Helen Mirren works out like the Royal Canadian Air Force

Dame Helen Mirren turns 69 years old on Saturday (July 26), but you would never guess that she’s fast approaching 70.

Perhaps the reason for her youthful beauty is a 12-minute-a-day workout pioneered by the Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF) in the 1950s.

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Helen, 68, recently revealed to Hello! magazine that she stays fit and readies her body for workouts using a plan employed by the RCAF. It's a fitness regime that sees participants perform a variety of exercises within 12 minutes, complete with charts outlining the movements.

The Calendar Girls actress said in the interview, “Each day, you have to do the exercises within the 12 minutes and until you can, you can’t move up.”

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The routine has an on-the-fly approach, employing exercises that can be completed without gym equipment. It works all muscle groups through a combination of push-ups, sit-ups, running on the spot and arm circling.

Helen adds, “It is the exercise I have done off and on my whole life. It just very gently gets you fit. Two weeks of doing that and you think: ‘Yeah, I could go to the gym now.’

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A quick glance at what’s to come for the Oscar-winning actress suggests it’s working! Helen is currently filming Woman in Gold with Ryan Reynolds, Tatiana Maslany and Katie Holmes, and she’s set to work with Bryan Cranston in Trumboand Colin Firth in Eye in the Sky in 2015.

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