Former WWE diva A.J. Mendez, better known as A.J. Lee in the wrestling circuit, has taken to Instagram this week to showcase her transformed body, emphasizing her dedication to a healthy fitness regimen while challenging societal norms around diet culture.
However, despite her resurgent physical fitness, those expecting to see her return to the wrestling ring may be in for disappointment. The athlete reaffirmed her retirement status with a straightforward "retired athlete" caption on a series of pictures from a recent photoshoot posted this Thursday.
Married since 2014 to AEW's superstar, CM Punk, Mendez last made a wrestling appearance in March 2015. She teamed up with Paige, better known as AEW's Saraya, and Naomi, known as Impact's Trinity Fatu, to secure a victory against Natalya and The Bella Twins, Brie and Nikki Garcia.
Intriguingly, amongst all the luminaries of her last WWE match, only Natalya continues to be associated with the company. During her stint of six years with WWE, which included a two-year development phase transitioning between Florida Championship Wrestling and "NXT," Mendez notched up an impressive record.
She became a three-time FCW Divas Champion and also managed to claim the Divas Championship on the main roster thrice. Mendez announced her retirement in April 2015, citing irreversible damage to her cervical spine as the reason for her exit.
Mendez's Post-Wrestling Accomplishments
In the following years, Mendez proved her versatility by penning a book entitled "Crazy Is My Superpower," which earned her a spot on the New York Times bestseller list. She also lent her expertise to the Women of Wrestling in 2021, serving as both an executive producer and color commentator.
While Mendez did hint at a possible comeback in 2019, asserting the age-old saying of "Never say never," she effectively doused those hopes in 2022.
Reflecting on the physical toll that her late-career injury had taken, she firmly stated, "I'm going to keep it feeling great by not wrestling." It seems, for now at least, fans will have to contend with enjoying her past glories rather than anticipating any future wrestling endeavors.