Ruth Walker: This year, I’m going to enjoy life. It’s too short and I’m not getting any younger’

MORNING. Are you up yet? Or are you reading this from a prone position under the duvet? Are you ruing the day you ever thought a cocktail of mulled wine, Baileys and Blue Bols might be a sophisticated combination?

Wondering where those mystery bruises on your knees came from? Or figuring out how you can order a taxi when you're not entirely sure where you are in the first place?

Ah, you've got to love Hogmanay, haven't you? A night to say good riddance to what has, let's face it, for most of us been a pretty crappy year. We've seen our bank accounts stripped bare, the value of our homes plummet, our jobs put at risk and our food and fuel bills soar. If there was a summer, it was a bit of a bummer. Basically, 2011 was rubbish. Glad to see the back of it, frankly. Another one on the scrap heap.

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But today. Today is a day for new beginnings. The first day of the rest of our lives. No regrets. No recriminations. A blank sheet. Feels kind of good, doesn't it? Invigorating. Revitalising. Full of hope.

So what's it going to be? Will 2012 be the year you finally get a job you actually enjoy? Will you move house? Ditch that selfish loser you call a partner? Learn Mandarin? Become a vegetarian?

Experience tells me it's sensible to aim low. More chance of success that way. So, for instance, this is the year I'm going to cook more. Don't worry, I'm not going to come over all Masterchef on you. It would just be nice to think the children won't be dining on frozen margarita pizza for more than two nights in a row in 2012. Yes, lovely reader, this is the year Ruth discovers the kitchen. Stand well clear.

On the health front, I'm going to continue the body building, which I love, love, love. I love the feeling of being strong and powerful and, if I so chose, more than capable of punching the lights out of anyone who gets me cross (of which there are a few). Fit Guy, you know I couldn't do it without you.

I'm going to get in shape for the Rock 'n' Roll Marathon too (which takes place on 15 April and is, in fact, a puny little half), courtesy of my delightful running trainer Alan Donald. I may not run all the way. I may not make it in under two hours. But I will complete it and feel an enormous sense of achievement as a result.

This year, I'm also determined not to beat myself up if I have a bar of chocolate now and again. Or feel frustrated if I overload on carbs. And I won't worry about the odd late night or the occasional glass (large) of merlot.

This year, I'm going to enjoy life. It's too short and I'm not getting any younger. Today is the first day of the rest of my life and I'm going to ensure I make the most of what I have left.

Resolutions should be life-affirming and fun, not self-flagellating and po-faced. Balance is the key. So what if I like running and I also like champagne? As a very good chum opined, as long as I have a glass in each hand, I'll be perfectly balanced.

So here's to the yin and yang of 2012. May they always be perfectly in tune. Cheers.