Fitness Routines

There is great deal more to a good figure than dieting. Exercise is its handmaiden and Diana was the first royal to go in for regular workouts. Time off at the gym had another benefit, too. It was a chance for Diana to unwind from the stress of public engagements. This is probably why she herself called her exercise routines ‘pamper Diana days’. The routine was hardly a soft option. Normally, Diana took three 30 minute sessions a week of vigorous exercise.


At home, she was said to keep a treadmill for walking two miles a day. Aerobics played an important part in Diana’s exercise agenda. As did jogging. When in London, she was fortunate to have the big expanse of Kensington Gardens close to her home in Kensington Palace. She could frequently be seen, though she often went unrecognized, jogging along the paths at a good steady pace at around nine in the morning. She did not jog alone. One or other of her bodyguards used to go with her and he had to jog, too, in order to keep up. Since that Diana was addicted to exercise, she would often do some extra moves at night. At the floor of her living room, she would do some upward crunches and side-to-side crunches to get a stronger stomach and a proper waistline.


Like all good fitness fans, Diana had a substitute for jogging if rain spoiled her outing, an extra two mile walk on her treadmill. Jogging was also part of her day when she was in the country, at Highgrove House, where the grounds offered her privacy and her bodyguards could rest. Highgrove had its own swimming pool and provided Diana with more valuable all over exercise. In London, she used the pool at Buckingham Palace. When at Sandringham, she used to slip away for a swim at the local leisure club. When abroad, she was known to use any suitable pool which had sufficient security. Majorca, where Diana holiday with the Spanish royal family, afforded her plenty of opportunity. So did Necker, Richard Branson’s private island in the Caribbean. 


The royal yacht Britannia had its own swimming pool, too. Wherever she was, Diana would swim 20 or 30 lengths, of both breaststroke and backstroke. As if all this were not enough, Diana added dancing and sports to her regime. She had been fond of dancing since childhood and admitted that it was almost an ‘obsession’ with her. That included tap and jazz dancing and ballet. Until she grew too tall for it, Diana had wanted to be a ballet dancer, but even then, her interest did not wane. In 1983, she was said to have taken six weeks of lessons under the aegis of Dame Merle Park, Principal of the Royal Ballet and director of the Royal Ballet School. Ballet training helped Diana cope with the strain on her back from lifting children at the Young England Kindergarten, where she had worked.

A 1993 Photograph Of Diana Exercising At Chelsea Harbour Gym In London

Favourite Diets

Although Diana knew that starting the day with a cup of coffee is unhealthy, she thought that it would give her the kick-start to the day. So, every morning, she has a regular cup of coffee that was freshly made from ground beans. However, when she first woke up, Diana prefers to have a hot cup of water and lemon. Her favorite juices were a mixture of organic cucumber, beetroot, celery, or carrot and apple. Diana believed that this fresh mixture of fruits are very healthy and good for detoxing and that it will help keep the liver function properly.


For food, she usually have muesli, a slice of organic toast or her favorite; croissant. The Princess made sure that her fruits and vegetables were organic. They were bought from Planet Organic Market in Notting Hill. Before she married, however, Diana enjoyed consuming her favorite schoolgirl foods: four bowels of cereal for breakfast, shepherd’s pie and baked beans, all of them stuffed with calories. Later, she graduated to a more discriminating diet; quiches, soufflés, jacket potatoes, sorbets and salads. Though not strictly vegetarian, as was supposed at one time, Diana avoided red meat and pork, preferring chicken, seafood or fish. Fruits and vegetables were always on the table and she liked pasta.


There were many stories about Diana chasing food round her plate with a fork and not eating at official luncheons or dinners. Diana, it appears, disliked being watched or photographed eating. At official meats, of course, people constantly stared at her, so there seemed to be no escape. Diana had to talk to her neighbors and others at the dinning table and the double act of eating and speaking was difficult for her. She found a way out of these problems, though. She ate beforehand at home, in private, before attending formal meals. This lone meal would be light, but filling and enabled her to watch her intake. She also avoided the fattening perils of lavish state dinners. Alcohol served at such meals was not a problem, though. Diana rarely drank, preferring natural mineral water. A lot of calories were saved that way.

Make-up Tips

‘Pampering Diana Days’, as the Princess called it, included massages using aromatherapy oils, facials and a skin care routine, which apparently involved splashing her face with water sixty times a day. Diana always scrub her face well after washing it with a plain glycerine soap, because she had a sensitive skin, and then apply a toning lotion made of rosewater and glycerine and a pre-moisturising mix of one drop of rose oil to two of geranium oil she made herself. Diana loved to use Guerlain moisturizer. She also preferred to use body lotions from Johnson & Johnson as well as Vaseline. The Princess also loved to tan her skin at least three times a week by an electric sun-bed she used at home.


She was also keen in creating natural and healthy facial masks inside her laboratory; her kitchen. For a softer skin and cleaner face after wearing make up all day, Diana would made a mixture of avocado, a white of an egg, lemon juice and honey. To refresh her tired skin, she mashes avocado in the blender and put it on her face, or whip a white of an egg, brush it on her face and add two slices of cucumber cut at an angle and place it over her eyes and lie down for 40 minutes. If a spot was notices in her face, she would dab it with witch hazel, or lightly steam her face with water that had just boiled and had two spoons of sea salt in it. After applying these natural masks on her face, Diana would wash it with warm then cold water for good results. For her hair, Diana regularly visits her favorite hair dressers, Sam McKnight and Daniel Galvin, to cut her hair or do blonde highlight. For waxing and facial; Diana used to visit an Iranian women’s salon at Kensington High Street.


Diana loved Kenzo perfume and was fond of Penhaligon. She used their Gardenia scent in the shower and Bluebell when having a long soak in the bathtub. Her favorite make up style was wearing simple colours. Her first choice of make up collection were from Guerlain. For cheeks, Diana used a light pink blusher. For lips, she opted for a pinkie brown lipstick worn under a natural gloss. For eyelashes, she would never curled them. Instead, Diana used a hyper allergenic mascara. Inside her eyes, Diana used to highlight them with a very fine blue or black pencil.


Source: Diana:

  • An Extraordinary Life, By Weidenfeld Nicolson Illustrated. Publication Date: 14 September 1998