"Every day we are one step closer to becoming the person we were meant to become"

Maria Kang’s Fitness Evolution 304

Posted on 18, September 2013

in Category Fitness, Fitness journals


 Maria Kangs Fitness Evolution/fitness journals fitness
First picture was taken in 2006 weighing in at 150lbs. The second was taken at 125lbs after having three kids in 2013.

I am telling you this story because I want to show a few things:

-          – My knowledge in fitness and nutrition was a progression

-         –  My body underwent Metabolic Damage and I couldn’t lose weight for years

-          – Building good habits throughout the years created a healthy life routine

-          – Consistency is the number one thing that helped me lose weight after kids

-          – My success was not an overnight success

I was a chubby child. An average teen. A “thick” college student. A Fit competitor. An Overweight Woman. And a Healthy Mom.

 Maria Kangs Fitness Evolution/fitness journals fitness

The first time I weighed myself was in sixth grade. I was 80lbs. I wasn’t considered fat or skinny. I was a healthy weight for my height. Being both Filipina and Chinese, I grew up loving rice. I ate large portions of white rice with other carbs including spaghetti and even macaroni and cheese! I also enjoyed sugary cereals, fruit roll ups and ramen noodles. My diet was definitely not very balanced! I didn’t play any sports, as we couldn’t afford it. That year I also received my period for the first time, which began the rollercoaster of hormones and weight gain that normally arises as you become a woman.

 Maria Kangs Fitness Evolution/fitness journals fitness
I was elected Student Council President of my Elementary school in sixth grade.

Junior High opened the world of candy for me. Of course, candy always existed but now I can purchase it without my parent’s consent at the school store. I can also eat these delicious fries that only cost .50, which was much cheaper than the school sandwiches for sale. I already started a small fitness routine at home (which included jumping jacks and leg lifts) but became competitive in P.E. and wanted to excel in the running, flexibility and strength challenges.  I didn’t weigh myself, but my height finally settled at almost 5’4.

In high school I started to become more careful of my food intake. I asked my mom, a woman who has suffered from health-related diseases all her life, for help in creating a healthier diet and she told me to start looking at the fats in foods. So, I ate a lot of carbs and sugar. I brought lunch to school, which consisted of a cinnamon raisin bagel and fat free cream cheese in the morning. I had a turkey sandwich with wheat bread and lettuce (no mayo or cheese) for lunch, with 10 saltine crackers and I had a fruit for snack.   If I did buy lunch it was often a baked pretzel with a minimal amount of cheese and if I did eat fries, I would blot each bite.  Of course, I continued my daily consumption of candy as Starburst, Mike n Ikes and Skittles had no fat. I didn’t play sports in high school, but I did participate in cheerleading. I weighed 117lbs when I left high school.

 Maria Kangs Fitness Evolution/fitness journals fitness
Graduating highschool in 1998

 Maria Kangs Fitness Evolution/fitness journals fitness

In college I gained the “Freshman 15” but in a span of 3 years. I ate a lot of Lean Cuisines, chicken burritos, Jamba Juices and turkey Subway sandwiches. Someone told me that if I wanted to lose weight all I had to do was bake a lot of chicken breasts and eat that all day. So I tried it and couldn’t last a single day. I also started eating egg whites in the morning. Prior to that I rarely ate eggs and when I attempted, I felt like gagging. I heard of the Atkins Diet and read all about ketosis so I started eating less than 20g of carbs a day. After 3 weeks of McDonald cheeseburger patties (no buns) that were at time, on sale for just .39 each, I lost a couple inches off my waist but I was constipated from lack of fiber and real nutrients.  I still worked out consistently, often taking kickboxing classes and playing tennis with my college boyfriend. In my junior year, the year I also became a personal trainer, I weighed 133lbs.

 Maria Kangs Fitness Evolution/fitness journals fitness Hiking in Tahoe junior year of college after my passion for fitness started taking form.

When I became a trainer it opened a whole new world of fitness and nutrition for me. I learned how important lean protein was for building muscle, complex carbohydrates for energy and unsaturated fats for overall health. I learned how to speed up my metabolism through building muscle and to get the “Britney Spears Abs” through a combination of healthy eating, cardio and strength training. I started having great abs and feeling confident for the first time in my skin. I joined the “Body for Life” program with my new boyfriend, who was also a trainer, and finished the 12-week program at 127lbs.

After college I decided to join the Miss Chinatown USA pageant  to become acclimated with San Francisco as that was the city I wanted to move and work in. Besides networking, the competitive drive in me started unveiling as I had competed successfully in my teens winning local, national and international contests. I dropped to 115lbs in a matter of 2 months through limiting my carbohydrates and training more, especially when practicing my athletic jazz routine. The year was 2003 and I won several pageants that year including Miss SF Chinatown and Miss Philippines USA – even competing in Manila Philippines! I found that my body was too lean for the pageant world so I tried my luck in fitness contests. At the time, “figure” competitions were just arriving on the scene and “bikini” was not yet popular. I joined Miss Bikini California and started a 6-week preparation of eating very strictly and splurging every sixth day. I deprived myself of any sugar, including fruits. I often performed cardio twice  a day. The week of the contest I was directed by colleagues (I didn’t have a trainer/coach) to limit my carbs for two days,  then up my carbs the last two days, then restrict my water the night before so I could look my best the day of competition. I weighed in at 113lbs and won the contest. I celebrated with Mexican food and Cheetos. The day after I booked my first paid photo shoot, which was $75/hour (for 4 hours) I ate a cheeseburger at McDonalds – not because I liked it – but because I was deprived of it. My weight also ballooned to 119lbs in one week. When I competed in nationals months later I didn’t carb cycle or train as intensely. I competed at 123lbs and placed Top 5 in both Bikini and Model America. I distinctly remember eating Halloween candy I had saved up almost the entire drive back home from LA.

 Maria Kangs Fitness Evolution/fitness journals fitness
competing in Manila, Philippines

 Maria Kangs Fitness Evolution/fitness journals fitness
After winning Miss Bikini California

This cycle of bingeing (because I ‘can’) and starving (eating 1200 calories and performing a lot of cardio and strength training), really began taking its toll on my body and mind. In November 2003 I binged and purged for the first time. It would officially begin my 3 year war with Bulimia. I would have 2-3 episodes daily at least 3-5 times a week. It often happened when I visited home or became very anxious. In reflection it was shocking how much I could consume. I could literally down an entire sheet of cake, a half gallon of ice cream and loads of candy because it was all easy to uptake. I never felt full. I just felt incredible sadness, a sick void inside of me that I nourished through lots of food and eventually praying. At the time I was now working as a Fitness Manager and later as a Project Coordinator with 24 Hour Fitness Corporation. I kept a steady weight 135lbs until I was finally able to recover from having Bulimic Episodes. When the bingeing/purging stopped, my weight began to climb.  From the years 2005-2008 my weight would range anywhere between the 140s and 150s.

At my heaviest I was 150ish. I say this because I weighed myself once and the surfacing number was 153 and I immediately jumped off and never weighed myself again for years. That was around 2005-2008. At that time I was eating six meals a day, training 5-6 days a week, sleeping 8-10 hours a night and living a stress-free life without children. It seemed that no matter what I did, I could not lose weight. I felt frustrated, fat…but I knew that if I was healthy internally and exhibited healthy actions to support that, then eventually I will manifest a healthy external physique.

When I met my soon-to-be-husband I was around 145lbs. When I became pregnant with our first son, my last weigh in at the doctor’s office was 180lbs. Six weeks after giving birth I went back to my routine of working out, first building my strength and stamina. I already trained during my pregnancy, which assisted in my limited weight gain of just 35lbs. I lost the weight within six months plus ten pounds. Then we found out we were expecting again. I gained 35lbs, weighed in at 170lbs at my last 2nd pregnancy weigh in and lost the weight within six months plus 10 pounds. After our second child I weighed in at 125lbs – the weight I’m most comfortable at – and it felt like ‘bouncing back’ was easier for me than it ever was even before I was pregnant. I would accomplish this feat one more time a year after with my last son (I gave birth in 2009, 2010 and 2011).

 Maria Kangs Fitness Evolution/fitness journals fitness
Taken during our first trip to  Hawaii together, December 2008

 Maria Kangs Fitness Evolution/fitness journals fitness
With our first son, just a month after he was born in January 2009.

I always tell people that pregnancy re-calibrated my  body after years of Metabolic Damage due to poor eating, excessive exercising and overall stress and anxiety levels. Regardless if I was 115 or 180, I stayed consistent with my workouts and implemented healthy eating practices throughout the day. Those long-standing habits are what helped me most when losing weight after having my children.

I also began nurturing my body more. Instead of ‘hating it’ – I reminded myself daily to love it…to say I love it and show it through feeding it nutritious foods and exercising. God has always played an important and central role in my life and I knew that when I found my purpose in helping people through fitness in college that one of the challenges I was given was to truly FEEL what it was like to be hopeless, overweight, depressed and unhappy. Believing in myself and the sincerity of a higher power guiding me through the toughest trials helped keep me faithful, consistent and most of all, persistent.

 Maria Kangs Fitness Evolution/fitness journals fitness
Taken 7 months apart.

Today, after 15 years in the fitness industry, I am continuing to evolve. I used to drink protein shakes daily – now I get all my protein from real foods (mostly fish and eggs). I used to put Splenda on everything – now I don’t use any fake sugars. I am starting to eat less gluten, incorporate more fruit and enjoy whole foods. I don’t often perform cardio for longer than 30 minutes at a time and I am focusing more on core work, stretching, running and having an overall balanced fitness routine.

My goal is to be 60 one day – in the best shape of my life – with my three grown sons, taking a midriff-baring photo with “What’s Your Excuse” on top. I believe you can design your life. You can mold your body. You can become your physical best – as long as you set goals, plan your attack, execute, reflect and repeat. God Bless.

 Maria Kangs Fitness Evolution/fitness journals fitness
 Maria Kangs Fitness Evolution/fitness journals fitness

304 Comments

  1. Laura says:

    Keep at it, girl!! Be true to who you are and continue inspiring those that want your inspiration! The media can be a blessing in disguise – I never would have known about your blog if it wasn’t for all of the NEGATIVE media attention. Now I’m a follower! Good things can come of this. :) Keep up the amazing work!

  2. retrobanana says:

    I heard about you on skinnyvscurvy and was really turned off…

    but then reading your blog I see you in a whole different light. I knew right away when I got on your page that I misunderstood you totally. I agree with everything you have to say completely and I believe in the same things. I also really respect your fitness journey and think it is very similar to what I have gone through. I believe that anyone is capable of changing their body and having the body they want to get. I think that is really all you are trying to say. There is this myth that genetics make you look a certain way or you are only born to have a certain body type or that you will overeat for the rest of your life but is isn’t true. I learned that. I learned I could reshape and recreate the body I always thought I would have. I changed myself and really learned to love my body and I keep wanting to improve it everyday. I believe in mind of matter and focus. I know I am always going to have to struggle to keep myself in check but the outcome is so worth it. It is one of the best accomplishments and all I want to do is keep doing it. I don’t think you are tryin to tell people that feel good about themselves they need change but people that think they have no control….that hey you absolutely do have all the power to change…anyways I am glad I took the time to read blog!

  3. RLH says:

    Wow. After reading all the media hype about “What’s Your Excuse” I expected to really hate your blog – but not so! You have a compelling story and are sharing real life experiences many can relate to. Keep going.

  4. Dianne says:

    I’m really glad I found this blog and read the words behind the image. I already felt that you’re actions were being misconstrued in the media and I was right. Your story is one of effort and success. You should be proud of what you’ve accomplished.

  5. Tony says:

    When I saw the ad, I thought you were encouraging people to have babies. I didn’t know it had anything to do with working out.

  6. Mark says:

    IMO you look your very best in 2009 a month after your son was born. Every thing is so political nowadays it makes me sick. Every comment is taken so far out of context its sick. The media stirs everything up nowadays. If you want to be fit be fit, if you want to be fat be fat, just be happy and love your fellow human being and accept them for what ever or who ever they are. It really is what’s on the inside that counts.

  7. JG says:

    Maria, I saw your interview this morning on the Fox News station I am so proud of you and what you have done with your life. I am 62 years young and have been in the fitness industry since the age of 20 I am proud to tell you and anyone who reads this I am smaller now than when I graduated from high school. I am 5’3″, weigh 130, I am a personal trainer, raised a son on my own who is a PT and we are grooming his 12 old daughter to be a trainer too. I am soooo disgusted at the mentality of today’s women who don’t care how fat they get. Just walk around Walmart with your cell phone and take pics starting from toddlers to the adults both men and women make me sick to my stomach! They may think it is looks cool now to be BIG & fat but they are setting themselves up for a life of sickness and disease starting at a very young age. I have women all the time compliment me on how good I look and cannot believe my age. My granddaughter and son are so proud of me,, my husband also thinks I am HOT!!! You keep doing what you are doing and the rest of the women out there can eat themselves to and early grave. Women like us have to set the standard plain and simple we will be around to see our grandchildren and great grandchildren in years to come. GOD BLESS YOU AND YOUR FAMLY.

  8. ivana velasquez says:

    i think you are truly an inspirational young lady with 3 beautiful children. I have two little girls and im extremely lazy but i am trying my hardest to change and turn the way i was before even better. YOU ARE MY ROLE MODEL THANK YOU IM 24 YEARS OLD AND YOURE TRULY MY IDOL I DONT CARE WHO SAYS OTHERWISE !!!

  9. JIM VERHEY says:

    Maria, Good for you! My 29 year old daughter just had her first baby 6 weeks ago and has shed 30 of the 47 pounds she gained. It’s refreshing to see young people like yourselves who are so aware of their bides and treating them right. I hope you look this good forever, you have every right to be VERY proud of yourself. Best wishes for a happy and fulfilling life! BTW, Baby Jack was 23 1/2 inches long and ten pounds even! 40 weeks nearly to the day….. How DO the doctors know?

  10. Roni says:

    Now THIS is what people need to see!

    Just fantastic! Thanks for sharing!

  11. Michael Dell says:

    You keep doing what your doing..! In our society today it seems everyone is offended over something, we have become a nation of whiners, you set goals and achieved them and some people can’t cope with that due to the fact they do not like what they see when faced with the mirror and they are taking that out on you, basically nothing more than a hater!! I guaranty that your story has inspired allot of people and as far as the rest who want nothing more than to put you down just brush them off like dandruff, you have every right to speak your opinion just as they have their right to disagree! I wish you and your family a wonderful Holiday Season and a very prosperous New Year..!!!!

  12. David says:

    Your story is an inspiration.

  13. Taylor Bogenschuetz says:

    For someone who struggled with Bulimia for 2-3 years, you sure number drop a lot. I found it to be very triggering. Your word choice is also disappointing. ‘Ballooning’ from 113 to 119? Really?

    Also what if your excuse is genetics? Mental disease? Or different priorities? Is it REALLY your business to be asking anyone what their excuse is to not be as physically fit as you?

    • jose says:

      Is it really your business to be asking her on her own website about a photo she posted on her own Facebook. Hey Taylor what’s your excuse?

      • Tallaney says:

        Good one Jose!

        • Lynn says:

          She’s a motivational fitness blogger Taylor. She’s suppose to ask prying questions to make you examine yourself and dig deeper. The biggest motivator is anger. So you think it’s harsh, life is harsh. But, it’s a lot harsher if you have Type II diabetes because your doctor never wanted to “hurt your feelings” and tell you to loose weight. She will make exponentially MORE money after the media storm that photo created because of angry people like you that will share it on your Facebook and all your friends that will follow the link back to this page and realize how awesome she is. So … thank YOU. Your comments do nothing but promote her awesomeness :)

  14. Definitely a great story, and one that has gotten a lot of people talking about being healthy for their family! Keep it up!

  15. esther g says:

    Loving your journey. Don’t have kids yet but will surely follow your footsteps when I do. Having babies is merely a passage to a new “you” and i don’t think we need to camp in the transitional baby if there’s even the merest possibility that committed exercise and fitness will get back not back to where we were, but on to a whole new us. Can’t wait! Keep it up, Papa God will handle the haters ;)

  16. Mallory says:

    Such a raw and inspiring story. When I first saw your picture and interview on one of the news stations (some blonde women interviewing you, don’t remember her name) and then watched her attack you for posting a picture of a healthy Mom of 3 I was disgusted. She later goes on to share how she felt it is OK to have a glass of wine with her husband as if that’s such a better message to send to America. I think any Mom or person who spends time on themselves to get healthy and fit both mentally and physically understands the benefit to their life is so much greater than what is seen in a picture and those that do not only see the negative. It was so disappointing to see so much negativity towards the image you posted and so much support for not spending time on personal health. I just want to say that I was happy to see you stand up for yourselves and make no apologies. You are inspiring and I hope more people find a healthier path in life and will understand your perspective and purpose some day. Thank you again for being inspiring, positive, not being afraid to make a difference and not backing down when under attack. What doesn’t kill you only makes you stronger and I hope that you realize you are the true winner in all of this!

  17. Debbie says:

    AS a 50 year old mother of three grown children, I think you are awesome! Your children will learn healthy eating and exercise habits, too. I started running about a year ago and am amazed at how good this has made me feel, not just physically but mentally. Keep up the good work and ignore the ‘bashers.’

  18. That was an incredible read, thanks so much for sharing. It just proves that you have been on a journey full of ups and downs to get where you are today. There really is “no excuse” you have proved this. I really enjoy following you, you are a real inspiration to me x

  19. Lissa says:

    I think you are a wonderful example to all mothers. Please pay no heed to your detractors. I do not understand why they feel your photo is an attack on their inability to lose weight or be fit. It is people like yourself that give me hope that I can do everything and be everything. It’s been four years since I gave birth and I still have that kangaroo pouch (along with pockets of fat everywhere else) but I know with persistence and consistency, I can achieve the results you did. You are so inspiring. If I can one day have half as hot a body as yours, I will die a happy woman! :)

  20. Larry says:

    Dont Back Down, you a re doing us all a service

  21. Claudia says:

    You’re amazing …. a woman who inspires

  22. Susan Dass says:

    Hi Maria,
    You are an inspiration to others like me. I’ve had my last baby 1 year ago and the weight does not seem to go. But after reading your struggles and seeing that they were similar to mine while growing up, battling weight issues….I am going to give it another try. Right now I weigh in 83kgs. But by January 2014, I will like to see at least 10 kgs less on my scale when I weigh myself. Then I will know that perseverance and hard work pays of. I am gonna give it a try, and thanks for all the tidbits of information you do give. I look forward to them.

  23. Wonder Woman says:

    I can’t believe people are actually spending their time looking you up and going to your site to bash you. Get a life!

    About her being “half naked”.. Ever seen a chick in a bikini at the beach with her kids? I doubt anyone would have a problem with that so to say she shouldn’t be posing with her children in a sexy workout inspired outfit is hypocritical. You’re just jealous of her and can’t/won’t admit it.

    I’ve had two children and lost the weight both times. I exercise and keep fit and to be healthy and to teach them to do so as well. I have a lot more energy and if I didn’t workout, I’d be tired all the time too. Sometimes I have to sneak a workout in.. I do all sorts of exercises at home when the kiddos are napping and in between chores. No excuses! You can always find time to do something.

    If you really want to, you’ll find a way. If not, you’ll find an excuse. Suck it up.

  24. Christine says:

    You are an inspiration. I am a mother of three(5yr old, 3 and 2) and in the best
    Shape of my life. I stay healthy for my kids, I want to see their children one day.
    Healthy mom, healthy kids, healthy family!

  25. Karen says:

    Way to go!! You look great and be proud of your accomplishments of being a mother of three and being fit!! If folk want to change they have to get up and MOVE!! There’s always going to be negativity but you must rise above it!! Continued blessings to you and family!!

  26. Jacqueline says:

    Congratulations! I am brazilian, I am 40 years old and I have one son. He was born in September, 2009. I am not like you, your shape, but I congratulate you because you are right.

  27. sally says:

    Great!

  28. Nicole Jolie says:

    People will always want you to stand in shadow with them. Don’t. It’s their limiting beliefs that make them uninteresting and dramatically repeling. If every woman could look like this they’d be happier, but they want to stay in their b.s. Keep rockin’ it Maria. H8rs are everywhere, leave them where they stand and step right on over ‘em. :)

  29. Amy says:

    You are awesome and a total inspiration to me, who is a writer in Hollywood, with only one daughter. Your story and your fit abs inspires me and makes me want to do better! I hadn’t heard of your blog until the brouhaha of this pic and I will definitely be a regular reader now. Great work!

  30. Íris says:

    Maria, you are truly inspirational! I’m pregnant with my first baby girl and after she’s born I will fight like you to regain my initial body form! You rock! ;) You are a fighter and a winner! And also beautiful! :D Congratulations for your achievements!!

  31. Ankita says:

    Hi Maria,
    I am your supporter from India. It is like an inspiring story. Great to see your site. Please would you suggest me something?

  32. Lydia says:

    Hi Maria,
    Got to know your blog through Asiaone.com, where they did a write-up on the controversy that your entry has stirred up among some.

    Just wanted to drop you a note, to let you know that your post has been an inspiration to me. Like you, I have constantly battled with my weight & eating disorders. At my heaviest, I was 100 kg and it got to a point of resignation as I did not know where or how to start changing my body.

    It is a different story now : I had to learn the hard way that the most important thing is to re calibrate yourself & have a healthy attitude towards our lifestyle. Focus on exercising & eating well, and everything else will naturally fall in place (hello size 8 clothes !). People have to realize that this journey is not easy ; everyday will be a constant struggle to revert to the old lazy/easy habits

    Here is to all the people who have seen this post & have decided to take the 1st step towards a healthier attitude. Great post once again :)

  33. Tony says:

    I love the self motivation not everyone has that strive or esteem even men. If you’re happy with yourself then that’s all that matters, don’t change cause someone else does. Do it for yourself some people change some don’t lazy or not. Bottom line just be happy from within. Love the transformation keep up the positive attitude and feel sorry for those negative comments they seem to be lonely or low self esteem, but everyone has different views..God Bless Love from San Diego

  34. kon says:

    Hi Maria – I am a working mom of 2 kids. I understand how difficult it is to be healthy and make time to maintain yourself. I do appreciate your hard work. At the same time I had a question – I resumed running and trained for half marathon this year for almost 6-8 months. But I haven’t lost a single pound and initially I did lose inches but I stopped on that too. I am a vegetarian and I haven’t changed my diet a whole lot. But trying to change my diet which is more difficult to me than working out. What do you think I need to change and why is it am I not losing weight.

  35. Jonny Moskowitz says:

    I don’t usually comment on pages like this, but I only heard of you because of the negative responses you were getting about the photo with you and children. For what it’s worth, you have another supporter. Fitness and staying healthy is an integral part to my life, and my family’s history of health problems is a huge factor in that. People may not want to hear it, but for every person with a legitimate health condition that prevents them from exercising or being healthy, there are countless others that find excuses. The fact is simple: you either find a way, or you find an excuse. Keep it up, and no matter what anybody says, you are an inspiration.

  36. John Adams says:

    If you’re inspired by this woman, you’re likely 2nd rate low-life american trash and don’t realize that she’s using you for her own obsessive need for attention. You also watch oprah and soap operas to fill the empty space in your life.

    Secondly, I’ve met at least a handful of “internet Model-like” girls/women here in the USA, and also in thailand and Brazil. All of them turned out to be not very attractive in person.. Make-up, photoshop, lighting, and all the other usual suspects. SO IF YOU ARE SHALLOW , NAIVE, AND BORED WITH YOUR LIFE THEN CONTINUE SENDING THIS PERSON YOUR BIZARRE GRATITUDE.

    • Laura says:

      Wow – it sounds like Maria hit a nerve with you!!!

      Remember John – No one can make you feel inferior without your consent. So while your post makes you sound like a ugly, angry man, just remember – you brought that on yourself. Maybe you need to get off drugs because they are making you sound like a madman…

      • John Adams says:

        Because she represents everything that’s wrong with the direction of the world.”Hi, my mommy shows her body to everybody and uses us kids by putting us in the picture too. Now she gets the attention she craves and calls herself a Social Entrepreneurship.”

        Sorry Laura, but you obviously don’t live in Los Angeles, There’s literally a half million of her type trying to do that same thing – get noticed as much as they possibly can. It’s gross. And it’s well-known the pretending to be grateful and humble is the formula for keeping fans and supporters. It’s a ll garbage. It’s a disease and LA is very much at the center of it. And she’s just the typical type. I, I, I, Me, Me, Me…all the while pretending like her purpose is to help others..

        And the worst part is we have country that just eats this stuff up blindly. If my “rude comments” help even one person snap into reality, then it’s worth it.

    • mt1274 says:

      Go get laid, maybe you will feel better.

      • Tallaney says:

        John Adam needs to go work out. It might help him with his anger issues. John…..it’s okay to admit that you’ve been hurt. Maybe if you take better care of yourself, you’ll feel a lot better. You should sign up for Obama Care. They are offering better care for mental patients. Take care buddy!

  37. Inês says:

    Hello,

    I find out about your blog last week. Then, I started to read it and I fell in love about it! You’re such a great writer, with a great life and love story. As a romantic person, I really loved all of the stories about you and your husband. I printed some articles and I read it when I go to work! I’m not a “blogger person”, I don’t usually read blogs and stuff like that. But you really are an inspiration, congratulations! As a suggestion, I think you should colect all the articles and put it in a book!
    *

  38. JANICE says:

    Don’t let the haters being ya down girl!!! You got it, flaunt it!!! You obviously worked hard to get where you are today, and you are absolutely correct….”it’s mind over matter” you have to take control of your own thoughts and body. Congratulations on your new body and keep up the good work, stay strong, loud and proud!!!

  39. Virginia P. says:

    Maria, I think that you are absolutely beautiful. I hope that you do not let anyone with negative comments affect you in any way. I am 45 and a tad overweight; could stand to lose 15 or 20 pounds. My children are 22, 19 and 17 and I find every excuse there is to not work out. That is my fault. If I had a body like yours, expecially since you have worked very hard to get it, I would definitely show it off and I would be very proud. Keep up what you are doing and goosd for you to teach your boys healthy habits.

  40. Denise says:

    Maria,
    You are amazing….I don’t see anything wrong with you posting your photo. If anything it should help many others stay positive about themselves.I have 6 beautiful children and I’m very proud to be the mother I am today.Healthy and staying in shape.Feeling so blessed:) You have a beautiful family! God bless you .

  41. Shannon L says:

    People just actively search for reasons to be offended these days, I am convinced of it. What is so offensive about a beautiful, fit woman who worked hard for her body & tries to motivate others ? We’ve become a nation of big babies, I swear. We all seem to want to be coddled at every turn. If you are larger than you’d like, follow this woman’s lead & DO something to change your body, your health, & your life. I’m sure it would make you feel a lot better than going online & throwing stones at others simply because they are trimmer than you.

    And I say that as someone who has 25 to 30 pounds to lose too, & you know what ? I’ve been working on it but not hard enough & Maria has been kind of a wake up call to me. I refuse to sit here & act catty & offended because she’s hot & fit & I’m not there yet. I’m sorry, but I believe jealousy is the root of a lot of this hate. If you are simply offended, then okay, let it go & do what’s right for you, why spread negativity over it ? Even trainers each have their own style of motivation, there is Chalene Johnson, who is more cheerleader & peppy ( not a slight, btw, I adore her ) & then you have Jillian Michaels, who is more tough love ( and I love her & use her DVD’s more than anyone, lol )…

    Why do you think that Chalene Johnson & Jillian Michaels, 2 different trainers with 2 very different styles, are both wildly successful ? Because aside from being brilliant at what they do, we are all DIFFERENT & different things work for different people ! It isn’t rocket science. So if you don’t find Maria’s message motivational, fine. Plenty of us do. Why bash her for it ?

  42. Mike Hosley says:

    There’s no substitute for diet and exercise, period. You seem like you have gone through ups and downs and you did have a nice look to begin with.. a trainer for a boyfriend to be a positive influence, and the habits seemed like they became a lifestyle over time. Good for you and don’t pay any attention to your naysayers.

  43. Mommyof5 says:

    Maria, I am proud of you! You have CHOSEN to overcome your personal battles with the help of God and some real grit! I have 5 children and my youngest is 11 months. I have always gotten back down to my original weight after every baby for my own health and well-being. People always say things like, “You’re so lucky! How do you do it?” My personal favorite is when people assume I must just have been born with an awesome metabolism or great genes…it’s called work and self-discipline folks!!! You keep it up. You are going to help motivate a lot of women who don’t think it’s possible to look the same after children.

  44. Rob says:

    Don’t let the fatties bring you down. I’m actually overweight, but I own my choices and my life. I have a lot of respect for you and what you represent!

  45. Diana says:

    You are an inspiration, continue doing what you are doing. I never post anything but I saw the article of the negative comments and I couldn’t help it but had to support you. Motivate!

  46. Randy says:

    You have nothing to be ashamed of and everything to be proud for… your fitness is a direct result of your hard work and dedication. I wish my wife were half as fit as you.

    • Julia Ross says:

      Randy, turn off the computer and pay attention to your Mrs. Randy. You were lucky to find her, so
      go pay attention to HER!

      • Leykis 101 says:

        Typical entitled broad with comments like this. If she put on pounds after Randy married her and refuses to get in condition, he was not lucky to find her. Fat women and their entitlement. Drop her and find a woman that cares about her health and appearance.

      • Leykis 101 says:

        He probably does pay attention to her. She’s the one that probably gives Randy no sex so he has no choice to look elsewhere.

    • Leykis 101 says:

      Perform a “DTB” on your wife and get someone younger, hotter and fitter if she refuses to get her ass in gear.

  47. Steve says:

    You look great and fortunately are proud of your body.
    The real issue here is that the people who have a legitimate excuse think to themselves “God I wish I could get back in that kind of shape.” don’t whine about your post but the ones who DON’T have an excuse are using the now standard fallback position of “being offended” to hate you for not sitting on your fat ass and melting into the sofa with a cola and a box of bonbons.

  48. actuallyfitperson says:

    The phrase “what’s your excuse” is a horrible one. It says why can’t you do it? I did it, so why haven’t you? If you can’t do it, you’re just weak/lazy/insert-negative-thing-here. It has also been applied to people without their consent, and in ridiculous ways. This picture (made by the person themselves) mocks the practice: http://media.tumblr.com/tumblr_mf30jbR93L1qgdoef.jpg
    Read the post here: http://notyourinspiration.tumblr.com/post/38496967298/did-you-know-cripples-can-do-things-inspiration-porn

    And there are valid reasons for not ‘being fit.’
    -Time, because even 30 minutes can be too much.
    -Disability/chronic pain. (While there are some excercises that disabled people can do, people with chronic pain tend to not even be able to walk without pain and that’s a damn good reason for not making your body hurt /more/.)
    -Body make-up. (My friend was literally big-boned and ‘slimming down’ wouldn’t have worked.)
    -Not wanting to. Because no one should be shamed/yelled at for what they do to THEIR body.
    -1 million and 1 other reasons not listed.

    You need to apologize- REALLY apologize for using that phrase. It’s not inspiring anyone. It IS shaming them, no matter your intentions. If you don’t, you’re just an asshole.

    • Jeff says:

      You’re funny. “What’s your excuse” is a very valid comment. The only valid “excuse” you came up with was chronic pain/disability. She’s not addressing those people. She’s addressing the general population of sick and unhealthy people that are all quick to make excuses about their poor health. She doesn’t need to apologize. It is inspiring. She’s not shaming or yelling at unhealthy people.

      Time: 15-30 minutes a day, Body make-up: being big boned doesn’t mean you have to be sick and fat, not wanting to: means you’re actually lazy and don’t actually care about your health. 1 million other excuses: you’ll always have an excuse.

    • Jared says:

      All 330+ million Americans, male and female, are caught between a media/entertainment culture that prays at the altar of fit bodies and a sedentary, PC game, what’s on TV tonight culture. We love our entertainment, but learn to hate (and not care for) our bodies.

      What personal trainers do, and even sometimes those over-sexualized Bally’s fitness or other TV commercials featuring an attractive, fit person actually do is INSPIRE people to exercise. That’s their primary purpose. SECONDARILY, they might make some people feel shame about their bodies, their attitudes, their choices or even their conditions or diseases that are beyond their control. Maria is not targeting the disabled, the genetically obese, etc. Maria is about improving society, and yeah she is making a living while she does it. What’s your excuse is a great line for millions of middle-aged people who use kids and adult responsibilities as the excuse to let their bodies atrophy before their eyes. What’s your excuse? says I did it, and SO CAN YOU.

      Signed,
      Middle-aged man who works out during his 30 min. lunches

  49. SteveInSeattle says:

    I loved the ‘whats your excuse’ pic. People are making excuses all the time and you are a perfect example of overcoming that and being healthy. On a side note, I bet you have a pretty butthole.

  50. Denden says:

    You go, girl! You inspire me to get off my a**, get moving, and lay off the M&Ms!

  51. Jesa Vega says:

    Maria you are a true inspiration! Thank you for sharing this with the world!

  52. Stephanie says:

    Good job on your life and keep up the good work!! You are an awesome person!!

  53. Nick says:

    Love the positive message. Take care of those babies and that husband of yours. Wishing you and your family all the best!

  54. Conor Hartnett says:

    No apology necessary. I actually understood your extremely obvious message, and I’m impressed AND motivated. The haters are just jealous and THAT’S obvious. Good for you !

  55. Seattle84 says:

    I feel motivated! I had and still do have a lot of excuses to not work out, but the truth is I need to treat my body better by eating well and working out. Thanks for sharing your story.

  56. AManWhoWasOffended says:

    You would have been better of not making any apology at all. Especially because you didn’t really make an apology. Essentially this is how it came across “I’m sorry you were offended, but that’s really your fault and not mine”. — that’s not a real apology.

    What you called an apology was perhaps even more offensive than the original caption.

    In one of your interviews you argued that no one can be offended without their consent. Following that logic, a person could say anything they want (and I do mean anything), and if anyone else is offended by it you’re saying it is just the fault of the person who was offended. That is utter nonsense. Words have meaning, and they can be used with the intent to offend. Granted, some people *do* look for any reason to be offended. This, however was not the case with many of the people who responded to your post/picture in a negative way. The caption came across as saying “I’ve had three babies in a short amount of time, and I look fabulous. If you don’t look like me, it is because you’re a lazy person who makes excuses as to why they can’t work out. That’s all there is to it. You’re just lazy.”. If you can’t see that people could easily take the caption to say that, then you are obviously unwilling to listen to constructive criticism. This much negative response should give you at least some reason to sincerly try to see it from others’ perspective. Your interviews do *NOT* communicate that you have.

    If indeed you are telling the truth about only wanting to inspire others to work out, you chose your words *very* poorly. I have watched multiple interviews of you defending the post and the picture. You made it worse. If your true motivation was just to inspire people to work out, then you should have admitted to chosing your words poorly. You came off as sancitmonious in your interviews, not as sincerly apologetic. You didn’t listen to what people were saying. You appear to have learned absolutely nothing from people’s reaction to this. Before you write me off as well (I sincerely hope you haven’t), I am *NOT* saying that there are no lazy people among those who criticized you. I am *NOT* saying that there are no people who should be working out that aren’t (among those who criticized you). I am sure there are.

    This is my challenge to you. If you really want to turn this thing around, and actually get something genuinely *positive* from the experience, stop ignoring your critics. I’m not saying you have to agree with everything they say — not at all. However, there are *valid* reasons why your wording in the original post was offensive, and if you are unwilling to sincerely consider that, then you will be the worse off for it.

    my two cents. Do what you will with it.

    • Dean says:

      @Amanwhowasoffended Get a life idiot! Maria you look great! Don’t let these people with low self esteem who hide behind their keyboard posting negative comments get you down. Your an inspiration to many! I applaud you!

    • ingrid says:

      Oh brother….
      “The caption came across as saying “I’ve had three babies in a short amount of time, and I look fabulous. If you don’t look like me, it is because you’re a lazy person who makes excuses as to why they can’t work out. That’s all there is to it. You’re just lazy.”. If you can’t see that people could easily take the caption to say that, then you are obviously unwilling to listen to constructive criticism. This much negative response should give you at least some reason to sincerly try to see it from others’ perspective. Your interviews do *NOT* communicate that you have.”

      DEAN…YOU made your own meaning out of everything she said…and YOU made it mean something bad. Thats on YOU ma dear. Shame on you for focusing on BS while Maria is trying to make a difference. So sorry if you have (low?) self esteem. She does not. So consider that you sound like youre whining.

      • AManWhoWasOffended says:

        @ingrid — I think your post was directed at me, not Dean.

        @ingrid & @Dean — you both aren’t listening either.

        The way I interpreted her post was completely logical. Just because you saw it differently doesn’t make my interpretation invalid. I *get* that some people didn’t take it that way. That was not my point.

        My point was that the way the caption was worded, it was perfectly logical for some to take it as offensive. I was far from alone in taking it that way.

        You’ve decided that anyone who doesn’t see it your way is an idiot. I actually think it is a good thing to encourage people to work out. I don’t knock Maria for doing so. I think she could learn to do it *better* by giving consideration to valid criticism by people who posted here, rather than just dismissing them as “haters” and “idiots”.

        People who dismiss all criticism as invalid suffer in the end. Yes there are people you *should* ignore. Yes there are genuine “haters” out there. Yes there are some people who are genuine “idiots” also. Unfortunately, online both terms are far too often used against people with whom others simply disagree. It is easy to call your opponent an “idiot” or a “hater” rather than to thoughtfully respond to why you disagree with them.

        Just because you are somewhat anonymous, doesn’t mean you should act like you are still 13 years old.

    • Andy says:

      Maria,

      I’m 58 years old and a recently Certified Personal Trainer. I’m in the best shape of my life because I just decided that my previous status quo just wasn’t good enough.

      In this “everybody’s is a winner,” “everyone is special” society, people don’t realize that you can’t rebuild until the emotional defenses are torn down first. It’s obvious that you went through this evolution, too, having been 150 lbs at one point. Don’t let detractors get to you. Stick to your guns. You’re an inspiration.

      Best of luck to you.

    • Shannon L says:

      I agree that she never should have made an apology….because she has NOTHING to be sorry for !! She is not responsible for a bunch of jealous haters or people who completely missed her point, & turned her message of inspiration into something ugly & made a big fuss over it. It’s called personal responsibility…try it sometime, you might find it useful.

      • Laura says:

        I see your point AManWhoWasOffended, but she NEVER said – I had 3 kids, why don’t you look like me? She said, I had 3 kids, What’s your excuse? See – I will NEVER look like her. It’s physically impossible. I am a pear shape and she is not. I want to look like the best ME – not what Maria looks like. And basically, the only way to do that is to stop making excuses, stop watching too much tv, surfing the net for hours on end, and get up and do something. That was her message. As someone who is very sensitive and has a thin skin, I’ve had to deal with alot of people saying stuff about me or to me that should offend me. But… I can be offended or I can take the message and do something positive with it – or, if the person is an ass, I can let it go. Her “apology” which she didn’t need to make, is true – people take things and try to put it on her. You could have skimmed right past the picture if you were that offended. I go on organizing blogs – Now – I can look at the blogs and think – Hey, that’s neat. I can do that or I can be offended and say “Why is she making me feel bad for not having an organized house?”. See the difference? Either way, You CHOOSE to see something that she isn’t putting out there. You CHOOSE to be offended. It’s not the problem – it’s your attitude to the problem that makes or breaks you.

    • Leykis 101 says:

      You sound like a woman writing all that. It says Leave a Comment not Leave a Novel. No one will read all that crap. Go out and get laid, you will feel better.

    • Pigmanfu says:

      AFatManWhoWasOffended

      There fixed it for you, stfu loser cry baby that helps ruin this country.

  57. me says:

    I just can’t get past the sentence that reads “I ballooned to 119lbs”. are you only 3 feet tall?

    • Me says:

      Your picture is quite inspirational. I just sent to to my overweight wife stay home mother of one kid. May be she will not like it as much as I did. You are truly an inspiration. Disregard the haters and keep spreading it.

    • jose says:

      No s**t,she stated in the article that she was 5’4″,wow a whole 119 pounds ah?By the way am 49 years old,180 pounds on my 5’4″ frame,lazy and don’t care what anybody says.

  58. Jennifer says:

    great pic. thanks for putting your self out there to help an overly stressed, over weight mom open her eyes. it was hard to see, but it is just because I know what I need to do and I have not been doing it! thank you!

  59. Amber says:

    I found your website through yahoo. Keep up the great fitness routine! There really is no excuse to skip being healthy.

  60. wakeelah caldwell says:

    I simply love the way you stated obvious.. Get off your butt and fix yourself . You look great and my kids are older than yours so I have a long ways to go. Thanks for sharing your personal emotional and physical rollercoaster. Whey.

  61. katie says:

    you are an inspiration

  62. Christine says:

    It was the so-called controversy about the What’s Your Excuse photo that brought me here. All I can say is good on ya! Anyone who thinks the photo is bullying, demeaning, insulting or anything else they want to call it needs to take a good hard look at themselves. If that photo was all it took to get your panties in bunch then you have issues. I’m not exactly where I want to be in life, in my shape, fitness level and size and yes I have a myriad of excuses. Each day people work past the excuses, push a little further and get on with life, don’t make this photo another excuse in your long list.

  63. CJChicago says:

    I find the photo awesome. Reading Maria’s story only makes it more awesome. If her life was thoroughly perfect—she’d be a joke–because that’s not life. Her story is life–a roller coaster of good, bad, positives, negatives and, hopefully, finally security and confidence in ourselves. At 66, I’ve just rejoined a health club and am getting in shape for–get this–retirement! Thanks, Maria for your inspiration. BTW you’re beautiful! In and Out!

  64. Julia says:

    If you got it, get it! People who react defensively are exactly that… defensive. Don’t take flack off anyone, you look amazing!

  65. D says:

    Love your story! You’re an inspiration to both men and women with your drive and determination. I crushed my back leaving my legs paralyzed over a decade ago. Without being able to run or even walk I have gained exactly ZERO pounds because I watch what I eat and found other ways to exercise. Some people will just always have excuses, pay them no attention because they won’t be satisfied until everyone is as unhealthy and miserable as they are.

  66. Janie says:

    I’d just like to say I find your “What’s Your Excuse?” photo very offensive. You don’t know what other people go through or what they may be suffering from. I used to exercise every day until one day I just felt so tired that I couldn’t. One day turned into a year, then two and now I’ve come to find out that the reason I felt so tired all the time and was always falling is because I have a hereditary form of muscular dystrophy. You can look at someone who is over weight and it is very easy to be judgemental and say they are just being lazy but you don’t know that person and you don’t know “their excuses”. I look “normal” but I’m not. I have no muscle strength anymore and am in intense pain when I walk. So next time you use that saying I suggest you think twice. And in my opinion you looked better in your ’06 picture.

  67. Xena says:

    Love your story and your way of motivating people and getting them to open up. I hope that you keep going full force and ignore those that can’t do and so try to pull down. You’re beautiful and fit. Keep being great!

  68. Ashley says:

    Mrs. Kang, Thank you for your story, I am a recovering Bulimic and it gives me HIGH hopes to see and hear about success stories. Congratulations to you and your health! I hope to see another image when your a beautiful 60 year old, stay focus, and God bless you. Much Love, Ashley

  69. Linda says:

    Great advice. Anyone who takes this negatively is in denial about the role they take in their own health and fitness.

  70. Valerie says:

    Hard work has its rewards! Love your blog and your positive attitude. Wishing you continued growth and prosperity.

  71. Jennie says:

    You are an inspiration, Maria! I’m also a mom of three boys now 8,9,11 years old. I’ve tried to diet and exercise to get down to 125 but I’m stuck at 140… I’ve juiced and lost the weight and kept it off for 2 years only to gain it back again. I work full time and an RN and homeschool my boys. Even my boys have gained weight. I have NO EXCUSE except for total laziness. Thank you for sharing your testimony. It has truly inspired me. Please pray for me to be consistent in exercise and healthy food choices as I will pray for your continued success and inspiration. Your husband and kids must be so proud of you!

  72. Admire says:

    So what is your eating and workout routine? How many calories do you keep to each day?
    I think you look great and it inspires me too! I’m trying to get down to my wedding weight of 128…. I’m at 151 now. Do you work? It’s so hard when you have to work all day.

  73. Shannon says:

    I agree and support your campaign no excuses. I am a pregnant fit mother still working out at 30 weeks pregnant with 2 kids ages 11 and 7. Also, manage a household and a full time job. Being fit, is an inspiration to our own kids by showing them how we make good choices and how they can too. It sets them up for having healthier happier bodies. I use exercise as a mental release, it gives me more enery, and reduces my stress level. I can’t wait to start reshaping my body and bouncing back after baby #3. I plan to exercise up to the day I give birth no matter the strange looks I get at the gym.

    Maybe, all the negativity is coming from people that have not yet found their inner journey to maintain a healthy lifestyle. Exercise and being healthy is a lifestyle choice, people need to change what they are doing wrong and start educating themselves on how they can feel better.

    You are truly an inspiration and people need to be inspired but most importantly they have to want to do it themselves.

    Best,

    Shannon

  74. Rozana says:

    YOU ARE AWESOME! I just saw the Yahoo! News story about the back lash and decided to look at your website. Please do not let some angry people that don’t feel good about themselves to begin with, ruin your spirit! I don’t even have kids and that picture inspired me to start eating leaner for my up coming wedding.

    Thanks for sharing your story. You portray a REAL woman that has a real normal life and went through fluctuations in your weight like most women do.

  75. AS says:

    I saw your poster, then saw the CNN story and decided to see your website. You are an inspiration.
    I think the people who are criticizing you are the ones who are jealous of the attention you are getting… I bet they also want to be recognized for things they did and they have a right to want that. They don’t, however, have a right to be rude and disrespectful to you.
    You’re great!
    I want to THANK YOU for doing this b/c it inspired not only me but I’m sure thousands of other women (many of them MOMS) who need this type of reminder that 1) It DOESN’T happen over night, 2) there will be results and 3) You can look great with perseverance!
    THANKS AGAIN!

  76. Angel says:

    Can’t believe someone would take your picture in a bad way. “What’s your excuse?” apparently people that are being negative towards that picture are the ones that feel they need an excuse to not do things in life. I think that’s a great inspiration to people to get off their asses or be more productive into doing something. I’ve noticed that people who have excuses all the time never accomplish much in life. Keep up the good work.

    BTW you shouldn’t apologize to the dummies that find negativity from your picture.

  77. Tom says:

    Nice Maria,
    Your courage is more inspiring than anything else about you. I see so many companies promoting products like supplements and fitness with the “It worked for me, it worked for my friends, so let’s get you started” line its sickening. Yet when true conviction and the results are displayed in front of them, they negatively judge. Kudos on your philosophy and wishing you continued success!!
    Tom

  78. sending positive vibes your way!

  79. Libsrule says:

    Your apology was spot on and inspirational. We ARE our thoughts and are in charge of our own health. Dont take any sh%$ from the haters!

  80. Steven says:

    It’s evident you worked hard to achieve what you’ve accomplished. So, don’t allow the armchair fitness experts to define who you are.
    They just wished they looked that good!!!

  81. Alison says:

    ‘What’s Your Excuse’ is a common phrase in the fitness community. We often hear- I’m too tired, busy, work too much, am a mom, am a wife. The truth is thy we all prioritize in a different way. Some of us make our health and well being a priority and we want to share this with everyone else. Our children, family and strangers who need a little motivation. If you choose to prioritize your job that’s ok. Of you choose to eat crap food that too is ok. If you choose to watch tv in the evenings that is also ok. Why, though, is it not ok to prioritize our time, good food and evenings with healthy choices. Why is it that people see this as judging others or trying to push a lifestyle??? That is never the case.
    Haters will hate……
    However, if the time comes when you choose YOU, we will always help you find the way.
    It isn’t about how we look, but how we feel.

    I hope, Maria, that you feel as amazing as you look!!

    “Look in the mirror. THAT is your competition!”

    A.

  82. Stacey chapman says:

    Hi! I think you look amazing. I’m pregnant for the first time and was worried about how I would look after. I’m going to use your picture as inspiration, that if i want to look good I can make it happen! Thanks. X x

  83. April says:

    You go girl! Pay no mind to the negativity.

  84. Jessica says:

    Hi There,
    I think what you are doing is wonderful and inspiring! Please do not listen to these rude people who say nothing but negative things. You should be proud for what you accomplished! I have three children just like you and looove working out. I haven’t been able to work out as much due to my schedule right now, but you’ve inspired me to start really going at it again! I think your story is also inspiring. If only people would take the time to really see what you’ve been through and who’ve you become. I feel like people only come on here to comment, regardless if they know your story. Keep up the good work and keep your chin up!

    Jessica

    PS. Your children are adorable!

  85. David Rinaldi Coleman says:

    Maria,

    Your abdomen now looks ugly. It looked a lot better and more feminine when you had some padding.

    What is YOUR excuse for being so shallow?

    Dave Coleman

    • Jessica says:

      Did you even read her story Dave Coleman? What right do you have to be offended? So what she says “What’s your excuse”? What IS most people’s excuse? Most Americans are too lazy and eat horrible foods. Over 60% are now overweight. Doesn’t that make any bells ring?

    • Tom says:

      She’s out of you league, consciously, Dave. Not your game, stay out.

    • Dennis Peters says:

      He’s just mad because he’s fat lazy and has no vision or drive in life.

    • Michael johnson says:

      You’re a fool, Dave. Since we’re passing out personal insults. Couldn’t you just say, “……I find a woman with more body fat to be more attractive.” When did being accomplished, an achiever, and proud of living a healthy life become “shallow”? I guess we should all succumb to the lowest common factor.

    • Leykis 101 says:

      David = Chubby chaser.

  86. angie says:

    As long as you are receiving negative feed-back you know you are making an impact, mostly on those that have an excuse and don’t want to admit it.

  87. Pat says:

    You look awesome, and the world needs more women who feel good about their bodies; that being said, you were as hot at 150 pounds than you are at 125. The only way that is achieved, by anybody, is through inner light shining forth. If you connect with your inner light through fitness, then by all means, keep on keepin’ on, Beautiful Warrior. Those who are jealous or exasperated by your pride need only to connect with what brings forth their own inner light…be that through creativity, leadership, charity, activism, motherhood, sisterhood, scholarly pursuits, or just plain old spreading general kindness. Weight and fitness have nothing to do with it. Be bright and fearless, my sisters…and be gentle with yourself and others.

  88. Herman Escriba says:

    You’re hot, you’re beautiful. Forget that fat envious women bullying you and go ahead.

  89. Ashlee says:

    I just wanted to say you are a huge inspiration of mine now. Your picture is BADASS. I had my son in March 2012 and struggled with post-partum depression and never worked out. I started Beachbody’s FocusT25 three weeks ago, and not only do I feel better, I look better. So far, I’ve lost five pounds. I’m more active with my son and my family, and I can keep up with daily activities. It feels incredible to be in shape, and when you’re a mama, it makes you feel that much more of a badass. Keep it up!

  90. Annette says:

    Maria,
    You are an inspiration for women everywhere, but not necessarily as a vision of fitness that we might strive for physically. It is your passion for fitness and healthy living that is a wake up call for many — me included!

  91. Hooria says:

    You’re truly inspirational!
    Best wishes,
    Hooria

  92. Curtis Smith says:

    You are awesome. Keep it up. We need more role models like you. God Bless.

  93. Deana says:

    Thanks Maria for sharing your story; I can really relate to much of it. Nice to see someone in the public eye who is so open with the truth about their body and the journey it has been on! I also like the rest of your site, great work! Very interesting to read!

  94. Rene says:

    You are an inspiration- thank you! My excuse has been that I don’t have time with 2 young girls but I need to get creative & make time. I want those abs- wow. I’m tired of my mommy tummy – I’m off to do some exercises with my girls & make it fun!

  95. Margaret M. Williams says:

    Maria,
    I do not normally respond to posts like this, but after reading the story on CNN and listening to commentary I wanted to tell you that I love your picture and the caption “What’s your excuse?” Also, I agree with you 100% when you stated it’s our choice how to perceive an image or comment. I believe we must take responsibility for our health, our family, and our lives. As a society we need to stop blaming other people when things go wrong, can’t have our way, or simply don’t like what we see in the mirror. Your picture made me think … what is MY excuse? Well, I do not have one … and neither does anyone else. Once a person can admit this he or she is ready to move forward. I am ready to move forward. Thank you, Maria, for sharing your story, your photos, and most importantly your sound beliefs. You look incredible and should be nothing less than proud of your accomplishments. I wish you all the best and thank you to staying strong and not giving in to what I call “societal problems” that are manifested in lack of self-responsibility.
    R,
    Margaret

  96. alexis says:

    Hi Maria!

    I have read your article on CNN as well as am a high school friend of your brother-in-law. I just wanted to say THANK YOU SO MUCH for putting yourself out there as a role model for mothers. Like you I have been fortunate to have two children and with a third on the way I find myself becoming overwhelmed with a full time job, and the grind of life, and at the end of the day I feel the MOMMY GUILT of not seeing my children all day, so I do use that as an excuse to not exercise. I was a personal trainer (seems like in a past life…hahahaha), and I know the importance of working out. But you have really reminded and encouraged me to look at being fit in a different light!!! Reading your posts I have really found a similarity with what you have gone through in your life, the weight losses and gains, the finding time for yourself as well as making fitness a priority. I have found that I have been making excuses for myself for years now (whether it be work or kids or other obligations), and I should not hid behind them. The most important thing, as you have stated is not only to be fit for myself but to be fit for my children and husband as well. The benefits of being a fit mother, as you have pointed out, will allow me to 1- have more energy for my children 2- become a less stressed person and mother, because I am also taking care of the basic necessities (myself) and this in turn would make me a BETTER mother. SO when I hear comments on how you are not a GOOD MOTHER because you choose to work out over choosing your children I really started to think about this and took this to heart… YOU ARE A GOOD MOTHER BECAUSE YOU DO THIS FOR YOURSELF. As a mother there is so much pressure to be perfect- to have a clean home, to have kids taken care of, to work a full time job to make ends meet, to have dinner on the table, to have the laundry done etc., that I find myself getting lost somewhere in between all of that. The motto that you have ”WHAT IS YOUR EXCUSE” is something that all mothers should really think about. There is no excuse not to take time for you, even if it is 15 minutes a day of just doing squats while they are at the playground. I remember being a young girl and having a very active Great-Grandmother that help to raise me, and she would always say… do your exercises at home! She would do calf raises when she brushed her teeth and she would go on her “REBOUNDER” and do 100 jumps while we go ready for school, and she was in her 80s!

    Thank you for inspiring me to want to be a better Mother to my children but becoming more active. And after this pregnancy I am looking forward to working my way back into a healthy lifestyle.

    I think that you are an amazing woman, and an inspiration to someone like me. You make me feel like there are no limits to what we can accomplish as mothers and that as long as we have faith in GOD and OURSELVES there is no feet that is too big to overcome.

    So I want to end this message by saying from the bottom of my heart THANK YOU for reminding me that making time for myself and being fit is just as important to my children as ANYTHING ELSE, and in turn this makes for a better Mommy!

    Alexis =)

  97. Jessie says:

    My excuse is a spinal fusion (2 plates and 4 screws) in my back and pain radiating down my leg to my toes and the possibility for more surgery in my future. Everytime I try to work out, I injury myself more. I have 3 kids, one with special needs and a full time (50+) hours a week and I have to be at work at 6:30am, some mornings at 5:45. I don’t “run” my own business, I am at the mercy of a boss, who also has a boss. I get 30 minutes to eat lunch and one 15 minute break, if I’m lucky. So, help me! What can I do. Oh, almost forgot, 2 days a week, I work until 7pm.

  98. Tim says:

    No offense, but it’s way too much self glorification for one person…we know you’re proud of yourself, but at some point you need to move on ;)

    • Tim says:

      i’m not a hater, i think you’re kinda cute…but WAAAAAY to into yourself

      • Mike says:

        Kinda cute? Shes Fuckin hot.

        • Dennis Peters says:

          Tim’s mad because his fat rolls have fat rolls and nobody wants to see that.

          • Tim says:

            nahh, it’s just a weird, over the top thing that’s all “look at me, look at me”…i’m an inspiration to others, blah, blah..at the end of the day it’s self obsession “I cried today…?” and people should care why?

      • Valeria says:

        Tim, Why shouldn’t she be into herself? Is there a problem because she doesn’t HATE her body like so many other women do? Is she a problem because she worked hard and wanted to show off her success? Is she a problem because she posted a proud picture of herself just like millions of other people do on the web? What’s YOUR problem? Why not be proud of herself? Why should she hide in a closet because YOU say so? She could move on, and is moving on, past all the hateful people who want to inject their own self loathing and piteousness into her message. Okay, Lets look at those pictures of athletes with mechanical limbs and the captions “What’s your excuse?” Should those people with prosthetics NOT be proud of their accomplishments, should they NOT post pictures of themselves striving to do what other struggle to do, should they Not be glorified in themselves for overcoming the odds? It’s the same message but different image.

  99. Tim says:

    This website is kinda weird

  100. Tania says:

    You are awesome, and you look incredible. :) You are inspiring me! Thank you for your honesty in sharing your battle. God is surely using you!!

  101. DianneT says:

    I came across your story on CNN.com , which lead me to your non profit and person web site. I think you’re an inspiration to men and women,, mommies and those who do not have kids. Let the haters HATE! You look wonderful!
    If you can get back into shape and maintain after given birth to three beautiful boys…WHAT’S MY EXCUSE!!??!???!!

  102. Sissy says:

    It’s difficult to choose words that won’t offend somebody, however, your “What’s your excuse?” seemed to be pretty harsh especially to people who don’t have the resources (money, babysitters, gyms, etc.) to do what you do. If you had toned it down a bit, you probably wouldn’t have gotten the negative responses. Kudos to you for being in the shape you are in, no kudos for your choice of words…………………….

    • Sally says:

      Sissy — A lack of “resources” is still an excuse. Gotta be honest. If you don’t have “money, babysitters and gyms” then put your kid in a stroller, and walk or jog around the neighborhood. If you have 3 kids, then why not start by being a good example and teaching them the importance of good nutrition and exercise and take them on neighborhood walks? Don’t blame it on money, babysitters and gyms. Like Maria says, “What’s your excuse?” Because those are still just that: EXCUSES.

      • KD says:

        Well while that is true, you certainly wont get a body like that if all your doing is walking around the block. I go on walks with my daughter and we end up going at a snails pace. So while it is great to get your kids out and walking it wont give you the type of results she has. To get results like that she probably does strength training 3x a week and cardio or interval training on her off days. Or at least that’s what most people would have to do. So I understand where she is coming from. I have to workout in my basement after my daughter has gone to bed, its the only way I can do it.

    • Dennis Peters says:

      I can name three exercises you can with anything but yourself. Push-ups, Crunches, and Running. There are many people that even use playground equipment at your local parks to do pull-ups. Just saying your gym can be anywhere you want.

  103. Lynn says:

    Congrats on your path to self-discovery and success! I found the condensed version of your story on CNN but they should feature your entire article of failure, struggles, endurance, and triumph! If people aren’t happy with themselves, then they should take more times to work on themselves physically and/or mentally, rather than taking their frustrations out on you. Keep up the good work!

  104. Lori says:

    Clearly you have worked hard to be healthy and fit and it is a real priority in your life. Your headline, however, does not do your story own justice due to its judgemental and, somewhat aggressive, nature. Clearly your accomplishments and struggles should serve to motivate others who may see themselves in your story, but I think there are better ways to motivate people to adopt your way of thinking as it relates to health and wellness. I’m a teacher and I work with kids who are always uncertain about what they are doing and whether it’s enough or if they are “ok”. If I were to try to motivate them to try something new and challenging by starting with, “What’s your excuse?” I would lose them before we even got started. Part of being a teacher, motivator and role model is to KNOW YOUR AUDIENCE. That’s all, just know who you are speaking to and present your view in a way that continues to develop your own story in a positive, successful way. That way you will get the recognition you deserve for all your hard work and also positively influence and help someone else at the same time.

    • Margaret M. Williams says:

      Lori,
      I’m not sure you understand Maria’s post or website … it is NOT for children. The caption is aimed at adults who do nothing but make constant excuses for why he or she can’t meet a goal–in this case a fitness goal. I think you may be perceiving it as judgemental due to your own insecurities. And that is your problem to bear, not Maria’s. In addition, this is HER page! She is free to express herself (as are you) and I believe she has done a very professional job at it. She is not only healthy, but through her story of prioritization and self-sacrifice I believe we can learn to take more responsibility for our lives. As an educator you, too, should be teaching responsibility to our youth rather than making excuses for failures or inadequacies.
      R,
      Margaret

  105. Crystal says:

    I read about your story first on CNN where people were “up in arms” over this. It’s just another example of people not getting all the facts about something. If you were someone who never struggled a day in your life with body image, I could understand why people might feel intimidated. But your biography clearly shows the hard work you have put in to this. Great job on your successes.

  106. Myriam Graton says:

    What do you do? Which exercices? And what kind of food do yo eat?….
    I’m intereting to do the same

  107. Raquel says:

    I am not a Mom yet, but one day when I am I will remember seeing your picture to help motivate me to stay healthy. Over the last 2 years I have lost almost 60 pounds and am continuing to push forward with living a more healthy, balanced life. Don’t worry about those who criticize you – you are an inspiration.

  108. erica says:

    At first after reading an article on your picture, I was a little put off. But after reading this page, I see that you are trying to share your fitness experience with the world. The reality is that everyone’s body and life are different than your own. But kudos to you for stepping up and getting healthy.

  109. Sarah says:

    As a healthcare professional, I just want to thank you for showing people the reality of the human body and that you CAN be average/chubby/fit across a lifetime. You have managed to eloquently show that you are a real person, experiencing both sides of the spectrum and that you have also experienced challenges along the way. Your story and the pictures that go with it demonstrate a real story that I believe most women can identify with, more so than just seeing an image of a sexy and fit female in the athletic industry.

  110. Brent says:

    Q: Know how to determine if you’re doing something right? A: If anyone criticizes you, you’re on to something. Bill Gates has more haters than anyone. Guy is a genious and is fighting the battle. My friend Bill Komanski is NEVER criticized. Know why? Because he loves chocolate bon-bons and fantasy football and works for state government … and he’s pushing 3 bills.

  111. Brent says:

    Maria, you look phenomenal. Your hard work has paid off in obvious dividends. Ignore the lazy web haters in their soft chairs and terrycloth sweats who lob in comments that detract from your accomplishment. It’s hard to work out, eat right, and attempt to motivate others. It’s easy to put down … but apparently too hard to put down the Twinkies and the 2-button mouse. Keep up the good work. You inspire me and my attempts at a fitter and healthier life. Thanks and congrats.

  112. Todd says:

    *******YOU ROCK – PLAIN AND SIMPLE!!!!!!!*************

  113. Teri says:

    You’re doing a great job at being the director of your life. You’re positive attitude is an inspiration to all.

  114. Allison says:

    You are awesome! I’m so sick of these people belittling you because of your hard work and dedication! Thank you for being an inspiration.

  115. Janay says:

    I’m lazy and greedy. I doN’t want to be either more. Than you for the inspiration.

  116. Devon says:

    I support you completely! I lost 50 pounds in 6 months, and I am a single dad with a 5y/o and a full time job. Anyone can change their body, you just have to be willing to put in the work. Don’t let ANYONE get you down. You look amazing, and people should find it an inspiration not an insult.

  117. Ani says:

    You are an inspriation, just what I was looking for to snap myself back to LIFE! Thank you!

  118. Hello Maria,
    You are an inspiration. It is a tough rough for moms. I have 3 girls and have had a battle like yours for years. I am a professional basketball player and enjoy being able to exercise daily whether I want to or not, but on those moments when I am not training I go through rough patches. I am in one now. I am starting to re start my workouts and eating right after surgery over a year ago. I want to be healthy again. What’s my excuse? NONE. I am starting today. Thanks for your words. God Bless

  119. Dana says:

    You’re an Inspiration to most, don’t let the few haters ruin that amazing drive you have. I have had my weight loss ups and downs, I know this struggle, you’re a strong woman doing what you do and it takes the motivated ones that see this. Keep pushing on, stay clear of hate coming your way as they are just the jealous ones wishing they looked as great and amazing as you do without having to put in the time and effort. Wish you all the best in the future and keep motivating with your photos!!!

  120. Terry says:

    Maria,
    Just saw you on the TODAY show!! Awesome! Anytime you put yourself out there you become a target. You could cure Cancer and you would still have haters! Let the haters fuel your continuing progress and fitness. What you have done is damn hard! I am a mom of 3 and I KNOW!
    Keep it up girl! Keep inspiring us mom’s to quit feeling sorry for ourselves and get out there and MOVE.

  121. Charles Carlson says:

    Kudos to you! So sorry for the public outcry against you, but iIllegitimus non carborundum! I am saddened by how fat and lazy the majority of Americans have become, and I am sick and tired of hearing people say “just love me the way I am”. That’s fine if they want to be fat, but don’t criticize others for wanting to be fit. Today is my 51st birthday. I am running my first marathon in less than 48 hours. I am in the best shape of my life – for now. My aim is to keep making it better. One of my goals is like yours: “to be 60 one day – in the best shape of my life”. I intend to keep running until everyone else my age has either given up or died, so I can finally win my age group in a race! Stay the course!

  122. Tara says:

    “It’s really where your mind is,” she says, referring to the different ways that people might interpret her photo. “I just hope that the person who feels completely overwhelmed can see they can control their own destiny. To know that there’s no excuse for not making time for yourself.”
    That’s really easy to say and I don’t want to be a “hater”, but she’s not 49 and doesn’t have 7 (or 5) kids…her pic doesn’t help me feel any less overwhelmed or more able to address my overweight issues. It makes me more frustrated. I’m guessing she doesn’t live 15 miles frm the nearest gym and obviously she doesn’t home school (yet??)… we all do have life circumstances that complicate and frustrate our ability to totally focus on SELF for the time it requires to be in that kind of physical shape. Yea, she does look great today…but I’d like to see what she looks like when she’s 49. And I am not a stranger to fitness. In my 30’s I lost 50# by reducing carbs and sugars and joining a water exercise class. I eventually became the instructor for the class and got a water X certification. I was in the best shape of my life…but life circumstances get complicated and nothing stays the same. 12 years later I still lead the Water X class occasionally as a “fill in” but I have a whole different set of life circumstances and am at a loss to get back into a fitness routine like I had then.

    • Terry says:

      Tara,
      There is always time. It’s just excuses! If you really want to work out at home, walking down your street, in your backyard, working out with your kids, you could!
      Even Octomom works out! LOL!

    • Na says:

      Tara,
      you’re only making excuses and you sound so insecure .

    • Jessica says:

      Your insecurities definitely come through your words. There is time, you just have to MAKE the time… You don’t have to indulge in your children 100% of the time… take time for yourself sometimes too… you will be healthier and feel better about yourself. You would be setting a good example for your children on healthy living. They would appreciate that as they get older.

    • John says:

      Thank you for giving an entire paragraph of excuses.

  123. Leann says:

    I am horrified by all the abuse your getting from people and the media. I also have a good friend who is now a fitness instructor and competes in competition for being is such awesome shape and I think it’s wonderful. My daughter is 20 months and I’m 6 months preggo with my 2nd child. I cannot wait to be back in shape after my son is born. I think it’s great that you show that it is possible even for a busy mom of 3 to find the time to take great care of her body and get in shape. Being a 1st time mom I am still learning how to juggle things and seeing you and my friend encourages me and let’s me see that there is a way to fit time in for me and my health. Thanks for sharing and keep up the awesome work you do.

  124. Puleng says:

    Wow! m totally inspired by your story!!! WOW!!

  125. Rhea says:

    All the haters are just jealous of you. I’m inspired and want to begin my exercise routine today.

  126. Renee says:

    Thanks for sharing your journey! This is most encouraging and thankfully gets your reader beyond the health trends though inevitable in our culture. God made us to “rule and subdue” His creation, and that most certainly starts with our own appetites and bodies.

  127. Rachel says:

    Have you ever ran a marathon? I’d like to see you blog your journey towards one!

  128. Diane says:

    Keep on being a great mom to those boys and an even better wife to your husband. More importantly though, keep on being a better person for you!! You are an inspiration, you are my inspiration…peace and blessings to you mama!!!!!

  129. Brenda says:

    It’s wonderful what you’ve accomplished and I know a lot of people hate you for it; I would not care for what people say about you, it’s your life and you chose to live it the way you want to and so does everybody else. So I don’t think anybody need any excuses unless they are not happy with who they are; so don’t worry about what people are saying about the way you’re living your life just like nobody should care to have any excuses. I think it’s that women with three children, a husband, a household, a job for the most part do not have the time to be working out; so either you are a superwoman or you’re sacrificing your family or you have someone to help you out when you have so much time for yourself, that is how other women see it. It’s not jealousy; it’s just that you have made your choices and they have made theirs and so they say “do not criticize who we are and we will not criticize you or the choices you make”. By the way, I’m in the belief that real women have curves.

  130. Angelika says:

    My husband showed me the article about you and your photo on yahoo. I am appalled by all the abuse you have copped for being beautiful, strong, super fit and a mum. I am inspired. I get why people were offended. It’s because it probably felt to the haters that you were confronting them for not being healthy, active and fit.

    I have no kids and heaps of spare time but I still have my excuses and laziness. I work out 3-4 x a week but I know I could do more. Stay strong. You did not do anything wrong.

  131. Amelia says:

    Rock on! Maintaining a healthy lifestyle takes thought, motivation, and consistency! You have inspired me. Your photos are beautiful. It is important for Moms and Dads to be healthy role models for their children. If the number of parents demonstrating healthy eating habits and participating in consistent physical activity ROSE, maybe the rates of adult and childhood obesity would DECREASE!

  132. Elie says:

    Girl I wish I could work out with you, you’ll be my perfect fitness buddy who’ll motivate my lazy ass to work it at the gym! I’m from Manila, in case you come back here, give me a call and let’s hit the gym together so I can finally lose these 25 excess lbs! :-)

  133. Angelina says:

    Hi maria! I’m a mother of two (18 months and 11 weeks) and had c-sections with both. Ive finally been cleared by my doctor to start working out again, however I’ve been struggling to start again. Hearing your story has motivated to get up and move! Thank you for sharing your inspirational story! I would love to hear if you have any tips or tricks to squeeze in those workouts with busy days! Don’t let others steal your blessings, take care God Bless

  134. Cathleen says:

    I think you truly are an inspiration to many who need a little help with motivation. I’m 56 and still work out at least 5 days a week. There are days when I just don’t want to change clothes and work out, but it sure is worth it knowing I’ll be around to enjoy my children and grandsons for a very long time! Plus, the compliments aren’t bad either!!! =)

    Keep on keepin’ on!!!!

  135. Cheryl says:

    I’m glad you didn’t let the real bullies shame you into taking this photo off your site. Any woman who has 3 kids in 4 years and can look as healthy and happy as you do should feel good about it and be unfraid to show it.

  136. Aimee says:

    Your kiddos are adorable!

    I think your photo would have been better received had you put something like “dream it, do it.” Or “imagine the possibilities.” Those phrases are more motivational, but it also would not have gone viral. Congrats on your hard work bringing rewards and business success!

    • Bethany says:

      It may have been better received by some and you are right probably wouldn’t have gone viral but for all the mamas that get it and accept the intended meaning, they wouldn’t have had that fire lit inside. Her facebook page 2013 no-excuse challenge has exploded with thousands of mamas motivating and inspiring each other :) It’s pretty awesome :)

  137. Bella says:

    The Chinese always take advantage of pregnancies to recalibrate a woman’s body. There are lots of books and family secret methods to reshape the body after giving birth. I’m surprise no one in the”west” had tapped into that.

  138. johndarcy says:

    You are beautiful then, an just as lovely now. Life is all about YOUR own perspective, no ones else’s. God bless all you do and have. I love that your empowered and are full of life and confidance. You GO GIRL!!!

  139. angeline says:

    Did you have c- sections or were you able to have natural births? You look great, I do not see your excess skin you say you have . Were u able to get rid of that too? I love running and that worked before kids but not working now, boo. Juicing helps but my belly area still bugs me.

  140. Tracy says:

    You’re AWESOME. Your story reminds me of my own (yes, I remember being the chubby Asian kid in the class, the ones the other kids made fun of), I’m still on my journey, your writing inspires me to NOT GIVE UP. I’m surprised of how hostile the reaction has been. Don’t listen to the haters, stay true to yourself and keep living healthy and happy.

  141. Kristal says:

    I think you are beautiful and I am proud of you. I am overweight but have managed to lose over 100 lbs since the birth of my child. I go to the gym and eat healthy. I have a goal. It didn’t take me a day to put the weight on so it will take a while to take it off. I come from the second highest obesity rate state in the nation. I hope to set an example and not become a statistic. Tell all your critics that the Lord would not want us to let out bodies die slow death to food and lack of exercise. Keep doing what you are doing. You are my new motivation.!!!!!

  142. Deborah says:

    I am sorry there are people who took slight to “What’s your excuse?” I have actually seen the same thing on other sites. Never bothers me any. I am fat and I have no excuses. I feel overwhelmed with it but am trying to take the long hard journey to getting fit. Your photos are an inspiration and hope that many will start their own fitness routine. You are a beautiful lady and sound like you are beautiful on the inside which is more important. I read your post today that you cried. It sounds like you two need more time together like nightly conversations. always stay a friend to each other. That is what will keep the marriage. Passion wanes away except for those special evenings but the friendship is what will keep you together through the hard times. Just holding hands and not talking will do it too. Remember it takes four hugs a day just to sustain and like 8 to feel loved and 12 to grow. whenever you see him, just hug him!

  143. Amanda says:

    I hope all the haters on FB come check out your page! Great story! You look amazing!

  144. johny radio says:

    Good on you, Maria! I know you’re not “fat-shaming”, you’re trying to help. But on the other hand, America SHOULD be ashamed for being the most obese country in the world.

  145. Dori says:

    Maria, I think your total story is an inspiration to all women of all ages. It is refreshing to hear a real story about weight gain, inner battles to get in shape and yes, honest talk about having stretch marks.
    Thanks so much for keeping it real :)

  146. Bradon says:

    I am a stay at home mother of two and I am not happy with my body. This picture is soooooooooooooo inspirational!

  147. Clive says:

    I’m not sure that I have ever read anything quite as spectacularly shallow as the contects of this website.

    Maria, you have take the concept of ‘narcissism’ to a whole new level. Well done.

  148. Grace says:

    Girlfriend, YOU ROCK!! Thank you for your story of inspiration. I have 2 little ones and several months ago, started eating clean and working out. By summer beach season, I looked better than I did at 18! Then the snippy comments, the dagger looks, the “why do you feel you have to be so thin? what do you have to prove?” comments started. Sadly women were the biggest critics. The guys all cheered me on (big surprise! ha!). I let it get to me and started falling off the wagon a bit for a few weeks now, been putting on some pounds. Then I came across your story on Today and decided that I wasn’t going to let a bunch of haters stop me from my goals. There are 2 types of people in life – those who do, and those who hate those who do. Thank you for your courage to share your story. P.S. – to all the naysayers out there, I did it without a trainer, I do not have time to go to the gym with 2 little ones and a husband who travels constantly for work, I do not have a babysitter or housekeeper, I read up as much as I could on nutrition and I worked out using exercise DVDs at 10PM after everyone’s gone to bed and I finished cleaning the house or at 6AM before everyone woke up. It wasn’t easy but you know what they say about things that worth having…

  149. Audrey says:

    I read about what happened on facebook after you posted you “what is you excuse?” photo. It is terrible that you have to defend yourself for being fit. Nike sends out messages like this to market their products to motivate people to work out and lead healthy lifestyles all the time. Why can’t you stand up for what you believe in…fitness! I have heard from so many young mothers about how hard it is to stay in shape after you have a had a baby. So many simply accept that and don’t work to do anything about it. You set a great example that it can be done and you can look great if you put in the effort behind it. Thank you for being a great role model and keep up the amazing work!!!

  150. Angela says:

    Hi! My friend pointed me to your site, and after reading your journey, I swear you told mine as well! I was 145 lbs when I met my husband, went down to my comfortable weight of 120 until having my first son. I only gained about 46 lbs, but lost it all within the first 3 months. I competed in a bikini competition (at a fitness competition) 8 months after my son’s birth at a weight of 114 and binged for a week because I was so deprived. I’m healthy and 125 again, so that’s great. I just wanted to tell you to keep it up because there is a lot of negativity out there coming from very insecure individuals who do not like people like you or me making them look like they have no excuses. There really is no excuse. I competed with amazing women who had torn hamstrings, lumbar injuries, ACL injuries, and the list goes on. Seriously, you rock and don’t let the negative, hateful people keep you from inspiring the ones who need you to motivate them!
    – Angela

  151. Stacey says:

    I do not think you were trying to offend anyone and I found your story inspirational.

  152. Katie L says:

    Maria – thank you. I’m 41 with 3 little ones, and I struggle with my body composition every day. I’ve bounced up and down throughout my life, and when I’m over 170, I’m prediabetic. After a hit at 145 about 18 months ago, I found myself back at 167 last month. I eat really clean, no processed foods, no starchy carbs, eggs from backyard chickens, good meats and fresh veggies -many from my own garden. I’m off the sweeteners and sodas too, but dangit, I just can’t move the needle, and I know that I just have to get MOVING, and I need to lift. No time for moving has been my excuse, and I’ve known I need to push past that. My husband is a powerlifting ex-Marine, and we have everything we need here in our home. My excuses end today. You have motivated me sister – thank you again!

  153. Nichole says:

    I think you are truly an inspiration. I always can find an excuse as to why I don’t work out more or eat healthy. It really just comes down to lack of motivation/laziness. I am 30 years old with 4 daughters ages 10, 6, 4 and 2. I want to be healthier and in great shape but I don’t know how to push myself to do it. I’m hoping that finding your page and reading what all you have to share will help. I think it is crazy all the negative feedback your photo has gotten. I think it is awesome what you have accomplished and anyone that wants it bad enough can also accomplish it.

  154. Anna Durocher says:

    I saw you in the news….good job!
    You are an inspiration!

  155. ba ba says:

    Thick is better and sexier :)
    I would have to agree with others

    justaguyu October 14, 2013 at 11:19 pm
    “You look much hotter in that Hawaii 2008 pic”

  156. Tony says:

    I think you look great and this site should motivate others to get out and try to be healthy! No everyone can’t look like you because they aren’t all built like you. I don’t think it distorts anyone’s body image because we have to all understand, different races, family histories, etc. won’t allow everyone to look like a swimsuit model nor do I want to see all women look like swimsuit models! So keep doing what you do! I think the picture is great and inspire your kids to be healthy and active! Great job!!

  157. Bella says:

    Am I the only one who thinks that you looked best in your “fattest” picture(on the beach)? I don’t see any extra weight, everything is on the right place and you looks healthy and feminine.

    • Stacey says:

      I agree, not that she necessarily looked her absolute best in the 2008 bikini photo but she did NOT look fat whatsoever! She doesn’t look fat in any of her supposed “bad” pics. I’d be more inspired if she actually was overweight at some point. Judging by her pics she was always beautiful.

  158. White says:

    Excuse? I am poor and cannot afford to go to a gym….my kids need to eat more that I need to look fabulous! I have a medical condition that is making my vertebrae in my spine slowly fuse together…if I take even a long walk down the road I end up in pain for days afterwards!! I ended in the hospital for over a week just for “pain control”. So here I sit in limbo…wanting to look wonderful and feel good about myself but cant do a damn thing about it!! This is my “excuse”….so if you don’t like what I look like…don’t look!

    • Nicole says:

      I live on less than $1200 a month with two kids, a mortgage and car payments, life/medical/car insurances and I don’t take a handout from the government, so I know what it is to not have much money. You don’t need to go to the gym to be fit and it’s really inexpensive to buy healthy food (I usually do frozen vegs and fruits because they last longer).
      Also, I’m sure she is directing her “no excuse” attitude at those who use their children and work schedules as excuses, not medical issues. “It’s too hard I have 1,2,3 (whatever) young children and work 30,40,50(whatever) hours per week.” Her point is, it can be done. You on the other hand need to consult a doctor (as anyone starting a new fitness regiment should.) You don’t have to have six-pack abs to be healthy. Don’t attack her because she is healthy enough to workout when you aren’t. It’s not her fault. I find her to be inspirational, because lack of money and kids and work were my excuses. But I can’t use them as excuses, like so many people do and that’s her point.

    • Bruce says:

      I see that you have a medical condition that limits, or prevents you from working out, but perhaps there are exercises you are able to do, that can benefit you. If you are not able to do any exercise, you are an exception to the rule. Most people can do exercise, but some choose not to.

      Choice of food is also an important element in our body condition. Reading the ingredients in foods, and understanding which ingredients to avoid can make a huge difference. Basically avoiding or limiting processed foods will help. Taking foods that increase your metabolism, such as green tea is good. Reducing sugar and salt intake is important.

      Focus on what you can do.

    • Jackie says:

      I also have the same condition and have had hospital stays for pain control!! I did in fact almost weighted 300 lbs after my last hospital 3 years!! Work out slowly and eat small healthy meals throughout the day…and don’t deprive yourself of something you are craving…just don’t eat the whole package of “bad” food! I also say if you don’t like what you are looking at don’t look!! I have lost over 120 lbs since that day and still going! Not everyone can stay looking like she looks we are ALL different…Good luck and stay strong my friend!

  159. Madison says:

    I NEVER write messages to people I don’t know (or probably too busy to read them) but I saw your story on the TODAY show clip and I think the anchor that disagrees with your picture is out of her mind. She is just another person making another excuse for obese people. Nothing stands in the way of a healthy life and lifestyle besides yourself. There are ALWAYS ways to be healthy and get out there and be in shape. I think you captioned the picture perfectly with “what’s your excuse?” People are only pissed about it because YOU’RE RIGHT. I don’t think you have any sort of unfair advantage for looking as amazing as you do because you clearly work your ass off for it; whether it is your job or not. The internet is never-ending and if people really, really wanted to change how they look then they could. You don’t need money for a gym- work out in your living room, eat better, stop going to McDonald’s, etc, etc. I have a two year old and I by no means look as good as I used to BUT that is because I choose not to do anything about it. All I would need is some time in the gym, and me not going, is on ME, not YOU. People are so quick to place their insecurities and blame on others.The reason our country, including little children, are so obese is because NO ONE will tell the truth. No one is fat because of someone else’s choices. I am SO GLAD you responded to critics and DID NOT apologize for your picture. Please continue to do what you do and stand by your picture and your lifestyle because there are NO excuses and if more people were like you, maybe obesity wouldn’t be such a huge problem. Congratulations on all of your success and I wish you could be MY trainer!

  160. Elle says:

    You are a true inspiration and source of encouragement, Maria! To those with negative comments, I believe that one of the main takeaways is to be healthy, while also having a beautiful spirit on the inside and never giving up in anything that you do. While this may not always come in the same form or fashion, it is the effort and determination that counts.

  161. Coleen McCrea Katz says:

    Ms. Kang, you do not walk in my shoes nor do I walk in yours. Do not judge me! What is my “excuse” 2 herniated discs and a recent major car accident come to mind. But I will leave that to the side. There are many, MANY young mothers who do not have the time and may not have the mental capacity (i.e. postpartum depression) to workout an hour a day or more. They may not have access to a gym nor the finances to join one. They may not have the time to get to one because they need to work one or two jobs to feed their family. They may not have the support of a spouse or anyone else to watch their children so that they can go to said gym. I am 53 years old, far older than you my dear. I have recently lost 20 pounds and have many more to go. I have gained these pounds due to mental health issue such as depression and due to my physical limitations. But I am overcoming both of those little by little. It’s a long road, a marathon and not a sprint. The beauty and the joy is in the journey and not the destination.

    • Nanna says:

      Are you serious? Staying healthy is the best financial choice you can make. Exercise doesn’t require a gym, one can exercise at home, with your kids even. Exercise and healthy diet improves also one’s mental capasity because they’re not that tired all the time. Not every fat woman with kids suffer from mental issues or lack of money. And if they did, it’s still not an excuse to live a unhealthy life, healthy lifestyle is even more important then.
      I’m sorry that you gained weight and lost your health. But you’re working on it right? No excuses anymore? You have found a way to live a healthy life with your physical limitations? And that’s what it’s all about. Finding your own way to do it with all the things happening to you. No one has a perfect life or optimal life situation. But that’s not a reason not to try.

  162. LGreg says:

    I was very glad to see your story on yahoo today–usually worthless stuff–but your story is inspiring! Ignore all the hateful, jealous, whining and keep on keeping on! I love the pregnant tummy photos and of course the ‘after’ shots. Keep putting out the word that it’s our choices we make- food, inactivity, etc that keep us where we are, and that we CAN change what we’ve done in the past. (I was overweight my second and third pregnancies and afterward but that was ONLY due to my choices, and I applaud your hard work and the hard work of others like you) Keep encouraging others like me, that it’s choices, choices, choices. Thank You! Thank You!

  163. Anne says:

    Maria, I think you’re so inspirational. I just came across your “Whats Your Excuse” picture on Facebook after a local radio station posted it, and some of the comments disgusted me. I think what you do is great, and while I do workout and take care of myself, seeing what you’ve been able to accomplish has given me an extra boost. Thanks for showing me whats possible with hard work and determination!

  164. Michelle says:

    Thanks for the motivation!!! You look amazing and I know your story help many. I don’t understand the mean comments, I looked at this photo as inspiration. Don’t listen to those who don’t want to put in the time to help themselves be healthy. Thanks again.

  165. blkwdw2963 says:

    Good for you! I’m a mother of 3 also, but I’m 10 years older. The only excuse I had was being lazy. I had to change my ways to make my life better. After working out for over a year, running and doing Cross Fit, I’ve lost 15 pounds. I went from being 140lbs down to 125lbs. It takes determination, a lot of it. I think of it this way, I DON’T JUST WANT TO BE A PRETTY FACE, I WANT TO BE THE WHOLE PACKAGE! I don’t want people to say “she’s pretty but…” Though I couldn’t care less for what people think about me, I am a little conceited (if not a lot) to know whether or not they think I’m HOT and at my age, I welcome that. And NO people, I don’t have low self-esteem…if you only knew.
    Mabuhay!

  166. Grace says:

    Maria,
    I only have one child and I make so many excuses… You are absolutely right! There are no excuses! Good, glad you’re not apologizing~ you should get an apology~
    Thank you for inspiring me~

  167. Jaclyn says:

    You are an inspiration. Thanks for posting the picture, because of that, I saw your story on GMA, and came across your blog. Thanks for being you, and showing that after you have kids, you can get back in shape:)

    Jackie, Boston, Ma

    forget about the negative people. they are envious and jealous.

  168. Jenni says:

    I’m curious about a couple of your pics…the one in Hawaii says December 2008 but you don’t look pregnant, because the one right below it says January 2009 after giving birth?
    I’m just checking if you had your dates wrong, cuz it would really suck if you are making this up and lying to people. It is nice to be an inspiration and motivational, but horrible if you are making it all up to make others feel bad about themselves.

    • Michelle says:

      I noticed that as well but if you look through her blog entries, you will find that it is just an error. The bikini pic was actually from January 2008 before she was pregnant.

      @Maria, like others on here I found your site simply thru the fuss that has been made about it on social media but found absolutely nothing wrong with your pic myself. You should be proud of your accomplishments and I agree that it is inspirational and not bullying. Unfortunately, our society has become obsessed with finding a place to blame failure instead of taking accountability. Too many people choose to remain in the victim mode instead of taking control of the situation and making a change. I am not proud of my current fitness level but I know that it is a result of my own poor choices. I accept responsibility and know that I am capable of changing it. Thank you for being an encouragement to others!

  169. Gigi says:

    Just saw your picture on Good Morning America and had to look you up. YOU LOOK AMAZING! Why on earth is your photo “controversial”? You got here through hard work and dedication, remember that people? Maybe we all forgot what that was when we wanted the quick fix to make us thin, the “magic pill” to stop us from eating , or how about not knowing why we can’t lose weight while we sit on the couch and watch trash tv all day. Come on people, praise this woman! She’s strong, beautiful and dedicated to her family and herself. I for one think you are BEAUTIFUL, keep up the wonderful journey.

  170. RLB says:

    Maria, you are a great inspiration. I am 32 years old with 3 children. I am overweight, and its nobody’s fault but my own. No more excuses! I want to be fit and fab!

  171. Annie says:

    I admire you and how much you inspire many women experiencing similar struggles with their weight. I am one of them. Thank you for sharing your life and passion for fitness and staying healthy! Best wishes and continued success with your goals :-)

  172. Karine Tran says:

    Maria! I think your awesome! Reading that article about your “controversial” photo and looking at your blog, I decided to say that you are AWESOME! Your husband is also so handsome! But yes, I admire your character to stand strong when so much negative comments are attacking you. You are right, its their fault to see your image in such a cynical way, when your picture was out of encouragement for others. Your awesome, stay that way.

  173. dave says:

    thank you! and, you’re awesome!!

  174. Tina Maghoney says:

    Julia, sad that you failed to read about her struggle with bulimia and other obstacles that she too had to overcome….just like the next woman!and in case you were unaware, this type of photo is very commonly found in fitness magazines and within the fitness culture. I too have great genetics and I will tell you right now it takes major discipline, clean eating, constant training and constant awareness of everything that goes into your mouth to be able to look like this. I have never been able to get to this point so with or without genetics you can stop feeling sorry for yourself and realize that everyone has to work hard to achieve the goals they set for themself.

  175. Tina Maghoney says:

    Sarah, so does that mean that someone that has a disability or an inability to run is justified for condemning you and your running stats? You need to realize that everyone is not created equal and look to her photo as a guide for inspiration not something to try and replicate in its entirety. Stop feeling sorry for yourself and set small goals that make you happy. And if you cannot find the goals that make you happy, then the problem is much deeper then this picture.

  176. Devon says:

    Editing Note: your pics

    Taken during our first trip to Hawaii together, December 2008 – you were NOT pregnant in this pic,

    With our first son, just a month after he was born in January 2009. – this is just a month later and i would guess this date is correct :)

    BTW…. you look great

  177. sarah says:

    You are inspiring, especially after seeing your weight struggles. I think people should see this as motivation. You have a beautiful family. I applaud your bravery for taking a stand for what you believe in.

  178. Toni says:

    Maria you are an inspiration. Do not let envious people shame you into feeling bad for meeting your health and fitness goals. As a fellow fitness enthusiast I have lost 30lbs this year and changed my eating habits and my body as a whole. I am healthier and happier. Hopefully I will enter into my first bikini competition next year. You aren’t half naked in your pics. You look amazing. Envy is a bitter emotion and most people are simply envious haters.

  179. Julia T says:

    You don’t need to be half naked to post something motivational. True, it is God who gave us this masterpiece to work with and sculpt. However, it’s exuding the wrong idea that all women need to look like Maria or a prototype of her lean physique. It doesn’t take into account everyone’s personal situation and that not everyone is built in the same manner or responds to exercise/diet in quite the same way. Although I will say, Maria looks fabulous and I’m sure she’s a wonderful person inside and out. There should be more emphasis on a person’s character rather than the idolizing of the physical body – we get enough of sexual objectification of females in our culture, where eating disorders, poor body image, low self-esteem plague our youth – consequently, our young girls grow up into adults with the wrong idea of their intrinsic and God-given worth. Whether you admit it or not, this type of image is a factor in diminishing the more admirable attributes of a female…Honesty, virtue, loyalty, and other qualities that build a person on the inside should be something that must be cultivated far more than anything else in society. Physical beauty is transient, but those aforementioned qualities are the invaluable components of a person’s foundation.

    • Jackson Leavans says:

      Sounds like you are one of the overweight people that make excuses, good on you.

      Better on Maria for getting the body she wanted. You trying to objectify and dilute her progress with valid comments of “honesty, virtue, loyalty” tells me that you are just another hater. I agree that those are all excellent qualities that a woman should possess, but your dismissal of her hard work and discipline is childish and insecure.

      • Shaun says:

        I agree with Jackson. I was one of the kids that was made fun of when i was a child even to early adulthood. Ive been currently working out since 2005 and It was hardwork, commitment, and discipline. Even if her kids were not in the picture i think she is still worthy of showing off what shes had to work so hard for. Honestly, can you name a mother with three children looking like that? I dont think there is very many in this day and age.

        why dont people get on the people that are obese, claiming they are handicap, and parking in the only handicap parking space. Give the handicap space to a person who lost his arm or leg fighting for our country. Give it to the blind man or a person with cancer.

        sorry Julia T , but i agree women should be prideful of everything brains, beauty, and soul.

    • Madison says:

      This has absolutely nothing to do with being sexual…did you not read her story? This is about being HEALTHY. H-E-A-L-T-H-Y. She isn’t telling you to look exactly like her she is simply sharing her story and struggles and telling women they CAN do it and be healthy. This isn’t so men look at her and think “ooh baby” this is to empower women and change the thought that being fat and obese is acceptable- it isn’t- because it leads to disease and death. Stop making this about sex because she’s wearing what she’s wearing- she’s a trainer- that is a common outfit! Get your head out of the clouds and realize this is about health and life and not sex. You wanna talk about virtue and inner-beauty then read the bible? She isn’t a pastor she’s a fitness trainer.

    • Luke Madrigal says:

      I appreciate your discomfort with a focus on one’s physical features, and the objectification that sometimes leads to. However, in this case, the physical features offer insight into the person’s character – discipline, self denial, sacrifice. And the argument cannot be made without showing the results.

      Is low self esteem a problem of our youth today? Absolutely. But it isn’t because they don’t think they are good looking; I believe it’s because they’ve never learned to deny themselves, to refuse immediate gratification. Yes, they have God given worth – but if one has no discipline and one is unable to control oneself, then one feels poorly about oneself.

  180. Jane says:

    Thank you for sharing! I’m sorry to hear that you’re receiving a lot of negative feedback on your photo, but I really appreciate your vulnerability and showing your personal journey of growth. We should all support each other, and it’s a shame that so many people don’t do so.

  181. Eddie says:

    Your story is incredible, as is your physical beauty, which is only surpassed by your inner beauty and positive attitude. Please don’t let the jealous people with negative comments phase you.

  182. s.tan says:

    Maria, your story is ever so inspiring and extremley relatable. Especially being that we are of the same ethnicity and what appears to be the same
    build. Though i only have one son, whom is two- as a working mom who commutes to work, diet has been my toughest challenge… in all honestly it’s been my life challenge.
    What do you recommend is the best place to start, to make an easy life style change to a healthier mom and wife?

  183. Heidi says:

    I saw that people were giving your grief for your pic of you looking amazing with your 3 sons. I wanted to say that you look great and are asking a valid question!. I had 150 pounds to lose and am down 51 and have 99 to go and see your progression as an inspiration! Do not let people make you feel bad for asking an honest question, “What’s your excuse?” Mine was that it didn’t matter since I had a great life and good health, but then I got pregnant and that is what launched me into seeking a healthy weight and body. You don’t see a lot of elderly obese people because they don’t last that long, I want to be around for my children and wonderful husband. “What is your excuse?” I don’t have one anymore!

  184. Rain says:

    I just saw your story on “Extra” and am very sorry to hear you have received criticism and people have misconstrued your intentions. I am a mother of a 17-month old child. I gained 40 lbs with my pregnancy (doctor recommended weight gain) and experienced surprising difficulty losing my midsection despite exercising throughout my pregnancy. I have maintained a weight loss of 38 lbs, but have diastisis recti which has been difficult to address. I have always had the benefit of a petite frame and athletic background, but diet has been my downfall. I found your story and dedication to healthy living and fitness inspiring. You posed a challenge to the moms of America and I for one gladly accept it! Your candor and success are appreciated and inspire me to put down the donut and accept culpability for how I treat my body. I wish you and your family well and will bookmark your site! Blessings!

  185. Marilou says:

    Yahoo brought me here :-) all I can say is: Maria, you are an inspiration! God bless you in this healthy journey and ‘just do it!’

  186. Ronnie Townsend says:

    Just a quick note of encouragement to keep doin what ya doin. All us fitness warriors are with you to the end. Your story SHOULD inspire people that it can be done. I tell family and friends who struggle with body and weight issues all the time. You just have to find what works for YOUR body and the results will come. Don’t go to the gym with a buddy and do his/her workout. Try everything until you stimulate YOUR body the way it wants to be worked. Same goes for diet and nutrition. No two human beings are the same. So no two fitness solutions are the same. A good trainer will design a regimen that is diverse enough that you will see the results you want and will discontinue that which doesn’t work for you. I absolutely HATE seeing people paying good money to a personal trainer and not getting any results because the trainer lacks the breadth of knowledge to get them there and just take them through cookie cutter workouts.

    P.S. you were pretty hot at 150 pounds so I see where some of the ladies might feel like you had an unfair advantage! ;-)

  187. hugh says:

    Hello Maria,
    all the best to you, forget about those foolish haters. There are very few valid excuses that one can have for letting their body go. Most of us in the first world myself included consciously decide to put other things ahead of our health and in the end pay the price; I am now 20 lbs over my ideal weight ( fat me )

    When I was in my mid forties I had a six pack, felt great and was on a natural high, Your story has given me a good kick in the ass and I do hope that other feel that kick also and do something about their burgeoning waist lines.
    H

    Just do it

  188. Bukola says:

    Hi Maria. Im Bukola from Nigeria, West Africa. Just checked up your page after reading about u in Yahoo. U are so great. Wish u and ur family d best. Pls keep up with d great work in health and keeping your family together. Couldn’t stop reading all your posts and going thru your pictures. U are really inspiring. Never mind the haters. U are doing great.

  189. I read that you were getting lots of negative comments on your ‘what’s your excuse poster’, so I thought I’d chime in – you look amazing! Healthy, fit, and setting a great example for your kids to have a life full of fitness and other goals reached. For that matter, you’re setting a great example for us all. Great job!

  190. Fred says:

    I’d hit it!

  191. Nicole says:

    Hi Maria – I just read the article about you on Yahoo. I wanted to take a minute to tell you that I think you are a beautiful mother and an inspiration to all women. There are so many people out there that only make excuses for why they can not do something. You can do whatever you put your head to. I am 5’4 and 127 lbs and I love working out. Its my happy place. I started working out with a trainer this morning so I can get my body in the best shape before my husband and I start trying for kids in January. I want to feel my absolute best so that when my body starts changing, due to pregnancy, I can keep my happy and know that I will get my sexy back after baby. Seeing your picture with three beautiful boys is proof to me that I WILL get my sexy back. It baffles me how people take so much time to say such hateful things and think so negatively. Did mom’s stop teaching their children that if you do not have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all. I know it must be hard to hear those negative comments, but I also think you know how amazing you are and you will not let those comments bring you down. I wish you and your family all the best! Keep up the great work and continue to inspire other women. When ever you are climbing to the top there are always going to be people trying to tear you down. DON’T LET THEM!

  192. T.Le says:

    Thank you so much for inspiring me and all of the people out there, that we too can make a difference and look amazing like you! Don’t let any hater bring you down and stop you from wanting to do the things you enjoy and love most. Because they’re jealous of how incredible you become. They hate themselves so much that the only things they can do is make others unhappily . Keep it up and keep moving on.

  193. Charissa Kay says:

    Hey Maria! I saw your story on yahoo. You are amazing and I agree with what you are saying about excuses. I used to have workout buddies but it got to the point of not relying on my workout buddies because most will not come to the gym with excuse of monthly cycle, not feeling well, or whatever their reason is. I got used to working out alone and I feel wonderful after workout. You are a inspiration and you go girl!!

  194. Rob says:

    Hello Maria,

    People should be bowing down to you – you are inspiring!
    I have 15-17 workouts a week as well as work full-time; I know what dedication it takes to reach your level of fitness.

    Best Wishes,

    Rob

  195. L says:

    I don’t know if you respond to comments but I do have a question. You look fantastic and I know for me it is possible to look like that again some day. I have 2 kids, the youngest is just under 5 months. I was working out but started to lose my milk. Did you breastfeeding or use formula? If you did breastfeed, what kind of foods and how often do you eat? I’m still struggling to find a balance and I lack the energy to cook all the time.

  196. Brenda Miller says:

    Maria – You look amazing and beautiful.. You have a beautiful family and there is nothing wrong with wanting to be fit too. You are a positive role model and people just don’t believe they can look as great as you. It’s hard work to get fit and stay fit.. and people can do it with a family and work. Continue to be the positive LOOK of fitness!!

  197. shelley says:

    How come you were not pregnant in Hawaii in December of 08, yet you have a picture of your daughter at a month old in January of 09??

  198. William says:

    Maria,
    You are beautiful inside and out. May God bless in all that you do.
    William

  199. Jennifer says:

    Yeah so your picture with the title “What your excuse?” is so hurtful. I’m 5’0″ I have had three kids two of them 19 months apart. Each one I labored with ranging from 9-36 hours. I had c-sections with all three kids. Needless to say unless I have my abdomen completely reconstructed inside and out I will never look anything like you do and even if I have surgery I still won’t look like that ever. So what my excuse? I don’t have thousands of dollars sitting around to have my abdomen fixed. But thanks for reminding me and making me feel awful.

    • Ute Barg says:

      “Make” you feel awful? No one can do that TO you. Only you can allow it. She did not sit around thinking “how can I best make Jennifer feel terrible? Oh I know, I’ll eat right and exercise and get fit. That’ll do the trick!”. SMH

    • Ana says:

      She didn’t have surgery either. Didn’t you see her loose skin photo. Why does her looking good make you feel awful? You must already feel awful on your own. Don’t use your surgery as an excuse as to why you’re not in good shape. It really has nothing to do with it.

    • Sharon says:

      “So what my excuse? I don’t have thousands of dollars sitting around to have my abdomen fixed. But thanks for reminding me and making me feel awful.”
      Is that excuse who you are? I hope not. I have lots of health issues, I am a good two decades older than her, and I do not see her post as “hurtful”, I see it as inspiring.
      Stop beating yourself up and don’t let your health limitations define who you are. There are loads of folks that are perfectly healthy and will never look like her, because they have a different build. So what? She still is a great success and an inspiration.
      Her message is still a positive one. Do the best you can for you, eat healthy food and get in as much exercise as you can on any given day. Be the best you possible.
      We can all improve our health at least a little, and don’t need to try to look like someone else, just the best we can be as individuals. I leave you with this thought that I often tell myself when I start slipping into stinkin’ thinkin’, “Quit whining and start working”.

    • Luke Madrigal says:

      She had an excuse for gaining weight. So did I – a 75 hr/week job, work travel, 3 kids, house work. I don’t look like I did when I was 18, but it wasn’t about that. It was about getting better than I was. So I decided I was no longer going to accept any excuses, and I wasn’t going to listen to that little voice inside my head that said I would never be as fit as that 18 year old again. And I stopped eating the chips, cut down the food and alcohol intake, put on a pair of running shoes and learned to run.

      I saved money (less food/alcohol, fewer prescription co-pays), didn’t spend much more (no gym needed, a pair of running shoes and a few pairs of padded socks) and lost 20 lbs.

      You want to feel better? Stop making excuses. Those who don’t want to find reasons; those who want to find ways.

    • Drew says:

      Jennifer, grow up!! Seriously? Do what you can, which is EXACTLY what Maria has done and STOP making excuses!!! If you “fee” awful, look in the mirror, you make you feel things, not anyone else!! It’s called projection. Do less projecting or more self introspection and you will stop feeling awful!!!

  200. Lacy says:

    You rock! I turned 35 yesterday and refused to have that birthday at 170#. I’m 5’8″ and I’m happier with myself at 145#. So, near the end of July, I told myself “Here we go!”. I have 3 kids, much older than yours (15, 13 and 9), and delivered a set of twins in February for a friend. I worked my butt of at lunch at the gym for the first 6 weeks and lost 20# paying attention to my intake and drinking TONS of water a day. The last 5# has fluctuated since then. But I’ll take the 20# lost and be happy at 150#. After all, I am a little taller than average. It looks good on me. ;) Keep up the good work. You have done so well!!!

  201. JR says:

    I’m a over weight single dad and going to the gym everyday to work out these issues. I was just complaining to a friend last night that there simply isn’t enough time to do everything. I’m up at 4:30 in the morning and was still going without sitting down at 10:30 last night. I was super frustrated but then read your story this morning. Now I’m able to push myself another day. One day at a time!

  202. Raytonya Hughes says:

    I came across your page, because of today’s article on Yahoo. I want to say that you are the most realistic testimony that I have come across. When I see your jouney, I can relate. I’m in the process of repairing my own metabolic damage and I know that in the near future I’ll be at the healthy/fit place that I’m suppose to be. Thank you for your testimony! You are an inspiration!! God bless you!!!

  203. Chris says:

    Awesome! You’re right there are no excuses. Woman who have children can look fabulous. You’re proff of that and I have other female friends who look amazing and very fit. This news about others being upset because of your photo is unreal. They just don’t understand. You’re husband is a lucky man. Congrats you and your family!!

  204. Phil says:

    In Richard Bachs book, “Illusions”. the Messiahs handbook informs Richard that “He should live his life as if everything he says and does in broadcast around the world, EVEN if it isn’t true.” It’s a quick read and very illuminating.
    I am too on a journey to improve my health. At 65 years and too many years of alcohol and drug use and abuse I quit cold turkey 11+ years ago. I too limit gluten and dairy.
    Thanks for putting yourself out there, you are an inspiration to many and a hopefully those who feel threatened will find their health and happiness too.
    Good luck to your husband and love does conquer all.
    God bless us all.

  205. Vanessa says:

    You look amazing! I am at the turning point in my life where I am starting to learn about proper nutrition and working out. I have fallen for the diet myths my whole life and I will be the first in my immediate family to change all of the bad eating habits I was raised with. I am so sorry that women are so jealous of you that they feel they need to accuse you of being a bully and a bad mom. You are making sure that you are healthy and will be around for your kids and they are criticizing you for that? Some of these negative comments just cracks me up! When I first saw your yahoo article picture I said WOW! I was impressed and motivated. Then I was shocked to read about all the negative backlash you were getting. Those people are just jealous and looking for more excuses and someone to blame to avoid taking responsibility for their own life choices.

  206. Brian says:

    Don’t ever let someone tell you your depriving your family because your staying healthy. In fact it’s just the opposite, you will be the one to have that quality time with your grandchildren and great grandchildren not having to be wheeled around. Stay healthy for them and you, looking good because of it is just one of the perks!

  207. amber says:

    This is so inspiring…I love it….I’m a mom of 4 boys and it made me smile to see you strong and gorgeous with all those cuties crawling around

  208. Angela says:

    Woow you look perfect for having 3 kids wooow,,,,,i need help…..I have one kid and i cant loss my weight…can you be a freinds help me..thnks you

  209. Sirjohn says:

    Hats off to you.
    You GO girl.

  210. Tom says:

    Hi! I think what you are trying to do is good. It’s hard to lose weight, and I never interpreted your picture as negative towards women. Don’t worry about the negative reactions…the message you meant gets thru to many people. The rest don’t matter. Keep up the good work of being a good wife and a good mother. Keep prayer strong in your life, and keep up with the marriage. I have been married for 31 years, and good women are rare diamonds. Keep on shining! :-)

  211. laura says:

    wow! you are an inspiration to all women! I have 3 children myself 2,6,9 and I have to say it is not easy losing the weight. my heaviest was at 180lbs after having my 3 child I had to something I didn’t like my body and wanted my old one back. so I changed my eating habits “Atkins diet” helped me lose 30lbs in 2 months and down to 150lbs but now I’m plateauing and cant lose more. I try to work out but I’m just to lazy and tired. can you give me any pointers? I do stand on my feet for more than 50hrs when I work but I go home I rest or try to go out so I can stay active. once again I congratulate you on your success and showing women that they too can become hot mommas they once were. :)

  212. Robin says:

    I have just been inspired!! From one busy mom to another… thank you!

  213. George says:

    I would totally wear that picture on a t-shirt! Could I? Wish more women were inspired instead of hating on you. They are just haters and haters are going to hate. You are awesome!

  214. Lisa says:

    You inspire me!! What a great attitude!

  215. Sam says:

    Your story is inspiring, screw the haters. You look great and i am just starting to workout again myself.. Not loving it yet. lol. Sam

  216. Marija Tomic says:

    I was curious to view your website after reading about you on yahoo.com and I must say GREAT JOB!!! I gained 85 pounds during my first pregnancy and I think many thought it would never come off but it did. I understand the “hate” comments and those come from people who are insecure about themselves and use every excuse in their book not to take care of themselves. I am truly inspired by your story and keep on doing what your doing and don’t change because of people who will be negative no matter what. God Bless!!!

  217. greg says:

    Maria,
    Read your yahoo interview. To all those whom are negative, tell them it is ok to eat at McDonalds or Burger King or the fast food place of their choice, only walk the six miles or more to and back home and limit themselves to a salad. I have no time for jeolous lazy people. Not everone can exercise to your limit, but everyone can at least walk a bunch each day. Keep up the good work. ( you look good at any weight of your choice)

  218. Maneesh says:

    Very Inspiring, keep up the good work.

  219. mhudson says:

    I know some folks are saying some not so nice things about you but I find that you are a great inspiration!!!! Keep up the great work and all. I’m a senior and though I am not as healthy as I should be, I am working on being better. Thanks for being a reminder that hard work does pay off!!! God Bless…

  220. Ceci says:

    I saw your picture on Yahoo, and had to read the full story, and check out your website. I think it is AMAZING that you’re 32, have 3 young children and look FABULOUS! I’m 31, just had my first baby, and feel disgustingly fat! Congratulations on your hardwork and dedication! You have just inspired me to get off my butt :) and work out!

  221. RICK SKAGGS says:

    you don’t have to make any excuses for your success to the people posting negative comments. You have every right to be proud of yourself and you should be!

  222. Rich says:

    I think that this little lady works very very hard to keep such a beautiful tight body. It just goes to show how lazy most Americans are that are fat. She is one in a million and there needs too be a lot more like her.

  223. Larry says:

    You looked better at 150lbs!!

  224. Sarah says:

    While I understand your idea of motivating people, I feel that it is easy to show your genetically difderent body conparing it to others who may work out more than you and still will NEVER look like that after kids. I am going to use myself as an example and I hope you realize why some people are not just offended, but also hurt by your post as well. First: many of us end up with stretch marks after kids…. A LOT OF THEM! I have two kids and both have caused my skin to stretch soo bad my stomach, from my rib cage straight down the the middle of my vaginal area, look like the US road atlas. That is all, unfortunately, genetics. Second: I am an avid runner as well as incorporating weight training. I run my two kids in a double jogger. Do I look like a runner? Nope. As a matter of gact, unless people know me, they dont believe me. I do half and full marathons. My first full was at about two months with my second kid. Even though I worked out and ran almost all of both my ptegnancies, since having kids I can not get back to how I looked before kids. I out run people who look like you. Instead of you posting pictures of your figure, post pictures of your workout stats!!!!! Prople like you who post pictures like this make people like me cry because I know that without surgery to lose the extra skin I will never look like you. Hopefully you will understand the anger and hurt others feel, though I do not condone rude and negative remarks. So what’s my excuse? I do not have the same great genetics you do. I went from being 5’5 140lbs with a six pack and great musclea all around to going up to 200lbs during pregnancy. My second kid I went up to approx. 230. I am now at 170-175, a size 8 and the more I lose the lower my stomach skin hangs. I really hope this sheds a lot of light on this controversy. I do diet too. I work out a minimum of an hr a day sometimes more. I have about 30lbs more to lose. I am not sure if its going to happen, but I will continue to rin and weight train regardless. Try not to judge people because they aren’t as ripped and lucky as you. They may be the ones who pass you out on the track doing their 10mile run training for their marathon.

    • Maggie says:

      I completely agree with you, Sara. I also worked my behind off ( figuratively), I love to exercise and be outside staying busy , I also “eat clean” ( no sugar, no processed foods, etc) I calorie counted… I did everything and couldn’t lose an ounce and keep it off. I used to be trim with a flat stomach ….* sigh* But, I was diagnosed with Hashimoto’s Disease, Fibromyalgia, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Epstein Barr Virus which is Chronic Mono. I also have Cervical and Thoracic Spinal injuries and, last but not least, Mitral Valve Prolapse that causes Atrial Fibrillation so just when I’m really getting into a good sweat hiking or something else fun I feel like I can’t get enough air to breathe and stabbing chest pain like a heart attack. So, I guess those would be my lame excuses….So no matter how hard I work at it or how much I ‘eat clean’ or restrict calories …I’m over weight because I’m lazy and I do’t *really* try.

    • Beatrice says:

      Sarah, first of all, stretch marks have nothing to do with achieving a fit body. I also have children, have stretch marks, and my once perfect breasts are now in ruins, however, I’m still fit and look far better than most childless women. Secondly, your biggest mistake is that you waste too much time jogging/running. Sure, genes have a lot to do with how our bodies look, but it’s not an excuse to not achieve a great body (maybe not like Maria’s but better than it is now). Women think that doing endless hours of cardio will give them an amazing body like hers, when the whole opposite is true. Not only will you hit a plateau but you’ll actually slow down your metabolism! If you want the best body YOU can possibly have (I’m talking about you yourself not anybody else’s) you have to lift HEAVY weights or use resistance that will challenge your body, and high intensity cardio such as interval training. Sorry but endless hours of useless cardio at a steady pace and lifting little Barbie weights will do NOTHING for your body (from what you posted, I think you prove my point). And running marathons (although admirable) usually just eats away your muscle which is the opposite of what you’re trying to achieve. Thus, the biggest reason MOST people are not fit like Maria, is simply because they are NOT following the right exercise program. Don’t be offended by my comment (as it seems you get offended easily) just try to take my advice or at least learn more about fitness (and actually test it) before posting such negative comments.

    • anonymous says:

      You are an amazing inspiration Maria, don’t let people like Sarah make you feel bad. You are just trying to help and it seems to me you have helped a lot of people and if people want to complain about you but not other supermodels and celebrity moms with toned figures then that’s their choice but it just makes them ignorant. You have worked hard to get where you are, and this dedication proves how good of a mom you are as well. Congratulations! :)

    • Brenda says:

      You do not need any excuses. Nobody should have to provide any excuses and even less after doing everything that you already do. Maria, even though she does not admit it, has the advantages of genetics; Maria is half Philippine therefore that provides her an advantage since Philippine people are thin by nature and other advantage is what you already do, hard work. Maria looks great in the picture and many others look just as great, but she made the mistake of adding: “What’s your excuse”. You will never motivate people if your approach is negative on.

  225. Chelsey says:

    You’re truly an inspiration. I’m an over weight teenager and within the past year have gained 50 pounds due to the Depo Shot. I am determined to look great again and the photo of you with your children has given me the determination that I needed. You’re beautiful. Thank you!

  226. justaguyu says:

    You look much hotter in that Hawaii 2008 pic

  227. Shannon says:

    I am so inspired by you…I have lost about 80lbs and feel better than I ever have not to mention that I’m in the best shape of my life and am now a runner. Thanks for sharing the inspiration.

  228. AL Wondering says:

    Peace be to You Maria,

    Did you know that the eyes expand 15% more when they see something Beautiful? Well, my eyes have expanded much more than that seeing your picture. I will also say you have a Beautiful family and do not pay attention to what folks are saying they are as you say Jealous of Your Beauty!
    God Bless,
    Al
    PS. Thanks also for giving life to those Boys.

  229. Dennis Peters says:

    You must be a small bald fat man who sits in your favorite recliner everyday and does nothing to improve yourself. You just sit there watching endless hours of tv judging everyone else from your chair. How sad.

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