Shortly after my diagnosis and completion of treatment, I realized that I was now officially off. My blood counts were off, my weight (of course) was off, my hair did not exist, and I was basically a big mess.

During my treatment, I could not focus on anything beyond survival. Before my diagnosis, I had been running 5k each day (yes, I was insane); it would take me about 45 minutes to an hour. I ate well but my weight had crept up for years, from like 21 years old each year saw 1-8 pounds gained, 2 lost, etc., till I had gone from 135 pounds to upwards of 160.

After treatment, I was 180 pounds and yet I knew that was not important to freak out about — I was once 200+ during pregnancy so 180 was not such a big deal … My treatment ended in July; by September, I had an appointment with the integrative medicine doctor at Sloan to find out what supplements and basically what I had to do to limit recurrence and other risk factors.

I had already been blogging and built some of my tribe and knew that no matter what I did, the risk would be unknown — on paper, I had no risk factors, and yet had stage 3 breast cancer.

Our appointment went well; he explained to me the accepted supplements and then examined me. His first response upon feeling my stomach was that I had too much belly fat. I did not kick him, though I wanted to — at this point, I was down to 160 pounds, which was around what I was at diagnosis — he said having hormone-positive cancer means that having belly fat is the worst thing to have, as fat stores hormones.

He told me that my goal weight should be 147 or lower. I was flabbergasted. I had not seen a “1” and a “4” on my scale in a decade and change, and here I was eating less, exercising more and struggling to get down to 160 … was he insane?

His advice to me was to do the smoothie challenge and I thought he was insane. I thought this type of thing was a scam, but when Sloan tells me to do something, I do it.

I began the “cleanse” and realized how much food I was eating that I just did not need. I did 2 juices a day, one meal (dinner) and snacks of nuts and apples through the day. The weight began to just fall off — my physical activity remained at about 10k steps a day but I was losing weight and fat like crazy.

I now wear a 28-inch waist jean with a weight of 128-135 pounds. It is incredible. I did not think I would EVER weigh less than 150 again. I feel better and cannot believe how much weight I dropped and have kept off for over a year. I am stable at my current weight and learned vital lessons in nutrition, activity and the delicate balance of being in menopause and having to keep belly fat low.