Hunter McGrady is making a splash for the New Year.
The Sports Illustrated Swimsuit pinup, recognized as the magazine’s “curviest model ever,” revealed on Instagram Thursday she will appear in the 2020 issue.
Sports Illustrated also shared some behind-the-scenes video of the 26-year-old posing in several swimsuits in Bali, Indonesia.
“I just feel better and better every single year and this location is insane,” McGrady gushed in a selfie video clip.
“This country is one of the most beautiful places I have ever been in my life and to be here with people who are like family makes it that more special,” she continued. “Can’t wait for you guys to see this issue.”
The Los Angeles native is the second plus-size model to be featured in SI Swimsuit after cover girl Ashley Graham. McGrady made her debut in 2017.
Back in May of this year, McGrady recalled to Fox News what it was like seeing herself for the very first time on SI.
“So, my very first shoot with them was in body paint, and it was absolutely incredible,” she explained. “It took 12 hours to paint on. And when I saw the photos for the first time, my heart dropped. I've never been so excited and so proud in my life because I'm a size 16, 18. I'm a curvy girl. So, to see those photos in this huge magazine was just such a remarkable moment, not only in my life but in my career. It was just wonderful.”
McGrady also revealed she’s proud to hold the unofficial title of SI's curviest model ever?.
“It’s incredible,” she said. “That is a title that I hold so near and dear to my heart because I know growing up, I never was able to open a magazine and really see someone that resonated with me. I want to make this change not only for our generation but pass this down to the next generation so that we can see diversity, we can see inclusivity in magazines, billboards, on television, across the board, because it's so needed, and it just takes little by little, step by step, and Sports Illustrated is just the leading for in this whole matter.”
Still, McGrady admitted she still has to cope with trolls on social media.
“My family always told me, ‘Hunter, hurting people hurt people,’” said McGrady. “And that's just simply put. And whenever I see those comments, that phrase just plays through my head, and I pray for them. I mean, it just goes to show how badly we need this now more than ever. The more comments like that I get, the more I'm like, bring it on. We need this. This is so apparent that this something that we need to continue fighting for and continue talking about and this narrative needs to continue moving forward. You know, there are always people who don't like you.”
McGrady insisted she doesn’t mind praying for her haters.
“It’s just not worth my time, you know?” she said. “They are clearly hurting. They obviously have insecurities of their own, and I've been there. I know what it's like to be insecure and feel bad about myself, so then I have to put that on others. And I've been there, so I understand that. So, if anything, I make it a learning lesson and I just say I'm praying for you, and God bless. I hope the best for you. I hope wonderful things happen for you because better to kill them with kindness. You can't fight fire with fire.”