When Maria Kang posted a photo of herself on Facebook in a bra and underwear, along with a long note about her thoughts on the obesity crisis, she instantly went viral. Now, six months later, she's back to make No Excuse Moms a global fitness movement.
So far, her efforts seem to be working: More than 700 groups worldwide have sprung up. Kang has her followers (as well as her detractors), but whether you love her or hate her, she definitely gets people talking.
“I feel like all the backlash was worth it,” Kang told Yahoo Shine. “I feel like my original image and message sparked an international dialogue that woke people up and made them question their excuses. I've always stood my ground that my intention was to inspire—and I have—and it's exciting.”
Groups are popping up globally in Aruba, Canada, China, Guam, New Zealand, and Switzerland, but not everyone is happy with Kang's perceived influence. Activists have taken issue with her for saying things like, "That's not what real women should look like," and that you can "just tell when someone is not healthy" (it's worth noting that while Kang is a fitness instructor, she's not a medical professional or dietitian).
Still, some moms are saying she's influenced them for the better. “I and so many others are hungry for change. No Excuse Mom is the answer for this,” Lori Ann Hare told Yahoo Shine. “We've recognized that living an unhealthy lifestyle and not taking time for health is not only detrimental for us, it's reflecting on our children's lives. My own family has many health-related problems, and I really want to be a good example for my daughter.”
What do you think of Kang's movement? Is she influencing people to make a healthy change, or is she too judgemental? Let us know in the comments below or Tweet us @Shape_Magazine!