YMCA instructor walks the weight-loss walk

ENGLEWOOD — The Englewood YMCA will celebrate water aerobics instructor Tasha Robinson’s 100-pound weight loss by throwing her a 100 Pound Party Jan. 12 with 100 minutes of water aerobics classes at the facility’s heated pool.

After attending the YMCA for more than four years, the 37-year-old Robinson made a life-altering decision two and a half years ago to live a healthier life. She weighed in at 276 pounds.

“I was desperate to feel better,” Robinson said. “I started with water aerobics. I was going so frequently, I was asked to be a substitute instructor.”

Now Robinson teaches water aerobics at the Englewood and Venice YMCA and is also a certified lifeguard.

Robinson re-evaluated her diet with the YMCA’s diabetes-prevention program, which helped change her outlook on food. She is now a coach for the program.

“I ate to cope with stress,” Robinson said. “Ice cream, potato chips and chocolate were my best friends. Now, I eat fruits and vegetables. I watch my toppings and dressings.”

Robinson ate smaller amounts of food with more consistency.

“I’ve never seen anyone so tenacious,” said Marcia Ziegler, membership director of the Englewood YMCA. “She wanted to make sure she was active and ate healthy.”

Robinson is not on a special diet.

It wasn’t easy at first, she said, but now she’s dropping a pound or two every week. She takes vitamins and said she doesn’t do anything that enhances her metabolism.

She said she found temptation at home because her husband still ate the foods she was trying to avoid. She eventually got rid of the TV because she said it supported a sedentary lifestyle.

“Once I was under 200 pounds (in the water aerobics program), I was comfortable on more land training,” Robinson said.

Now down to 162 pounds, Robinson completed the Englewood YMCA Triathlon in July and is working to compete in a mini triathlon on Jan. 13 in Naples. She’s competing in yet another event in February.

“Tasha is one of the most positive individuals I have ever met,” Ziegler said. “She’s happy to help people.”

When Robinson is not at the YMCA, she works as a professional harpist with various local symphonies. Her long-term goal is to join the Sarasota Storm Triathlon Club.

“You can do it without surgery,” she said. “I am living proof.”    The 100 Pound Party at the Englewood YMCA will be held at 2 p.m. Jan. 12 at 701 Medical Blvd., Englewood. Admission is a $5 donation. Proceeds will benefit the YMCA scholarship fund. Those in attendance can participate in 100 minutes of mini classes of shallowwater aerobics. There will be a synchronized swimming demonstration. Call 941-475-1234.

Photos here

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About Tom

Tom Chang is a freelance journalist with a background in multimedia journalism and web publishing. He is currently pursuing his Masters in Journalism and Media Studies from the University of South Florida St.Petersburg. He graduated in 2004 with a Bachelors Degree in Mass Communications at USF Tampa. Tom's interests include a little bit of everything from entertainment to sports. He also wishes to delve into creative writing writing sci-fi/fantasy stories. Tom was recently the Online Editor for USF St. Petersburg's the Crow's Nest, he joined the staff in January 2010 where he started freelance writing, photographing, copy editing and later became a staff writer. Tom’s freelance experience in journalism amassed a wide range of companies including Creative Loafing, The Focus Magazine, Lutz News, Examiner.com, and Tampa Tribune.
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