Health

Hooked on a healthy lifestyle

Published 3:01 PM ET, Thu April 25, 2013
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Four years ago, Melissa Schaaf weighed close to 250 pounds. Living in a "household of naturally skinny people" with her husband, Bob, and their two children made eating healthy challenging, she says. Courtesy Melissa Schaaf
"When I turned 40, I looked down at the scale and thought, 'Oh my, I must really do something about this,' " Schaaf says. Courtesy Melissa Schaaf
Schaaf lost 80 pounds through regular exercise and Weight Watchers. Courtesy Melissa Schaaf
To celebrate her weight loss, Schaaf hiked in and out of the Grand Canyon with her daughter, Margaret, and son, Alex, in the summer of 2011. Courtesy Melissa Schaaf
In December 2011, Schaaf was diagnosed with stage I leiomyosarcoma, a rare cancer found in muscle tissue. She underwent four rounds of chemotherapy in the spring of 2012. Courtesy Melissa Schaaf
Schaaf continued to go to the gym through her cancer treatment. She credits exercise with keeping her sane and combating some of the effects of chemotherapy. Courtesy Melissa Schaaf
Schaaf is now in remission and has kept the weight off more than three years. She plans to run a half marathon at the end of April. "There (are) no limitations anymore," she says. Courtesy Melissa Schaaf