Biggest Loser success story? After Rachel Frederickson was crowned the season 15 winner of The Biggest Loser on Tuesday, Jan. 4, some have questioned if her 155-pound weight loss was too extreme. During a conference call with Us Weekly on Wednesday, Frederickson addressed some of the backlash she has received.
"First and foremost, my goals are to be healthy and strong," she said. "I'm an athlete and have been an athlete since I was a little girl. I went on the Biggest Loser journey to find that confidence that I lost. Through the challenges I fought to get into the finale, I found that girl again. I'm embracing this new part of the journey."
"I followed the advice and support of the medical team at the Biggest Loser the entire journey," Frederickson added. "So it's been natural, and I've enjoyed every part of it. I'm going to continue on that path, maintaining this healthy lifestyle and really just enjoy this new life."
Frederickson's big weight loss reveal made personal trainers Jillian Michaels and Bob Harper's jaws drop during the finale Tuesday. The 24-year-old former high school swimmer started the show weighing 260 pounds, and ended weighing just 105 pounds after about seven months of hard work.
"I started as a [size] 20 and now I'm a 0/2. I was a 6 during makeover week," she told Us. "It's all about maintaining now!"
In the wake of the criticism, NBC and Shine America are also showing support to the reality competition show's $250,000 prize winner.
"We support Rachel and all of the Biggest Loser contestants who have shared their journeys over the past 15 seasons," the network and production company for The Biggest Loser said in a statement to Us. "We remain committed to helping contestants achieve healthy weight loss and live healthier lifestyles, and to inspiring viewers to do the same."
This article originally appeared on Usmagazine.com: Biggest Loser Winner Rachel Frederickson: Weight Loss Was "Natural," Network Shows Support