Photo: ESPN/Peggy Sirota
Ronda Rousey is probably the only ESPN Body Issue cover model you’ve never heard of.At 25 years old, Rousey already has an Olympic medal and an MMA title belt.
But she’s also only two years removed from working the graveyard at a gym to get by.
Following in the footsteps of former MMA star Gina Carano, Rousey is poised to crossover and became latest women’s fighter to burst into the mainstream.
And she has an incredible life story that’s worthy of the fame a lot of people think she’s about to get.
Ronda had a tumultuous childhood. She had to overcome a brain damage, and when she was 8 years old, her father committed suicide
Her mother Ann got her involved in Judo at a young age. Ann was the first American to be a World Champion in judo, and she encouraged her kids to try the sport
She made it to her first Olympics in Athens, but didn't medal. In 2008, she went to Beijing and won a bronze in judo
In just seven months, she went from an out-of-work ex-Olympian to a professional MMA fighter, winning her first fight in 25 seconds
After winning her first four fights in less than one minute, she became the sport's most recognisable name for her borderline offensive trash-talking
But the new spotlight isn't changing her. She went on an anti-Kim Kardashian rant on the red carpet of the Body Issue party
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