Richard Simmons' upbeat outlook has helped his fans drop the weight, but the unflappable fitness guru isn't as positive about "standoffish" talk show host David Letterman.
Simmons made his comments to Men's Health magazine, explaining that though Letterman seems good-natured on his show, he shows a different side when the cameras stop rolling.
"I love David. (Long pause.) He's more complicated than any of them, that David. I've done his show so many times. You know, I've actually never met him?" Simmons asked the fitness magazine. "You're just not allowed to talk to him. Or if you are, he's very standoffish. Then the commercials are over and you're back, you sit down again and finish the show. Maybe that's just how he is with me, I don't know."
In one memorable visit, Simmons was showing Letterman how to use a steamer, when it burst into flames. When asked whether he would consider going back on the show, Simmons said he didn't think the host cared for him much, but he would consider a reunion.
"Maybe one day, when the time and everything is right [I would return to the show]. Because I do love him," Simmons continued. "The last time I was on, we went to commercial and I was like, 'I'd love to meet your wife!' He was like, 'You never will.' And then I was like, 'And see your son!' And he was like, 'You'll never see him.' And then we come back from the commercial and he's all friendly with me again."
Simmons also opened up to the magazine about his inspiration for launching a fitness empire after being a 200 pound 8th grader and once turning to eating disorders as a solution.
"Bulimic, anorexic, you name it. And after all the throwing up, I would starve myself. Which meant eating lettuce and water for two and a half months. I almost lost my life. I seriously almost lost my life," Simmons said. "Some people reading this will not be able to relate to that, because they don't care that much about food... When we're binging, we do not think about death. We just think about how good it tastes."
The 63-year-old fitness guru is a pop culture icon who rose to fame in the 1980s. He is known for his "Sweatin' to the Oldies" aerobics videos, upbeat attitude and sense of humor, curly hair and signature workout short-shorts, as well as a slew of flashy costumes. He teaches classes at his own studio, Slimmons, in Beverly Hills, California.
Tia Mowry, 33, recently told OnTheRedCarpet.com that the session she and her sister Tamara attended was "one of the hardest classes" she has ever taken.