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Maria Kang Plays Defense Against the Haters (Again!) Post Facebook Ban

Written on November 27, 2013 at 11:22 am , by

No excuses mommy blogger Maria Kang got the Facebook boot this past weekend for more controversial comments. Do you think she’s in the wrong? (Photo courtesy of Maria Kang)

Maria Kang is just a mom—a mom gone viral, that is, when her ab-flaunting “What’s your excuse?” captioned photo sparked controversy and media scrutiny. Things had just died down for the Californian fitness enthusiast when she hit another nerve last week with a Facebook rant about plus-size women in lingerie.

Kang issued a warning about what she had to say, then vented her disapproval for those who encourage overweight women to be proud of their bodies. The mother of three urged her nearly 230,000 followers to change the mentality that’s sweeping the nation (sourcing multiple statistics), noting that she was not knocking those who are proud and heavy…but instead simply trying to empower healthy role models in society. Three hours later, Facebook removed her post and she was temporarily blocked from the site altogether.

“I think that everyone should love and accept their bodies,” Kang told FITNESS yesterday. “I don’t think that anyone can progress when they have a foundation of shame, so I didn’t want to seem like I was bashing them. No one should be ashamed of who they are. But there is a fine line that we’re walking, and that’s what I was talking about: When you say you love and accept yourself versus love and progress yourself.”

With two-thirds of our nation obese, $3 trillion being spent on health care, and childhood obesity on the rise, Kang believes there are multiple contributing factors tipping the scales, all in which stem from family. “Economically, it’s tougher to get good food when you’re poor,” she says. “Socially, if people around you are eating like crap and it’s normal, then it’s normalized. And culturally, if people are saying you’re okay being overweight, they keep on reinforcing this outlook.” The root of the problem, in her eyes, lies in leadership. “If the parents are healthy and they are healthy role models, then they can raise healthy kids. That’s just how it goes. It’s so simple but so hard when we live in such a blameful culture.”

So is she at fault for fat-shaming? Is the criticism warranted? According to Kang, she’s simply telling the truth and would never intend on hurting anyone’s feelings. “If you have excess body fat, especially around your midsection where your organs are, that’s not healthy for you,” she said in response to the recent backlash. “I think we should never shame anybody to lose weight. We should motivate them in a positive way, but when you say love and accept yourself, you’re creating not only a normalization, but a sedentary, complacent society.”

Although some have deemed Kang a pudge-loathing personal trainer, that’s not exactly the case. “I’m average…and nowhere near a size zero,” the former NASM-certified instructor said. She doesn’t work out for a living — her day job revolves around overseeing the ownership of two residential care homes for the elderly — but she loves volunteering her time to mommy exercise groups every Tuesday night. “I think your job is to be healthy if you’re a mom,” she added, a concept that provoked her founding of Fitness Without Borders, a community education and motivation non-profit.

So, why so passionate about the obesity epidemic? Kang, a former bulimic, witnessed first-hand the debilitating repercussions of the medical condition with her own mother. “She’s 52 years-old and has so many health issues. I work with people who are overweight by choice. I think that’s the reason why people are so pissed off; I’m telling them that they have a choice when they really want to have an excuse.”

Is it a choice? We at FITNESS believe someone can be fat but fit, and you can’t tell what’s going on with a person’s body just by the way they look. Regardless, Kang certainly knows how to stir the pot, and one thing we can totally get behind is her belief that small steps in the right direction can lead to major gains, which doesn’t happen over night. According to Kang, you have to be uncomfortable with where you are to desire change. “It’s not an all or nothing thing,” she said. “You have to take it one step at a time.”

 More from FITNESS: 

  • glo4jc

    Hi, My name is Gloria. I am 58 years old. I have 3 grown children and 5 grandchildren. I think that Maria Kang is inspiring, not fat-shaming. I have always been able to get back in shape after I had my babies and even now, I keep myself in pretty good shape for my age. It CAN be done!

  • Jerica

    Awesome! It has EVERYTHING to do with what goes into your mouth and something as easy as walking and lifting weights (to maintain our muscle mass which our bodies need to stay strong through the aging process).

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  • Monique Gonzalez

    I truly believe the truth is hard to hear. And it can offend alot of people whether it is ment to or not. Her choice of words was not well recieved however we are still talking about it and I believe raising awareness is what she set out to do. Mission accomplished.Taking care of ourselves and our families health wise isn’t a task or a chore but a responsibility that alot of people have lost sight of.

  • dontjudgeothers

    What is easy for you is not always easy for others. You have to remeber that every body IS different. It sounds like it is a lot easier for you to drop a lb than it is for other. I’m saying that having lost 87lbs.

  • Savannahb

    I am technically over weight but you wouldnt know it by looking at me. Call it muscle, call it God, whatever it is, I am overweight and I personally think i am GREAT healthy role model. Kang doesnt take into account that you dont have to be skinny to be a healthy role model. Some women may never reach what a BMI chart says is their ideal weight because they have illnesses, conditions, or other health problems. They must accept themselves and encourage others. Kang puts out the idea that these women, who have “given up” she would seem to say, can’t be role models. I think Kang truly means well. She needs to work on her language and delivery. She seems to be looking for controversy and that doesn’t build anyone up.

  • Mel

    I think she is inspiring! Those that are being negative about it are typically the people that are jealous—jealous that they don’t have her drive and they are the people that make constant excuses for themselves. I grew up always having junk in the house and the one thing I decided on as an adult is to be healthy! Working out is not a chore, it is part of my routine. I expect my children to know and make healthy children as well, from the example I will set forth for them. You can’t control genetics, but genetics is not to be made as an excuse. Hard work, self discipline will all pay off.

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  • sassytodayandeveryday

    Sadly, this idea of “don’t accept and love yourself the way you are” leads to so many women not enjoying today. They will like themselves someday, but not today…when they lose more weight, get a different job, get a better house/husband/etc. We are trained to be disatisfied, always searching for flaws and buying the latest “remedy” instead of finding what brings us joy and the light in each of us. Each woman needs to find something they DO like about themselves, and dressing it up in lingerie for themselves or their man isn’t about claiming perfection, it’s about living in today! Don’t wait to be your best self, wear your favorite outfit(or lingerie), or save it for “someday!” How sexy is that?

  • judgeme

    no one claimed it was easy… but if you want to try to give people more excuses then that just reiterates what this whole article is about, everyone always claims others are lucky cause its easy never realizing how much work goes into being “lucky” with something so “easy”

  • NanB

    Yeah, but how did you lose those 87 lbs?? By putting in the work and trying real hard to change your lifestyle, right? That is the whole point of what Kang is trying to say. It is a choice to be healthy and fit. Most people are just too lazy to put in all the hard work that it takes to make lifestyle changes like that.

  • ThickChick

    She’s free to say whatever she wants…I’m a bigger girl and I take no offense, everyone chooses the way they live.

  • Mel

    I can relate to this. I was once very overweight and have an eating disorder. I became a personal trainer and I am trying to help others. It is a daily struggle for me to stay on track and I am not always perfect but glorifying being overweight is not the right message we are sending. As I understand some people can’t help it but so many can and won’t. It’s one day at a time. I just try to make healthier choices each day.

  • Blondy

    She’s right about the obesity thing. Our nation is so obese because it’s so damn lazy. There is no right or wrong size, but there is a difference between living a healthy lifestyle and being lazy. I see her trying to set an example to live a healthy lifestyle and be a good role model to not just give up and be fat and lazy cause she had kids. I see soo many parents with kids that look like Violet from Willy Wonka, where they look like they should be rolled out of the room it’s disgusting. That’s the example wears setting for our future and that’s ok? She stands against that and is banned? Do they want us to end up like all the fatties on Wally?

  • Philboy

    I have taken hundreds of pounds off over my lifetime and couldn’t figure out why I couldn’t keep it off. Turns out my abdomen was in my chest due to complications from radiation therapy treatment I had for childhood cancer. It wasn’t that I wanted to be fat…. I worked hard not to be. But the radiation killed my thyroid, and paralyzed my diaphragm which pushed my abdomen into my chest, collapsed my lungs, and my esophagus. By the time it all got figured out I was 4 months from terminal. After 3 surgeries, I am put back together. I think she needs to realize that there are contributing factors to people’s weight gain besides being sedentary. Everyone is different. And by the way….. her kids are at the easy ages. Let’s see her work out when they are teenagers and she has to run them around all over town and take them to all weekend soccer tournaments. She isn’t going to inspire people to get in shape with these words, she’s just going to piss people off.

  • happygirl36

    The philosophy this individual uses is sound and technically correct (I also believe in fitness and taking care of the only body you will ever have). Today, society is way too dependent upon quick fixes, the easy road, etc as a means to improving their body and health. That said, I find her motivational style to be disingenuous – the only thing that has come from it is that she has alot of attention now, alot of followers and eventually she will make money from this endeavor either directly or indirectly from her controversial views. She appears to be living by the motto that many desperate celebrities cling to these days: there is no such thing as bad publicity.

    I also grow concerned over her lack of compassion (if it exists I have yet to see it or read about it). The reality is that not every single overweight person can look like she does….there are those who will work as hard as she but because of genetics, etc, they will look invariably different. When we start to subscribe to the belief that in order to be considered good (or successful or hardworking etc) at anything you have to look and act like the persona she exudes, we are in trouble.

    I respect her hard work and dedication to health – however, I do not respect her humanity.

  • Inna Fridman

    I really think you should read the article more closely. She wants people to understand that healthy life can be achieves it by eating healthy food and exercising. Nobody says it’s easy, but when you start exercising and eating healthy, it becomes your habit, your lifestyle. I always wanted to be skinny until I understood that it’s wrong way to go. I need to be healthy and fit. I actually started to enjoy my workouts now. And, I enjoy my muscles! :)

  • NousAsylum

    I’m just amazed that this woman has so many people listening to her. Do you think she realizes that there are life saving medications that cause people to gain and hold on to excess weight?
    It is kind of like flaunting your wealth in front of people that work hard every day and haven’t had the chances (genetics and time to cook correctly/work out) and luck you have had. Give people a hand up not the tired old crap, “if I can do it you have no excuse”.

  • KNL

    I share the same view as Ms. Kang. There are some who are thick by choice, some who are thick by genetics, and some who are thick due to medical problems. We the people are feeding the health care industry with our unhealthy habits (diabetes, heart disease, hypertension etc). We the people need to stand up and say I’m not going to take this anymore and do what we can to be healthy – stop eating fast food, processed food, soda, sugary drinks, candy, etc.

    Moderation is out the window in this country. More is better in American society and sadly that also includes food. Move more, eat more healthy food, say no to certain foods. We need to also help the poor get healthy as well. Ms. Kang, I support you!

  • Amanda

    I could say so much about what I think is wrong with what she is saying but I won’t,I will just boycott anything that has to do with her and what she is saying. For all of you that find her and what she is saying to be helpful and inspirational that’s great.

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  • Jessicamd1987

    She’s saying being a healthy role model by eating healthy and exercising regularly! If you do that then u are a healthy role model! And with that comes weight loss and muscle! NE thing ne one says besides that are just coming up with excuses

  • Kelley Mittel

    Everyone’s body is different just because someone isn’t a size 2 doesn’t mean they are not healthy, and just because your a size 2 doesn’t mean you are healthy either. I think the real issue is how we view health. To be healthy isn’t only about your weight; that is just one small aspect of overall health yet in America all we seem to be worried about is our weight. As far as her fat shaming I am sure she is and if she truly isn’t then she needs to find a better way to express her message.

  • llll

    Her pictures are photoshopped. She has posted unphotoshopped pics before and they show her stomach stretch marks. Yay you are in great shape. WHat kind of shape anyone else is in is none of your bussiness unless they ask you.

  • Blondy

    That’s supposed to we are not wears…auto correct :/

  • ioioio

    I am in the fitness industry. I understand what she is
    saying. I don’t think what she said was meant to be insincere.

    It’s a reality.

    As trainers we are trained to recognize certain categories of people. “A” type to “D” type.

    The majority of our population fall in D. That is non-active and sedentary.

    It’s been proven time and time again that health diet and exercise reduces
    diseases and keeps the body in homeostasis.

    Of course it’s not easy. It’s called HARD WORK, DEDICATION and SELF-DICIPLINE.

    Of course love yourself! That’s why one should be working towards being the best they can be.

    And there is no such thing as perfect.

    When we start saying it is ok to be overweight, we are also saying ok to disease.

    That’s not ok.

  • MomOf1

    I have always been slim and my family big (men and women) I have been picked on by my family for being thin but I like my fruits and vegetables always have. My family blames society for their obese bodies I blame them, they smoke and eat unhealthy then turn on people like myself who have always been athletic and eating right. I love my family, I do, but I think they are unrealistic and pointing fingers so no one will focus on their poor decisions. I agree with Kang however I do know people who are naturally big (born that way) bone density etc. And for some people it takes extra work but if you won’t work hard to reach goals what are you teaching the children of our society today? That everything will be handed on a silver platter? No, we all have to work hard some harder than others but that’s life.

  • Amy Marie

    I am a fat woman getting fit. I am also studying psychology with a specialty in eating disorders. I see NOTHING wrong with what she wrote. Part of the problem with obesity in this country is that it is seen as normal. We need to have a wake up call in this country while not fat shaming & making people feel bad about the bodies they currently have. She is a great example & walks the line necessary brilliantly. I think the problem is that too many people in this country are in denial & live in excuses. Not everyone is going to look like her but everyone can be healthy to the best of their ability.

  • Lin

    The problem is the emphasis is on being sexy and thin. It should be on being healthy and fit. Not every thin person is healthy and fit….or sexy. Not every overweight, albeit not obese, person is unhealthy. We shouldn’t be focusing on appearance.

  • Jeimy

    You couldn’t have said better!! Although I agree with her a little in that being overweight is not healthy and if you don’t like being overweight you should change it so that you can be healthy and happy. BUT after reading your comment I have to agree more with you. Being overweight makes me depress and it stops me from leaving my life and smiling. For instance I would say things like why get my hair done or my nails or putting make up on. Or not being pretty close which I love, if I’m fat!! Lol . You’re right we gotta be happy and live if and that will help us loose weight too. Xoxo your comment is inspiring !!

  • notjudging…

    Haters are just confused admirers…who cant understand why people like u, and in some small way wish they were more like you…i agree with the point she is trying to make, if its normalized, or if there are excuses for it, people wont get off their asses and do something about it, if there is a medical reason why its possible to work out, then control your eating, simple…

  • Jenn Courtney

    wasn’t actually BANNED – her profile was shut down for a couple of days
    – same thing happened to me when I posted a photo that was reported to
    the facebook police and deemed inappropriate – it’s an overblown
    melodramatic flounce, nothing more. Here’s what I find odd (and
    irritating) about Maria Kang – I have no issue with her being a fit Mom
    obviously – though I do find her to be self-absorbed, vain and attention
    seeking – however, she seems to be TOTALLY disassociated from her words
    and their meaning – she seems totally mystified that the words she
    strings together into public sentences might have a negative impact on
    others – and then she gets petulant and cries like SHE Is the one being
    attacked when she uses clearly abusive and shaming language about other
    peoples bodies – which are NONE OF HER BUSINESS unless they are her
    clients. She just. doesn’t. get.it. she does NOT represent the average
    American woman. She does not have the average American socio-economic
    life…she is FAR more educated about fitness and nutrition than most –
    she obsesses about it – she still has an eating disorder – she’s
    vain…she values herself for her appearance first – clearly. People get
    upset when you attack their appearance…and her non-apologies didn’t
    convince anyone – she needs to stop talking and reflect on that for a
    while. What she has shown the world is a distinct unwillingness and
    inability to actually engage in the real conversation about health and
    healthy body image. ~here end rant~

  • Ashley Elaine McIntyre

    Kang you have balls! Don’t let anyone tell you your shaming them for telling the truth and the truth is its important to be happy with who you are, and healthy as you are! and if your not, don’t just lay down and accept it. ACCEPT that this is where you are, and start making changes in your life to feel better on all levels! It isn’t easy, and some days you wont want to do it, and some days you’ll question why you need to make a change anyway, and on and on and on, and then you will hit a place where you SEE all the good that has come from all your hard work and you’ll understand. and then you’ll try something else and fail and go through the same partners over and over again and that’s life! If we just passively sit by and let life happen instead of making life happen, we really have no good reason to complain when it turns out we don’t like it!

  • Lisajoanne

    Try giving birth to twin boys who were 8 lbs. 9 oz. and 7 lbs. 11 oz. when they were born … then tell me about how easy it is to get back to pre-baby body.

  • Ashley Elaine McIntyre

    I dont think luck has to do with it. She has 3 kids which is more than a full time job on top of all the other work that she does in her life. Being healthy is about your lifestyle, around making your health and well being a priority. You don’t have to look like her, but are you happy and healthy as who you are, and if not the only way it will change is if you make it happen I think is her point. I will say this though, she definitely come off strong.

  • Sandy

    People are just jealous. Good for her for keeping herself in shape!!

  • Jeff Yastremski

    I just think people need to quit being pussies,, and toughen up…if thats all you have to bitch about then lifes pretty good I would say,, Damn

  • Belle

    Not everyone has a career in exercise nor the ability to be able to dedicate the (fill in the blank here) due to circumstances she may not be aware of. Love everyone, accept everyone and find your happiness. Who are you to judge? Who is she?

  • Lily0924

    I don’t think she is fat shaming, I am not skinny. I had my top weight at 300. I am not that anymore. My progression sometimes stop because I eat crap. I like hearing her perspective. Even when you write what she says, I don’t get offended.

  • maanmaan

    “Of course it’s not easy. It’s called HARD WORK, DEDICATION and SELF-DISCIPLINE.”

  • Paula

    I think she needs to learn to word this differently and more compassionately. I am motivated and look up to many women in the fitness industry. She is not one of them. Primarily because of the way that she words things. And before anyone asks or wants to jump to an incorrect conclusion I work out and try to be as healthy as possible but I don’t judge others.

  • dachunkienutbutta

    I actually disagree with this. I think that Americans are not lazy – they are overwhelmed, exhausted, and trying to maintain a frenetic pace using “quick fix” food, transportation, whatever – anything to maintain the schedule, get the promotion, have he kids participate in a thousand after curricular activities, all of this. Then, people are exhausted and not necessarily engaged in what they’re doing (not doing what they love, but doing what they think is right) and not nourishing themselves properly (quick fix, fast food, poor leisure choices such as sitting in the front of the TV, rather than say, going for a family bike ride) which results in unhappiness, obesity, poor physical health, poor mental health.

    I have recently discovered what a vicious cycle becoming unhealthy is. 4 yeras ago I had a crippling episode of depression followed by a big increase in the medications I was taking. My depression got better in a way, but I was also sleeping all the time because the mood stabilizer was causing sedation. I gained about 40 lbs., then when my symptoms began to resolve, I reduced my dose. It had been about 2 years at this point, and I had been able to maintain other responsibilities but I was not able to exercise during this time because I was sedated and depressed. After I got off the medications, I started trying to exercise again and noticed my feet were sore about walking about 1 block. I also have a gastrointestinal condition where I cannot digest fiber well (gastroparesis) so eating well is a total challenge. I have lost 10 lbs in 6 months and I can finally walk for 30 minutes without being in too much pain. The road back has been steep, tough, and at times SO discouraging – I will never stop trying, but I am far from physically fit…and yet, I am not lazy….I cook/clean/work/go to school….so I resent the idea that someone who is overweight is 1 – not trying and 2- lazy.

  • Kd

    She’s sharing her thoughts and cares which should be praised instead of bashed. Americans don’t take pride in their bodies if all they do is eat junk. I’m not perfect shape nor over weight. I believe we should take care of our bodies with exercise and healthy foods which should be pushed more than bashed. We are giving these Americans too much easy roads with these bad habits and it should be looked upon more than it is. We are not made to be overweight. To make a point sometimes you have to be extreme and I think her pic and thoughts are exactly that, something to stand out above the crowd so all can see and hopefully to only be inspired and not bashed.

  • MW

    A lot of people say that if you’re poor, you’re automatically overweight. My single mother raised my brother and I off of very little. We had free meals at school, got free food from our local Church, and lived in subsidized housing. And although it seemed culturally accepted to be “bigger” where we lived, it was 100% possible to be raised eating the right foods without breaking the bank. My mother wasn’t a personal trainer or educated in nutrition, but she knew what was right and wrong to feed her family. She worked 2 jobs and was in school full time, and still managed to keep us all in shape. For example, there’s no way we could afford a gym, so we had competitions seeing how fast we could run up stairs at a local school. In sum- it IS possible and my family is living proof that if you put your mind to it, you CAN be healthy if you make the concerted effort to make the right choices. The life lessons I’ve learned carry through to today. I’ve run 9 marathons to date and make sure to fit in cooking meals and carrying healthy snacks.

    Either way, I agree with Maria Kang and think she’s great for speaking what she thinks and getting people thinking that lethargy should not be a societal norm. It is hard to go against the grain, especially when it comes to touchy issues. Agree with many of you that her delivery could use improvement but I think she means well. I’m a size 6-8 and don’t feel the need to be a size 2 to be happy with myself. But being mindful of my decisions on a daily basis is a great place to start.

  • admind

    Hello you dear in my perception that diet and regular arrangement of meals, including the body of his request and needs only is the way to good physical fitness peaceful

  • jvgandone

    I’m overweight, I understand what she is saying. I don’t feel any better or worse after reading this. it is shameful that we as a society allow anyone to shape our mind and dictate how we feel about ourselves. I agree with her, love yourself but you should want better. it isn’t about self image it is about being healthy. I have been on a weight loss journey for a few years, I love who I am inside and out, with that being said I know I still need to lose weight to be healthy. I am down 57 pounds, 27 more to go, goals I set for myself. In those years of losing, I’ve had a baby and other surgery that left me out of commission for a few months. I will lose those last 27 pounds, nit because I am being “fat shammed” but because I want to, I want to be healthy, even more so that I have my little guy now.

  • admind


  • Barbora

    I agree with what you’re saying but I don’t think she means you have to be skinny to be a healthy role mode; she herself said she is nowhere near size 0…i just think she means that it is bad if you are inactive, lazy, and out of shape, whatever your size, and you just say that you “love yourself” and use that as an excuse not to be truly healthy. To me that was pretty obvious but sure, different people read things differently…all in all, i think she means well and i’m inspired by her message for sure :)

  • Barbora

    I think she just meant for people not to use “love yourself the way you are” as an excuse to stay lazy…not that they shouldn’t love themselves until they lose weight and are healthy. …so i think you gotta love yourself now in order to realize your body is special and you need to treat it right by taking care of it :) …then you’ll love it even more b/c of how much more efficiently it will serve you once it’s fit :)

  • Barbora

    THANK YOU! well-said. People can be so sensitive when it comes to the truth! People will get offended…whatever…we can’t tiptoe around every issue! She said it like it is and I agree with her :)