Ronda Rousey Says Being Named Best Fighter Is Better Than Being Voted ‘Sexiest Woman Alive’

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By Lucy McCalmont

At 5 feet 7 inches tall and weighing in at 135 pounds, Ronda Rousey is hardly the image of what some may consider traditional beauty, but the UFC’s Women’s Bantamweight champion is exactly the person we need to redefine what “sexy” means.

By not caring at all about fitting into the ideal.

In an interview with HBO’s “Real Sports,” which aired Tuesday, Rousey talked about Sports Illustrated calling her pound for pound the best UFC fighter, man or woman, earlier this month.

“It makes me feel way better than if someone told me I was pretty,” Rousey replied. “If I was voted ‘Sexiest Woman Alive,’ it wouldn’t make me nearly as happy.”

She added that “it’s once in a blue moon” that a woman tops the pound for pound rankings. But the magazine didn’t stop there in its praise for Rousey.

“Rousey is not merely the most dominant fighter in MMA, she’s the most dominant athlete in all of sports,” SI said.

While some might question the violence of the MMA and a women’s role in the sport (eye roll), others have already ascribed her the face of third wave feminism. For Rousey, she told HBO that she doesn’t wake up thinking about progressing “for the betterment of women and society.”

“But I try where I can,” she added.

And where she can has been when she’s outside of the cage, just as much as when she’s in it. In her recently released autobiography, the 28-year-old writes about her own struggle with an eating disorder. The issue of body image is one that she has taken head-on, including purposely gaining weight for her SI swimsuit spread so she could be “a little bit curvier” and feature “the look at which I feel I’m the most attractive.”

Rousey explained more about that mindset to HBO.

“I’ll purposely do it heavier,” Rousey said of her shoots for magazines like SI and Maxim. “I’m going to go and do that shoot looking exactly how I look like on a normal day.”

Get. It. Girl.

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