Whoever thinks doing things like a girl is a bad thing, has never met the following female athletes. In this day in age, life can seem as though it’s still very much a man’s world and it sometimes feels tough to measure up to the guys, especially when it comes to sports and strength. These 15 female athletes prove otherwise and showcase incredible talent that will leave you running the other direction if ever faced one-on-one with them.
15. Sophie Hitchon – Hammer Thrower
British hammer thrower Sophie Hitchon has a lot to brag about when it comes to strength. The 24-year-old is a former World Junior Champion and also currently holds the British hammer thrower record with a 73.86 foot throw. After being a ballerina for 10 years, the 5-foot-7, 165-pound athlete now credits her past experience with dance in helping her concentrate on her performance during competitions. Sophie trains 9 times per week, and leaves two days open for rest. On a list of facts about herself on her personal blog, the British athlete included that squats are her favorite form of exercise.
14. Jessica Eye – UFC Fighter
Women Bantamweight UFC fighter Jessica Eye is a knockout inside and outside of the ring. Jessica is known for her hand speed and Fox News has called the 5-foot-6 fighter “one of the best strikers in the women’s division.” When she was 16, a drunk driver crashed into Jessica and her father as they were walking down the street, which left the UFC fighter bedridden for three months. Jessica credits this accident for her motivation to get involved in mixed martial arts. She’s currently ranked No. 7 in her class.
13. Holly Holm – UFC Star
Holly Holm is one female athlete you don’t want to mess with. The UFC fighter stands undefeated as the Women’s Bantamweight Champion. The 34-year-old fighter nicknamed “The Preacher’s Daughter,” since her father is a Church of Christ preacher, realized her love of fighting at just 16 years old when she began doing cardio kickboxing for exercise.
The 5-foot-8 UFC fighter weighs a lean 135 pounds and describes her training as challenging and combines a variety of different workouts. “I run five days a week, spar twice a week, grapple 2-3 times per week and wrestle two times a week. Maybe some strength and conditioning in there somewhere depending on the day and I also do mitt work 3-4 times a week.” Holly told UFC.com.
In 2015, Holly ended Ronda Rousey’s undefeated streak in the ring and gained tons of fame by knocking her out with a head kick.
12. Serena Williams – Tennis Star
Tennis player Serena Williams is sure to kick your butt on and off the tennis court. The 34-year-old athlete is ranked No. 1 in the Women’s Tennis Association’s singles category. Coached by her father Richard Williams and her mother Oracene Price, Serena began playing tennis at the young age of five. The 34-year-old has won four Olympic gold medals and has won countless championships including the U.S. Open, French Open, Australian Open and Wimbledon. Serena credits her seriously toned body to healthy eating habits and prefers dancing as a form of exercise to running and cycling.
11. Venus Williams – Tennis Star
Much like her younger sister, Venus Williams is one female athlete you don’t want to mess with. The 35-year-old tennis champion is currently ranked No. 13 in the Women’s Tennis Association’s singles category. Although Venus and Serena consider each other competition, they’re supportive of one another and have also won three Olympic gold medals together in the doubles category. In 2001, Venus was diagnosed with Sjogren’s syndrome and had to withdraw from the U.S. Open. And just how does the tennis pro keep in such amazing shape? Two-hour gym sessions, 5-6 times a week of course!
10. Ronda Rousey – Former UFC Champ
With 12 wins and only one loss, Ronda Rousey is one tough athlete when it comes to UFC fighting. Taking after her mother Ann Marie DeMars who was the first American female to win a world judo championship, Ronda began practicing judo at 11 years old and went on to win a bronze medal at the 2008 Summer Olympic Games in Beijing. The five-foot-seven fighter has been awarded two ESPY awards for Best Female Athlete and Best Fighter. Nicknamed “Rowdy” in the ring, Ronda recently lost her Women’s Bantamweight title when she was defeated by opponent Holly Holm in 2015.
9. Christmas Abbott – Olympic Lifting
The phrase “never judge a book by its cover” couldn’t be more relevant than when talking about fitness celebrity Christmas Abbott. Standing just 5-foot-3 and weighing only 120 pounds, the 34-year-old has climbed her way to success through Olympic lifting, CrossFit competing and personal training. Christmas has admitted that her favorite form of exercise is weightlifting and has been able to squat 255 pounds in the past. “I love lifting heavy weights — it’s my favorite thing. When I lift heavy weights, it just reminds me of how far I’ve come and how far I can still go,” Christmas told Cosmopolitan. As if weightlifting and maintaining her own fitness brand and training isn’t enough, Christmas is also the first female NASCAR pit crew member…can you say badass?
8. Aneta Florczyk – World’s Strongest Woman
We’d hate to cross paths with Aneta Florczyk on a bad day! The Polish powerlifter began lifting at the age of 16 and has gone on to win countless contests. Aneta has won the World’s Strongest Woman contest in Zambia in 2003 and in Ireland in 2004. After that, Aneta was crowned the winner of the World’s Strongest Woman competition in 2003, 2005, 2006 and 2008. A video of the polish athlete rolling up a frying pan with her hands went viral and lead to her growing success. Aneta holds Guiness World Records for “Most Wins Of The World’s Strongest Woman” and “Most People Lifted And Thrown In 2 Minutes.”
7. Chyna – Former Wrestling Star
Regardless of her retirement from WWF wrestling, Chyna is one former athlete we’d want to have our backs in a fight. In 1997, Chyna made her debut on television as fellow pro-wrestler Triple H’s bodyguard, and soon after gained much success. She went on to wrestle and compete against some of the strongest men in the business and was the only undefeated Women’s Champion in WWF history. The 6-foot tall, 200-pound wrestler turned actress has appeared in countless television shows and movies since her split with the WWF, including a few adult videos. Aside from her acting career, she spent time in Japan teaching English.
6. Carissa Gump – Olympic Weightlifter
American weightlifter and Olympian Carissa Gump knows a thing or two when it comes to breaking records. The New York native may only be 5-foot-1 but she’s a multiple American open champion and holds various American weightlifting records. In 2008, Carissa competed in the Summer Olympics in Beijing where she placed 14th in the women’s middleweight category. During that competition Carissa managed to lift over 194 pounds in a single-motion snatch. She’s married to fellow weightlifting Olympian Jason Gump.
5. Amanda Bingson – Olympic Hammer Thrower
Breaking the American hammer thrower record in 2013 with a throw of 248 feet is one of the many achievements Olympian Amanda Bingson has to show. At 5-foot-5 and weighing over 210 pounds, the 26-year-old athlete posed naked for ESPN’s 2015 Body Issue. “I’m just dense. I think it’s important to show that athletes come in all shapes and sizes,” Amanda said in the ESPN interview. In the interview, Amanda also revealed that her training consists of consuming 175 grams of protein per day while also focusing on weight training and core strength.
4. Candace Parker – WNBA Star
Whoever said playing like a girl was a bad thing obviously never met WNBA star Candace Parker. Younger sister of former NBA basketball player Anthony Parker, the 6-foot-4 Los Angeles Sparks player is guaranteed to school you on the court. Averaging 6.3 assists and 10.1 rebounds last season, Candace has set the WNBA bar pretty high for all of her other competitors. The 29-year-old who has been known to play guard, forward and center has two Olympic gold medals from 2008 and 2012 and holds the U.S. Olympic single-game record for the most blocked shots.
3. Lisa Leslie – WNBA Star
Although now retired, former WNBA player Lisa Leslie is another female athlete you don’t want to mess with. The three-time WNBA MVP and four-time Olympic gold medalist played with the Los Angeles Sparks for 12 years before retiring in 2009. The 6-foot-5 center played basketball in middle school and high school before attending the University of Southern California and being named National Player of The Year in her senior year. Known as one of the greatest female athletes of all time, Lisa is also the first woman to ever dunk a basketball in the WNBA.
2. Laila Ali – Best Female Boxer Ever
1. Olha Korobka – Olympic Weightlifter
We would never want to get on Ukranian weightlifter Olha Korobka’s bad side…ever. The 30-year-old weightlifting champion is 5-foot-11 and weighs over 370 pounds. At the 2004 Olympics in Greece, Olha was ranked 7th in the women’s over-75kg group. Olha went on to win a silver medal at the 2008 Olympics in Beijing where she lifted over 610 pounds. She was also known as the heaviest female competitor that year at the Olympics. After failing drug tests after competing in the 2011 World Weightlifting Championships, where Olha had won three bronze medals, she was banned from the sport for four years.