The Vikings practically invented the term “tough guy.” So when Iceland native and London-based personal trainer Svava Sigbertsdottir decided to name her workout The Viking Method, you can assume it’s going to be can’t-move-afterward-I’m-so-sweaty levels of difficult.
The 45-minute session uses a combination of punishing high-intensity anaerobic and aerobic resistance intervals using body weight. While in Toronto with Marshalls, Svava explained to us how to incorporate the principles into your daily workout regimen.
Skip the machines at the gym. “When you do standard gym training, machines and all, you are not getting the best out of your body. You are often training one muscle group while the others do nothing. Working with your body weight mixed with free weights brings fire to your whole body, therefore connecting it and working it in such a functional way – the way it has been designed to move – as a whole."
Don’t forget your core. “Work your core as a connector rather than an isolated area. Try crawling or plank variations where you are moving your limbs. High jumps and balancing exercises are also effective in working your core in a different way.”
Always switch between anaerobic (high-intensity training) and aerobic training (low-intensity cardio). “Imagine a car. You start it, it takes a few seconds and you can feel it using its power to get all systems going. And then once it’s done that, its smooth cruising. What we want to do is constantly fire up that engine and right when it reaching the smoothness, shut it down. Then fire it up again. Constantly making the body use its power and maximum amount of energy, constantly keeping it on its toes. You also have certain muscle fibres that only work quickly and not for a long time and you want to keep on firing them up.”
Let other people motivate you. “We set goals and challenges and have the time of our lives smashing them. My main goal has always been to make people feel good about themselves. To help them realize that they are a true force to be reckoned with.”
Your workout wear can make you work harder. “If you have training gear that you find cool-looking, it does serve as a motivator. You are sweaty and dying, but you have on an outfit that you feel good in, it can make a huge difference. It then becomes fun to shop for the gym, which makes you then want to go to the gym. Nowadays there are so many styles and options, especially with shops like Marshalls, where you get quality-training clothes without breaking the bank.”
Marshalls flower-print leggings, $29.99. Visit marshalls.ca for store locations.