If there’s one thing almost everyone wishes for in the new year, it’s good health. And almost everyone has room for improvement when it comes to the lifestyle choices that support our health and well-being. We turned to several local experts for their top tips to help make 2013 a healthy new year.

Alison Allman, health, wellness and fitness coach, Pyramid Health Coaching

One way to think about healthy goals is to take a personal inventory of these health and wellness-related areas: physical health (muscle strength, flexibility, cardiac endurance, weight, flexibility, balance), work/life balance and mental health (positivity, stress, energy). Select the one that seems most pressing to work on during the next three months. Many times, we create a ‘New Year's Resolutions’ list that’s too overwhelming. Keep it short and realistic.

Charles D'Angelo, weight-loss coach, author of Think and Grow Thin

Upgrade your mind's iPod. We tend to upgrade our tech gear more often than we do our minds. Often, we have a negative track playing in our minds that we're unconscious of. Be vigilant in how you are talking to yourself—speak positively and faithfully about yourself and future. Know that nothing—not even your family or history—can stop you from succeeding!

Tim Detmer, owner of Finish It Fitness

Maintain a food journal because it’s the most proven weight-loss tool and requires zero expertise. Find a workout buddy, and make canceling a workout mean something to someone besides yourself. Balance your workouts—a blend of cardio and strength workouts creates the best, fastest results. And seek the help of a professional. You go to a mechanic to tune your car, so hire a personal trainer to tune your body.

Dale Huff, owner of Nutriformance

I believe that one good habit creates other good habits. For example, research has shown that the simple act of taking a multivitamin each day causes one to think about other healthy food choices throughout the day. Surround yourself with positive choices and behaviors. Get the candy bowl out of your office—or at least hide it in a drawer—and stay away from the vending machine, etc. All the little things can add up!

Dr. Michael Railey, SLUCare family and community medicine physician

Express yourself about displeasure so that you can avoid outbursts. Nurture your inner circle of relationships, like family and friends, by contacting them on a regular basis. Have a life plan—most people don't develop a three- to five-year life plan. Once you come up with it, write it down.

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