Happy FRIDAY everyone! Today for Feature Friday I want to introduce you to a beautiful girl named Laura! We “met” via instagram as I completely fell in love with her uplifting spirit, positive energy, & drooled over her delicious food pictures! We instantly connected when we started to comment on each others photos about how much we were alike. I asked her to speak today because I feel that when I find someone who has such radiant light about them, I want to help spread their gift. She is a true definition of #WHATSBEAUTIFUL & being TRUE TO HERSELF. So without further ado – here is Laura’s story!
Hi everyone! I'm Laura Verbich! I'm so excited to be featured here today on POWERCAKES! I was so honored when Kasey approached me and asked if I'd like to be a guest blogger for the day - my initial reaction was OH HELL YES! I guess I'll start off at the beginning, and tell you a little bit about myself (I tend to go off on tangents and I get very passionate when I talk/type, so stay with me!)
I guess this allllllllllllllllll started when I was really young. When I was 9 years old, I weighed 130 pounds. I was a serious round ball. I ate a LOT - many double dinners, because I grew up living on the apartment right on top of my Italian grandmother, who would feed us children like there was no tomorrow. I LOVED to eat, and she LOVED to feed me, and this was a deadly combo. I was really big. And REALLY unhappy. I remember lying down and looking down at my big stomach and my big legs and wishing and hoping that when I grew up, I'd be skinny and have abs and be pretty. I felt really horrible about myself. One day, in grade 5, I said to myself, Laura you are starting high school next year, you cannot be a fat kid! You CAN'T! The summer before 6th grade, I made the change. I ate smaller portions (MY portions, no doubles), no desserts, lots of fruit and veggies. I exercised nightly in my basement. Very basic things, jumping jacks, crunches, skip rope, jogging on the spot, jogging up and down the stairs. I was really determined. I remember the feeling, I was so determined to lose weight and be fit! That summer, I lost 40lbs, bringing my weight down to 90lbs. I'm a small girl and it was healthy, and I was FINALLY HAPPY! Fast forward a few years... I was exercising here and there, never really committing, it wasn't something I felt I neeeeded to do.
When I was 15, I decided to become vegetarian. It was something that was ALWAYS on my mind, and one day, I saw a video of a cow slaughterhouse, and I cried for DAYS to my mother to let me become vegetarian. She kept arguing that I'd get sick, that it was unhealthy. One day, I met a 7yr old kid at a wedding shower, and he was vegetarian. I was like, WELL if this kid is veg I can be veg! And I ate veg all day and told my mom that night, that I AM NOW A VEGETARIAN and PROMISED to "get enough protein" and do my research. I knew that one day I would become vegan, but right then, at 15, I definitely wasn't ready to give up my favorite food in the whole world, CHEESE! Fast forward 6 years later, I decided to go vegan after reading "Skinny Bitch". Changed my life! Becoming vegetarian was the absolutely best decision EVER in my life, because it lead me to go vegan, which lead me to healthy eating, which lead me to a healthy, happy life!
Around that same time, I started going to the gym regularly. I didn't know what I was doing, just mainly cardio and some lighter weights. I wanted to get in SHAPE. I didn't really care about losing pounds, I just wanted to be fitter and healthier. But nothing was happening. I gave up on the gym, and my best friend Stefanie and I ordered the Insanity DVDs together one night and started at the same time. I was SCARED, I was nervous, I had never done anything like this before. But I pushed play every day and gave it my ALL that summer. I started restricting carbs that summer as well, but was overeating everything else. Once I'd get a taste of carbs, because of the restriction, I'd binge. And by binge, I mean a WHOLE DAMN BAGUETTE! I drank lots of alcohol, partied VERY often, slept only 4-6 hours a night, ate lots of vegan "junk". I was totally a negative girl almost ALL the time, I was really unhappy inside and out. One day, during an Insanity workout, I sprained my ankle REALLY badly and couldn't move for 6 weeks. I was incredibly depressed that I couldn't do my cardio, but there was nothing I could do about that, so I focused on cleaner eating. I actually lost weight and saw more results just eating and no working out! When I was healed, I finally I said, something's gotta change! I had dreams of being COMPLETELY confident and happy in my body, and PROUD of myself, and I KNEW I could get there if I found the right thing for me. I did research & learned a LOT about fitness, about nutrition, about taking care of my body and treating it with love and respect.
And BAM, I found Chalene Johnson and TurboFire! THIS CHANGED MY LIFE! Her positivity radiated through the screen, through her words, through her body right into me. I resonated with her, I felt connected to her and I finally felt at home in my body as I danced and kicked and punched with Turbo. I FOUND MY CALLING! I FELL IN LOVE with fitness, I fell in love with Turbo, and I fell in love with MYSELF! I felt myself changing every single day... it is so hard to describe. It's like I finally woke up... and found myself. Every day I'd find another piece of the puzzle that makes me Laura. I became so passionate about spreading this love and positivity and light and happiness! People started noticing a change in me - my body was changing, my face, my skin, my hair, my eyes, my glow, I saw it too and I loved it and I wanted more! I got an Instagram account and started connecting with others who were passionate about health, fitness, animals, everything I was living for. This fuelled my fire! I loved who I was becoming, I loved who I was meeting, I loved my life more and more. When things would get rough, I'd focus on myself, internally, how could I improve MYSELF and make this situation better? How can I make myself happy? And when I started doing this, I was attracting happy and loving people. The people around me started to change. Everyone got happier, I was helping others with their fitness and health.
I found out that I could actually build career doing this through Beachbody, which was the company that changed my life in the first place! And it all fell into place. And I'm keeping at it every day! I wanna change the world!!! And I know I can, I know that EVERYONE CAN, because I see the influence the people I look up to have on me, and those around them. I'm an independent Beachbody coach - this means that I'm here to help anyone who needs help with their health and fitness goals, has any questions regarding nutrition and working out and to provide information and testimonials for Beachbody products. I've done so many programs and LOVE working out at home EVERY DAY! Working out from home gave me all my results and changed my life, I completely believe in the products and that's why I feel compelled to tell everyone about them! I know they WORK, and I know they changed countless lives, even just in my own little community!
Now I'd like to share with you one of my absolute FAVE recipes of ALL TIME. I have a protein pudding at LEAST once a day, most of the time twice (right after my workout and as my last meal of the day). I love these puddings - they provide tons of nutrition and keep me full, satisfied and curb my cravings.
Laura’s Classic Protein Pudding
- 1 scoop chocolate protein powder
(I personally love Vega Sports Performance protein in chocolate, and Shakeology Chocolate Vegan)
- 1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk
- 1-2 ripe bananas (more bananas = more pudding-y)
- 2 tbsp chia seeds
- 1 tsp maca root powder
- 1/2 tbsp raw cacao powder
- 5 ice cubes
Directions: Place ingredients in a blender and blend blend blenddd until smooth! You can leave it to set in the fridge overnight or for a few hours if you want – the chia seeds thicken! Otherwise, ENJOY right away!
I loved being able to share my story with you all!
Here's all my social media info, so come on over and follow me, friend me, email me, let's connect!
Instagram: @gorgeousssleep (that's 3 s's!)
Twitter: @gorgeousssleep (same as IG!)
MyFitnessPal: gorgeousssleep (same as IG & Twitter!)
& if you'd like to join my team on Beachbody,
you can add me here: www.beachbodycoach.com/lauraverbich
Love you all! Can't wait to connect.
Peace, love and plants,
Thank you so much Laura!!
I am also featured on my girl Brittany Barr's blog today!
You can check that out [here]
where I share my Carrot Lemon Poppy Seed Cookies!