Christie Brinkley, 63, Shatters Age Stereotypes in the Upcoming Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue

Christie Brinkley is giving all of us some serious workout goals in the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue – and no, not one from decades ago, either.

The 63-year-old eternal mega-babe appears in the coveted print real estate of the upcoming issue with her two daughters.

The iconic model took to Instagram to share a snap of herself with 31-year-old Alexa Ray Joel (her daughter with singer Billy Joel) and 18-year-old Sailor Brinkley Cook. In the post, Brinkley thanks Sport Illustrated “for sending the powerful message that good things come in packages of every size and we do not come with an expiration date.”

Sailor, a mini-me version of her mom, shared the same image to her Instagram account, along with an empowering message. “I’ve had issues with my body image since before I can even remember. My body and I have been through it all. But recently I have been liberated. I am healthy, I treat myself well, and for that I’m happy,” she wrote.”As a growing young woman SI showed me all bodies are different and all bodies are worthy of celebrating. Thank you thank you @si_swimsuit for celebrating my beautiful mama, my beautiful sister, I, and ALL WOMEN!! How lucky am I?!”

It was the encouragement of her daughters that inspired Brinkley to slip into the swimwear for the cameras one last time. “My first thought was, ‘At my age? No way!’” she told PEOPLE. “When I turned 30, I was like, ‘This is the last time I’m posing in a bathing suit!’ When this issue comes out, I’ll be 63. I thought, ‘Those days are over.’ But to get to do it with my girls, I thought, ‘One last go!’”

Brinkley also poses alone in the issue, rocking skimpy two-pieces like she hadn’t missed a beat since the 80s. Of course, Brinkley is no stranger to the long-celebrated issue; she first appeared on the cover of the Swimsuit Issue in 1979. She went on to grace covers in 1980 and 1981.

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“In a country that’s very ageist, people love to put you in little boxes,” she told PEOPLE. “Women feel very limited by their numbers. On a personal level, I thought, if I can pull this off, I think it will help redefine those numbers and remove some of the fear of aging.”

Bold (or, what society defines as bold) moves like Brinkley’s and the fight for equality of older women in Hollywood like Geena Davis remain as important as ever. A recent analysis by Clemson economists Robert Feck and Andrew Hanssen found that age 40, male actors get 80 per cent of the leading roles available. This leaves the over-40 set of Hollywood’s leading women with just 20 per cent. And no, there’s nothing encouraging about that statistic.

The fight of all women everywhere not to feel confined to a limited shelf-life to exude beauty and sex appeal is ever-important in a society that constantly sells you on the fear of aging in their marketing of things like Botox, fillers and liposuction.

As for Sports Illustrated, the publication has deviated from its long-held beauty ideals by featuring plus-size models like Ashley Graham in recent years. The Swimsuit Issue hits newsstands February 15.

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