Purpose Driven Training: Joanne Kadir

Living the fitness lifestyle can mean a wide diversity in what and how to exercise. Different passions, different goals – but with the same dedication for training and living an active and healthy lifestyle!

Something that often is a common denominator in above is gym training. This serves as an important foundation to succeed in different kinds of sports.

During the upcoming months we will publish a series with several different Better Bodies ambassadors who are passionate and active in different kinds of sports but have one thing in common; the gym as the foundation. Whether the main purpose is to build strength, stability, becoming more explosive, loosing weight or gaining weight they all go to the gym to achieve it.

Joanne Kadir is originally from Gothenburg, Sweden. She now lives in Stockholm where she’s working as a Business Analyst in Logistics and Pharma. Joanne has a Master of Science in Engineering and she is also currently pursuing a Bachelor in Finance. As if this wasn’t enough, Joanne has a very rigorous training schedule, performing several sports on a higher level. Keep reading for an insight to her very active life, and be prepared to be amazed!

Since Early Age

Since I was 3 years old I’ve been doing something active. My mom wanted me to do more “girly” sports like ballet and figure skating, but at an early age I started to love all kinds of sports including anything involving a ball. In our courtyard at home we had all kind of stuff for me to play with. At 6-7 I started playing handball with a team (while still doing figure skating) and around 10-11 I started playing basketball – which became my main sport for a few years.

Beside above I tried all kinds of sports for 1 semester and then a new one the next. It was everything from Tennis to Capoeira. I also started competing in running (larger events like Göteborgsvarvet) just for fun.

Current Endeavors

Today I am exactly the same person as I have been my entire life, I do all sports! Seasonally, periodically, and I compete for fun!

Two sports have stuck with me through all these years though; Basketball and Running. Today I’m playing in Hammarby Division 3 Basketball, and I’ve ran Göteborgsvarvet (half marathon) since 12 years back. With my personal best being 1h 41 min.

Besides this I compete in Powerlifting on national level along with Weight Lifting. I have also competed on a national level in Athletic Fitness, which was my main focus a few years back. Other sports that I perform more seasonally (depending on my timing with other activities) are:
– CrossFit – I have competed on different events mostly in teams.
– OCR laps – I’ve done a few competitions in the elite troop, mostly to evaluate the court.
– Other running laps like ultra marathons and now the ” En Svensk Klassiker”
– Ninja-training – doing obstacle training indoors, this was also a main focus a few years back.
– Strong Woman – I’ve done some competitions, this is something I would love to re-start again.
– And of course golf during the summer season, if that counts as a sport.

Recently I have also started with Tennis, taking lessons once a week.
To keep my body healthy, I do hot yoga once a week as active rest/recovery.

The Juggling

It’s a struggle sometimes to keep the schedule, especially since I love to compete in every sport. There are periods when I have a competition each weekend, in different sports. Some weekends I’ve even had competitions in two different sports in two different cities.

If you put your mind to it, it will work. And people at competitions are always positive and energetic, it is a fun way of meeting others. The happiness makes me want to do it again and again.

Most of it is a mental challenge, you need to believe in yourself and trust the capacity of your body. It is so much stronger than we think.

Combining training with work and studies is another piece of the puzzle. I work in Rotebro and study in Uppsala. Both full time. People living in the Stockholm area knows that these locations are both outside of the city. i spend quite some time on trains to commute so I have to plan my days and my work efficiently to be able to do it all.

100 Hour Days?

I have busy days but I still have loads of time left. I love to hang out with friends, go out dining and having a drink or three at a bar. One thing I have no time for though, and also don’t really miss since I don’t even own one, is watching TV. It is very rare that I watch a movie or series. It might happen that I stream something online once in a while but it is rare. I think watching TV is a very time consuming thing that most people do which I don’t.


I listen to my body all the time and I am totally aware of all small signs it gives me. I love to take powernaps, and I can without feeling bad skip a training session or at least do a lighter version if my body is not 100%. My workouts and training sessions are always adjusted to my current status. If I feel strong, I can add some more training on that specific day, if I don’t, I’ll do my minimum and make sure to do that properly – just to be able to recover for the next time.


Since Powerlifting and Weight Lifting requires weight-in, I need to focus on my diet 1 week before competition. Other than that, I eat and drink what I want. I have a sweet tooth and I occasionally drink alcohol as well. My food account is my largest expense, I eat a lot!

A Typical Training Week

Monday – Hot Yoga and basketball
Tuesday – Running / Powerlifting / Weight Lifting
Wedensday – Gym and Tennis
Thursday – Basketball
Friday – Powerlifting / Weight Lifting
Weekends – Basketball Games, Golf, Gym, Competitions

Your Best Advice

Leave your ego. Be humble. New sports requires new learning. You will not be the best from the beginning. Hence the curve is pointing straight up, which gives you kicks of wanting to do more, learn more.

It takes time, nothing happens over night. When you start reaching levels where you compete on higher ranked competitions, it’s hard to keep up with the full timers. I am usually among the top athletes, but never as number one. I know why and that doesn’t bother me. You don’t need to sacrifice your entire life as the book says. Its fun with the variation and it will also keep you injury free.

Support Network

I have different friends for different occasions. So yes, I have support in all different areas; at work, at basketball, at the gym, at the bar, at school, while traveling etc.


People love to put me into this one square; “Sporty”
So when we have “fika” (cofee and cake) at work, I often hear; “Oh, can you really eat that?” Or when people look at my body noticing that I am more muscular than average some tend to avoid me since they believe I’m a “sports-nerd” not doing anything else or can’t talk about anything else.
No one ever guess that I’m an engineer and that I work at an office or that I love to go out on after works. I usually have to defend my habits, which is a big challenge, and it have always been.

The Future

My nearest goal is to finalize the “En Svensk Klassiker” (skiing, bicycling, swimming, running). I am super proud of myself since I didn’t know how to ski or swim, and this has been my first time ever biking with road-pedals. It was a big challenge for me doing something way outside of my comfort zone, and it was super fun! I’ll never do it again though, LOL.

Other than that the rest of my sports are business as usual. And as for my work-life, hopefully when I’m done with my bachelor next summer I can start broaden my carreer life as well, to challenge not only my body but also my brain.

Words To Live By

Tell your mind and your body will follow. Don’t let your comfort zone get in the way of your capacity.