After earning raves for their August cover featuring curvy model Erica Schenk, and again in December when autistic runner Kiley Lyall won their cover competition, the magazine has put another curvy model, Nadia Aboulhosn, on the cover of their April issue.
Aboulhosn, who also moonlights as a blogger and fashion designer, was initially photographed for a story inside the magazine, but Women's Running editor-in-chief Jessica Sabor decided to give her a bigger role in the issue.
"We originally selected Nadia for our feature on fitness/fashion influencers, but we loved her energy so much, we knew we had to put her front and center on our cover," Sabor says in a statement to PEOPLE.
Aboulhosn, 27, says she was blown away to hear that she'd be leading the issue.
Seeing the cover for the first time was an incredible experience for Aboulhosn.
"I was in the airport last night flying from Florida back to L.A. and went in the store, saw it and started crying," she recalls. "This elderly couple next to me was like, 'Whats wrong?' I'm like, 'This is my first magazine cover after working non-stop for five years!' "
Aboulhosn has long been a trailblazer. In eighth grade, frustrated with the lack of a girls' football team, she joined her school's all-boys team as a linebacker. She discovered her love of running through the team's daily track workouts.
These days, Aboulhosn goes for three to four runs a week, and does bodyweight workouts in between modeling for fashion brands Addition Elle (a fave of Ashley Graham), Lord & Taylor and BooHoo.
Sabor was thrilled to feature someone like Aboulhosn, who is working to change the body-image game.