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Coffee Break Episode 23

Coffee Break episode 23: with Katy Glenie

Welcome to Living Well with MS Coffee Break #23, where we are pleased to welcome Katy Glenie as our guest!  

Our Coffee Break series is your chance to get to know members of our diverse OMS community. In each episode, you’ll join Geoff Allix for an intimate chat with a different member of our global community. Our guests will share their personal stories and talk about their challenges and victories, large and small. We hope you find common cause and a source of inspiration from the stories of these very special people. 

As always, your comments and suggestions are always welcome by emailing [email protected]. We hope you enjoy this episode’s conversation with Katy, coming to you straight from Taupō, New Zealand. 


Click here for a full transcript of this episode.

Katy is an outdoor loving adventurer who lives on the shores of Lake Taupō in New Zealand. She is mom to 4-year-old Rosie, wife to Mike and runs a communications consultancy that supports businesses who are making a positive impact in the community and on the environment.  

Katy is currently training to climb a 3,000-meter peak in the Southern Alps of New Zealand. It will be the first mountain she has climbed since her MS diagnosis in 2019. She keeps her mind and body strong through a daily program of exercise, meditation and OMS-friendly diet. She wants to use her journey to show others that having MS doesn’t mean the end of adventure. In Katy’s own words: “The training might look a little different, the journey might be a little slower, and the goal might change, but the joy of a life filled with adventure is still out there waiting for you.” 


  • Katy, welcome to Living Well with MS Coffee Break. We’re so pleased to have you on our program. The purpose of this series is to better get to know some of the diverse members of our community from around the world, and today you’re in the hot seat. You live in what sounds like an idyllic place. Can you tell us about Lake Taupō in New Zealand? 

  • When were you diagnosed with MS? Can you provide some context on that? When were you diagnosed and how did you initially deal with it? 

  • You live in a remote place. What are some of the challenges of having MS and living in a beautiful yet distant paradise? 

  • At which point did you come across the OMS program? How was that experience for you? Why did you decide to start following it? 

  • What are some of the challenges you’ve faced at first in adopting the OMS program? How did you overcome them? 

  • When did you first start to see any kind of positive indicators in following OMS guidelines? What were these? 

  • One of your core philosophies is that nature if the best medicine. Seems that’s led you to take up mountain climbing. Can you share the backstory about how you got into climbing, and how your balance your own health needs with what seems like a rigorous physical activity? And how, if at all, has OMS helped with this? 

  • You’re training to climb a 3,000-meter mountain in NZ’s southern alps. Wow! Tell us more. 

  • Shifting gears slightly, one of your other passions is caring for the environment and reducing consumption. How do you put that into practice in your daily life and can you share some perspectives or ideas that may enlighten our listeners? 

  • If you tap into your experience with MS generally and OMS specifically for a nugget of wisdom that would help people ease into and better adopt the OMS program, what would that advice be? 

Katy’s Mountain Climbing Adventures: 

Katy completed her first alpine climb since her MS diagnosis in August 2021, climbing Single Cone in the Remarkables, near Queenstown, NZ. This was part of her training program for the big 3,000m climb, which is due to happen in November 2021.  

According to Katy: “The climb was incredible, and although I was a bit slower than before my diagnosis, and was very tired afterwards, my body was able to keep going. Hooray!” 

Katy’s Links: 

Katy’s Glossary of Māori Phrases 

I’d love to share some of our local Māori phrases that are commonly used here in Aotearoa (New Zealand in Māori). Our indigenous language is unique to our country and is seen locally as a treasure (or taonga) and an important connection to our land and people: 

Kia ora = hello  

Mōrena = good morning 

Ka kite anō = see you again / later 

Ngā mihi = greetings (commonly used as a sign-off on emails / letters) 

Kaitiakitanga = guardianship / care and protection of our land and native species 

A macron over a vowel indicates a longer vowel sound, and Māori vowel sounds are: 

  • a (‘a’ as in ‘car’) 

  • e (‘e’ as in ‘egg’) 

  • i (‘i’ like the ‘ee’ in ‘tee’) 

  • (‘o’ as in ‘four’) 

  • u (‘u’ like an ‘o’ in ‘to’) 

Coming up on our next episode: 

Starting October 20, Living Well with MS welcomes back Dr. Aaron Boster, an Ohio-based neurologist specializing in MS. This time we tap his expertise to grapple with an important topic that isn’t discussed as often as it should be – sex. Sex and sexuality are vital dimensions of a healthy life, but how are they impacted by MS? Our discussion with Dr. Boster digs into the science and practical implications behind this topic, so let’s talk about sex and MS! Also, the final installment of Ask Jack for 2021 premieres on November 10, and it’s our special holiday cooking edition. Remember, you can submit your questions early for the next and all future Ask Jack episodes by emailing them to [email protected]

Don’t miss out: 

Subscribe to this podcast and never miss an episode. You can catch any episode of Living Well with MS here or on your favorite podcast listening app. Don’t be shy – if you like the program, leave a review on Apple Podcasts or wherever you tune into the show. And feel free to share your comments and suggestions by emailing [email protected]