"The simplest things in life have become easier," Tomsche wrote in a CNN iReport submission. "I don't feel like I can't breathe when I bend over to tie my shoes. I'm not out of breath when I walk up and down the halls at work, and even sleeping is easier since I don't have all that excess weight pressing down on me."
Venegas offered to do a professional photo shoot with Tomsche in January, and they posted the pictures online. Venegas' Zumba classes quickly filled up. She says Tomsche has inspired their small community.
Tomsche is just happy she's gotten her smile back.
"I never thought coming from a town of 12,000 (people) that I would be an inspiration for anyone," she says. "It's just given me so much confidence in myself."
Her advice for others who are struggling to lose weight? Find a workout that you love.
"It can be done," she says simply.