Olympian Kerri Walsh Jennings is famous for her beach body, but the three-time gold medalist said she was still nervous to shoot a pair of nude photos for ESPN Magazine's Body Issue.
The 34-year-old beach volleyball champ is featured in back-to-back photos, one showing her heavily pregnant with her third child, and then shortly after baby Scout was born.
"For the first shoot, I was very pregnant, and that wasn't as scary. I thought it would be, because I was big and rotund when I'm usually the opposite, but it was really comfortable because I felt almost like I was in costume," she said. "But for the second, I was two and a half months out from having a baby. I'm supposed to be tight and toned and strong, but I have a lot more work to do."
Even so, Walsh Jennings said the process couldn't have been better.
"The team tasked to glam me up did such a wonderful job throughout each shoot," she said. "I felt I was amongst friends and ultimate professionals who worked together to create something beautiful."
With the post-baby photo taken just two months after her daughter's April birth, the athlete said she was motivated by the photo shoot to get back to her workouts sooner than her doctor recommended.
And now that the photos have come out, Walsh Jennings said she's thrilled with the reaction they've received.
"I'm so happy and relieved that people are receiving my pictures so warmly," she said. "I didn't realize how vulnerable I'd feel upon the release of the photos."
"I am happy and I am proud," she said. "I can't wait to see a copy of the magazine!"