Lauren Abraham has more in common with Captain America, her favorite superhero, than you might think. Though she’s not a vigilante (at least that we know of), she did transform from regular girl to paragon of fitness and didn’t need any Super Soldier serum to do it. And no, maybe the Red Skull never tried to kill her, but she did suffer some horrific snowboarding injuries, undergoing 10 different surgeries that ultimately ended her competitive days. Not only did she come back to continue snowboarding, she took up a new sport—paddle boarding—and even went pro.

M&F:You say Captain America is your favorite superhero. Why him?

LA: That he had a warrior spirit even before he transformed. He knew what was inside of him and he just went for it 100%. And when everybody doubted him, he was the one who believed in himself. I think that’s kind of like what my life story is. I believed in myself the most when everybody doubted me, and I feel like I rise to the occasion.

M&F:And you are from the 1940s and were frozen until we unleashed you.

LA:Well, I did almost freeze to death in the back country of South Lake Tahoe, CA, a few years ago. That’s as close to death as I’ll ever be.

M&F:What happened?

LA:I had just started dating this guy, and it was a powder day and there was a blizzard, so they were closing the mountain down at noon. We were at the top, and instead of going down the trail for our last run, he dropped into the back country, where there were signs everywhere that said, “No Ski Patrol” and “Out of Bounds,” but he told me to trust him. So we cruised down this huge mountain through the woods. At one stage, I turned around behind me, and there’s this other kid behind us that had decided to follow. The next thing you know, we cruised for way too long, and I just knew in my gut that this was not the right move. We get down to the bottom and there’s just this flat field, a complete no-man’s land. We were on the opposite side of the resort!

M&F:And it’s still snowing hard?

Yes, and it’s getting dark, and the wind is 30 miles an hour. We had to hike back up the mountain nearly six hours trying to beat the sun. By the time we get to the top, it’s pitch black and the guy that I was dating looked at me and he goes, “I’m sorry it comes to this, but this is the end of the road for us,” and he literally laid down to die! And the other kid joined him! I said “F@#$ you! I have an amazing life ahead of me, and I’ll be damned if I’m lying down with you two.” I cruised straight into the blizzard, hiked another 15 minutes, and stumbled upon a ski patrol shack. No one was inside, but it was open and there was a phone. An hour later, the ski patrol came on a snowcat to get us.

M&F:And Despite all that, you still snowboard?

Sure do! I still love the sport. Plus, my career as a TV host and sportscaster, along with recent shows on FSN and several other networks, keeps me connected. Being a sponsored SUP athlete, a competitive snowboarder for a time, fitness expert, and certified yogi has opened a ton of doors throughout my career. Without athletics, I wouldn’t be a paid fitness model for and own my dance company, LA Entertainment. I am also excited about my soon-toopen adventure and fitness camp this summer in Costa Rica and my health and wellness retreat in Mexico this fall. I’m truly blessed, and I owe it all to staying fit and healthy. and healthy.