Empowering as her experience shooting for the “Body Issue” was, it wasn’t done completely on her own terms. Her main concern in posing for the magazine was nude photos that might be leaked.
She was cautious as she could be on set, but then her fears materialized. An ESPN cameraman was shooting behind the scenes for the ESPN YouTube channel while Rousey was getting her pictures taken. It turned out that the video showed her completely nude for a moment. She was furious and asked ESPN to remove the video at once, which they did.
Lean, Mean, Fighting Machine
As a pro, Rousey achieved the impossible and won four fights in a row, with each fight lasting less than a minute. All of those fights and achievements lead her to compete against the reigning champ.
The fight took 4 minutes and 27 seconds, much longer than Rousey's average, but it ended with her victory. She became an MMA sensation and even appeared on the cover of the "Body Issue" by ESPN Magazine.
With Rousey's growing popularity, her "Body Issue" cover was only a matter of time. Think of "Body Issue" as the "Sports Illustrated" of ancient Sparta — mega athletes showing off their hard-earned sporty physique on glossy paper.
Rousey was happy to participate, as she viewed the concept as art. Her main message was that femininity doesn't have to be sacrificed for the sake of athleticism. "I can be a fighter and be tough yet still retain my femininity," said Rousey profoundly.
Rousey has made a name for herself as a fearsome fighter who takes about a minute or less to show her opponents who the real boss is.
Then, in 2015, she went into the ring with Holly Holm. Holm was pretty confident for someone who was about to face the seemingly unbeatable Rousey. The UFC community was shaken to its core when Holm won the fight. Rousey was shaken even harder.
Losing Her Mojo
After her disappointing battle against Holm, Rousey was deeply disappointed in herself. She spent the following year focusing on training and didn't compete at all.
When she was finally back in the ring, she was scheduled to fight against Amanda Nunes, who was the reigning champ. There was a lot at stake for Rousey. Surprisingly, the 48-second-long fight ended in Nunes retaining her title. Fans were shocked, and Rousey started thinking she might be losing her touch.