New year is the perfect time to wash away the excesses of the festive season and concentrate on improving your personal health. With the prospect of longer days and better weather, as well as the impetus and motivation to get fit in 2016, there couldn’t be a better opportunity to live a healthier lifestyle.

Getting fit, however, is not always as simple as joining a gym and pounding the treadmills on a daily basis. Club memberships can be expensive and, unless you live in a major town or city, you may not have easy access to a facility. Alternatively, your working hours may simply prohibit you from attending a gym on a regular basis, meaning that a costly membership offers poor value for money.

Fortunately, you really can get fit in the comfort of your own home or even, incredibly, from your sofa. All you need is one television, one remote control and bags of enthusiasm.

Take a break!

Advert breaks are traditionally the perfect time to boil the kettle or to grab an unhealthy snack from the kitchen before resuming your place on the sofa. However, a fresh approach to those annoying interludes could help to give your health the boost it needs.

With each advert break lasting for approximately three to three and a half minutes, these times are the ideal opportunity to jump up and engage in an intense cardio workout, such as running on the spot, skipping (if your lounge has sufficient space without bringing down the lights) or hula hooping. Try complementing these workouts with a healthy snack such as raw carrot, nuts or celery sticks while you watch.

Create a TV mini-gym

If you take a trip to your local gym, you may well see fitness equipment strategically positioned in front of ceiling-mounted televisions displaying the latest sports events or music channels.

You can replicate this at home by relocating your fitness machine in front of your television, so you can enjoy a workout while watching your favourite programmes. While treadmills and rowing machines do tend to be costlier, it is possible to obtain more affordable equipment, such as exercise bikes, which you can use at a pace to suit.

Tone up

For effective toning that doesn’t even require you to leave your sofa, simply strap some weights to some different parts of your body while you flex your limbs as you watch television. For example, attaching the weights to your ankles and raising your feet from a bent-knee position will tone your calves and thighs, while holding weights in your hands and raising them towards your shoulders will give your biceps a workout.

Just remember to start gently and increase the mass as your muscles strengthen.

Remember your all-round health

Of course, good health isn’t just about keeping fit, but caring for your overall wellbeing. One step you must take this January is to arrange your health insurance plan, to provide you and your family with all the health benefits you could need, so that you can obtain fast and affordable treatment when you need it most.

With an online quotation available on our website, you can even find out just how affordable Paycare’s health insurance plans could be from the comfort of your sofa, while your favourite television programme plays in the background.