After nearly a decade on My Kitchen Rules, it seems judge Manu Feildel is readying to hang up his apron.
During a recent catch-up with TV WEEK, the likeable French chef hinted the may not be returning for season 10 of the hit reality show.
"You know, when I got my gig on My Kitchen Rules nine years ago, I said that was it," Manu explains.
"I've achieved my dreams. In nine years, there have been some really good moments and some not so good."
But it's the routine of it all that has become a bit of a problem for the popular judge.
"If you've got a good crew, if you've got a good batch of people who are fun, it's great. But sometimes when they get you around the table, you go, 'You know, I don't really want to be here,'" the 44-year-old admits.
"It's just a negative place sometimes. It's the same in most offices, but we've had a good bunch of people [working on the show] the past few years and some are really fun to be around."
So when asked whether he'll be back to celebrate season 10 in 2019, Manu is careful not to give too much away.
"To be honest, it always depends," he says. "It's all about ratings. If the show doesn't rate, we don't have a job."
When you're working with food as much as Manu is, it's hard not to let it take over your life. In 2015, Manu revealed he'd stacked on a whopping 10kg during filming.
"When you're working on MKR, it's not even about eating so much food," the chef says.
"Sometimes you end up eating only one meal a day. It's so irregular that it's easy to put on weight."
WATCH: Meet MKR's Kim and Soung (story continues after video)
This season, though, Manu has put himself first, taking up boxing and hitting the gym regularly.
"I need to balance my life, otherwise you forget and then you go crazy," Manu says. "I used to make up the excuse that I didn't have time, but this year I just made time and I do it three times a week. It keeps me sane."
According to Manu, the lifestyle change has been, well, life-changing.
"I do feel the pain of it," he laughs. "I feel like I am getting older, for sure. But in my mind I feel better."
When Manu isn't busy in the kitchen, you'll most likely find him spending time with his fiancée Clarissa Weerasena and playing dad to son Jonti, 13, and daughter Charlee, who turns three this month.
"My family is very important to me," Manu enthuses. "Especially having a little one. Charlee is a clown – full-on, but gorgeous."
- PuzzlesThe Australian Women's Weekly July Issue Online Entry
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