KATIE BULMER-COOKE: My hopes for 2017 – be happy, healthy and positive

Walking is a great way of keeping fit and staying healthy.
Walking is a great way of keeping fit and staying healthy.
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Happy New Year everyone. I love the buzz of this time of year, and just thinking about all the opportunities 2017 has in store is dead exciting.

Something not so exciting on the other hand is the Facebook newsfeed currently. If I had a pound for every Facebook status I’ve read about people crying about feeling fat, bloated and generally pants, I’d be a millionaire.

For me, at this time of year, there are two choices.

Number one, don’t go daft and over eat or over indulge at Christmas. That way you’ll have nothing to whinge about now, or number two, eat loads, go crackers on cheese and crackers, enjoy yourself in the process, accepting that you will feel like a house come January and then just go and work it off. Simple!

I certainly indulged in the odd festive cheese board, a box of Ferrero Rocher and had bigger portions than usual.

I knew I’d feel like pants afterwards, but I was willing to take the hit.

So let’s stop moaning and get on with shedding our festive pounds and have fun in the process.

Don’t feel you’ve now got to adopt the diet of a rabbit and pound a treadmill for an hour everyday. Instead, just go back to what you were doing before ... smaller portions, better choices, more movement and less ‘keeping the couch down’ as we say in our house.

Seen as it’s a new year I thought I’d share some of my hopes for 2017.

In at number three, I’d like more people to be kinder to each other online, and I hope that everyone is genuinely as happy as they appear to be on Facebook.

In at number two, I’d like people who live in Sunderland to speak more positively about the city and get on board with as many of the great things that are happening in the city as possible. Lots of people are working super hard to make Sunderland the best it can be, but they need everyone’s support.

Finally, in at number one, I hope everyone looks after themselves better.

It’s scary how obese we are becoming as a city, and it’s becoming way too normalised.

We need to make better choices and move more. That doesn’t have to mean becoming a fitness freak or a gym bunny ... fitness can be fun, it doesn’t have to be serious.

Walking is great exercise and we have some fab outdoor spaces in the city and along the coast, and we’ve also got places like Gravity Force.

I can vouch for the fact that bouncing around on a trampoline certainly gets you out of breathe, raises your heart rate and burns calories.

Twenty years ago the population as a whole was slimmer, because we played outside, rode bikes and climbed trees rather than ‘keeping the couch down’ while watching various screens.

So let’s move it Sunderland and here’s to a happy and healthy 2017!