Charles Barkley announced during Game 4 of the NBA Finals on Friday, June 9, that he plans to attend a "fat camp" for the next six weeks to lose weight.
"Listen, I am embarrassed about how fat I have become," the retired NBA player told fellow TNT cohost Shaquille O'Neal. "I've become lazy. Number one, I'm not healthy. I'm not healthy. Y'all not going to see me. I've got to come back for the [NBA] awards show. But I'm taking the next six weeks to get my fat ass in shape. [I won't be] around anything. So, I don't drink, I've got to eat healthy and I've got to work out. So, I'm disappearing until I see y'all."
Barkley, 54, insisted that he was "being very serious" after his fellow broadcasters questioned his comments. He said the so-called "fat farm" that he plans to attend is located in San Antonio.
The 11-time NBA All-Star, who stands at 6-foot-6, was previously a spokesperson for Weight Watchers' "Lose Like a Man" program. During an interview on Any Given Sunday last year, he said he first gained weight in 2000, his last year playing with the Houston Rockets, when the team cut his pay to bring Scottie Pippen on board.
"The only year that I was fat was my last year in Houston because they had promised me $12 million," he said. "When I showed up, the contract was only for $8 million. And I said, 'What happened to my other $4 million?' They said, 'Well, we just decided to keep it.'"
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