William opens the episode thinking about his father’s love for walking and that while growing up, Charles “used to “try to force Harry and I out of the house all the time” adding “we didn’t really have any of it.”
“But now, as you get older, you appreciate it a lot and see it for what it is,” says William.
The Royal is the latest star to record walking and talking in the series, and it’s available on Apple Watch with a Fitness+ subscription.
Each episode, between 25 and 40 minutes in length, is designed to be an immersive experience. Special guests walk around a meaningful location and reflect on life lessons while sharing memories and experiences through stories, photos and songs.
William’s walk – which he recorded again in the spring – took him across his family’s sprawling 20,000-acre farm in Norfolk, eastern England. Starting at Sandringham House, he learns of the sights and sounds of the “Great British Countryside, as we like to call it” as he heads to St Mary Magdalene Church, where members of the royal family are due to attend church service on Christmas Day later this month. He ends his journey standing outside Anmer Hall, the home he shares with his wife Catherine and their two children.
William reflects on his family’s annual Christmas Day trip, talking about his “strong memories” of his grandfather moving forward while “we’ll stay behind with little legs trying to keep up.”
During the episode, Prince discusses the importance of staying mentally fit and recalls one moment nearly a decade ago that left him sweating at a black-tie event.
Remembering that “I can’t believe I’m actually telling this story,” he spoke of a 2013 fundraiser at Kensington Palace attended by American singers Jon Bon Jovi and Taylor Swift, “which almost knocked me out.”
William says there is always “a lot of handshakes on those nights” as he tries to “be charming and interactive.” Then he goes to watch the performance, thinking that his main tasks in the evening – primarily to welcome guests – are over and he can relax a little.
“I sat next to Taylor Swift. She’s to my left. And after John sang his first song, there’s a pause, and she turns toward me. She puts her hand on my arm, looks me in the eye, and says, ‘Come on, William.'” Let’s go sing.”
“To this day, I still don’t know what happened to me. Honestly, even now I cringe at what happened next, and I don’t understand why I gave up. But, frankly, if Taylor Swift looks at you eye contact with your arm and says, ‘Come with me..'” I got up like a puppy and went, “Yeah, well, that sounds like a great idea. I will follow you.”
William continues his tale describing walking toward the theater “in trance” and desperately trying to remember the lyrics to “Livin’ On a Prayer.”
“Under the black tie, there was a lot of sweating. I felt like a swan, trying to maintain a composure on the outside, but on the inside, the little legs were running around quickly,” says the royal, adding that while he is very comfortable giving speeches However, he has less experience in live singing.
“Sometimes, when you are pushed out of your comfort zone, you have to adapt to it,” he adds.
During the episode, the Duke also revealed the effect his time as an air ambulance pilot had on his mental health. He details one experience of helping a child who was hit by a car.
William says he “came home that night very upset but not noticeably” and was aware that “something had changed…a real tension inside me.” He describes fragmenting his feelings and returning to work, but “it really shocked me weeks later.”
“My personal life and everything was just fine. I was happy at home and happy at work, but I kept looking at myself, and saying, ‘Why am I feeling this way?'” Why do I feel so sad? “And I’m starting to realize, in fact, that you take people’s trauma home, people’s grief, and it affects you.”
He says he was “lucky” to have had someone to talk to from the Air Ambulance Service, adding that he has spoken to mental health frontline workers throughout the pandemic and encourages listeners to seek support as he has.
The episode also features some of Prince’s musical selections, including Tina Turner’s “Best” song her mother had in the car as she drove her sons back to boarding school.
“Sitting in the back seat, singing away, it felt like a real family moment,” William says. “And my mother, she was driving, singing at the top of her voice. We’d even get the cop in the car, and he’d sing sometimes too.”
These days, the father-of-three says he’s surprised his kids “really inherited my family’s love of music.”
“One of the songs kids love right now is Shakira, Waka Waka,” he explains. “Charlotte, in particular, is walking around the kitchen with her dresses and ballet stuff and everything. She’s totally crazy with Louis following her everywhere trying to do the same.”
Williams’ episode concludes the show’s second season, with past guests including British heavyweight boxing champion Anthony Joshua, actor and comedian Stephen Fry and Dr. Sanjay Gupta on CNN.
Three leading mental health charities selected by the Duke will receive a charitable donation from Apple – Shout in the UK, Crisis Text Line in the USA and Lifeline in Australia. The Shout and Crisis Text Line offers a free 24/7 confidential service for people in crisis due to texting, while Lifeline provides free 24/7 crisis support and suicide prevention services.
The special episode for Fitness+ subscribers drops on Monday, December 6th. The company will also be streaming three free shows from the show on Apple Music 1, its leading global radio station on Apple Music, starting at 8AM GMT, 12AM PT and 7PM EST.
record for CNN Royal News, a weekly bulletin that brings you the inside track of the royal family, what they’re doing in public and what’s happening behind the palace walls.