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Daily Mirror
Daily Mirror
Joe Smith

How King Charles keeps himself fit - from 12 minute 'regime' to diet

At the age of 74 King Charles will be the oldest person to be crowned monarch in the history of the United Kingdom when he attends the coronation on Saturday 6 May.

But according to sources close to Charles, the King has been putting in the work to make sure he’s up to the job and making sure he remains fit and spry.

He reportedly starts each day with the 5BX fitness regime, designed for the Canadian Air Force in the 1950s. The 12-minute regime includes press-ups, sit-ups, back extensions, stretching and running on the spot, the name stands for "five basic exercises".

When staying at Balmoral the King reportedly enjoys nothing more than a long yomp over the moors.

“It takes effort for a fit man half his age to keep up with him,” one former aide told journalists.

“Many a VIP has fallen by the wayside over the years when they have gone off on a walk with him.”

Pcitured here in Nepal, Charles takes his own chef on foreign trips and tries to avoid banquets for fear of food poisoning (Tim Graham Photo Library via Getty Images)

Sources say he has kept up a regime of good diet and exercise throughout his life, making sure he maintains a weight of 11st 5lbs. Though he has joked that keeping his weight down is a “never-ending battle”.

He reportedly does not eat lunch and though he flirted with the idea of becoming vegetarian in the 1970s he has settled for skipping meat and fish two days a week, while ditching dairy one day per week.

After a breakfast of fruit, nuts, seeds, soft boiled eggs, and a cup of tea, Charles won’t eat again until 5pm when he has a tea consisting of sandwiches and cake, the Telegraph reports. According to the paper the King does not even drink water between meals, to avoid unscheduled loo breaks.

Charles also likes to avoid banquets whenever possible, both at home when entertaining guests - he prefers a drinks reception when hosting - and when abroad. He reportedly tries to minimise foreign banquets as, “there are parts of the world where people might have left food out all day because they want to make sure it’s ready. People who have worked for him for a long time have stories of him being very ill before having to make a major speech,” a royal source said.

Charles has always kept fit, with long outdoor walks being one of his regular forms of exercise over the years (Tim Graham Photo Library via Getty Images)

The King travels with his own private chef, reportedly to minimise the chances of food poisoning. "It might seem like an extravagance,” a source told the paper, “but it’s an absolute necessity to have your food prepared by your own team as often as possible, because it minimises the danger of food poisoning.

“He is very aware that when you’re cresting 75 you have to do everything you can to maximise your efficiency as a tool of the state.”

He also takes his own stash of booze with him when he travels overseas, according to reports, to be mixed by his staff to his precise taste - he prefers a dry martini.

As well as a chef and stocked bar Charles always travels with a doctor - one of a roster of GPs who use their annual leave to accompany the monarch on trips abroad.

A keen polo player in his youth, Charles suffered several injuries after falls from horses (Getty Images)

In his leisure time the King was once famously fond of playing polo on horseback but several injuries left him with a broken arm and needing stitches for a cut on his face. A degenerative back problem from polo saw him in pain and unable to sit still, even having to receive some visitors lying on his back in the early 1990s.

Prince Harry revealed in his autobiography Spare that his father would also do daily headstands in his underwear to alleviate his back pain.

“He performed them daily, in a pair of boxers, propped against a door or hanging from a bar like a skilled acrobat,” he wrote.

Charles’ medical run-ins don’t end there. Bizarrely, the new monarch had his tonsils removed when he was eight, and insisted on carrying them with him in a glass jar at all times for several months.

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