Over the years, Catherine, Princess of Wales, has made no secret of her fiercely competitive spirit and her love of staying physically active.

In 2023, she revealed she often sneaks in morning workouts by jumping on her kids’ trampoline and discussed her love of cold water swimming during an October 2023 podcast appearance alongside husband Prince William. “The colder, the better. I absolutely love it,” she told her cousin-in-law, host Mike Tindall. “To the point where William’s like, ‘Catherine, you’re crazy.’”

Kate’s not getting much action right now as she continues to recuperate from the planned abdominal surgery she underwent on January 17. The 42-year-old spent 13 days at the posh London Clinic before heading home to Adelaide Cottage on the grounds of Windsor Castle. And on February 9, William whisked Kate and their three kids (Prince George, 10, Princess Charlotte, 8, and Prince Louis, 5) away to their country residence at Anmer Hall so the mom of three could convalesce there. According to a palace source, they exclusively tell In Touch that Kate’s recovery has been more grueling than she thought it was going to be. “She’s always been in very good health and athletic,” the source tells In Touch. “So not being able to jump out of bed and
move around has been hard on her.”

In addition to dealing with constant pain, Kate, who opted not to share details of her malady, has been plagued by nasty rumors about her hush-hush operation. (Kensington Palace revealed the surgery was not cancer-related, but offered few other details, leading to massive speculation over her condition. There was even talk the palace was lying about the procedure to cover up a top-secret tummy tuck.) The reports have added insult to injury. “Some of the comments have gotten back to Kate,” says the source. “It’s been upsetting, but she’s trying to focus on staying strong and her recovery.”


The princess is doing her best to take it easy. “Kate was told her recovery could take a few months and that she would not be up and around until at least Easter,” the source tells In Touch. “She had delicate surgery and she’s trying to follow doctor’s orders to let it heal and not doing anything that would agitate the area.” Taking it easy is not always, well, easy. “On one hand, it’s been nice to rest, but having to sit by and watch others do her work has been frustrating,” notes the source. In her absence, William has stepped in for her, attending a dinner for the London Air Ambulance Charity Gala where Tom Cruise was in attendance on February 10, for example, as well as pitching in with longtime nanny Maria Borrallo on school drop-offs and pickups for the children.

With the kids on a midterm break, William thought Kate might fare better at their 19th-century house in the Norfolk countryside. “William and Kate love Anmer Hall,” the source reveals to In Touch. “And Kate was looking forward to being surrounded by nature, trees and beautiful sunsets.” The source tells In Touch that the change of scenery has indeed lifted Kate’s spirits. “William was right in thinking it would help her recovery.”

The move also brings them closer to King Charles III, who is just two miles away at Sandringham House. The 75-year-old is battling an undisclosed form of cancer, Buckingham Palace announced on February 5, and has begun outpatient treatment. The source says Wiliam has more “peace of mind” being near Charles as the monarch rests and receives treatment.

While Kate has remained hidden away, Charles has been seen out and about and in good spirits since news of his diagnosis broke. He’s been back and forth to London for medical visits and gamely waved to onlookers and photographers as he walked to church with wife Queen Camilla, 76, on February 11.


Despite the rampant rumors about her health, Kate remains adamant that she and William remain mum about the surgery. “They’ve been through so much after Prince Harry’s memoir, the queen’s death and now Charles’ illness and they don’t want to bring more attention to themselves,” the source explains to In Touch. Kensington Palace is following orders — on February 1, they finally offered a brief health update saying she’s “making good progress.” Adds the source: “Kate and William believe that what they’ve revealed so far should be enough.”


The one bright spot through this ordeal for Kate has been her kids. Like William, they’ve been stepping up as much as possible. “The children are helping with chores and cooking,” the source gushes to In Touch. “They’re reading Kate their favorite stories and bringing her tea. They’re trying their best to keep her entertained.”


A palace source says Kate didn’t anticipate how difficult it would be to get back on her feet. “She wants to get back to work.”

Have a tip? Send it to us! Email In Touch at contact@intouchweekly.com.