It's the new year – time to shake off the food coma once and for all!!! I think pretty much everyone vows to get fit after the super-indulgence of Christmas and the party season but, as we all know, talking and doing are two very different things!
For me the secrets to sticking to a new fitness regime are pretty simple...
Firstly do something you love otherwise you won't do it! I love walking, it's my favourite exercise; the thing I'm always happy to do. In London I like walking along the Thames, up to Battersea Park, around the park and back again. It's a fair hike and because it's a circuit I know roughly how long it takes so I can always set aside the right amount of time even on my busiest days.
Tabitha (Somerset Webb) has been doing personal training three days a week – pretty impressive form considering the weather London has been having. I've seen her tweeting that she can't believe she's been out in the snow at 7am! She says it helps her think more clearly and I've noticed that she's more relaxed when she devotes those three hours a week to herself with no phone, no emails and no one asking her questions. Forget how you look, exercise makes you feel so much better mentally.
My second tip is to exercise with a friend. Let's face it, you're much less likely to leave them freezing on a street corner somewhere while you slam the snooze button on your alarm clock for a third-straight time. When I power walk I'll go with Tabs or with Ruth Lorenzo who was on The X Factor with me. If you've promised to meet a friend you're not going to let them down whatever the weather and however hard the day ahead...are you???
Finally, it's important to find a place that you enjoy exercising whether that's in a big, shiny gym with lots of exotic-looking machines or, if you're like me, somewhere special outdoors. When I'm in Melbourne I love doing the 1000 steps in the Dandenong Ranges, a nearly 2km rainforest climb. It's a beautiful place, I can hear the birds singing, and it just makes me want to exercise.
Runyon Canyon in Los Angeles is similar. It's a 160-acre national park just above West Hollywood that takes you up to Mulholland Drive. It's brilliant with trees all around, no buildings, birds singing, people walking their dogs. It's fantastic.
Finding somewhere that makes you feel great is so important. It doesn't have to be anywhere exotic – the UK has some amazing parks and commons. At the end of exercising you should feel good because that's what makes you want to do it again.