Biggest Loser’s Amanda: I get a lot of male attention now!”

She may not have earned the title of Biggest Loser, but finalist Amanda Arlauskas certainly came out of TV’s hottest competition as a winner! Weighing in at 250 pounds at the start of the show, Amanda has since lost a whopping 80 pounds. In this exclusive interview, Amanda tells In Touch her diet and exercise plan for keeping the weight off, and how being on the show changed her life forever. “I feel wonderful, and I’m the happiest I’ve ever been,” says Amanda, 20. “I can admit that I love myself for the very first time, so I feel like a winner!”

Do you find you act differently in social situations now?
In the past, I was kind of the girl who stayed to the side, never wanting to be the center of attention. Now I walk into a room and I’m glowing and happy, and I want to be the center of attention. I’m confident, and I don’t feel like I have to hide anymore. I’m not shy for people to see my new body and how hard I’ve worked.

Do you notice people treating you differently?
I get a lot of male attention now, and it’s a lot for me to take because I never really had that before! I was always told, “You have such a pretty face,” but I knew my body was always keeping me back from anything really happening. Now I have a lot of guys trying to talk to me and get in touch with me, and it’s flattering — but I’m definitely not used to it!

Do you have any tips on staying motivated?
My biggest motivation is looking at before pictures and thinking about how sad I was. I worked so hard, and I can’t imagine going back. I just felt like a horrible person when I was overweight because that wasn’t who I was inside. I was tied to this ball and chain because I was overweight. Right now, I feel the best I’ve ever felt.

What was the hardest part of being on the show?
Exposing your life to millions of people and allowing cameras to film you 24 hours a day, getting on a scale in almost no clothes and letting people see that dreaded number on the scale. But then the next day, they can catch you at your best moment. That was the ultimate reward!

For more of Amanda’s exclusive interview, check out this week’s issue of In Touch, on newsstands now.

*PHOTO CREDIT: JOHN RUSSO/BROOKS INSTITUTE*