Photo gallery: 7 ways to make this year your healthiest ever

Discover the best resolutions to make for better health -- and find baby steps to get you started.

By Julie Beun

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How to make this year your healthiest ever

Not long ago, I was hanging upside down by my thighs on a chrome pole during an exercise class.

As the blood rushed to my head, I had this brief and horrifying thought: "Maybe you're too old for this." Then I remembered Eartha Kitt. I'd interviewed the diminutive, raspy-voiced performer in 1990, when I knew her only as Catwoman from the campy 1960s-era "Batman" TV series. What I didn't know was that she had parlayed her reputation as "the most exciting woman in the world" (according to Orson Welles) into a lifelong acting and singing career. Lithe as a cat at 63, she was a vibrant and self-aware diva keenly interested in everything she saw. "I'm learning all the time," she'd told me. "The tombstone will be my diploma."

Thanks to Eartha, I've been doing pole fitness -- at age 46 -- for two years. I'm also taking Spanish classes because, as you'll soon learn, it's never too late to pick up another language...or to take up yoga, quit smoking and become a decent cook. And struggle as we might with New Year's resolutions after the champagne flutes are empty, it's never too late to set healthy goals -- and stick with them.

Whether you're 18 or 80, these seven New Year's resolutions can yield seriously healthy results.

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