The fit mom whose photo with her three sons went viral and sparked controversy in 2013 posted a lookalike image of herself and her sons in late December.
Maria Kang’s original image provoked a heated debate on the internet. In the photo, Kang posed with her three boys, ages 2, 3, and just eight months. The fit mom wore fitness shorts and a cropped top for the photo, which was captioned with “What’s Your Excuse?”
The image went viral with some people praising Kang as an inspiration, while others feeling that she was shaming overweight people.
Now, five years later, Kang posted a photo with all of her boys again. While the children have changed dramatically, the fit mom still looks the same she did in 2013.
“I’ve never been a fat-shamer or online bully,” Kang wrote in her new post. “I work and therefore don’t workout all day. While I wish I could have one, I don’t have a full-time nanny, housekeeper, or cook.”
“I’ve got excuses but I’m not hiding behind them, letting it tell my story or giving me a hall pass for unhealthy behaviors,” Kang added.
Since posting the original photo, Kang made a career out of promoting healthy living and exercise. She’s done that while being a mom, a wife, and a business owner.
“I desire to serve my community, grow old with my children, feel beautiful and healthy with my husband and prevent (as much possible) heart disease, diabetes, and strokes,” Kang wrote beside the 2018 photo. “I want to live a vibrant, energetic and active life…and because of that, I refuse to allow my excuses hold me back. What’s Your Reason?”
Kang captioned the new photo with “What’s Your Reason?” She explains the meaning behind those words in the post.
“What is your reason for getting/staying healthy?” Kang writes. “Why is this fitness journey important to you? Once you identify your WHY, the HOW part becomes easy.”
“I haven’t changed my tune, I’ve just grown up a whole lot,” Kang writes. “I’ve always known there are excuses in life – you’ve seen me go through many these past several years as my kids grew from toddlers into tiny men. What I’ve learned is you can’t only confront your Excuse, you must also direct your Purpose.”
The “fit mom” regularly posts photos and videos of her and her boys. In one of the recent videos, she does a work out while her sons play at the playground, illustrating how to fit exercise into a busy lifestyle.
Compared to the stream of negative responses to the original image, most of the comments now praise Kang for staying fit and inspiring others.
“Love this! I preferred the ‘what’s your excuse’ as it’s more profound and definitely got my attention,” wrote Arit Eminue on Facebook. “But hey, whatever. I admire your grit, determination and ambition to help people get fit and healthy and live their best lives. Looking forward to more from you in 2018.”
“Wow! Great job at updating and clarifying your message,” wrote Therese Lefebvre Atwell. “Thanks for always inspiring me!”
“Maria, you are one of my most admired people. I say go back to what’s your excuse, because people do make up excuses,” commented Michael Sosa. “Forty percent of our country is obese. Another third overweight.”
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