From professional basketball and football players to Olympic gymnasts and throwers to soccer stars and golfers, the world-famous athletes who recently shed all their layers for ESPN magazine are superheroes in their own right. Short or tall, lean and muscular or broad and dense, they use the bodies they were gifted with at birth to defy expectations, break records and become undeniable champions, all while redefining our definition of beauty in the process.
But these seemingly godly creatures are ultimately human, and just like us, have struggled with body image issues over the years. Eventually, they came to terms with their self-esteem—enough to take off all of their clothes and flaunt their inspiring physiques to the entire world in a gorgeous photo spread in the sports magazine. LivingHealthy sourced images of some of the most incredible athletes of the bunch, their moving words of wisdom and interesting facts about their athletic bodies.