Holly Holm became a household name seemingly overnight, following her upset victory over the previously undefeated Ronda Rousey, to become the UFC Women’s Bantamweight Champion. While the win over Rousey may have made Holm a mainstream star, she had already established herself as one of the world’s top combat sports athletes years before capturing UFC gold.
Before even entering the UFC, Holm was one of the most successful female boxers in the history of the sport. She had won numerous titles and finished her boxing career (assuming she never boxes again) with a record of 33-2-3. In fact, Boxrec.com, a site dedicated to holding boxing records, has her rated as the 2nd greatest female boxer of all-time.
When you look at the 36-year-old Albuquerque, New Mexico native’s combat sports career, she is clearly in a league of her own. Moreover, besides being an outstanding athlete, Holm is also one of most beautiful female athletes currently competing.
At 5-foot-8 with flowing, long blonde hair, Holm could easily be mistaken for a model as opposed to someone who gets punched in the face for a living. While the former champ is definitely a looker, she isn’t known for posting racy photos online, like other female fighters.
That being said, she still has some hot photos out there, and we’ve brought you 15 of the best.
15 High Kick
Holm shows off some impressive flexibility and balance here, as she throws a high for the cameraman. The pic showcases the leg strength that helped her pull off one of the biggest upsets in MMA history by knocking out Ronda Rousey at UFC 193. Holm's many hours spent in the gym have resulted in a world-class physique, as we can see in this instance.
Fun Fact: One of the things that often gets overlooked when discussing the Holm-Rousey fight, is the fact that Holly Holm also had an undefeated mixed martial arts record (9-0) heading into the fight. She had impressive wins over current bantamweight contender Raquel Pennington and the always-tough Marion Reneau. However, she would hit a bit of a rough patch following UFC 193 and go on to lose her next 3 fights.
14 Yoga Pants
Yoga pants seem to be everywhere these days. Even women who don’t participate in sports or exercise can be seen sporting athleisurewear. That being said, Holly Holm is a woman who definitely spends more than her fair share of time in the gym, and the results are evident in this photo. Holm is clearly an athlete that knows how to rock yoga pants, as we can see.
Fun Fact: While the New Mexico native is best known for upsetting Ronda Rousey, Holm herself would go on to suffer an upset loss at the hands of Miesha Tate, in her very next fight. Holm looked to be winning the fight handily heading into the 5th (and final round) before being taken down and ultimately choked out, though Holm never officially tapped out.
13 Swimsuit Pic
Holm looks ready for the cover of the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Edition in this stunning bikini pic. Her teammates, former UFC Light Heavyweight Champion, Jon Jones and middleweight contender Yoel Romero also make an appearance in this photo. The 36-year-old’s model-like physique is highlighted in this image. Holm doesn’t post a lot of bikini pics online, but when she does, they certainly get fans attention.
Fun Fact: Holm had some very impressive wins over some of the biggest names in boxing, over the course of her career. She defeated Hall of Famer Christy Martin via unanimous decision and also has a win over female boxing icon (and former Playboy cover girl) Mia St. John. Interestingly enough, St. John is helping train Holm’s next MMA opponent, Cris Cyborg, for their upcoming bout on December 30th.
12 Black & White
This artistic black and white photo shows the former champ posing in her standard workout gear. It also shows us that Holm can look amazing even when she doesn’t appear to be trying to. It would seem that the boxing icon has mastered the art of making looking good, seem virtually effortless. The portrait shows Holm just being herself, which is, in of itself, a thing of beauty.
Fun Fact: Holm stared in the 2016 action movie, Fight Valley, alongside fellow fighters Miesha Tate and Cris Cyborg. The movie centers around the main character Windsor (played by actress Susie Celek) trying to avenge her sister’s death. The film, which was directed by Rob Hawk, received mixed reviews from critics. Holm would later end up facing her co-star Tate in the octagon and is scheduled to face Cyborg in late December.
11 The Little Black Dress
Fans are generally used to seeing Holm looking good in her UFC Reebok uniform or some type of workout attire. However, as we can conclude from this photograph, the boxing legend can rock formal attire as well as any Hollywood A-lister. The blonde bombshell sizzles on the red carpet in her black dress and stylish heels. The Albuquerque native looks every bit the VIP in a picture her fans are sure to love.
Fun Fact: Holm recently ended her three-fight losing streak last June. Before that, she suffered two consecutive losses to Miesha Tate (for the bantamweight title), Valentina Shevchenko, and Germaine de Randamie. Despite suffering losses, all three fights were competitive, and some MMA pundits believe Holm should have received the nod in the de Randamie fight.
10 Fight Gear
This is how most fight fans are used to seeing Holly Holm – in her Reebok-sponsored UFC fight gear. This photo helps to showcase the MMA standout’s impressive abs. It’s clear that Holm had definitely been doing some crunches and likely some other core-focused exercises prior to this photograph being taken. The top-ranked contender manages to look both attractive and slightly intimidating in this instance.
Fun Fact: After defeating Ronda Rousey back in 2015, Holly Holm made combat sports history by becoming the first person to win major championships in both the sport of boxing as well as mixed martial arts. These accomplishments have led some (most notably teammate and former UFC champ Jon Jones) to call her the greatest female combat sports athlete ever.
9 Thumbs Up
This image shows Holly Holm and a friend having a little fun prior to (or perhaps after) a yoga workout. Besides serving to showcase the pugilist's impressive physique, the photo also shows the former titleholder letting loose and having a good time. Being a high-level professional fighter can likely be stressful at times, so it can be interesting to see athletes (especially fighters) without their game faces on. Holm steals the show, yet again, with this candid yoga pants pic.
Fun Fact: Holm’s career as a combat sports athlete began when she was discovered in a cardio-kickboxing class, at just 16 years of age. Coach Mike Winkeljohn, of the famous Jackson Wink MMA academy, saw potential in her and began training her as a result. Winkeljohn remains Holm’s coach to this day.
8 New Shorts
In this photo, Holm shows off her powerful legs, as she takes a selfie in her workout shorts. The former champ doesn’t appear to be sporting a great deal of (or any) body fat in this particular image. Finding a photo of Holly Holm when she isn’t in outstanding physical condition is seemingly impossible. This Instagram post shows the kind of figure one can only hope to obtain by spending countless hours training and working out in the gym.
Fun Fact: It's a little-known fact that Holly Holm competed in kickboxing. As an amateur, she finished with a record of 6-0-2 and won the IKF’s USA National Amateur Tournament in 2001. She also had three professional kickboxing matches and went 2-1 between 2002 to 2003.
7 Halloween Fun
In this post, we see Holm and her husband Jeff Kirkpatrick all dressed up for Halloween. The UFC standout is dressed as Elastigirl, while Kirkpatrick is portraying the popular cartoon character, He-Man. Holm’s hourglass figure is on full display in a costume that is definitely on point. The former Bantamweight Champion makes a very convincing superhero, as we can see here.
Fun Fact: Some folks may not realize that Holm has also fought in Bellator MMA. Back in February of 2013, she faced a fighter by the name of Katie Merrill in her home state of New Mexico at Bellator 91. Holm won the contest via TKO in the 2nd round. The bout against Merrill would be her only fight in Bellator, though she would fight several more times for smaller promotion before finally making her UFC debut.
6 Cover Girl
Holly Holm shows us her modeling skills while being featured on the cover of Strong Fitness Magazine. The caption below the image reads, “Working with the Strong Fitness magazine was so much fun! What a great group of people. I am excited for the upcoming magazine!!!!” It would be fair to say that their collaborative efforts paid off, as the cover looks outstanding. Based on the over 41, 700 likes, it would appear that her fanbase also approves of the cover.
Fun Fact: Following her recent three-fight skid, Holm won her most recent UFC bout against Brazil’s Bethe Correia. After Correia taunted the former champ, Holm responded with a head kick, similar to the one she used to polish off Ronda Rousey at UFC 193.
5 With The Karate Hottie
Here we see Holly Holm with another one of MMA’s premier beauties, “The Karate Hottie” Michelle Waterson. The two gorgeous ladies are teammates at Jackson Wink MMA who also train together. Waterson is a 115-lb fighter who is also a former champion in the all-female fight promotion known as Invicta Fighting Championship (FC). It’s a real treat for fight fans whenever these two photogenic ladies get together.
Fun Fact: Holm grew up in the village of Bosque Farms, New Mexico and is the youngest of three siblings. Her father is a preacher, which lead to her nickname, “The Preacher's Daughter.” Roger Holm, Holly’s dad, attends all of her fights and could often be seen in her corner during her time as a boxer.
4 Weigh In
Fighters often look depleted when it comes time to for the official weigh-ins. However, based on the photo here, Holm would appear to be the exception to that rule (at least in this instance). The blonde bombshell looks like a lean, mean, cage fighting machine, in her red bikini as she smiles for the camera in this photo.
Fun Fact: One of the biggest wins in Holm's boxing career came against Auburn Hills, Michigan native Mary Jo Sanders. Sanders, who is the daughter of NFL Hall of Famer Charlie Sanders, came into the fight as the favorite to defend her IBA Welterweight title. However, it was Holm who would emerge the victor, via unanimous decision. The loss was the first of Sanders' career; she had entered the contest with a 25-0 record.
3 Biking In A Swimsuit
Besides being a fun bikini pic, there is also an important lesson here for those planning to visit Italy. According to Holm’s caption, “FYI…If you ride bikes like this in downtown Italy, the police will try to take you to jail and pay fines. I thought you could wear a bikini there.” Apparently, there is a no-bikini policy in certain parts of the country. Who says you can’t learn anything on Instagram?
Fun Fact: Holm has also been on the receiving end of a major upset lost. In 2011 she was knocked out by French boxer Anne Sophie Mathis in the 7th round of their bout. The result was considered to be the upset of the year in women’s boxing. The two would fight again in 2012, with Holm winning the rematch via decision.
2 Team Player
This photo features Holly Holm and several of her teammates and training partners. MMA fans may recognize former UFC standout and current Invicta FC commentator (and matchmaker) Julie Kedzie (to the right of Holm). One thing we can safely conclude from this photo is that MMA training results in some killer abs. Holm (and the rest of the ladies in the photo for that matter) appears to be in outstanding shape.
Fun Fact: Holm’s next bout will be against Cris Cyborg for the UFC Women’s Featherweight Championship at UFC 219, which is scheduled to go down on December 30, 2017. Holm failed to win the featherweight strap on her first try, after suffering a controversial loss at the hands of Dutch fighter Germaine de Randamie. De Randamie was stripped of the title after refusing to defend it against Cyborg.
1 Black Eye
Even a black eye won’t stop Holly Holm from producing yet another outstanding photograph. In this image, Holm shows off her post-workout abs as she poses with UFC strawweight Jodie Esquibel. In the caption, the former champ playfully states, “yes I'm also rocking a sweet black eye. I’ll try to keep hands up next time.” Even with a black eye, Holm still managed to get over 10,000 likes on Instagram for this photo.
Fun Fact: Jodie Esquibel is a 115-pound fighter out of Albuquerque, New Mexico who currently competes in for the Ultimate Fighting Championship. She has only had one fight thus far in the UFC, which was a loss to former title challenger Karolina Kowalkiewicz in the latter's home country of Poland. She previously fought in Invicta FC against current UFC fighters DeAnna Bennett and Alexa Grasso.