Site icon Women Fitness

Celebrity Fitness Trainer Svava Sigbertsdottir Shares Her Inspiring Fitness Journey

Svava Sigbertsdottir

With International Women’s Day just around the corner, we thought of introducing you to one of the most incredible personal trainers. The brains and beauty behind the much talked about, The Viking Method, Svava Sigbertsdottir.

From Crossfit to Pilates, Kickboxing to Yoga, Football to Ballet, HIIT Training to Badminton, being through it all, Svava never found that one ultimate type of training which would give her that tight, lean, toned physique she wanted. Therefore she took the best out of the very effective way the training is done in Iceland and combined it with her life long experience and education and created The Viking Method.

Know the fitness story of Nicole Scherzinger’s Trainer Svava Sigbertsdottir  as she catches up with Namita Nayyar, President Women Fitness.

Ms. Namita Nayyar:

You are one of the most successful Celebrity Fitness Trainer and the founder of the intense training programme The Viking Method. Walk us through your incredible fitness journey and tell us how it all began?

Ms. Svava Sigbertsdottir:

I have been training my whole life, it has always been a part of me. Then, 12 years ago, I moved to London to study musical Theatre. But when I finished the BA, I didn’t want to (nor could ) tour, I didn’t want to as I am a single mum and also, I just didn’t feel it fit me. I wanted to work more with people and do different type of training; closer to what I had being doing myself throughout my life and I was developing by myself. When I was studying, we used to dance hours ever day. Ballet, contemporary, jazz ballet, tap, but it didn’t give me that tight, lean, athletic body nor the power, strength and agility that I wanted.

So I started to develop my own method; I took the best out of my roots from Iceland and combined with my training and created the Viking Method, using me as my first client. I Completely changed inside out, I became lean, toned with long muscles full of power and strength. On the inside as well.  When I set up my company I had nothing, but I had time. So I spend all my time first making the website and then getting it known. Which is the toughest part. That takes all your time and energy. At the same time as I was doing classes, pop-ups, training press and so on to get my method out there, I set my online training. I wanted people to be able to have a quality program and great tools without the heavy cost of a personal trainer or a gym. All the hard work really paid off. Now, I have people all around the world doing my method and constantly receive emails about how much better people feel, how more confident they are, how fitter they have become. And nothing brings me more joy than that.

Ms. Namita Nayyar:

What are the Top 5 Fitness Facts about The Viking Method, that make it different and effective?

Ms. Svava Sigbertsdottir:

1. Most fitness methods, trainers, the media and so on, are leaving out the most important part. Your mentality. Your being. They approach it from the wrong starting point. They approach it from the outside in. And it doesn’t work.

The approach needs to be from the inside out. And that is what the Viking Method does. The Viking Method is three folded. It is about your being and your mentality, your training, your nutrition.

All content on this site is copyright of Women Fitness and no part of any article found on this site may be reproduced without an express permission and highlighted, do follow link crediting or preferably the original page as the source. This interview is exclusive and taken by Namita Nayyar President and should not be reproduced, copied or hosted in part or full anywhere without an express permission.

All Written Content Copyright © 2017 Women Fitness

2. In the Viking Method we do not do Before & After photos.

– Before & After pictures is what everybody does. And for me, it is definitely not a true indicator of your progress. That is why, in the Viking Method we do Before & After performances; The Viking Challenge: the First day of your program you do a specific Viking Challenge for a certain time and note it down. Then you do your program and on the last day, you repeat the Challenge.

To do these performances and then see how much more you can do, is amazing. It gives such a feeling of accomplishment. You realize you can do so much more than you thought you were capable of.  Photos do not show this change and they carry with them such a down effect. You are happy for a second and then you start seeing all the things that still need changing. And then someone comments negatively on your looks and you feel crushed. Both because you are coming from a place of lacking; that you need to change, not just add to you, but to get rid of certain parts and also because you put so much importance on a thing that is vulnerable to other peoples opinion; it is subjective. But what you do, is not subjective.

No one can disagree or change what you did. You did it! You didn’t give up, you kept on going, you made yourself more powerful. You added more greatness to you. And no one can take that away from you. Don’t get me wrong, of course we all want to look our best. But that should not consume us and be the value of our being. Because do you know what? Then you will never win. There is always some other “flaw” that you see that needs improvement, there is always someone that you feel has a better body than you have now, there will then always be validation from others needed.  This is why we are putting the focus on what you do. On who you are. So better that. That has no negative affects. Smash every workout. Do the Before & After performances. See how much YOU improve. That is an achievement that is not open to discussion. You earned it. You own it. And the benefits are for your whole being. Looks included but more importantly, the rest and the best of you. This is where you always win. And I promise you, it will change you forever.

3. Quality over quantity. – No jumping jacks, no crunches.

– In the Viking Method there are no time fillers; exercises only done for the sake of doing something and do not add much to you.  Every exercise is there because its highly beneficial for you to do. Same with exercises that create more damage than good, like core crunches. They are out. It is so important that you know what you are doing, technically know how to do each exercise and why you are doing it, what muscles you are using, your posture during the exercise, your starting point and your end point. Never just do the movement. Actively do it. By that I mean consciously engage your muscles. Be connected to your body the whole time you are training. It is psychosomatic.

You recruit more muscle fibers by thinking about it and actively doing so instead of just doing the movement with no presence. When you train like that, you get more out of fewer reps. And let me tell you, the average person that keeps a plank for 7 minutes, is not actively engaging their core muscles throughout as they do not last that long. Lower back and hip flexors have taken over, making the exercise not beneficial anymore. Don’t confuse longevity with job well done. The length doesn’t matter, that you do the exercise properly is what matters.

And that is what we do in the Viking Method.

4. The Viking Method promotes optimal hormonal balance.

We train and diet with our hormones in mind.

One of the reason women tend to have more fat than men is because women have much more of estrogen receptors than men have. Estrogen is crucial for you, but too much of estrogen ( and too little ) brings an imbalance that has huge negative effect.

The relationship between estrogen and fat is a close one. Fat has a very big part in the hormonal system; one of its jobs is to produce estrogen. Which means that the more fat you will have , the more estrogen you will have.

Too much estrogen can slow down your metabolism and cause weight gain; can block out the thyroid and prevent fat being oxidized.

When estrogen is in balance it works with you.  In theory, when estrogen is in balance, it is not harder for women to loose weight than men, but as soon as weight is gained, estrogen goes up and then it does get harder.

Men also have more of the lean tissue building hormones, therefore it is harder for women to “tone up”. The more muscles you have, the more energy you use which is why resistance training is very important for weight loss. As women have less, they do need to watch that they do incorporate resistance training into their program and that the weights are that heavy that the last few reps are a struggle. They should be. If they are not, up your weights.

When you train, you want to activate your fat burning hormones. In order for that to happen, you must do certain things. And not do certain things.

The right nutrition is a must as well along with the right timing of your macros.

5. Core is used with every exercise.

– In the Viking Method there are no lying core crunches, no fast core bicycles or throwing your legs aimlessly down and up. I work the core as the center of your body. As the connector, as the clue that keeps you together. You will not be going through your program and only focusing on your core for the last 5 minutes. You will use it in every exercise. Your core is your power house. First thing you always need to do is engaging your core and in order to force you to focus on it, the Viking Method is filled with balancing, stability, lateral movement, kicking, explosive exercises. Using your core this way, will make it extremely strong. And not just that it will improve your performance in every way. You will run faster, jump higher, your resistance training will bring greater results and all tasks in daily life will be easier. You will be tighter, more together, your whole posture and the way you move will be completely different.


Ms. Namita Nayyar:

What exercises comprise your fitness regime or workout routine?

Ms. Svava Sigbertsdottir:

We train with no machines. We use free weights and our own body weight; crawling, pushing, pulling, rotating, kicking, huge amount of Plyometric exercises. In the Viking Method we focus on the fast twitch muscles fibres that are the most powerful ones but fatigue quickly.

I do specific exercises that I pair in a certain way; a high intensity functional exercise followed by a more of a static functional exercise, done within a certain time frame or certain amount of reps. This forces you to utilize more energy and oxygen and at the same time create more lean tissue as well as activate the growth hormone, king hormone of fat burning. The growth hormone can only be activated through high intensity training. Training that you do “in the fat burning zone, where you can always hold up a conversation” is not good enough.

You should not be able to utter a word while you are training.  This training creates an after burn that is very beneficial. It raises your metabolic rate, meaning you will be burning more energy long after you stopped training. In order to keep this higher rate up, never go longer than 48 hours in between sessions, as after that time it will start to drop.

In the Viking Method programs, there is a huge importance placed on the core. Of working it in the most efficient way. Throughout your training. Not just for the last 5 minutes where you do exercises that mostly are aggravating your hip flexors and tightening your lower back.

Your core is the connector, it is your source of power and we work it in that way. In every single exercise. Balance exercises is another important component; they benefit your neuro-muscular co-ordination, strengthen your joints and ligaments and improve your core strength as well.

Ms. Namita Nayyar:

Do you take some special diet or have a strict menu that you follow to remain healthy and physically fit?

Ms. Svava Sigbertsdottir:

The Nutrition is all about bringing your body into balance. Full of energy, vitality and optimum function of all your systems.

It is also about eating healthy in your every day life. It is not about counting every kcal or weighing every gram of food.  I give you the macros you should have, I tell you what food is good to have, I give you guidelines, recipes, meal plans. But I do not tell you every single gram of every meal. That is not a long lasting way to be. Horribly boring, time consuming and most of us have family, partner, friends, and that way is terribly anti-human.

Even the end goal of the daily meal plan examples I will give you, is to not use them. Its about you learning and knowing which food is great to have and when, and recipes to choose from and then for you to be able to pick from those or make your own.

The idea that changing your body shape is all to do with Kcal in vs. Kcal out and the importance of the amount of Kcal is out-dated and not right.
 Yes we need to watch that we do not eat too much but we have to understand that if you eat 1500 kcal in Mars Bars it will have a totally different affect on you to if you eat 1500 kcal in fish, chicken, vegetables and fibrous fruit. What is important is where your energy (Kcal) is coming from and how it affects your body especially your hormones and producing the optimum hormonal function.

We have the good protein and the healthy fats. (fat does not make you fat!) Loads of vegetables and fibrous fruit. Other carbs, we have after we train as well as on training days we have a slow releasing carbs for breakfast. One night a week, there is a cheat meal. That is a must.


Ms. Namita Nayyar:

You have glowing skin and gorgeous hair. Share with us your haircare and skincare routine.

Ms. Svava Sigbertsdottir:

I believe everything that is on the outside is generated from the inside. If you are healthy on the inside, it will demonstrate on the outside. My diet is healthy, I train and sweat out any toxins there are, I watch that I am content and strong in my life, which is very important. I might have much on, many stress factors, but I am not stressed. Therefore I am not bringing damage to my cells. Nor psyche. And that is my hair and skin care routine. I put no chemicals on my face, I do not heat damage my hair by blow drying it or straightening it. For me, combing it  and washing my face is work enough! Hahaha!

Ms. Namita Nayyar:

Give us some of your famous hormone-managing fitness tips.

Ms. Svava Sigbertsdottir:

90 min before you train have no carbs. When you train you want to activate your fat burning hormones and you cannot do that properly with your insulin elevated.(carbs elevate the insulin).

Often, no matter how hard you train, there will be a stubborn area where you feel like you just cant get rid of. For many women it is the hips and bum area and for men the stomach. ( but it can of course be other areas as well.) There is a scientific reason behind this. On every fat cell there are two receptors called Alpha and Beta receptors. The Alpha generates fat storing and has little blood flow, the Beta generates fat burning and is rich in blood flow. In these stubborn areas, there are much more Alpha receptors than Beta, which is the reason why it is that much harder to get rid of the fat. This we also take care of.

In order to do so, few things need to happen. First of all no insulin (the 90 min rule), then high intensity training is needed to activate your fight or flight hormones as they are the ones that make these receptors work. Therefore, training in your “fat zone” as they say, where you can talk while you train, is not going to cut it. Up it. Be uncomfortable the whole time.

Now, after this has all been done and the fat is out, due to the low blood flow in these areas, you need to keep the blood flow up so the body is able to transfer the fat to places where it will get burned. Therefore after you have done your Viking program, you always have a ten min jog. Nothing fast, just to keep you warm and blood flowing on the inside. Or do a yoga flow. Or dance. Anything, just move.

Your fat burning hormones go through your liver. Therefore healthy liver is crucial. Vegetables help cleanse it, which is another reason why we have so much of them. Before you go to sleep, is where your other 90 min rule is. No carbs 90 min before bed. The first hour is of sleep is very important, height of recovery hormones doing their work and they need to be free from sugar to be fully smashing it.

Ms. Namita Nayyar:

Share with us your Top 5 Weight-loss Tips for women.

Ms. Svava Sigbertsdottir:
1. Stop focusing on what your body looks like. You are not your body.

Therefore, stop letting your body dictate you; How you feel about yourself, the value you give to yourself, the love you have for yourself. You are so much more than you give yourself credit for. You are strength. Your are resilience. You are power. You are fire. You are joy. You are kindness. You are empathy. You are beauty. Use your body to bring out these elements of you. Your body is your amazing tool. Use it as such and treat it as such. Train it, take great care of it, love it. But never mistake it for you. Stop lower the standards for yourself so much that you actually believe that your whole worth lies in how your body is shaped.  You are not your body nor are you your body´s slave.  You are the boss. Lets get you to start acting like it.

Train for your performance. Your actions. The body will follow.

2. Prepare.

Preparing is crucial. Know what you are going to eat, know what you are going to do when you train, know what your goals are, know where you are going. Planning and preparing gives you that knowledge. And knowledge is power.

Prepare your out meals ( work lunches and so on) either 3 days in advance or do it the night before when you are doing dinner. Also know what you are having for your other meals in advance. This makes healthy eating easy. And much easily doable.

Always have a training plan. Never start your session without knowing what you are going to do. You need to have a program. Otherwise it is very difficult to progress, to last through hard sets, to not give up. Having a certain exercises that you have to finish before you can stop, pushes you on.

3. Set training goals.

Each month have a training goal. Set out to do certain amount of full push ups or sprint at a certain speed or this many burpees in one minute. Anything. And then smash it. Having goals is the same as preparing. It pushes you on. You know where you are going. You can see the mountain top. You just need to focus on going up.

4. Stop weighing yourself.

Muscle is heavier than fat and denser. Therefore you could stay the same weight but still be more toned, with much less body fat percentage, healthier and happier, and you could miss out on all that joy because you haven’t lost any weight. Or heaven forbid, you might have gained some and this could, wrongly so, discourage you. Watch that you are focusing on the right things. This is why it makes no sense having weight goals instead of training goals. Throw the scales out.

5. Start keeping check on what you think and say to yourself about yourself.

Negative self talk is exhausting for your soul and causes physical harm. Literally. Your neurons will re-wire, your cells will re-generate with more stress receptors, your energy goes down along with your fitness level. Stop bringing harm to yourself.

When you train, the mirror in the Gym is not there for you to negatively judge what you look like. Its not there for you to constantly shame yourself. Its not there for you to have a destructive internal dialogue about your body on a loop.

Its there for you to assess what you are doing, your actions, your posture, your technique. In a positive way. “I should be able to do this better” is a sentence that I want you to take out. Right now, you are doing it to the best of your ability. And that is enough.

And the mirror is also there for pep talk. Quality, trashy, game on pep talk. The mirror is there to help you.

Ms. Namita Nayyar:

Who has been your greatest influence and motivator in your success in the field of fitness?

Ms. Svava Sigbertsdottir:

Any woman who is better themselves is such a motivator for me to keep bettering myself. My inspiration are women with full time jobs and partners and kids and still wake up at 6 am to train. Women who walked out of relationships that were making them less. Women who stand up for who they are, no matter how much that will rock the boat. Change takes courage. Courageous women are my inspiration. And that I get to help many find their courage, is what motivates me.


Ms. Namita Nayyar:

You have worked with so many celebrities. How has your experience been working with them? Is it challenging, interesting or both?

Ms. Svava Sigbertsdottir:

It is exactly the same as working with none celebrities. It is just their job, it is not who they are. We are all basically the same, the same things matter to must of us. We all want to feel good, to be good, to be comfortable in our own skin. We want to give and receive love, achieve things, win some and learn some. The approach might be different, person to person but the end goal is the same. So no matter in what profession you are, that is what you focus on and talk about and give energy to.

Ms. Namita Nayyar:

You have done many photo shoots and shown your spectacular toned physique. What advice do you wish to give to the women of today to be body confident in order to do such fitness shoots?

Ms. Svava Sigbertsdottir:

With photoshoots I am actually not very comfortable in. I never know how to stand or how to smile or anything. But I am body confident in general so it works. (eventually, after all the half open eyes and hair in the face and so on have been deleted :-))  We all want to look our best of course. But watch that you want to look YOUR best. That you are working with you and what can be YOUR best. Stop comparing yourself and your body to others. “If I go to the gym 5 times a week and eat really healthy, how long will it take for me to look like her?” is a question that I get often from women.

And the answer could be never. You are not that person. You are put together in a different way.  For example, I am very straight, I do not have much of a waist and no matter what I do, I will never have a tiny waist. Therefore if I think that I do not look good unless I have a small waist and try everything to get that, then I will never be confident with my body. I will then always be unhappy with the way I look. I will see women with small waists and feel that I lack that. But if I stop comparing myself to others, and just focus on making me as great as I can be, then I am unbreakable.  So be unbreakable. Focus on you. Not others. And then you will have the body confidence to do anything.

Ms. Namita Nayyar:

Advice and motivational words to the inspiring and budding fitness trainers who all are your fans, they shall like to know from you, what they should do for their climb to ladder of success in field of fitness?

Ms. Svava Sigbertsdottir:

Prioritize. As with any profession, if you want to succeed, especially with your own company, there can be no work-social balance. You need to give all of you. You cant go out every weekend and watch telly every week night and then be surprised that it is not going so well. In order to get an easy life; life that you are living out your goals, you need to do what is hard.

In the fitness industry, you are your power. What is it that you offer that no one else offers? What is your thing? You need to find your thing. Then set up a website. That is your calling card. Get a business email account. Then ask. Contact press and ask if you can train them for a feature, contact gyms to see if you can teach your thing there, collaborate, check on pop ups, give freebie sessions. Constantly ask. In the beginning you will get no, but so what? You can take much more than a little wind. Go through the no´s . Keep at it. Do not give up. If it was easy succeeding, everybody would. So, keep at it. If you do then I promise you will start getting the yes´s .

Ms. Namita Nayyar:

What do you wish to say about the website and message for its visitors?

Ms. Svava Sigbertsdottir: is such a fantastic website bringing you endless of tools for you to become better inside out. So use all of it. Read and take in the articles about diet and exercise, but also the articles about your psyche, about your inner well-being along the ones about fellow strong women who have done well. That is inspirational for you as it shows you that you can do that as well.

What another can do, so can you. As soon as you realize that, there is no holding you back. Remember that information is power. Knowledge is power.

To know the latest about Svava Sigbertsdottir check her out on her social network at:

Or visit her website:

Women Fitness Team thanks Svava Sigbertsdottir for giving her valuable time for this interview and quenching the thirst of her fans to know more about her and made this interview happen.


All content on this site is copyright of Women Fitness and no part of any article found on this site may be reproduced without an express permission and highlighted, do follow link crediting or preferably the original page as the source. This interview is exclusive and taken by Namita Nayyar President and should not be reproduced, copied or hosted in part or full anywhere without an express permission.

All Written Content Copyright © 2017 Women Fitness

Exit mobile version