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Anyone who thinks models don’t work hard, think again.

Kate Upton made history with her latest Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue cover as the first to grace it two straight years since Tyra Banks in 1996-97.

Boy did she have to earn it in Antarctica, though.

Kate Upton Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue Cover Shoot

"It was definitely the hardest shoot I’ve ever done," she says. "The best as well … Antarctica is one of the most beautiful places I’ve ever been to."

"But I’m from Florida, so it was pretty painful. I was very surprised by the news that that’s where my shoot was going to be located,’’ she recalled.

 

Kate Upton joked that it took her two months to thaw out.

“When I came back I was losing hearing and eyesight because my body was shutting down,” she said. “It was working so hard to keep me warm."

Hey, at least the resulting Kate Upton bikini photos will help keep others warm. That must mean something, doesn’t it? She’s a real humanitarian.

"It was an accomplishment just to get through the shoot… I didn’t even think about the possibility of being the cover until after I thawed out a bit!” Kate adds.

“But now it’s like, wow … I actually went down there and was able to accomplish that."

Planning for the shoot took about three years due to costs and scheduling, making it the first-ever fashion shoot that has taken place in Antarctica.

"Everything about the picture is perfect," SI editor MJ Day said, "First of all, it’s cold, even though we were there in summer. The wind chill was sub-zero."

"The elements are really working against you."

"She never complained. She’d just say, ‘Okay, let’s do it again.’ I knew if I needed to bury someone in clothing, I needed her physique and curves to come through.”

You see, ladies? Curves are awesome.

Kate Upton 2013 SI cover: