This book is filled with drawings of Olympic women, and it's amazing.

In 2012, designer Wendy Fox was watching the London Olympics when she noticed something about the women athletes.

"I was really amazed by the physical diversity of the female athletes and how vastly they differ depending on the requirements of the sport," says Fox.


The Women's 100-meter hurdles at the 2012 Olympics in London. Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images.

Some of the fastest, strongest, most athletic, and inspiring women in the world don't have bodies that adhere to a societal ideal. They have bodies built for speed, agility, strength, and in short — kicking ass.

Fox decided to turn all 276 female gold medal winners into a poster of inspiration, perspiration, and representation.

Photo via Kickstarter/Wendy Fox.

You may know some of their names — like McKayla Maroney, Misty May-Treanor, and Serena Williams — but you probably haven't heard of most of them.

That might be because, according to a 25-year study, the coverage of women's sports in media is often shamefully small when compared to the coverage men's sports get.

In 2016, a little less than half of the athletes competing in the Olympics will be women. The most in history. So Wendy Fox is stepping it up.

She's turned to Kickstarter to help fund a poster and book filled with illustrations of every woman who wins gold in the Rio Olympics.

Photo via Kickstarter/Wendy Fox.

The goal is to inspire young girls — who will see accomplished women athletes held up as high as men often are — but also to help foster a worldwide interest in women's sports.

Women athletes are too often objectified and sexualized, with little attention paid to their athletic prowess.

A quick Google search for "female athletes" will yield a depressing amount of listicles containing the "hottest" or "sexiest" female athletes instead of anything remotely substantive.

Not to mention the fact that women in general are still held to absurd beauty standards and often judged for the way they look far more than their merits and accomplishments.

Serena Williams at Wimbledon 2016. Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images.

Just look at what happens over and over to Serena Williams, inarguably one of the greatest athletes of all time. She has to wade through absurd body-shaming controversies while she's busy doing awesome things like, I dunno, WINNING WIMBLEDON.

In her illustrations, Fox is careful to draw the athletes to scale, beautifully depicting the fact that all heights, builds, weights, and skin colors are capable of greatness.

"I would love for girls to look at this project and discover a sport that’s for them," writes Fox in her Kickstarter campaign, "especially a sport that they didn’t even know existed before and for them to make a conscious shift in their perception of what it is that their bodies are capable of."

Photo via Kickstarter/Wendy Fox.

So pay attention in Rio 2016, because the list of women champions is probably going to fill up fast. And if you pay closer attention, you'll see that champions come in all shapes and sizes.

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Shanda Lynn Poitra was born and raised on the Turtle Mountain Reservation in Belcourt, North Dakota. She lived there until she was 24 years old when she left for college at the University of North Dakota in Grand Forks.

"Unfortunately," she says, "I took my bad relationship with me. At the time, I didn't realize it was so bad, much less, abusive. Seeing and hearing about abusive relationships while growing up gave me the mentality that it was just a normal way of life."

Those college years away from home were difficult for a lot of reasons. She had three small children — two in diapers, one in elementary school — as well as a full-time University class schedule and a part-time job as a housekeeper.

"I wore many masks back then and clothing that would cover the bruises," she remembers. "Despite the darkness that I was living in, I was a great student; I knew that no matter what, I HAD to succeed. I knew there was more to my future than what I was living, so I kept working hard."

While searching for an elective class during this time, she came across a one-credit, 20-hour IMPACT self-defense class that could be done over a weekend. That single credit changed her life forever. It helped give her the confidence to leave her abusive relationship and inspired her to bring IMPACT classes to other Native women in her community.

I walked into class on a Friday thinking that I would simply learn how to handle a person trying to rob me, and I walked out on a Sunday evening with a voice so powerful that I could handle the most passive attacks to my being, along with physical attacks."

It didn't take long for her to notice the difference the class was making in her life.

"I was setting boundaries and people were either respecting them or not, but I was able to acknowledge who was worth keeping in my life and who wasn't," she says.

Following the class, she also joined a roller derby league where she met many other powerful women who inspired her — and during that summer, she found the courage to leave her abuser.

"As afraid as I was, I finally had the courage to report the abuse to legal authorities, and I had the support of friends and family who provided comfort for my children and I during this time," she says.

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via Matt Radick / Flickr

Joe Biden reversed Donald Trump's ban on transgender people serving in the military earlier this year, allowing the entire LGBTQ community to serve for the first time.

Anti-gay sentiment in the U.S. military goes as far back as 1778 when Lieutenant Frederick Gotthold Enslin was convicted at court-martial on charges of sodomy and perjury. The military would go on to make sodomy a crime in 1920 and worthy of dishonorable discharge.

In 1949 the Department of Defense standardized its anti-LGBT regulations across the military, declaring: "Homosexual personnel, irrespective of sex, should not be permitted to serve in any branch of the Armed Forces in any capacity, and prompt separation of known homosexuals from the Armed Forces is mandatory."

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