In case you aren't as much of an internet fiend as I am, go take a look at this article about Maria Kang.
I had never heard of her before the recent explosion over a photograph of her posing with her three (adorable) children while dressed in a sports bra and running shorts appeared all over the place. She is rather beautiful, and her body definitely shows the amount of work she has put into it to look the way she does. Flat abs, strong arms and legs.
I think the problem begins with the caption she added to the photo. Without the caption, the photo is not only lovely, but inspirational. My first thought was, "WOW, that's dedication!" It's hard enough for me to find time to workout with one child, much less THREE. That's brilliant.
However, she also added text to it. "What's your excuse?"
The text soured it a bit for me. I don't think she is taking a stab at heavy people, or lazy people, or even people in general. The phrase is popular and common in the fitness world. Many photos are out there with the same caption, and they are meant to inspire. For the type of people that like having drills shouted into their faces by their trainers during workouts, this phrase does what it is intended to do - it makes them get up and work, and work hard.
For those of us that prefer a different approach - softer, if you will - the phrase is jarring and borderline rude. A trainer shouting in my face about how fat I am and to work harder would succeed only in making me cry and leave. I would never pay anyone to berate me, I do enough of that to myself, thank you very much. And that, I think, is where the problem lies. Many people took the message personally when it wasn't intended to be as such. They took it as a personal stab at women, mothers in particular, as if it said, "What's your excuse for not working out and looking as amazing as I do?"
I honestly don't know anything about Maria Kang. I know she has an online following and she is fairly popular in fitness circles, with many Likes on her Facebook page. And the only reason I know any of that is because of the sudden explosion of interest in her due to this one photo.
So I am certainly not an expert on Maria Kang. I don't know if she is normally a nice person, or rude, or conceited. All I know is that she is in fantastic shape for having had three children. (Though I am bit jealous of her lack of stretch marks. I have ONE child, and enough stretch marks to reach around the Earth if I lined them all up. So unfair.) I suppose my opinion is that I really wish she had no captioned her photo. I think it took something away from it that would have otherwise been wonderful for those that wanted to see it. I have no doubts that people still would have ripped her a new one simply for having the photo taken, and that is likely because they are cruising for an argument. Trolls, if you will. Whiners, certainly. And lots and lots of jealous ladies.
But had she not...I would have posted it on my Instagram in amazement and used her as a goal. Not necessarily to look like her, but as a way to tell myself, "Hey, if she can do it, so can I!"
But otherwise, I have no opinion either way. Go, Maria Kang. Do your thing.