative is the way to go!
One glass of wine with dinner.
~Mixed bag. A glass of wine is a nice way to unwind at the end of the day, but its effects are still up for heated debate, with studies mired in controversy. Proceed with caution, as it can impair sleep quality and suppress immune function. My advice: don’t make it a daily habit, and like most things, enjoy it in moderation. Salud!
What does science say?
To sum it up, Kyjah’s wellness routine is grounded in some solid scientific evidence and importantly, works for her lifestyle. I love that her generally healthful breakfast choices have some built-in flexibility for purely hedonic food for joy experiences. Bacon and loads of syrup aren’t for the everyday, but they don’t have to be rigid “never” foods either. The best healthy habits are the ones you can stick to and fit seamlessly into your daily routines. To curb a ‘vice’ that’s becoming disruptive, use the power of habit to switch up the cue, the routine and/or reward fueling your ‘habit loop’.