In less than 30 days, I’ll be escaping the cold New York weather and heading to the sunny islands of the Caribbean on the Tom Joyner Fantastic Voyage cruise. I can’t wait! I’m almost ready, but there’s one really big thing I must do: get bikini ready! How many times have we found ourselves in this bind, ladies? Trying to lose those few pounds or just tone up in a short amount of time… and that can be challenging. So I turned to my friend, fitness trainer and real life Gladiator ShaNay Norvell, for some help. Here are some tips for getting fit quick for that upcoming vacation or the sunny days of Spring.

S&LF: We know weight loss is a slow and steady process, but sometimes we need to shed a few pounds quickly. What are a few tips you can give for getting fit quick?

ShaNay Norvell: I will give you my S.U.P.E.R. solution to getting fit quick:

S: Schedule all of the available dates & times that you have to exercise before the cruise or big events. Utilize the morning hours for your first workout of the day. This is the best time to work out and eliminate opportunities for interruption. This will also jump start your metabolism for the day and give you a natural endorphin high. I highly recommend two workouts a day for as many days that you can leading up to the cruise. This allows you to feel like you have double the days you have until the cruise. This also maximizes results.  On the day you do two workouts, make the morning one a full cardio session, 30 – 45 minutes. Make the second workout a resistance training and cardio session.

U: Unique exercise workouts that you enjoy are the best to do when you are trying to accelerate progress. Pick music that you enjoy. Find an interval-based class or train in interval style outdoors. If you are bored, you probably won’t stick to it. Use a trainer that can personalize  a workout just for you to ensure that your needs are met and meet your goals in a healthy and safe way.

 P: Portion control is key when you want to see progress fast. Your hand will become your measuring tool for all food. Your brown rice, sweet potatoes, and any starchy carb should equal the size of your cupped hand. Your hand open flat should be the size of protein/meat, which should be grilled, baked or sauteed. Your green leafy vegetables, broccoli, asparagus, spinach can be the size of both of your hands side by side.

E: Eat frequently! Your first meal should be within one hour of waking or one hour after doing your morning workout. Your meals should be consumed every three hours, which will keep your metabolism high and your body burning fuel efficiently. Eat only food items you can wash. This means no processed foods, breads or pastries for the next 30 days… and beyond.

R: Rest uninterrupted for 7 to 8 hours nightly. This helps your body repair, supports a healthy body and provides energy to execute your workouts.

S&LF: What are the best foods and drinks to eat for weight loss?

ShaNay Norvell:

For breakfast:
Grapefruit, Rice Cereal, Oatmeal, Banana

For lunch/dinner:
Salmon, Asparagus, Broccoli, Green Beans, Spinach, Kale, Lentils, Black Beans, Kidney Beans,Quinoa, Avocados, Blueberries, Pears, Oranges, Almonds, Pine Nuts

Also green tea and water are good drinks.

S&LF: What are the foods and drinks to avoid when trying to lose weight?

ShaNay Norvell: Avoid carbonated drinks, sugar, salt, caffeine, alcohol, flour, dairy and meat. Try eliminating meat for the next 7 days. You will see and feel a difference. If you make it past 7 days, then go for the full 30 days until the cruise.

S&LF: What are your favorite targeted exercises for those parts seen most in a bathing suit (i.e. hips and thighs, abdomen, arms, etc.)?

ShaNay Norvell: Look good naked or in a swim suit with these exercises:

Hips & Thighs – squats, lunges, running stairs

Abdominals – Pilates is awesome for the entire core, abs, obliques, and lower back.

Arms: tricep bench dips and push ups

Back : pull ups

My favorite cardio exercises include jump rope, running, speed walking outdoors, and cardio row machine

About ShaNay Norvell
ShaNay Norvell is global fitness coach recognized across America and abroad as a “no nonsense
expert teaching her clients and students to live healthier lives.”

Norvell is the creator of the Norvell Method, where she teaches clients and her own team members to develop the mind of fitness.The former star of NBC’s “American Gladiator”has a celebrity client list that includes news anchor Soledad O’Brien, producer Dallas Austin, and actor Malik Yoba.