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Anne-Marie Flammersfeld (extreme athlete)

Anne-Marie Flammersfeld is a German ultra runner and extreme athlete. She is a member of the German national team for ultra trail running, the world record holder for the fastest female ascent and descent of Kilimanjaro.

In 2012, She was the first woman to win the Racing The Planet 4 Deserts Series. In that year, she ran 250 kilometres across four deserts – the driest, the windiest, the hottest, and the coldest in the world.

In July 2015, she set the female world record at Kilimanjaro: Starting at the Umbwe Gate, she climbed to the summit in 8 hours 32 minutes.

On the podcast today, we talk about her extraordinary experiences and how she got into ultra trail running and her advice for people wanting to go to the extreme of endurance races and what to do when the pain starts to set in.

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Transcript of our Conversation

Anne-Marie Flammersfeld

[00:00:00] Anne-Marie Flammersfeld: My next guest is an ultra trail runner and big adventurer. She has covered quite a wide range of the world from discovering this thing called the four deserts quite a number of years ago. She suddenly decided to pursue it and became the first German and female to win the competence. On the podcast today, we talk about some of her incredible experiences and delve in deep into the sort of psychology of this sort of ultra running.

We talk about the sort of mindset in which you need to sort of pursue and break through the sort of pain barriers. When times get tough and she gives some incredible advice on the podcast today about how to sort of focus your mind so that you can push through on these endurance events. So I’m delighted to introduce Ann Marie Flammersfeld to the podcast.

Yeah. Thanks a lot. Thank you. I was absolutely great to have you on and really sort of get down into what you’ve done over the [00:01:00] last 10 years and say, because your story. It’s truly amazing from how you started and then sort of got into the sort of four deserts race, which is probably where your sort of big expeditions sort of came from a before.

I always like to start at the beginning and how you sort of how this all sort of came about. Well, how it came about me too, to run through four deserts or two to be, get into these, we’ll try running. Actually it was it was really just a chance. I was, I was not a runner before I met a person while doing just a simple holiday trip in south America.

And there I met a gunner from long way and while doing a horseback tracking through, through the jungle and the forest of WIA at the end of the world and gonna then taught me something about the T’s going to the [00:02:00] Antarctic. Some days later and I said, okay, what are you doing there? Some whale watching.

And then he said, no, no, I’m, I’m, I’m doing a race for desert race, the 250 kilometers to the coldest desert on earth. You have to carry everything by yourself. And I just looked at him and said, what is he talking about? I had actually no idea that there is a longer distance. You can run as a competition, as a race.

Then, then the matter of. And so at that moment I thought, okay, that sounds really, really cool. Maybe when I’m at home, I do some research, but at that moment, I didn’t know what was coming in my future. So that was sort of how it all sort of kicked off there. It was just by pure chance someone had sort of.

Said they’re going to Antarctica and then sort of the research started taking place and the way, yes, definitely. I ran two [00:03:00] marathons before I was a little bit into this running scene, but I was definitely not infected with it running virus at that moment. And I was going for a run or for a job just to, to move a little bit around, but not to run distances level longer than 50 60 kilometers.

Yeah. Wow. And I suppose when, when this sort of all started, because I like, like you say, it does take a while to get that running bug or the running virus. So from the process of doing those two marathons, what made you, what was the sort of kick that sort of made you jump into doing the four deserts or these big ultra endurance races?

Wow. Good question. I haven’t figured out yet. But I can tell you that at that moment, when, when Guna told me about this name, racing the planet for deserts, that there was a [00:04:00] kind of a flame popping out of me. And I felt these enthusiasm at the moment do something what I’ve never done before and never dreamed about doing it.

So, but at that moment there was something. I think when you, when you go around the world with open eyes and an open heart, then these things can come to you. And that, that was that moment. I, I had at that time and so when I was at home, I did this research and I saw that you can run through four desserts, each 250 kilometers.

Self-supported everything is in your backpack. Organize. It just gives you. Well, you have to sleep with 10 people in and no shower, no hotel, no, no chef. You have to cook your own things. You have to carry everything once you, once you want to have during seven days and you have to carry it in your backpack and.

Yeah. So I, [00:05:00] I thought a lot about if I want to do it. And then I saw that you can do four in one year or all four in one year to get into this grand slam club. And then I looked at this club and there was no German at that moment. There were only seven people and no one from Germany. I will do it. I better bring the flag into the German national flag into these clubs and okay.

I will do it. And then it was April and I started with the training for the first race. What worked was in March, actually the next year. So I had 10 months, 11 months of training to prepare to prepare. And in terms of the training for that where you based up in the mountains where you are now, or were you more at sea level?

Because I imagine at in, up in the mountains at altitude was probably a much. Better sort of fitness then you would [00:06:00] have at sea level for something like this. Definitely. Yeah. Well, I, I, I’m born in Germany and very flat it’s more or less under zero. And in 2006 I moved to Switzerland and I’m, I’m really adapted to these attitudes here at 1,800.

And of course I have benefits when I go down and have a raised at sea level. But the training on attitude is more exhausting because I can’t adapt to 90%, 95% of the sea level, but there’s still. That five to 10% liquid leaking that I can’t get into the same performance, how I can do at sea level.

So it is harder training here and everybody who was in on attitude and wanted to train there in the normal speed or normal kilometers per hour knows that it’s suffering of oxygen. Yeah. But of [00:07:00] course, when you go down, then you have the benefits. Yeah. So with that you had 10 months sort of training and the first one of these four desert races, where is it for people who don’t know from the podcast?

Yeah, it is in in Chile, in the Atacama desert, the dry desert on. And then the second one is in in China, in the Gobi desert. It’s the windiest desert, the third one in the Sahara in Egypt, the hottest desert, and then three weeks later the coldest desert in the Antarctic. So you said you certainly get your, a fair, fair, fair share of extremes.

Yeah. Yeah, it is. Yeah. I don’t know. It’s just, yeah, it was really extreme idea to, to do it. Yeah. And with that they all take place over the year. How did you find the sort of [00:08:00] adapt team from the driest to move to suddenly the window? Yeah, well, actually it was every day that was really, really beautiful and nice.

And every desert was unique actually. And to go from the dry to the windiest desert yeah, it was tough, but it was not so tough as to go from. The hottest to the coldest because there were only three weeks in between. And and from the, from the dries to the windiest, they were, was at least nine weeks in between.

So I was changing back to normal and then I went to the. When you started was quite tough in the Gobi desert too, to run always against the wind. Always. Sometimes it came from the back, but normally it was coming from the front and yeah, you had to deal with it. [00:09:00] There was no other choice. You could have sit down and wait for something better, but at least no one was coming.

You had to. By yourself. There was no one who was putting away the wind or the heat or anything else. It was just you and your, your mental your mental thoughts. What was the driving force? How can I say. I’m not sure where abouts in the Gabey desert. It takes place, but we had Ash dykes on the podcast last year and he sort of talked about his, a walk or Trek across the Gobi desert and said that you moments you have just complete silence.

And it’s one of the quietest places on earth so much so that you can just hear yourself almost breathe. Well, not brief sorry, your heartbeat. You can hear your body functioning that say yeah, definitely in all the three desert. It was I’m I’m I’m the [00:10:00] same. I’m I’ve heard the same in the Arctic.

Quite noisy. Sometimes from the pink greens, they were making a lot of noise there. But I mean, in the Atacama desert, when you go out and you, you have the most beautiful night sky with the stars there, and you think you can grab the stars just when you lift up your, your arm. And it was really, really impressive.

And yeah, the silence, the nature, the atmosphere. To be in a place where actually not human being can survive a long time because there is nothing, no water, no shade. There’s wind. This is really unreal conditions. And you have to run to get further.

So with that, I mean, your backgrounds in sort of sports science, sports, psychology woods, that [00:11:00] key in terms of pushing through, in terms of training your mind to sort of go through this. Suffering let’s say, and being able to cope in such extreme conditions. Yeah, of course I, that at the Mo at the, when I started to train, I wanted to prove that what I’ve learned at the university at the squats university if it just if I can do it in reality or if it’s just a theory and so after.

The background of all these training signs and sports science. And so I, I I’ve wrote my training schedule for myself and I’m very flexible because I’m a person I, I, I’m not stuck into today. I have to do 20 tomorrow. I have to do 10 dadadadada. I know that. What I want to do, but I look around in my mind, which trainer today fits for me, good or suits to me or which one I like, maybe [00:12:00] I am today.

I run 20 kilometers. And I seeing, okay, where do I want to go today? What is fun for me? And then I started, and then on the next day I say, okay, today, maybe it’s better when I do a shorter one. Okay. Where can I go? Maybe I run up on the mountain and then go down something like this.

I was sort of saying to that’s the sort of psychology of it. It’s about finding something fun while training to do. Yeah for me. I would say it was the right schedule and this is what I would recommend to everybody who wants to do something like this. First the most important thing is that you really like to do that you really like what you do, that you have fun, what you do, that you enjoy what you do when, when it’s not.

Then it’s every day, every time it’s suffering and then you don’t like it, [00:13:00] and then you’re working against it and it costs a lot of energy and it is better when you start a project. Totally. You don’t have to run a marathon. It’s just also a profession. When your job or a project, it is, you really have to enjoy what you do.

This is my, my, what I really, this is my mission, actually, what I am. And yeah, the second thing is, of course, you need to improve your fitness to get better step by step by step. And, and I was listening to my body a lot and when I felt there was a pain, maybe in my knee, then I stopped the training a little bit.

And then I went to the physio. Then I increase the kilometers per week, a little bit more. And when I saw that it was going on quite well, I was going on and. It is a sensitive mixture of what you want to do and what you can do. And when you don’t listen to your body, then I think you, you can’t perform in a good way.

[00:14:00] Wow. And yeah, I suppose with that, for people listening it’s when you were going through, let’s say the Gabby desert, having the wind in your face, Was there enjoyment still there? No, sometimes not. I’m honest. And I was honest in that always when I suffered and of course it is allowed to suffer and it can’t be every day, a hundred percent smiling and positive energy.

They are crisis, but. I found out that the crisis can come and it can stay for one hour or three hours, four hours. And it’s just, yeah, it’s very, very bad feeling bad. The crisis will go some, some moment it will go over. And this is effect, I would say. The crisis comment and the crisis [00:15:00] goal. Boom, I would say.

And and the most important point I would say is that you recognize the. And on that point, when you’re recognized, then it’s over. But this is the sensitive thing that you, that you really have to step out of your mind and to look from a bath and to see, oh, she has a crisis. Come on, wake up. And then you can perform in your a hundred percent.

When you, when you’re not, when you’re in the crisis, you are maybe 60, 70% and you are fighting against, oh, what is that today? Why can’t I run in my pace? Oh, everything is so boring here. Why am I doing it? All this mindset what’s going on. Then when you listening with a good attention and awareness to these thoughts, this you have to train actually then you can stop it before it goes into the circle, down, down, down, down.

[00:16:00] Yeah, I would explain it a little bit in that way. Yeah. Yeah. Say the idea is that when you’re doing these sort of trips or these expeditions or races, the idea is when you start to feel suffering, you have to recognize that you are. Was that one of the things, one of the main things you were sort of taught in sports science, sports, psychology.

And then from there, you can acknowledge that this is any temporary and that you can sort of move forward from. Yeah, this is one method. Actually, there are quite a lot of things you can do also, for example, to work with pictures in your mind that you imagined something. What, what helps you for example You have to create a picture from a place you really like where you feel that there’s a lot of positive energy where you can relax.

It could be, I don’t know, place at the end, the [00:17:00] nature, the little lake or at the sea or wherever. It must be something where you can relax and where you, when you are. Really positive. And then in that moment, you can just imagine that picture. And then all the positive energy is going from the picture to your body.

And then you feel everything is fine. I am I’m at my place where I can relax and then you still can run, which you stick to in your mind. And it helps a lot to overcome a crisis. So that was one of your main coping mechanisms when the sort of four desert racists sort of put you into the extreme. Yeah, I tried these pictures at the visualization.

We call it and with a mental coach, with a friend of mine, and we did some hypnosis sports hypnosis where I was forced to do, to create pictures. And for example, my, my biggest concern [00:18:00] was that I, how would it be when I’m in this heat, in these extreme hot days? ’cause I, I live here in the Swiss Alps and I normally have six months of winter with temperatures between minus 22.

Yeah. I understand. And then the summer is it’s warmer, but we have maybe between 15 and 20 degrees. So it’s not 30 to 40 degrees. And then I my mental trainer, she said to me, I, that I have to create a picture. What could. And so for that case that I was running in the hottest desert and that I was not able to deal with the heat.

I, my picture was that I would imagine to run through an ice cold snow storm and that I have to feel the snow on my skin that I w here are the snow cracking underneath my feet that I smelled the snow. So I worked these picture with all my five senses. [00:19:00] And then I put it into my mental box. And when I was X, for example, in the Sahara, in the hottest desert, and it was extremely warm and hot, I remembered my picture.

And then it worked and I even got a chicken skin from, from cooling down myself, even to, to thought on, on, on, on that picture of this ice cold snow. Goose bumps. Yeah. Yeah. Wow. And so with those four deserts, you completed it in all of one year and became what the first German, the fastest female is that right?

Yeah. Everything even in general, the first person, the first woman to, to win all four in one year, no woman has since done it before. And did that sort of, and say, did that sort of propel the ideas going, [00:20:00] because after that you sort of, you’d done completed this challenge of the four deserts and did that sort of propel you into thinking of more bigger grander ideas or.

Yeah. I found out that I maybe had the tenant in running long distances, which I, I was not sure that I had it. And so I. I was looking into these calendar of rules for trail running races. And I saw that there are a lot races on all over the world. And, and then I, I looked and I, but it was quite hard to find something not to talk over the top, but to what is not singular, but a little bit different.

But yeah, it was a little bit of a chaos. And then. Actually I started these bottom up climbs project with [00:21:00] two friends. And it was a little bit like when I met Guna this time, it was with a friend, we were in the ski lift and he asked me, do you want to come with me from the lowest to the highest point of Switzerland?

I said, yes, I come with you. No idea from where to where so sorry I live in Switzerland, but I knew that it may be the lag of yoga in in the, in the control test. And but the highest point, maybe the matter horn, but it was the two foot pizza with 4,800 meters, something like this. And yeah, I said, yes, let’s do it.

And then it was so that my two friends that did it with the bicycle because they are more cyclist. And I said, okay, I’m a runner I found out and I will do it by my own feet. And then I did it in five days actually to run from the lowest, to the highest point of Switzerland. 250 kilometers. [00:22:00] Yeah.

And 5,000 vertical meters, something like this. And yeah, this was the start of the bottom-up clients to go from the lowest, lowest to the highest point. And in that year, after the four desert, I also run the monastery. A trail race in the Himalaya, and this was eight days and maybe 16,000 vertical meters and 220 kilometers, something like this.

And yeah, I was really into this running virus from that point on. Yeah, it was sort of the adrenaline that you were sort of getting from these races or these challenges. Yeah, maybe I drawn a lien. Maybe it was the yeah, to, to, to think that I can. Go all over the planet cannot not as a tourist more than an athlete to go from one race to another race and to explore culture, to explore places where [00:23:00] I would normally not go to.

It was more the exploring thoughts more than the adrenalin, actually. It was the driven force. Yeah. But Yeah. I really like to do new things. This is also because why I never did two races twice, so I always did something new too, because I thought, okay, they have so many races, very nice places.

And as long as I want to do it, as long as I can do it, then I go into places and countries where. Yeah, maybe I will never go again, something like this. Yeah. The sort of idea of using, running as a way of experiencing the different countries or different cultures is there. I think it’s a really amazing way to sort of see different parts because you run through plate is probably what she otherwise would never have the chance of explore.

And by doing that, you discover so much more about the [00:24:00] place and yourself and everything that sort of goes with it. Yeah. Yeah. The culture of things and you see places and people and people see you running and they think maybe what is she doing here in my place, but it’s so special. And I always met nice people around there.

And yeah, I’m really thankful for that, that I was able to do it. Did you on your, on your sort of progression from not even a rhino to suddenly doing these sort of epic challenges, did you have any sort of trouble because to sort of go from zero to a big runner, I math it must’ve been quite a transition for your.

Did you have any issues in the sort of transition or not really? No. No, no. It was more that, that my body was reacting quite well. I I was really surprised about this because yeah, no, the [00:25:00] January medicine. They, they tell you, oh, you have to be careful with your knees. You have to be careful with the hormone system.

As a woman, you have to be learned a lot of, like I said, but nothing happened to me. So I think my body can tolerate these distances. And of course, sometimes I have pain here and there and I have to go and see my therapist. And but I would say that. Look at my body a little bit more serious than maybe the general people and that I see when something is not right.

And so the transition from I actually, I think I’m still a normal person but the transition to, to run long distances it was, yeah, I think there was a force in myself. There was this. Yep. Power that wants to come out and to run just to run. Yeah, because you’ve [00:26:00] done, as he said, some of these meeting trips, one that sort of caught my eye, which I found fascinating was your world record Kilimanjaro run, which I have to admit slightly jealous.

There are some times on this podcast when people do something, I’m like, ah, that’s something I really would love to do. That’s okay. Yeah, the Kilimanjaro. It was, yeah, very nice project actually. And I, this was part of this bottom up climbs, seven bullet Kanick summits. And we, with my two friends, we flew to, to Africa, to Tanzania and we had.

I started at the C level to cycle five days through the country to get to the bottom of the forest on the, of the, of the Cayman Java. And then we just walked as normal tourists up in four days on the Cleveland jail. And then I had two days for resting and [00:27:00] yeah, I thought when I started this project, maybe it, it can be that I am, I’m able to do it.

And when I have the power, I will start and just try it. And I had really no good acclimatization. I was cycling five days. At least 350 kilometers through Africa, we came there and then we went up in four days. I was suffering a lot of the altitude and not a good, I’m not good at altitude. Actually it is up to 4,000.

I’m good. But then I really need to have time. And we had no time because we had a really, really tight schedule. But I felt quite good. And then in the morning, two days after I was on the top, I started totally alone in these very, very black dangle. This was my biggest fear actually. [00:28:00] My friends were there at the start and they were cheering me and then I was alone and I was so afraid that I maybe will meet an animal or another person’s suddenly.

And I was just lying my big hat lamb, which is good light. And I was just running, running, running, running, and don’t look left or right. And then I was really happy when the sun came up and I, that my eyes were able to see everything and that my fantasy was not playing any tricks on me anymore. Yeah.

And then I ran up in, what was it? Eight hours, 32, something like that. Yeah. And I broke the, the former record with three hours or, yeah, but when I came up to the top, I was really because I was not, definitely not acclimatized. I was suffering a lot and I, every 1000 meters there was a guy and [00:29:00] he was waiting there for me to, to see if I’m okay.

And. Some water and some bigger warmer clothes closest for me. And then on the top, there was one waiting for me. And I was so slow when I was coming up and I was so slow going down until 3,500 meters. And then I said to him, okay, now I can run again. I was able to run until my friends were waiting for me and.

Very nice that threatened people listening. We’ll probably sort of wonder what sort of, what’s the sort of feeding, like when you’re at the top of Kilimanjaro, because you’ve run up you and what’s eight hours. And if we’re obviously suffering from altitude sickness was to sort of feeling that you’re getting, when you’re up there, did you have sort of time to sort of take in that you’re at the top?

Or were you like right now? I need to get that. When I was on the top, [00:30:00] I just thought I need to get down. And I felt some headaches and dizziness. I, yeah, I was I was not attitude to the sickness or sick but it was more, I, my mind say to me, okay, don’t waste too much time. Just go down. And it just.

A big thing. When, when you, when you come up and realize that you have done it, I mean, the time I was not watching all the time, I had my, my, my, my Garmin and I started the gum and what I was not looking on it the whole time. I actually, I never do it because it’s stresses me a little bit when I when I watch the watches all the time and So when I was on the top, I just pressed it and said, oh, it’s eight hours, 35, 32 minutes.

Okay. And then I realized that, okay, let’s go down. Yeah. And so [00:31:00] when you go to the bottom where there’s people that are greeting. Yeah, my friends were waiting there and all the guides, they, because you, you are not allowed to go on the chemo without guides. And everybody was there with some process caused some pain or was it, I, I can’t some bubbling water, sparkling water, and, and I got some.

Blankets traditional blankets and some flowers. And and then we went back to the hotel and I was so tired and I think I, I got some fries or pizza and two beers and it was just party, I suppose. That’s the one good thing about sort of ultra running or ultra endurance running? Is that after you’ve.

You can stuff your body with whatever you want. It’s one of the guilty guilt guilt-free pleasures you can get in life. Yeah, this is a, this is really nice. And I’m a kind of [00:32:00] person like this, this I can suffer and I can force my body until the limit. And then when, when it’s over, I say, okay, it’s over now.

Let’s have the party please. Well, and so from that, your plan is the seven summit volcanoes, which you’ve already done. And you’ve got three pending or four pending three here, three pending. And when’s the plan to do these three volcanoes. Yeah, well, it’s at the moment with the COVID situation, it’s not so easy to travel and there’s the one in Russia missing the amount elbows, which will be the next one because it’s yeah, it’s easier.

The easiest, one of the three missing ones and the next one would be the one in Papua New Guinea. Yeah, it’s quite far away and a very long trip. And [00:33:00] the last one, I don’t know if it will be possible, but it’s down in the Antarctic, in the, in the code. And it is really expensive. And I don’t know if, if it’s still Make a bill with all this climate change in the world.

If it’s really necessary to fly there and to do something, just have a private project. But yeah, we will see maybe there will be a chance that we can fly with someone who going there cause it’s really, really expensive. And then maybe we will get the chance. Chances coming, like, let me see that midway, but Russia, I would say it’s possible and demand herbalists it’s yeah, it’s calling actually.

Yeah. Yeah. It’s, it’s, it’s an interesting sort of topic that’s sort of come more mainstream is traveling for pleasure. And it’s a sort of difficult one to sort of weigh up, especially [00:34:00] when you’re doing these sort of personal projects. Do you feel it’s become a bit more of a. Topic with you. Yeah, well, it’s just, I mean, these bottom-up claims, these are actually quite, quite nice for the environment because I never use any motor.

I just do it by myself by my own power I cycle I run, but I have to go in a special country to do it. And Yeah. I mean, when I do it once a year, when I fly one time a year or one time in two years, then I think it’s still okay for, for me. And yeah, it’s a, it’s a big question. How are we can save our planet and I think I’m not the person who is who has.

Yeah, who can talk in a, in a good way about it. Yeah. Yeah. It’s sort of one of these, it’s a very sensitive theme and, and everybody has to, [00:35:00] to look on, on him or herself that, how can I save, what, how can I save energy? How, what can I do for myself? And yeah. And flying, of course, it’s, it’s not so good.

Taking the train would be better, but even to cycle would be the best thing. And they have like, from time to time, it is good when you can go out in an airplane to another country to have an adventure. Yeah, yeah, exactly. And have this sort of experience and sort of just see a completely different part of the world to yours.

One of these wonderful challenges we face in the future. Yeah. Yeah. When it’s an in unique challenge when it’s unique and it’s quiet, good plant. Yeah. Yeah, but I think there are a lot of people who are saying, no, no, you can’t go on an airplane anymore, but yeah. A different, different theme. Yeah. [00:36:00] And we’ve with these trips, of course your sports psychology has become sort of a huge part of it.

Because as you say, it’s a lot of the sort of endurance things. It’s more mental sport than actually a physical because you. And what I’ve found over the years of doing these is you can put yourself through so much more than you ever possibly imagined. Have you found that you’ve almost reached your limit, would you say, or do you feel through the future, you’re going to keep pushing it, keep testing it.

Interesting question. I would say that in running, I, I haven’t found my limit yet. I would say I, I, I can go further, further, further. And I would say when there would be a really neat that I had, that I would have to leave my home and to go for, I don’t [00:37:00] know, then I would say I would be able to, to walk or to.

As far as I can go, but I haven’t found my limit yet also in racing unless I’m ill or if there is an accident or something that stops me. But when there is no pain in the body and, well, actually there is a pain in the body, but when it’s not so. Just the big pain like that. It’s a ruin yourself or ruin the part of the body.

Then you can go, you can, when you can’t run, you go, when you can’t go, then you walk. And when you can’t walk, then you don’t know, you slow down, down, down, down until you stop. And the other thing is that with all these races and adventures, I, I learned that there is always. That always comes away. And it is a little bit like this crisis thing [00:38:00] when there is a crisis, I know that the crisis can go and I, I actually, my character always, it was always a little bit like this.

Let’s try it. And I’m, I’m not a person who says, is it possible? Can I do it when I feel that from the inside, this is this inner power or this flow, what to recall it. Then, then it is possible. I don’t know what is the outcome, but for sure, I will. And I laughed to jump into the cold water and then I think, oh, maybe I’m not in the right place yet.

Can I go back? And yeah, something like this. Yeah. Part of the show where we ask the same five questions to each guest each week with the first being on these trips or expeditions, what’s the one gadget that you always take with you.

I always [00:39:00] make a playlist and I always make a playlist with songs I’ve never heard before. These are new songs and they remind me when I’m back. And couple of years later when I hear the song, I definitely know exactly where I was when I was listening that song. So sort of in the Gabby desert, you have your song.

Yeah, I can tell you when I listening to special songs that I was there, that I was suffering and I was all that also in the Atacama desert. I knew that when I knew that after the fifth stage one more was coming and. At least one hour ahead of the second woman, I knew that when everything is going on like this, that I will win it.

And I was going through these tent campsite and I was listening to a song. And when I hear the phone, I, I, I back into this feeling. I can tell you everything. What would, [00:40:00] was there in detail? So what was the what was the song when you’re going through Antarctica? Whoa, Attica. I wasn’t listening to more or less the alternative playlist with snow patrol and Bush and and block party, block party.


Things like this. Yeah. What is your favorite adventure or traveling? I never read adventure and travel books. I got a lot of books. People gave it to me as a present, but I, I never, ah, no, no, I never read it because I want to, to get in my own experiences. So when, when someone says, oh, there’s a book, someone has written about that, what [00:41:00] you are doing.

Thank you, but I want to be fresh when I go into a new adventure for myself, but now I remember that, and it’s quite a funny story that I read a book about hair got hanger hair, got hanger. It’s the first German was on the Mount Everest in 90, 90. And she was then doing the seven summits and I read a book, the first book from her.

Where she was writing about the, her experience and her adventure from the Mount Everest. And I read it in 2002. And in 2019, I met her here in my hometown just by chance because she was here with her new book and she was on a, on a how can you say, on a travel on a journey to present her new book? And I say, Hey God, you go by star.

[00:42:00] And she was, since that we are, we are good friends. Yeah. Yeah. This is a story about adventure books. What about your favorite quote? Cool. Ah, ah, they are a lot actually. Mm, mm. This is maybe from from you know, her, his little girl from the book from us, the link, then the strongest girl on the world, unfortunately.

Acid Lincoln, she’s a writer and she wrote lovely books for, for, for children. And she’s the strongest girl on the world and she say how can I translate it? We, we haven’t done this before and [00:43:00] therefore it will go quiet. Is it right? Translated HighSpot now that’s happened. so it means like we haven’t done this before, so the output can only be positive.

Okay, good. Yeah. Why, why are these adventures important? Because I laughed to explore. I laughed at junior things. I love to put myself into situations where I’ve never been before. I, yeah, I really liked to, to, to see how I react, how, how I can adapt to new situations. And yeah, this is actually my fourth.

Nice. What’s the other one? The other one is. People listening are always keen to sort of travel and go on these sort of expeditions like yourself. What’s the one thing you would recommend [00:44:00] to them to sort of get started. To go to do something like yeah, I mean, I, I, I think I said it before, you have to really want to do it.

You have to really feel joy and passion and these flame of, and to the ASM to do something. What gives you. Positive energy and where you can feel that it comes out of you. So don’t do anything. Once someone is telling you, you have to do it. You have to go there, you have to do this. I think it’s yeah, you, you really have to find your own thing and your own project and it’s not, must not have been That it’s always faster or bigger or something more than someone has done it.

Just create your own project. That’s where you go out of your comfort zone. And yeah, I would recommend. [00:45:00] That you find your way and you’re this kind of like, you want to do it. Like you want a cycle, you want to walk, you want to go in, in a boat. You want to, I don’t know, to go with a parachute somewhere.

You have to find something where you’re feeling quite grounded. Yeah. I suppose with these and like having spoken to a lot of people on the podcast, it’s, it’s about knowing your, why. And by having that and having a strong why means that you can sort of push yourself further and you can tolerate some of these hardships that you go through.

Yeah. And I would say it is I mean, you need to have an objective without an objective, you, you don’t know rather you have reached it or not, but I think it’s really important that you have part time objectives that you are not disappointed when you are not [00:46:00] able to reach the big goal.

And yeah, I think this is also very. Finally now, what are you doing now? And how can people follow your journey in the future? Oh, well, I’m, I’m on Facebook or Instagram. I’m sometimes I’m doing a little videos here from my home hometown. I call them hello from Switzerland and there is kind of funny little videos and yeah, I, I hope that I can go on with my bottom-up climbs.

I. Yeah, since COVID I have done only little things. Yeah, and, and, and then this year I want to go from maybe from, in Greece, from the sea level to the Olympic, to the highest mountain of, of Greece. Yeah, you can, you can follow me on the social media and sometimes I’m writing my blog. Things are coming.

[00:47:00] But I, I like to be more outside than writing and typing something. Yeah. Oh, wow. Well, it’s been such a pleasure listening to your stories and I cannot thank you enough for coming on today. Thank you. It was really a nice talk. It was different to two other ones. Yeah. Very good question. Yeah. Thank you.

Well, I mean, it’s really interesting cause I, I think the sort of your head. You’re the sort of psychology of it and sort of being able to keep putting yourself through those sort of tough situations are hugely important. And thank you so much for sort of sharing that advice to the listeners and everything.

I’ll remember it next time I’m out. Yeah. Thank you. It’s just coming out with, I mean, yeah, I’m, I’m, I’m talking a lot about these things because people ask me always, but Yeah, your questions were a little bit different. Yeah. What’s nice. Yeah. Not the standard ones. Yeah. Well, thank you so much [00:48:00] again.

Yeah. Thank you.

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