Stephanie Anderson didn’t become the The Biggest Loser — she was sent home after Koli convinced her friends that she was manipulating them — but she did change her life and find love with contestant Sam Poueu. Now that the final four have gone home to prepare for the May 25 finale on NBC — and America has to choose whether Koli or Daris will make the final three — this will be the last in In Touch's exclusive series with Stephanie. "I'm not voting. I think it should be up to America," Stephanie tells In Touch, adding that while she admits she still doesn't know what she'll wear on the big night, "I'm excited to see everyone! It’s up to these contestants to go home and focus on getting fit. I have been at home for four months, and I’m thoroughly impressed with what I’ve been able to do — but it’s hard!"
For more with Stephanie, click here.
Daris, Koli, Ashley and Michael all went home and had another big weigh-in in front of friends and family. Were you disappointed that you didn’t get to have that?
No, when I got home, I told everyone my weight and how much I had lost, and what my goals were. I did the same thing without a scale. I don’t hide behind that number anymore because I also know it’s just a number, whether it be 120, 150 or 180. It’s how healthy am I on the inside, how much muscle mass, how do my pants fit, how do I feel? Those are ultimately what we should judge ourselves on, not just a digital number. On my driver's license, it has said 175 pounds since I was 16. I was 278! That was 103 pounds over. We’re not lying to people; we’re lying to ourselves. Now, I just don’t lie, and I don’t care if someone thinks it’s too low or too high. No one knows my body.
Have you had any slipups, like Daris, who was binge-eating in the middle of the night when he went home?
I haven’t had any middle-of-the-night eating, but I had a few instances. When I first got home, it was harder. I first let myself have a glass of wine on my 30th birthday and that led to a couple of glasses. And a few things here and there, like “I can have Pinkberry.” It’s 180 calories, and you want to incorporate a balance in your healthy lifestyle, but right now, it’s important for me to finish what I started. Long-term is quality of life, and that is not shoving food down your mouth at 1 a.m. I haven’t done that, but yes, I’m afraid that could happen one day. I don’t feel that I’ve gotten to that point where I can go out and have an ice cream cone. Once I hit my maintenance weight, I am going to be able to have that ice cream cone and know that that 220 calories is an extra 25 minutes on the treadmill. And then I'll just make sure I follow through. When you look at contestants who have been successful in keeping the weight off, they don’t deprive themselves, because that’s when you binge. But they don’t overindulge, either. There’s a fine line. My heart broke for Daris, and I was really proud of him that he was able to open up and share that. Because him talking about it is the first step in healing and moving forward. It’s the denial, like Jillian said later on, that will really get you.
Have you done a marathon?
I’ve thought about it. I’ve done about a half-marathon, and I run at least 5 miles a day every day. I have a lot of Biggest Loser alums who want me to do triathlons and marathons with them, and it’s something that I’m interested in trying. I always feel accomplished when I’m done running, but I also enjoy doing spin and a bunch of other activities, and running can really take a toll on your body. Daris’ time impressed Sam and I beyond belief. For Koli to finish in six hours is phenomenal. And then Ashley and Michael shocked me – 20 minutes after Koli! It just goes to show that no matter what your fitness level, you’re able to accomplish a lot more than you think by staying focused.
Were you surprised that Koli and Daris fell below the line?
I didn’t know who would. I was happy for Ashley that she was top dog in that weigh-in. And I feel bummed for Daris and Koli. Who do you vote for? The guy who has been the consistent leader and has had the highest percentage of weight loss the entire time? From day one, that was Daris. So do you fault him for losing weight too fast? But also you’ve got Koli, who’s lost 172 pounds. He looks like a completely different man and has pulled consistent numbers each week. But Michael only needs to be at 270 to have lost 50 percent of body weight. He is able to shed those pounds at a much more accelerated rate than someone like Koli, who left at nearly 50 percent, and Daris, who, in my opinion, is on borrowed time. Besides toning up, I don’t see anything else he can do. But building muscles will put more weight on him. I still think that you're really just voting for third place. I have been saying since I knew the final four that Michael and Ashley would have the best chance. And Ashley’s doing great, but I’m going to predict Michael to win!