Kickboxing world champ dives into swimrun

May 2, 2019

Sierra Verunica

By Nancy Heslin

“Growing up in Sweden, you have the possibility to train in any sport and anywhere,” says Fanny, who admits she’s a horse girl at heart. “At age 20, I discovered kickboxing, though I’ve always loved to run. Swimming, however, I’ve always hated, I mean really hated, and I just learned to crawl two years ago.”

Many of the 190,000 @fanny_josefine Instagram followers know “the Ninja” for her gruelling workouts. “I was posting stuff every day on Insta but wanted to try an experiment. What would happen if I posted things people wanted to see at times they wanted to see it? I found my niche as ‘Strong Girl’ doing fun videos and challenges.”

Fanny wants to show that training can be playful and fun. “I think that’s something different and I’m not afraid to show failure in my videos.

“I spent 12 years in economics at PricewaterhouseCoopers but left last year to concentrate on social media. I now work helping companies and I’m also building my own channels.

Along with her boyfriend and Team Lost teammate Patrik Widell, who films with a GoPro, Fanny also uses TikTok and together have over 500,000 followers. “I don’t see myself as an influencer, I like the word content creator better. It feels more like me.”

Fanny and Patrik met in Hvar last May during a training week. “We were swimming and fell in love, not just with each other, but with the open water. We love big adventures and that’s what swimrun is like, plus you have to know your partner well in swimrun. As a couple, it’s easier to find the time to train together, pushing and helping each other to be the best you can be.”

Fanny dreams of Team Lost becoming a full-time gig. Their swimrun goal this year is to stay injury free and to do all the races they signed up for and for social media, they hope to inspire more people to train playfully and try something new.

“It’s a big step starting with swimming as a lot of women are afraid to even go in a pool. I think open training sessions in open water is a great way to get into the sport, especially if you have the goal of trying a swimrun.”

Fanny and Patrik will take on the Utö Sprint distance May 18, although Fanny admits that as beginners, they are not used to new situations with cold water and slippery rocks so they approach these races as good practice. “Honestly, our goal is to have fun. If you have fun it often leads to great results.”

ÖTILLÖ Worlds Series 2019 continues in Utö May 18 and 19. Sign up for the Experience (7.1k), Sprint (13.4k) and World Series (40.3k) races here.

Article first published May 2019.

More magazine articles

The Swimrun Chameleon

Annika Ericsson is a five-time ÖTILLÖ Swimrun World Champion, winning the title more than any other racer in any other category. She also has a slew of first place wins in both the Women’s and Mixed categories.

How one team uses swimrun to combat MS stereotypes

Patric Tengblad was recently diagnosed with MS, a neurological disease that affects 2.3 million people worldwide. For the 2019 swimrun season he will pair up with newcomer to the sport Dr Fredrik Piehl as Team Combat MS.

The accidental triathlete takes on swimrun

12-time Ironman Champion Lucy Gossage is swapping her podium position for a year of different races in different places, and that includes her first swimrun at Isles of Scilly.

Our 2019 challenge: bring a friend

Swimrun continues to grow by leaps and bounds. Not only has the sport crossed over to the endurance community but new brands, new athletes and new races (and on non-frozen continents!) are coming on board. Look for our new 5-7k Experience distance and the possibility to race Solo.

International partners
  • Vivo Barefoot
  • ARK Swimrun
  • Mr Green