Back in 2009, Candace Parker made an appearance in ESPN the Magazine's Body Issue while pregnant with her daughter, Lailaa Nicole Williams. Now she has returned, showing off her sleek yet muscular frame and long legs for ESPN's cameras.
You can check out her photo shoot below.
Obviously, the fellas are going to enjoy Parker's appearance in the magazine. She's a gorgeous woman.
But for the ladies, she represents an inspirational figure as well. Retraining the body after nine months of a pregnancy can be a struggle, let alone when you are training to return to a professional sport like basketball that requires a lot of wear and tear on the body.
Parker shared with Morty Ain of ESPN the rigors of returning to training after having a child:
The adjustment was very difficult. If you took nine months off, even without having a baby and gaining 35 pounds, it would be tough. Your body changes, your hips change, everything is different. I started working out maybe two weeks after I had my daughter—light jogging, court work, a lot of core—to get my muscle memory back. After my first workout, I was so sore I couldn't go back the next day. I set goals, such as dunking four or five weeks after I had her, just to keep myself motivated and working hard.
As you could see from the video, she is as fit and toned as ever.
Parker became famous for being the first woman to ever dunk in the NCAA Tournament (and the second player to dunk in the WNBA), but she is one of the best all-round ballers women's basketball has ever seen.
She won two Wooden Awards and a Naismith Award at Tennessee, then took the WNBA by storm in 2008 with the Los Angeles Sparks, winning both the Rookie of the Year and MVP awards.
Talk about debuting with a bang.
But her pregnancy and battles with injuries have limited her career since. It's a shame, as she remains one of the compelling talents in the WNBA to this day.
And as we've seen, she's also one of the league's most gorgeous players and sports one of its most toned frames.
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