Watch the video above: Motivational image from fit mother inspires angry backlash. Minna Rhee reports.
TORONTO – Maria Kang has three kids all under the age of three years old and six-pack abs, to boot. And in a photo flaunting her toned figure and young family, the mom and business woman asks others, “What’s your excuse?”
The caption on her Facebook photo suggests the photograph is meant to “inspire people everywhere.” But so far, it’s only stirred up trouble, with critics accusing her of “fat-shaming” other moms. Kang is dressed in a workout bra and matching shorts next to her three sons now aged 1 to 3 years old.
Kang, a 32-year-old Sacramento fitness blogger, received some 22,600 comments on the photo, 16,000 shares and another 191,000 “likes” on the infamous Facebook photo. Comments range from praise to some nasty name-calling.
Kang offered what she calls her “first and final” apology to the whirlwind of response she garnered after the photo went viral.
“I’m sorry you took an image and resonated with it in such a negative way.”
She told readers that she has struggled with her genetics, battled an eating disorder, works full-time without a nanny and isn’t a personal trainer. She also pointed out that she didn’t give into pregnancy cravings or use motherhood as an excuse to be inactive.
“What you interpret is not MY fault. It’s yours. The first step in owning your life, your body and your destiny is to OWN the thoughts that come out of your own head. I didn’t create them. You created them. So if you want to continue ‘hating’ this image, get used to hating many other things for the rest of your life,” Kang said in her apology.
“It’s a natural response. I’m used to it,” Kang told Good Morning America.
“But it never feels good not being liked. I think people hiding behind their keyboards think I’m not human and I don’t have bad days,” she said.