Every Wednesday throughout the summer we hit Georgia Street with the YMCA of Greater Indianapolis to bring you Anthem Blue Cross & Blue Shield’s Workout Wednesdays. It’s a 45-min cardio/hip-hop dance session full of energy, laughs and of course, whippin’.
Our fun-loving and motivating instructor Robanne Robin definitely knows how to deliver one awesome lunchtime workout to our weekly crowd of 100+people. Take a moment to learn more about this passionate instructor’s journey and then meet us every Wednesday at noon on Georgia Street.
Meet Robanne Robin, YMCA Fitness Instructor
Can you summarize your health and fitness journey?
I’ve been all over the place with weight. I was a heavy child, then anorexic and bulimic as a teen/young adult, then 300 pounds for 10+ years, then lost 150 pounds. In terms of fitness, I have gone through long periods of inactivity, essentially no exercise at all, however when I was anorexic I would “over exercise” to burn more calories. I’ve done it all. Then, I had a major health scare in 2009.
What inspired you to make a lifestyle change?
I was sick and tired of how I was living. Couple that with the fact that I had had two separate trips to the ER with a heart rate over 200! The light bulb went on…that I not only needed to lose weight, but I needed to change my lifestyle. I had no idea how to do any of that. Yay me! I wrote an entire book on the hot mess that I had been my entire life with weight and food and how I eventually figured it out. You can check it out: Half My Size, available on Amazon, or at my website getyourstrongon.net.
Why did you get involved with the YMCA?
I had been a member of the Y for six years at the time I was struggling with severe obesity. I just never worked out. I took my kids to lessons and t-ball games at the Y, but I didn’t do anything for myself. So after I began to lose weight, I realized it was my turn. It had to be. I started walking on the treadmill and after doing that for over a year, I got bored and knew I had to find something I enjoyed so that I would continue on my path to healthy living. One day I was walking on the treadmill, and all these gals came walking out of a group exercise class they had just taken. They were all hyped up about it. So, I asked them what class they were talking about. Long story short, they said I had to come check it out for myself. So, the next week I did. I had no idea it was a hip-hop cardio class. I accidentally found the class I now love and teach three times a week at the Y.
What does the YMCA offer to our community?
The Y is awesome. They offer programs and classes for all ages from kids to seniors. They encourage and motivate people to live better lives and take care of themselves. They offer free appointments with Wellness Coaches to help you get started when you are new to the Y, or if you need a refresher on how to use the equipment, etc. They also provide financial assistance to families in need by subsidizing memberships, programs and day camps to help struggling families. My family was a recipient of this assistance at the same time I was beginning my health and fitness journey. The Y was absolutely instrumental in my successful transformation.
Additionally, the Y takes on national issues like the obesity epidemic and the dramatic rise in Type 2 diabetes. They have programs like the Diabetes Prevention Program to help combat these issues. Now, I also lead Diabetes Prevention Program classes for the Y!
What is your favorite part of Workout Wednesday?
My favorite part is absolutely shaking what mama gave me! It is so fun to have great loud, banging music to sweat to! I love seeing the crowd out there in the sun, having fun and getting a great workout! Georgia Street is the perfect place for these outdoor workouts! It’s also super cool when we have local celebs jump in for the warm ups (and try and keep up with us…!) We also get cool freebies sometimes from sponsors, like sweat towels and Indy 500 buttons and sunglasses! And best of all…these workouts are free! WOOT WOOT!
What is your Workout Wednesday motto? How do you keep it fun and exciting for all participants?
My motto is COME SHAKE WHAT YOUR MAMA GAVE YA. And, you don’t have to be a “good dancer” or in top notch shape to do this workout. I demonstrate modifications for low, medium and high impact to accommodate all fitness levels. I love to keep it fresh with new music and sprinkle in some funky moves. You’ll be whippin’ and nae-nae’in before you knew what hit you.
What or who would you say is your biggest inspiration to live a healthy lifestyle?
My biggest motivation to live a healthy lifestyle is that taking caring better care of me allows me to take better care of others, namely my three amazing children.
Where is your favorite place to work out Downtown?
Outside on Georgia Street. Period.
We’ll see you out on Georgia Street!