Nearly two months after surviving what doctors have called a “widowmaker” heart attack, Bob Harper is still struggling to get back to his normal self.
“It’s been hard,” he said on Tuesday’s show. “I am going through some depression. You really face your mortality. And I’m really understanding what’s not important and what’s really important in life.”
Bob revealed that his heart attack was even more serious than it had originally been reported. He stated that the type of heart attack he had often leads to sudden death.
“It was a 6 percent survival rate,” Bob said, “I was in full cardiac arrest. My heart stopped. Not to be dramatic, but I was dead. I was on that ground dead.”
Bob said he’s only alive today because two doctors who happened to be in the gym at the time of his heart attack saved his life.
“I was so lucky. Thank God,” he said. “They started performing CPR on me, they pulled out the AEDs and used that on my twice before the paramedics got there super quick and they jolting me one more time. The fact that there were doctors in the gym when I had the heart attack saved my life.”
The heart attack left Bob in a coma for two days. When he awoke, he says he had no recollection of what had happened to him.
Bob said that, like many ‘Biggest Loser’ fans, he was surprised that someone as healthy and fit as he is could have such a massive heart attack at age 51. Still, he recognizes that sometimes he may have pushed himself too hard.
“It was hugely shocking to me,” he said. “I’ve learned a lot about myself. I’ve learned a lot about the fact that genetics does play a part in this. It is so important to know your health.”
Ultimately, Bob says he wishes he listened to his body more.
“I’m a guy that lives a very healthy lifestyle, very regimented — I work out all the time,” he said. “But there were things that were going on in my body that I needed to be more aware of. Before the heart attack I was having dizzy spells, and maybe I should have taken that more seriously. It’s been a huge wake-up call for me.”
He hopes that his fans will learn from his mistakes.
“I strongly encourage anyone that’s listening right now to go to the doctor, get your cholesterol checked, see what’s going on in the inside so it doesn’t happen to you what happened to me.”
Watch Bob’s interview with the Today Show’s Savannah Guthrie below: