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The New Year is a blank page, a new leaf – and there are few better times for us to change our bad habits than with the changing year. The idea behind New Year’s resolutions and promises is an idyllic one, but it’s sadly one that doesn’t often fit in with our every-day reality. A new year doesn’t change the fact that we’re still busy at work, that we’re still running around after the kids and that it’s still easier to get a take-away than cook something healthy.

Why not make this New Year a little different? It’s important that we grow and change for the better – but there’s no reason why we can’t be sensible about what we do to get healthier, and how quickly we change it in 2014. Here are our top tips on how to change – and more importantly stick – to a healthier lifestyle.

Firstly, and this applies to anything you decide to take on board, move into it gradually. Chances are, if you go full pelt into a new exercise regime or healthy-eating plan, it won’t last. In order to sustain a big change, you need to build up to it. The best way of doing this is to set yourself achievable goals.

In regards to getting healthier and fitter through exercise, this is an easy one.

If you fancy the inexpensive adventure of running, start small – a five-minute run is a great achievement if you’ve not done it before, and you can build up in distance from there. If you don’t mind investing a little cash in your fitness levels, then joining a gym is great for tracking improvement and getting a fitness plan designed specifically for you. If you’d like to make your exercise more of a social endeavour, then you could find some classes locally – yoga, zumba and street dance are all great fun, and fab for getting you into shape.

When it comes to food, eating healthily doesn’t need to be complicated. Really simple changes like controlling your portion size can make all the difference. Creating a realistic meal plan for the week can help structure your food shop and keep you on track healthy eating wise – it’s hard to wander away from something you’ve already prepared for! This also means you don’t over-buy food, so you can save money and eat healthier at the same time.

Eating properly and exercising are easy ways to ensure you stay as healthy as possible, but it’s always a good idea to get yourself checked out by a doctor from time to time, even if you don’t see one on a regular basis at the present. Health-On-Line are a great healthcare resource – and if you’re looking at getting more into shape, it’s important to have informed advice that’s tailored to you

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