Lindsey Vonn: ‘You Don’t Have to Be a Size 2 to Be Beautiful’

11/10/2015 at 01:39 PM ET

Lindsey Vonn
Health Magazine

It’s hard to imagine Lindsey Vonn ever feeling self-consicous about her body.

But when it comes to walking a red carpet, even the Olympic gold-winning athlete with a killer physique can be insecure.

“I’m, like, twice the size of anyone, in both height and weight!” she tells Health in its December issue. “I’m five-foot-ten, but I’m definitely quite a bit heavier than everyone else. I feel like the odd man out sometimes, but that’s even more reason to be confident, to show girls that you don’t have to be a size 2 to be beautiful. Any size is beautiful as long as you’re confident in yourself.”

RELATED: Lindsey Vonn: What I Eat in a Day

That accepting outlook has made the U.S. ski champ a proud and relatable role model to young girls. She even started The Lindsey Vonn Foundation as a way to help empower them.

Lindsey Vonn
Health Magazine

“It’s kind of funny because before I was 17, I was incredibly skinny. I was made fun of and called ‘chicken’ and ‘chicken wings’—I was super tall and probably weighed 30 pounds less than I do now,” she explained. “Then I gained weight because my metabolism slowed down, and I kind of was on the other end of the spectrum. I’m normal-size, but when I started to do well and do events and photo shoots, I felt like I was too big.”

An advocate for healthy eating  – “when I’m eating really clean and splurge on something really sugary, I feel like I’m going to vomit,” she says – and keeping fit, Vonn is putting her vast knowledge to good use. This spring, her first book, Strong Is the New Beautiful, “a menu of foods you can eat and workouts you can do” debuts.

She is also focused on the future when it comes to her love life, after her almost three-year relationship with Tiger Woods ended in May.

Lindsey Vonn
Health Magazine

“I think it’s just given me more time to spend on myself,” she says of the separation. “That’s what happens with most breakups: You really look at yourself and figure out what makes you happy, and you also have a lot more free time. I’m focusing on my job—my skiing— and I’ve been working really hard. I got a new nutritionist, and I’m just doing everything I can to be in shape for this season. And it’s paying off.”

–Michelle Ward Trainor

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Showing 7 comments

nope on


her ex has a thing for “blondes” with “strong” features.

disnerd94 on

So, she’s what…a size 6? That’s huge! >_<

cynic1018 on

barf…..not a fan of her at all. she is an athlete, so of course she is in shape, but not necessarily shapely or svelte.

Phi on

Brooke Mueller? Is that you?

boom on

Coming from someone who looks like a size 2?
Gee thanks for the life advice.

Kara Allan on

As a stylist who dresses women’s bodied I found the title of this article ridiculous.

Lindsey goes on after that crazy statement to say that any size is beautiful as long as you have confidence in yourself. Why wasn’t that the title of the article? I’m so annoyed when one size has to be denigrated to make another size feel better about themselves. I don’t have control over the fact that I’m 4 feet eleven and a half and a size 2 then she does at 5 feet 11 and whatever size she is but I’m not complaining about it either.

Your size does not dictate your beauty, how you personally feel about it and present that to the world does. All women at all sizes are beautiful, period. The comparing and contrasting and body shaming needs to stop.

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