You’re invited to join the #CutUpCOVIDChallenge

If you follow the Defender’s “Fit & Fine,” our weekly feature of a fitness enthusiast who shares tips on being physically, mentally and spiritually fit, you know we feature folks who know their way around a gym.

Don’t get us wrong. Shannon LaNier is a bonefide fitness enthusiast, but like so many of us, the coronavirus quarantine had him comfort eating and not working out at his usual intensity.

So, this week, we took a little detour from the norm.

LaNier admits he has put on nine pounds during quarantine. The “Q9” as he calls it. The good news? Before things got too far out of hand, LaNier is taking control and is extending an invitation for others who have overindulged to join him in the #CutUpCOVIDChallenge, beginning today through June 29.

Over the next several weeks, join LaNier as he implements nutrition and fitness advice from @BeeFitFoods, @TheBodyShopHTX and other fitness experts.

The Defender will follow LaNier’s transformation and report his progress on Wednesdays. Check back at DefenderNetwork.com or on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram for updates. Also, post your updates with the hashtag #CutUPCOVIDChallenge. We would like to share your challenge photos and videos too.

Click ‘next’ above to learn more about LaNier and to see his before-challenge-body.

Who is Shannon LaNier?

Age: 40

Occupation: News anchor (CW 39), podcast host (www.daddyduty365.com), author (“Jefferson’s Children”)

Education: Kent State University

Major: BS, Electronic Media Production; MS, Media Management

Motto: “Live every day as if it were your last, because tomorrow is not promised to you.”

Motivated by: “I’m motivated by family. I try to be successful for my family. I want to live longer, be better and get the most out of my time. I want to be healthy so I can be there for my family and extended family. I guess I’m still chasing the dream to make my parents proud!”

Unknown facts: “I am the great grandson of President Thomas Jefferson and Sally Hemings.” [Sarah “Sally” Hemings was an enslaved woman of mixed race owned by President Thomas Jefferson.]

Fitness start: “I got started with fitness in college…trying to get the girl! I then started caring more about health and keeping my temple healthy.”

Exercise goal: “My goal is get my six-pack back, fit my clothes and look good.”

Fitness advice: “Take it slow, don’t expect see results right away. It took time to get there. Focus more on how your clothes fit versus the numbers on the scale. Throw the scale out! It lies! When you work out, you gain muscle. Muscle is heavier than fat.”

Social Media:
IG: @mrshannonlanier
Twitter: @MrShannonLanier

Here is LaNier’s before-challenge-body. Join us weekly as he works his way back to his six-pack in the photo above:

Shannon LaNier post-quarantine


Prior to COVID-19, I ate clean.

“My pre-COVID diet consisted of green smoothies in the morning, a salad or veggie burger for lunch and a protein option and veggies for dinner.

“During the coronavirus quarantine, my diet went south. I ate for comfort, but enjoyed the cakes, ice-cream, popcorn, guacamole and chips, pizza and anything else my three kids were eating!

“I look forward to working with my trainers and nutritionists. They tell me I’ll start a ‘macro diet.’ For it, you count macronutrients – grams of proteins, carbs and fats — rather than calories. Shout out to these folks for helping me through this life change: @thebodyshophtx  @jamaicanmuscle  @darkskinnedjermaine and @beefitfoods.” 


Physical: HIIT and weight training are my go-tos.

“I normally work out twice daily incorporating HIIT and weight training. During the #CutUpCOVIDChallenge I’ll basically do the same, just more of it.

“During quarantine, it’s been fun working out with the kids…literally.”

Mental: Working out is therapeutic.

“Working out is healing and therapeutic. It works off negative endorphins and helps balance the soul and spirit. I also stay balanced by dividing up my time. After 3:30 p.m., it is all about the kids, no one else can have that time.

“Of course, during quarantine, everything came to a halt. Mentally, it was draining to know that everything had been canceled — no vacations or gym time. That’s what started a cycle of comfort eating.

“I’m excited now to have a goal. I need goals for motivation.”

Spiritual: I try to take care of my temple.

“God gave me this temple, so I need to take care of it. I thank him every day for waking me up in my right mind. I’ll be looking like this guy again soon!”[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]