PRIME Minister Kevin Rudd has revealed he is battling the bulge, on the same day as his deputy Julia Gillard was voted one of the country's sexiest women.
Mr Rudd said it was difficult to maintain a fitness regime while coping with the responsibilities of office after photographs in The Australian revealed how the prime ministerial paunch had grown since he won power last November.
Mr Rudd, 50, said since moving to the seat of power in Canberra he could no longer manage the regular trips to the gym he made when he was an opposition leader based in Brisbane.
"Now I'm down here, it's a bit harder to manage when you're bouncing around the countryside,'' he said on local radio.
Mr Rudd's predecessor John Howard decked himself out in a green and gold Wallabies tracksuit to take a brisk walk almost every morning during his eleven years in power, sometimes finding protesters heckling him on his route.
The current Prime Minister said he was also trying to take steps to keep in shape.
"I tend to walk a lot, at different times of each day, depending on the schedule,'' Mr Rudd said.
"I also swim several times a week and I gym whenever I can.''
Ms Gillard has been named one of Australia's sexiest women in a poll conducted by the men's magazine Ralph.
A bemused Ms Gillard came second behind former Miss Universe Jennifer Hawkins in the vote. "I think people don't understand that I am probably two foot shorter than Jennifer Hawkins and double her body weight, so it's been a very unusual result,'' the 46-year-old redhead said on local radio.
"I would simply agree that Jennifer is a very attractive woman.''
Yuck, media biased!!