10/05/2011 04:07 EDT | Updated 12/05/2011 05:12 EST

10 Easy Ways to Live a Healthy Lifestyle

The most important thing that each and every one of us has is our health. Why? Well, you can't take care of your family and those you care about if you can't take care of yourself. Think about it. Do you ever notice that when you fly, the flight attendant instructs you to secure your mask on your own face before attempting to help someone else, in case of an emergency? They tell you that because if you lose consciousness you are not in a position to help those around you.

The same is true with life. Why not take time now to ensure you'll be around for years to come.

Now I realize that busy schedules, working long hours and various life duties can make being healthy challenging, so I've thought of 10 ways you can incorporate a healthy lifestyle and turn your life around right now, if you desire.

1. Control your weight. You don't just wake up one day and boom you are overweight... it creeps up on you, giving way to an expanding waistline. Pay attention to your weight and manage it.

2. Drink water instead of pop. Some experts say we are supposed to drink approximately eight cups of water a day. Drinking water does the body good and is preferable to the sugar and caloric intake found in juice and pop.

3. Commit to eating healthy as much as possible. I believe you are allowed one cheat day if you can eat healthy for six days. And that means eating healthy with appropriate serving sizes and loading up on vegetables and fruits. Try eating frequently throughout the day with smaller portions -- breakfast, lunch, dinner, plus snacks (i.e. yogurt or an apple) between mealtimes.

4. Exercise your heart. Try adding some cardiovascular exercise such as walking, jogging, biking or swimming to your weekly activities.

5. Add some muscle. This is a good idea because it can elevate your metabolism. Greater muscle mass makes it easier to keep lean. You can do this by adding strength training to your routine. It could involve simple exercises like squats, lunges, push-ups, pull-ups, crunches/sit-ups.

6. Explore the athlete in you. Try running a half-marathon or a bike race. By setting a performance goal of running a certain time or maybe just finishing the race it gives you motivation to exercise.

7. Use the buddy system. Recruit a friend or involve your family with adopting this healthy lifestyle behaviour.

8. Adopt a routine. Just like you get up each morning and brush your teeth, shower and get ready for work, having a healthy lifestyle means incorporating it in your regular routines. So, if you commit to work out three times a week, schedule it and stick to it.

9. Pay up first. Anticipate feeling some muscle soreness when first beginning an exercise routine. Fortunately, the more you exercise the easier it gets!

10. Reduce stress levels. Take time to think of the good things (a glass-half-full approach), sleep more, or set one hour in the week (or in a day) for you to just relax.

Committed to a healthy lifestyle,