TAMPA, Fla. – At a Tampa YMCA you hear the voice of trainers and the clank of weights. It looks like a typical day at any gym, but the men and women working out now have more in common than just muscles and might. They are all cancer survivors and they wear t-shirts proudly announcing that fact.

They're also all members of the Y's LIVESTRONG program. It's a free 12-week session for cancer survivors designed to help heal both body and soul.

“It’s so important to get back to who you were before the treatment, before the radiation, before the chemo — before
the cancer,” says Linda Robbins, a breast cancer survivor.

“Nice work, way to go ... good job,” a trainer says as she moves from machine to machine. Certified LIVESTRONG coaches tailor exercise programs for each individual and their own unique challenges.

“I was the person who didn’t want to come in the door and now I’m a gym rat!” says Michele Boone, a breast cancer survivor with a laugh.

Group sessions also build both muscles and a network of survivor support.

“I’ve got an opportunity to really meet other survivors, interact, tell stories—sometimes horror stories—but to really understand I’m not alone,” explains Chris Brewer, a young man taking on Hodgkin Disease.

keep living strong at area LIVESTRONGThere’s an easy way for you to help
YMCA’s. You can participate in or support the Goody Goody Turkey Gobble on Thanksgiving morning. All the money raised from the run goes to support LIVESTRONG.

This program is free for both cancer survivors and their families and when you watch them work out, it’s clear that participants are living up to the LIVESTRONG name. They end their session with high-fives all around.