IF getting active and staying healthy were easy, everyone would do it.

But we don't!

We come home after a long day of sitting in a chair to de-stress by sitting in another chair, unable to summon the energy to take a walk or hit the gym.

If you are struggling with a sedentary lifestyle, you are one of so many millions of people who do the same.

Everyone needs to start from ground zero and work there way up to a sustainable level of fitness.

Shift your thinking from couch potato mentality to thinking like an athlete.

This may sound like a big challenge, but it’s not as big a leap as you think.

You need to have a clear vision of what your goals will be, set a realistic goal that you can stick to and doesn’t put too much pressure on yourself.

Schedule a regular workout time, some of the most committed exercisers do it every day before the sun comes up or late at night when the kids are in bed.

Sit down with your weekly schedule and try to build in an hour each day to be good to your body.

One hour is only 4.2 per cent of your working day - when put like that, it's not actually a lot of time, but we still find time to make excuses up.

Workout in the great outdoors with your family.

Don’t let the fact that you have no time to workout due to childcare.

Take the kids to the local park and run around outside with them.

Reach out to others for support. Exercising should be built into your family life, you should view it as a necessity.

Sometimes it takes the place of watching TV together.

For others, it’s finding a friend with a shared zest for running and planning scheduled workouts together.

It’s easy to hit the snooze button when it’s just you, but much harder to leave a friend waiting at the gym.

Consider joining a social networking site or online community with fitness trainers and nutrition experts and support from other people trying to lose weight and maintain healthy eating and exercise routines.

People who get this kind of online support are proven to lose three times more weight than people going it alone.

A great way to move more is to invest in a fitness watch like the ‘FIT BIT’ you can track your daily steps and it tells you how much / less you are doing daily.

You can set your daily step count and it will make you take the stairs not the lifts in work - you will be moving more with one of these watches.

Example of a weeks fitness:

Monday: 45-minute power walk.

Tuesday: Fitness class.

Wednesday: 30 minutes of cycling.

Thursday: Fitness class.

Friday: 45-minute power walk.

Saturday: Family day outdoors.

Sunday: One-and-a-half hour mountain walk.

For all your local classes, go to www.pauledwardsfitness.co.uk for a timetable or join your local leisure centre.