Q&A: Queer Eye’s Bobby Berk

How do you exercise while shooting?

Before Queer Eye, I had a workout routine of four to five days a week at the gym. I was much more built than I am now. After I got cast, it flew out the window because we’re never in the same city for one day. But recently, I started working with a personal trainer and chef, both of whom travel with me. So lately, I’ve been doing two-a-days every day.

What do you do during those two workouts?

I do whatever my trainer tells me to.

How do you get in the zone at the gym?

I like to crank the music up. I go into autopilot and don’t even count reps. I’ll also do a lot of stretching because I have back issues.

How do you navigate such an intense schedule?

Some days it’s crazy and some days it’s kind of chill, it just depends on where we’re at and our hero (the subject we’re making over). We actually say that when we’re filming, it’s more like we’re on vacation than when we’re not filming. When we’re shooting an episode, we’re in the same city and we pretty much have a routine of the same days on and off each week. When we were in Japan, I got to bring my trainer with me and every single day I got to work out. In between episodes, we’re constantly traveling for press and gigs and it gets harder. In the last few months, I haven’t even been home [for] a full week.

How do you maintain a healthy diet?

I really try to cut carbs as much as I can and focus on good proteins and less fat, which takes some willpower. What’s recently been motivating me the most is when I start to see a little change in my body. I hired somebody because trainers hold you accountable.

Why do you think design can have such an emotional impact on people?

I think the biggest part is that they never knew that a change in their home could change their life. It affects the way they live and the way they interact with their family, and people don’t really realize how much their home atmosphere has to do with their mental health. If your house is a mess and disorganized, it causes issues all around. If your home is nice, orderly, and clean, in the morning when you get up you’re not in an annoyed mood or screaming at your kids. You get up and you are happy because everything that’s surrounding you makes you happy.

What’s your go-to design tip?

Declutter! Just get rid of stuff. Marie Kondo says it best: If it doesn’t spark joy, get rid of it.

How do you take care of yourself and regenerate?

I keep myself grounded by hanging out with the same people I’ve always hung out with, especially my best friends whom I’ve had for 20 years. I’d definitely prefer to spend my evenings with my longtime friends than go to a Hollywood party. Aside from that, I also love making wine spritzers. I'll make them with a specific brand I'm into called Ecco Domani and love relaxing with a glass during dinner.

You used to live out of your car and moved to New York City with $100 in your pocket. What goes through your mind when you see how far you’ve come?

It’s mind blowing. I can remember living in a 400-square-foot studio with three other people and two dogs on air mattresses that the dogs would pop all the time. I could have never imagined the difference between when I first moved to New York and now.


This interview has been edited for publication.