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Back2You in cammino sulle Dolomiti - immagine di Nada e Frank

Back2You walking in the Dolomites

Back2You walking in the Dolomites

Those who know Back2You know well that it is not a simple product, but a lifestyle choice aimed at awareness of one's physical and internal abilities, at the awareness of being an integral part of the world and nature, and at the awareness that Our choices, our actions, are never too small and that each one can make a difference.
Back2You clothing is able to protect and increase energy, strengthen the metabolism, optimize and improve performance, slow down chronological aging and provide effective well-being .
These benefits also manifest themselves in a rediscovered radiance and beauty , because seeing yourself "well" is good for you.
The philosopher Ludwig Feuerbach said "We are what we eat". Now that Back2You is a reality within everyone's reach, we can say: " We are what we eat and what we wear ".

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Frank, you who chose Back2You as an ally on your "journey" in the Dolomites, what do you think?

I think that traveling for several days has become a wonderful place to be, never the same and able to write inside me to the point of healing me. This seems like a poetic passage but the truth is that it is exactly like that, and I feel like saying that it applies to all those like me who have this type of experience, perhaps with different nuances but the substance is the same for everyone.
Walking with your body re-discovering its strength and ability to overcome physical and mental obstacles, vibrating and living step by step crossing people, animals and places, communicating in silence with your unconscious and often discovering parts of yourself that are almost or completely unknown, feeling with the senses everything that surrounds you, the smells, the noises, the light, the colors, the greens, the yellows, the blues, the reds, feeling the fears, feeling the pure joy, breathing, listening to your heart, taking back your rhythm of the day, of dawn, of the sun and of the sunset.
All this was shocking the first few times, think that several times I asked myself "but where was all this stuff", the truth is that we have become unaccustomed to listening and listening to each other, we have become unaccustomed to entering into true and profound contact with ourselves and with others, to accept and enjoy the slowness of things and the good that all this does for us both emotionally and physically.
Of course, crossing a territory is wonderful but also very tiring, if you have a 10-15kg backpack on and maybe it's very hot or raining it's even more tiring, but the incredible thing is that you also accept this because it's part of it and so are you. you are part of it. And then you discover that you only need a little, a few things, a few objects, a little food, and you're fine, you're fine just the same as if it were also an excellent way to eliminate toxins and addictions, then practically it's like that too.
This ability that nature has to lay you bare, as I was saying at the beginning, scared me, but now I am grateful to it because it welcomes me and shows me beauty, in fact I have understood that it is these types of experiences and contacts that I seek, with the earth but with bare feet firmly planted in it and with people who feel and vibrate at this type of frequency.
I have almost always traveled alone but when traveling you are never alone, incredibly even in the most remote places you meet people similar to you with whom it is very easy to establish a dialogue and relationships of friendship and exchange, sometimes not even an unknown language it's a barrier, often with these people maybe you only travel a few dozen kilometers in company and then say goodbye forever, or with others you travel hundreds of kilometers and lasting friendships and connections are born that not even thousands of kilometers away put them in crisis.
And then you discover that everyone is traveling for some profound reason because these travel choices are not random, sometimes the end of an important story, sometimes a mourning, sometimes the search for answers that cannot be found. What you say to each other with these unknown people but close to you during the journey is often destined to remain engraved inside you forever, and it comes out, and how it comes out.
Nowadays it almost always happens that on the first day I ask myself “What are you doing here Frank? Why didn't you, Frank, sit on the sofa reading a good book or by the sea under an umbrella?”, in fact the effort is a lot because training is training anyway, but on the real journey as soon as you move away from the starting point you know that you will have many days and many kilometers ahead of you before you get to the other side, you will be uncomfortable, you will wash little and often you will eat and sleep not very well and at uncoordinated times. But immediately the wonder of the journey across the world enters you, crosses you, forcefully kidnaps you, takes you and takes you with it, fills your eyes and heart with colours, sounds and smells that you have often never experienced before. In the meantime you talk to yourself, you ask yourself if everything is okay, you tell yourself that everything is not okay, you tell yourself that it will get better and... then you know that it will get better, because these adventures are boiling pots with lots of good and healthy stuff inside .
Then on average during the year I put aside 3 complex questions that I don't know how to answer or don't want to answer and incredibly the journey normally gives me all the answers I was looking for. Obviously I can't tell you what questions I started with because they are very personal, but I can tell you that this being alone with one's own legs and one's soul while traveling helps the individual to take steps and they happen with great ease and serenity.

What you said fits well with Back2You's wellness philosophy . Back2You is not just a clothing brand, but a philosophy of life that is based on the search for the essential , on freedom from the superfluous , on contact with oneself , on trust in one's own resources , on breaking down barriers between inside and outside , and on the vision of beauty . Back2You offers an approach to well-being that is based on respect for the body and the environment. Its garments are made with high quality materials that last over time and promote psychophysical well-being . Back2You invites people to take care of themselves, listening to their bodies and their needs . When you start to see changes thanks to the use of Back2You, it is important to get in touch with the deep sensations and perceive the small but constant progress that makes us feel better day after day and enjoy the awareness of the strength and power found again. We are wonderfully complex beings and deserving of care and attention.

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These synergies are beautiful, right? Come on, now tell me about the trip you took this year!

This year I chose Italy and I covered the Alta Via number 1 of the Italian Dolomites on foot with a backpack, sleeping bag and tent, starting with my right foot from Lake Bries (BZ) and arriving with my left foot at La Bissa (BL), excluding transfers to and from the area, the trip lasted from 31 July to 9 August.

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How did you choose the path?

Think that everything was born almost by chance, let me explain. I stopped by to say hello to my friend Giuseppe at his workplace towards the end of January, we had a chat in his office, then, looking at his computer screen, I saw that he had a page open on the next marathon in which he would participate, it took place on the dolomites and was a circular route that included a refuge. His story and the wonder I saw in his eyes had also sparked my deep curiosity to the point that I wrote down the address of the website he was visiting and returned home with the "loot".
At that point the journey before the journey began with the discovery of the Alte Vie delle Dolomiti, I dedicated about two weeks to research, analysis of the routes and reading many posts to understand what other users were also saying. Practically from the start, my interest was in Alta Via number 1, trying to understand lengths, differences in altitude, terrain, weather, wild animals, in short, trying to understand what I would find myself living up there and therefore how I would have to prepare and equip myself given that I had a few months ahead of me to get everything in order.

So you were thinking about taking this trip alone?

Well for about 10 years now I have always traveled alone, a dimension that I like and that allows me to experience a journey within the journey within myself, because after all journeys like these are not done to win medals or plant flags on a geographical map, but to know and get to know each other, to discover and discover oneself.
So to answer your question, yes, I honestly thought I would tackle it alone, but as fate would have it, about ten days later, by calling Giuseppe, thanking him for the advice and telling him what I would have liked to do, he gave me the contact details of a friend municipality that had expressed interest in a similar trip, so also in this case I collected "the data" and took it home because I felt that this trip was better done by two.

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Have you always made trips of this type, or rather has there even been a click at some point in your life?

It all started about ten years ago with the Camino de Santiago de Compostela, one of those experiences that shakes your soul and further elevates your sense perception, changes the units of measurement of space and time, distances you from "plastic life" and, from certain points of view, it makes you feel even more alone, but stronger. From my experience but not only, when you take a trip like this you can't stop and you can't wait for the time to get back on the road.
After all these years I still consider it the journey of journeys, I'll start by saying that I'm agnostic and I say this because we shouldn't imagine that journey as a journey of faith. That route has its own magic, its own strong energy, it passes through incredible places in France and Spain which at times reminded me of the Italy of the 70s, almost out of time. It's a journey for everyone and I recommend it especially to all those people who for some reason are in crisis with themselves and/or are looking for answers but don't know where to start. It's a path that frees your life.

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Out of curiosity, what did you do before?

Before that trip I went on holiday a bit like everyone else, in the sense that I rented accommodation in a tourist area and spent about ten days there. Now that type of approach is light years away from me and I can no longer imagine myself in a similar situation, I get bored just at the thought of staying in one place for so many days, I almost no longer find any sense in it. Then I probably wouldn't have anything to tell myself and my friends, it's no longer for me, at least at this moment in my life.

Before talking in more detail about the trip to the Dolomites, can you tell me about any other trips you have undertaken in recent years?

So, last year I was in Ireland in the south-west area, I crossed an immense and almost uninhabited territory, with natural contexts very different from ours, lots of greenery everywhere, a thousand shades of green in fact, then lots of water everywhere , lakes and then peat, peat was a discovery for me, very complicated to walk on because you sink into the mud and water, then huge spaces where I almost only encountered quadrupeds. It was certainly a beautiful but difficult experience especially due to the climate, in practice it was always raining, but in the end I really liked it for these vast territories where you are face to face with nature and that's it, but it's not a trip for everyone , in the sense that you need to have a bit of experience and then emotionally you need to be very stable because it is very easy in the midst of the fog and all that water from above and below to lose heart and go into crisis when instead you need great firmness .
Two years ago, however, I took the Tuscan Francigena starting from north to south. I had already toured those territories by motorbike and car on other occasions, but on foot I saw incredible things and beauties invisible to non-walkers, a territory with a thousand shades of yellow, and... the thing that struck me most was when arriving from the woods from the north I entered Vignoni Alto and leaving the door of what remains of the fortress located on the hill the whole Val d'Orcia appeared before me, a breathtaking spectacle. It's natural, especially in summer, that almost every photo you take of Tuscany is a postcard, because everything has an ancient and wavy flavor and the colors and climate are fantastic. It is a moderately demanding journey but I would say almost for everyone.

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But returning to the Dolomites, how do you organize a trip of this type?

I confess that I had never been above 2000 meters for such a long period of time so from this point of view the journey at altitude represented something new for me too.
I immediately told myself that for this trip I wanted to do something different from my "typical solitary trip", I therefore immediately accepted Giuseppe's proposal and teamed up with Gianpiero, the mutual friend whose contact he had passed on to me. With Gianpiero we began to carefully analyze the routes also taking advantage of the GPS tracks of other users and their comments, then we analyzed the materials (backpack, harness, rope, carabiners, clothing, shoes, food, sleeping bag, tent, water bottle, gps, app, first aid kit, jacket, etc.), then the preparation we wanted and had to undergo, we joined the CAI and took out accident insurance for that type of remote area and we collected technical information by meeting also trained people from the CAI for the use of harness, rope and carabiners and prepared for any encounters with wild animals.
In GPS tracing of the route we only took some small "poetic licences", avoiding some mountaineering passages and choosing other paths, this is because it didn't seem appropriate to play with fate and therefore with life in some mountaineering passages for which we had neither experience nor specific training.
In the meantime, on the weekends we planned and walked along paths in the hills, pre-Alps and Venetian and Trentino Alps to prepare ourselves physically and mentally. In fact, it wasn't so much the kilometers that worried us, but above all it was the differences in altitude, the weight of the backpack and the terrain which was sometimes very bumpy and slimy that we had to overcome.

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How do you choose a backpack for a trip like this?

I personally like to have a large backpack full of pockets and various areas to put many things in separately so as not to have to overturn everything every time if you need to take something specific, furthermore I prefer to have almost everything inside the backpack so I can maintain the order of the things and if it rains I know it's all in there and by covering the backpack I cover everything. For this trip I had a 70+10 liter and it was so full that I had 14kg on my shoulders + another 2-3kg depending on how much water and food I loaded.

And what about Back2You clothing? How did you find it?

The Back2You clothing was a nice surprise, both your willingness to become a technical partner of the trip and the availability of the 4 kits you provided us, namely: leggings + shirt + bandana.
As you well know, it wasn't the first time I wore your products, in fact I regularly wear your boxers which are very comfortable and the t-shirts which are light and delicate on the skin even for a man. However, this was the first time I had worn Back2You clothing in a very demanding and technical undertaking. I must say that I was surprised by many small and large things: the comfort, the maintenance of body temperature, the lightness, the fact that despite the endless sweating the garments did not stink, the washability and quick drying and the robustness of the fabric which between he has seen all kinds of branches and stones but he has done very well. All these details at altitude, being able to have very few things with you, because the weight on your shoulders must be limited to the gram, are certainly a plus. For the color of the garments we had chosen white together because in some areas of the Dolomites there is a very small black tick, so with white garments it became immediately visible and removable.
Then I have to confess that my cousin Nada and I, all dressed in white and with the Back2You logos, made a really good impression.

So can we say that Back2You is also the perfect clothing for demanding sporting endeavors?

Yes, yes, yes, it passed the test brilliantly.

Were there any unexpected events?

Obviously yes and also a very important one because it fell on the project before departure.

I mean what happened?

The preparation was going wonderfully, in the sense that we were in very good shape and the very heavy backpacks were ready with everything that would be needed for the ten days of travel, when around mid-July, therefore 15 days before departure, in the morning he called me at I phoned Gianpiero telling me that the night before he had slipped on his motorbike and suffered a severe bruise on his left knee, but not to worry because the emergency room had told him it was just a bump.
July 31st was close, for about 10 days we hoped that the knee would recover but unfortunately further tests highlighted damage that could not be recovered in such a short time. After a moment of disorientation, I didn't lose heart, I therefore decided that I would leave alone, even if it would have made everything more complicated and dangerous. The CAI advises against traveling alone in the mountains, in fact a sprained ankle in the middle of nowhere or on a little-traveled path is enough to transform a simple walk into a nightmare, not to mention a tragedy.

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So what happened then?

The surprise came from my cousin Nada, who offered to be my travel companion 3 days before departure. My cousin Nada is a person with a sunny soul, a beautiful woman with a wonderful smile, she loves walking and loves animals and nature in general, she and I are very close in spirit so when she proposed to me it struck me an incredible smile of joy on my face because I knew that she trusted me and I trusted her and that therefore together we would be a super team. Obviously she hadn't done any preparation even though she had always gone walking and to the mountains. The departure was on Monday, so on Saturday I took her with me to the pre-Alps to walk with a weighted backpack so that she could get an idea, even if vague, of what she would face physically and I must say that I was pleasantly surprised by the courage and tenacity of that woman. On Sunday we went around the shops to get what she was missing, integrating it with some objects on loan from Gianpiero who was at home on crutches.
I knew that my cousin Nada was a force of nature, but I also knew that she was also very emotional because she is a profound person and therefore faced with the beauty of the territory crossed it was easy to get excited and lose concentration on the steps and therefore on safety.

Well, finally let's talk about the trip, so then the departure?

On July 31st we left, the feeling between me and Nada was excellent and relaxed, there was no form of competition but only wonder at the wonders we encountered, and despite the fatigue and the somewhat unstable weather throughout the journey we we did very well. Without being noticed, I always checked on Nada to make sure everything went well and there were no accidents. I must admit, however, that she was very strong and very clear-headed, while enjoying the journey, the views, the friendship and the long chats we had about the meaning of life.
The Garmin GPS guided us well almost everywhere, we saw so many beautiful things that we took home about 500 photos and about 500 videos which give an idea of ​​how full of emotions this trip was.
There have been epic climbs like the one at Lagazuoi, crazy lakes at high altitude like that of Coldai, and then scree slopes and breathtaking lunar landscapes, silent woods and impetuous and noisy streams, encounters with squirrels and the wonder of wonders of the Mondeval plateau that really stole my whole soul, no words can describe its beauty, only photos or live viewing can.
In the end we returned home tired, dirty and thin, but with a different light, details and colors in our eyes, hearts and souls, much stronger and more contrasted than before, and we feel rich and proud of this. And in a certain sense we returned home even more cousins ​​than before, because this type of travel and sharing strengthens emotional and human bonds of whatever nature they may be.

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How did you eat and sleep?

To eat, above a certain altitude you can only organize yourself with the refuges or mountain huts, there are no markets, so we stopped to eat in these places found or booked along the route, obviously we also had some reserves of bars and almonds and packed items often bought in the shelters themselves. I in particular always had a small thermos with hot coffee because you never know when you're in the middle of nowhere and the temperature drops.
To sleep we had booked some refuges while other nights we spent in tents. I have a beautiful professional tent, small but light and very safe, let's say that for two people it is very narrow, but with Nada we decided to use and bring only one to save on weight. We were a little more uncomfortable but 2kg less makes the difference. I carried the tent anyway ;) but it is important to underline that it is still advisable to have a tent with you even if you have booked all the refuges, because in the mountains the weather or tiredness can change your travel plans and therefore have a back-up for the night it is highly recommended.

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One imagines the mountain as a serious place and that's it. Were there any "comedic" moments between you and Nada?

Well there was the Nada “pee” thing. Very often Nada asked me to take a pee break, at the beginning it broke the rhythm a bit, then since I had to document the environment, colors and sounds with many photos and videos, in the end Nada's pee break created the right just enough space to think about the shots and close-up audio shots of nature, and... also to check the route on the GPS. Then from a certain point on, when I saw beautiful and meaningful things to shoot, I asked Nada if she needed to pee so I had an excuse to stop for photos and videos.
Another funny phase was in some stages where for a few days we weren't able to wash ourselves or at least take decent showers, I remember that one evening in the tent we smelled each other's armpits to see if we smelled, and we came to the conclusion that we didn't we stank or we smelled of the same stench which therefore we couldn't smell ;)

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You were talking about GPS, explain better, how do you orient yourself on similar journeys?

It depends from route to route. There are well-signposted journeys such as the Camino de Santiago where it is impossible to make mistakes, then there are territories forgotten by God and men such as green Ireland where Google maps are actually not enough and it is therefore advisable to equip yourself with professional GPS tools or topographic maps. At a certain point in my journey I decided that I wanted a very powerful, precise and reliable instrument and therefore I invested in a professional product from Garmin which allowed me to plan trips better and also to enjoy them more because it is like having if a "friend" who knows the roads of almost all places in the world and in the event of natural interruptions to the route or sudden changes in the weather allows you to evaluate possible alternatives by reprogramming the route almost in real time. It also integrates the possible possibility of calling for help where there is no cellular signal because it does so via satellite, and this is no small thing.

Which part of the body should be kept under control the most?

Body and mind must feel good throughout a trip of this type, in fact over time you learn not to get anxious in case of difficulty, because it is important to be clear-headed and with as few ailments as possible. So for example, clothing must be well managed, the weight must be reduced to the gram without missing anything for the needs of the trip.
But the part of the body that needs to be checked and pampered the most are the feet: at the end of the day I always check them carefully, I check if there are any red or otherwise distressed areas, if I have any doubts I put on a protective plaster to prevent them from forming. bubbles, then I use organic coconut oil and massage them for a few minutes every evening before sleeping so I soften them and at the same time dissolve as much as possible any tension accumulated with the fatigue of the day. So you also learn to take care of yourself with simple gestures and to listen to any points of physical pain.

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Have you had any dangerous situations with wild animals?

To tell the truth I never felt in danger even when encountering wild animals, it must be said that as far as possible I always informed myself beforehand about any behavior to adopt and what type of animals there were in the areas I would have crossed. Then we must always keep in mind that we are the intruders in those territories so we must maintain non-disturbance behavior, we must ask permission and enter on tiptoe.
On this type of journey it is quite natural to encounter grazing animals, but normally they are not the real problem, instead you have to be careful of the dogs that control the grazing, trying not to invade their territory which they obviously will instinctively want to defend. While, for example, wolves are very wary and normally run away from humans, wild boars just need to leave the passage perfectly free and therefore just stay on the side of the road and stay still, while with bears I have never had the pleasure of meeting them and I hope to never have this luck!
But in the Dolomites I was more worried about the ticks and that's why for those we always wore long trousers and shirts with long sleeves and everything was white, this is because the ticks are small and black and therefore could have been identified immediately by shaking them. elsewhere from clothes. Then, for example, vipers tend to be a little "cozy" and in the middle of the paths in the early morning because they need the heat they lost during the night, so you have to be much more careful at the first light of dawn about where they rest. the feet, but also no trace of vipers.

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And what can you tell me about the ZERO2DOLOMITI logo?

Oh yes, for this trip I created a logo and slogan “ZERO2DOLOMITI | It's a marvel!” because I liked the idea of ​​having formed a team with a travel project with its own identity and personality.
“ZERO2DOLOMITI is the journey, it is the project, it is the desire, it is the need, it is the parable of the journey of two friends, who from scratch, in a zero moment of their life, at a zero altitude, decide to overcome the mountains because we need to move forward, we need to go beyond and live the here and now! It is an inner journey, not of conquest but of knowledge, the strong search for a new spiritual balance to raise the limit of one's awareness, to see and see oneself from above, to peer and scrutinize oneself from above the clouds, to breathe and stay in silence. It is a journey into the absolute beauty of the mountain in total sustainability.
The ZERO2DOLIMITI logo is a combination of signifier and meaning, of sound and image, of characters and meaning: ZERO is the starting point, it is the respectful point of observation, it is the point of consciousness, it is the void and the full, it has zero impact on the natural environment; 2 are the men, are the friends, are the souls, are the direction; The DOLOMITES are the wonder, they are the emotion, they are the mother, they are the power, they are the paths where every step must be conquered.”

And what are you plotting now?

Yes, I really like this question! To this journey I wanted to link a book that I am completing and which will be released in December this year entitled "THE WOMAN OF FANES", so stay tuned because it will be wonderful ;)

To conclude, in a few words how would you summarize your latest trip to the Dolomites?

In short, it's impossible because each of these is linked to many moments and places, but I'll try anyway: dreams, sounds, silences, scents, sunrises, sunsets, sun, water, rain, rivers, lakes, waterfalls, streams, woods , trees, grass, roots, fog, wind, skies, valleys, peaks, forks, rocks, screes, clouds, snow, hail, meadows, gray, blue, red, yellow, pink, purple, cold, hot, mud, lightning , thoughts, words, hunger, sleep, tent, backpack, sleeping bag, heart, animals, people, souls, steps, steps infinite, infinite, infinite infinite.

1000 shades of clouds | Alta Via delle Dolomiti number 1 | ZERO2DOLOMITES

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