Fitness blogger, soccer wife and new mom Caroline Berg Eriksen has caused a stir online after posting a nearly naked selfie, showing her chiseled stomach, mere days after giving birth.
Eriksen, 26, is the wife of Norwegian Premier League player Lars-Kristian Eriksen and the woman behind the biggest fitness blog in Norway, Fotball Frue. On Nov. 28, just four days after giving birth to her baby girl, Nelia, Eriksen posted an Instagram photo of herself posing in a bra and black underwear. "I feel so empty, and still not... 4 days after birth," she wrote.
The photo has since garnered major attention.
Writer Suzanne Aabel responded to the picture on her blog, questioning if she and Eriksen are even of the same species. Australia's Mama Mia blogger, Rebecca Sparrow, called Eriksen's photo a "disservice."
"This whole situation has become ludicrous," Sparrow wrote. "The competition for women to give birth and then immediately remove any trace from their bodies that they ever carried a child is OBSCENE. There is no other word for it. Actually, it’s more than obscene – this 'Look how hot I still am!' obsession and need for public endorsement."
"Focusing on HOW we look post-baby detracts from how we feel," she continued. "And THAT is what we need to be concerned about with all new mothers. Motherhood is overwhelming on so many levels. We need to shift this goddamn focus back to the mental health of our mothers."
Meanwhile, Cafe Stir blogger Ericka Sóuter defended Eriksen, saying that, as a fitness blogger, it is her job to look good. Critics, she said, may have issues with themselves more than issues with Eriksen, and women should be celebrated regardless of their post-baby size.
Eriksen, who gained 22 pounds during her pregnancy, has defended herself and her body.
“During the pregnancy, people kept telling me that my body will never be the same and I wanted to show everybody that’s not entirely true,” she told ABC News, adding that she has not worked out since giving birth on Nov. 25. “I think all women should be proud of themselves, regardless of how they look after labor."
Eriksen's story comes just weeks after California fitness enthusiast, Maria Kang, made headlines for posting a photo to Facebook showing off her washboard abs. In the pic, the 32-year-old mom posed in a sports bra beside her three young children. She captioned the image "What's your excuse?" and received a flurry of criticism for being a "bully" toward other mothers.