Have you seen the “What’s your excuse” photo on Facebook from fitness enthusiast Maria Kang? If you haven’t, you are probably not among some 16,000 comments and 12,000 shares which the post attracted.
Maria Kang was attacked for the image she posted, which shows her and her three children, aged three, two and eight months, with her dressed in a sports bra and looking slim, with the caption: “what’s your excuse?’
Many people took great offense, claiming that Kang was attacking overweight people and being insensitive to them. The 32-year-old mother of three received some cutting comments from Michelle Wyatt who posted:
“I’m not fat so please don’t take it as I’m ‘miserable’ and ‘unhappy’ with myself, but not everybody wants to look just like you!! Just saying! Posting pics of yourself and your hot body and telling everybody that they don’t have an excuse and that they should look just like you is NOT ok! We all can see that you have a hot body, but posting pics and telling people that they should look just like you will only make them feel worse about themselves when they realize that they can’t!!”
Due to the comments she received, Kang duly issued an apology for the post, but initially said she posted it in an effort to encourage busy young mothers to take their health seriously and exercise properly after giving birth.
Kang attempted to explain herself after a large number of negative comments were posted: “I wanted to say, ‘I know you think you don’t have time if you have kids. But if I can do it, you can do it too.’ ”
As the comments and shares increased and the criticism against her intensified, Kang released a more substantial apology, the full text of which is here:
“I’m sorry you took an image and resonated with it in such a negative way. I won’t go into details that I struggled with my genetics, had an eating disorder, work full time owning two business’, have no nanny, am not naturally skinny and do not work as a personal trainer. I won’t even mention how I didn’t give into cravings for ice cream, french fries or chocolate while pregnant or use my growing belly as an excuse to be inactive. What I WILL say is this. 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. You can either blame, complain or obtain a new level of thought by challenging the negative words that come out of your own brain.”
What do you think of the “what’s your excuse” post? Do you think Maria Kang was right in her intentions to encourage young mothers back to fitness after birth? Or do you agree with the many comments that the image was insensitive and offensive to overweight people? Sound off in the feed below.