On IELTS Speaking Test, it is often the case that most students of mine often say 'a lot of ' or 'lots of’. I’m not saying these are 'bad' words. All I’m trying to say is you can use better high-scoring phrases or words. Why not an 'awful lot of' or 'a whole lot of'? You can use either of these two phrases. That's going to go a long way. So for instance, I might say: 'I have a whole lot of problems in life.' Or 'I've got an awful lot of things to take care of.'
"a whole lot"
1- very much:
He didn't like them a whole lot.
2- a large number:
I said no, for a whole lot of reasons.
"an awful lot"
1- A very large amount; a great deal.
We've had an awful lot of letters.