Venus Williams, the 34-year-old tennis star, suffering from an autoimmune disorder after being diagnosed in 2011, bares all in the July 11 Body Issue from ESPN The Magazine.
The American tennis star and four-time Olympic gold medalist opens up about her challenges with Sjogren’s syndrome, which leaves her tired and forces her to limit the amount of time and efforts she puts into training.
“At my worst point, I wasn’t able to play tennis at all,” she said. “Just the whole quality of my life was compromised. You are so tired it hurts. You have to accept that you’re never going to be 100 percent.”
Because of Sjogren’s syndrome, I have to be careful,” she says. “If I train too hard, then I won’t be able to do anything the next day. There would be times when I’d park my car at home and I fell asleep behind the wheel because I was so tired. It’s a balance between pushing myself as much as I can and being reasonable about what I can achieve and what my body will tolerate.”
It’s amazing to see her smile and will power, and the fact that she’s still excelling in her career despite the challenges.
During an interview about her nude appearance in the ESPN Body Issue July 11 edition, the Tennis star said:
“It didn’t dawn on me until right when I walked on set that I would have to be without clothes,” “If I would have thought about it before, there may have been a little less of a chance.”
Yeah! that’s Venus for you.
While the Williams Sisters are often viewed as a package, the quieter Venus has been somewhat overshadowed by her more vocal younger sister, Serena Williams. They dress differently and even play differently.
Williams being featured in the July 11 edition of body issue comes five years after her sister Serena, who is also a professional tennis player and currently ranked No. 1 in women’s singles tennis appeared on the 2009 cover.