Maria Kang has been called everything from an inspiration to an idiot.
She’s a bully or a beauty; she’s obnoxious or outstanding. Why the range of emotions, and who is Maria Kang?
The Sacramento mom posted a photo of herself, in exercise shorts and bra top, alongside her three young sons and pointedly asked, “What’s Your Excuse?” And the floodgates of social commentary Hell hath opened upon her.
The mother of three, business owner and recovering bulimic makes no apologies for looking that good. She claims no hereditary or ethnic advantage, no hours-long workouts, nanny, caretaker or extreme dieting regimen. In her own words, “I’m a wife, mother, business owner and nonprofit founder. I dream. I set goals. I plan. I take action.” Makes sense when it comes to getting fit and staying that way. But what about the women (and at least a few men) who read her post, saw her photo and decided it was time to tie her down to the nearest weight bench and beat her with barbells?
Her detractors call themselves real people, normal people, average types. They slam Kang for fat-shaming, for being obsessive and unrealistic, for not really getting it when it comes to what most people face in terms changing their lifestyle habits.
On the contrary: I think she does get it. She’s been through an eating disorder, she’s had three healthy pregnancies in three years without excessive weight gain, she works, and most important, I saw nothing particularly accusatory in anything she wrote. I did not see her outright hating on fat people, or using a verbal cattle prod to force anyone to follow her lifestyle. Just posting the photo on Facebook, Pinterest or her blog and putting the generic question “What’s Your Excuse?” out there is not a sign that she hates YOU. And it’s not likely that you’ll ever look like Maria Kang, either. But that’s fine because neither will I; there isn’t enough workout time in the day or plastic surgery to achieve that.
Go ahead and keep working out and have a goal: look like the best person YOU can be. Because if you want to work out to the point of looking like Maria Kang or anyone else, it probably won’t happen. You’ll give up and walk away from your workouts long before that point. Some goals, like being YOUR best, are attainable with planning and action. Others are just a dream because the time commitment, the money or the equipment just isn’t available.
And don’t slam her just because she looks the way she does and displays it on Facebook. After all, you can post there, too.
- Fit Facebook mom ‘apologizes’ after post-pregnancy photo draws criticism (myfox8.com)
- Fat mom? No excuse, says California mother of 3 (wcpo.com)
- “What’s YOUR excuse?” – Fat Shaming or Fit Shaming? (lovelifeandlemonade.com)