Staying positive! Al Roker is measuring his weight loss success with one important benchmark — making sure his clothes fit right.
“I have no idea where I am. All I know is my clothes fit,” the weatherman, 67, exclusively told Us Weekly during the Broadcasting and Cable Hall Of Fame 30th Anniversary Gala in New York City on Thursday, April 14. “That’s kind of the benchmark for me.”
The 3rd hour of Today cohost underwent gastric bypass surgery in March 2002, losing a total of more than 100 pounds. Even 20 years later, Roker insists it’s difficult to maintain a healthy weight.
“Every day is a struggle, every day,” the Emmy-award winner explained to Us. “Anybody who struggles with their weight knows. Some days you’re up, some days you’re down, but if by the end of the week you’re OK or the same, great. As long as you’re working on it, all’s good.”
For Roker, it’s not about the number on the scale, but about making sure he remains strong.
“I don’t know if I have a goal. I just want to make sure I’m healthy,” he continued.
The TV personality previously opened up about his eating habits in his 2013 memoir Never Goin’ Back: Winning the Weight Loss Battle for Good. He explained it was trying to woo his now-wife, Deborah Roberts, that helped him realize how much food meant to him.
“My life was centered around food. I could never live with no food in my apartment — not even in New York, where you can get everything delivered in 30 minutes or less,” he said, revealing that Roberts, 61, only had “champagne, a jar of mustard [and] a slab of half-moldy cheese” in her apartment.
The NBC host said he would fill his then-girlfriend’s fridge with all the essentials to make it feel more like “home,” including milk, eggs, butter, coffee, oatmeal and fresh vegetables. “Last but certainly not least, I put in Häagan-Dazs in her freezer,” he wrote.
In the book, Roker revealed that his weight loss became an endless yo-yo cycle after his mother’s death in 2011. He was only able to trim down to a consistent 205 pounds after implementing a strict diet and exercise plan.
“I used to use travel as an excuse to eat poorly. Now I don’t go anywhere without my scale; I literally pack it with me,” the author told Parade in December 2012. “It gives me permission to have a bad day, or even just a bad moment. In the old days it was, ‘Well, I’ve blown it; I may as well just go hog wild.’ Now it’s [like], ‘OK, I made a mistake, let’s get back on the wagon.’”
The journalist recently took to social media in celebration of being 20 years post-gastric bypass surgery.
“Hard to believe it was 20 years ago today, I wore these size 54 Levi jeans to my #gastricbypass at 340 lbs and here I am today,” the journalist wrote via Instagram March 15.
Roker also reflected on his journey by sharing a series of photo highlights from his transformation, including one of him stepping into the jeans he wore at his heaviest.
“It’s still a struggle but I’m never going back,” Roker wrote in the Instagram post. “I have setbacks and struggle every day, but I never forget how far I’ve come.”
Reporting by Diana Cooper