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Elk Grove's Maria Kang, a.k.a 'Fit Mom', is back in the spotlight because her latest image is accused of being 'photoshopped' (Tuesday, March 4, 2014) News10

ELK GROVE - Maria Kang, known to many as 'Fit Mom', is no stranger to controversy.

But it's her latest image that has many people talking.

Critics say her new, "What's your excuse?" picture has been Photoshopped to make her look thinner.

In her new photo, the Elk Grove mother of three is asking the same question that stirred up so much controversy a few months back.

"I think it's a beautiful image," Kang said.

The fitness advocate posted the image on her Facebook fan page. It lists several excuses that many working moms use for not making healthy choices.

Many critics are blasting her photo for being Photoshopped and setting unrealistic expectations for women.

One Facebook comment read, "I have every right to be comfortable with my size 12 and not look like a plastic self-centered Barbie."

Even with all of the backlash, Kang is not taking any punches.

"The fact is that photo is not Photoshopped," Kang said.

She is defending herself and the picture that was professionally taken in January.

"It is absolutely the real me," Kang said. "What we've become accustomed to are images where they've taken inches off a person, and they look longer and taller."

She points to the visible stretch marks she has from giving birth to three children. But she admits the picture was airbrushed.

"When you look at the before and after, you're going to see that there's a little bit of lighting manipulation, if there's anything, it's lighting. But you're not going to see my waist getting thinner or my legs getting thinner," Kang said.

She is proud of the pounds she's been able to shed and not ashamed of her weight. She said those so-called "haters" out there are just making excuses for themselves.

And while negative comments keep piling in, so do ones expressing support, messages like, "My overall inspiration! I wanna be like you Maria!"

Kang said she doesn't mean to create controversy and just wants to make a difference by promoting healthy lifestyles where working moms can advance their careers while staying in shape.

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