“Lebensfeuer”, literally meaning the “fire of life” … The name in itself carries something of a magic. Seductive, almost. “What do I burn for?” How am I feeling really? These and further questions are being answered by the world’s first “Lebensfeuer” destination worldwide: The Alpine valley of Kleinwalsertal in the Austrian Vorarlberg district. So what does all of this mean?
To be quite honest: I have originally had just the same question. My host & “Lebensfeuer” professional here in Kleinwalsertal, Klaus Peter of the Hotel Gemma, offers me a warm smile while encouraging me to listen: “Measuring the so-called ‘Lebensfeuer’ all started with a Viennese doctor who went on a holiday here in Kleinwalsertal. He discovered this place’s natural beauty and healing powers, especially in terms of physical and mental health. Parallel to this, the tools for measuring your heart rate through electrodes attached to your body developed to a point of easy access to and use by individual people. During the analysis, we use those tools to draw up your individual “Lebensfeuer” (fire of life), depicting your vitality score. Based on the results, we can recommend you either activating or regenerating walks here in our valley: “Lebensfeuer” holidays are always a means for you to relax and come to terms with your individual sense of wellbeing and health.”
In order to do this, I attach two electrodes as well as a device to measure my pulse rate to my upper body close to the heart. For the next 24 hours, I am required to fill out a protocol of my day’s activities. These notes later help to make sense of the variation in my heart beat. Now, the unique thing here is the long time span of measurement: No one is able to pretend something for more than 24 hours! My “Lebensfeuer” therefore is a solid and objective validation of my current state of health. I am just curious as to what it will reveal? 😉
Klaus Peter of the Hotel Gemma is a certified “Lebensfeuer” professional. His awareness and understanding help me to make sense of what is going on with my “fire of life”.
As part of the “Walser GenussTage” gourmet event week, I am invited to visit the Alpine summer hiking destination of Kleinwalsertal in Vorarlberg together with my gourmet travel friends, Monika & Petar Fuchs (TravelWorldOnline), Lea & Steffi (Escape Town), Clemens & Simon (Anekdotique) as well as Christina & Thomas (CitySeaCountry). This Alpine valley district is truly spectacular: It has originally been farmed by Swiss settlers, is only accessible from Germany and yet a part of Austria.
My “fire of life” starts burning on 13 June, 2014 at 09.23 in the morning. From now on …
… I am required to “behave as normal as possible”. To have a simple breakfast. Enjoy my visit of the local GenussMarkt as part of the GenussTage gourmet event week in Kleinwalsertal. Take one of the mountain cable cars to the top of the mountains. Go hiking. Eat something (and drink a lot). Laughing, talking, sharing and learning. Just what I normally would. And to “relax” (though what my “Lebensfeuer” and I understand by that is completely different!), as well as to sleep of course. Exciting! I spend the entire day thinking of my heart: What is it about to do? Beating, of course, but how?
I take my iPhone and type in all activities into the “Lebensfeuer” app specifically designed to match up with the variances in my heart rate throughout the day. How did my rhythm change during the hike? And how did I feel during the phase of relaxation? Am I really able to calm down and recharge my batteries in my sleep? Answers to these and many more questions are revealed by an analysis of my “Lebensfeuer“. I start the day happy and excited, constantly wondering if this will affect my heart beat during the 24 hours that follow … ?
In the end, my “Lebensfeuer” analysis confirms what I already know deep down inside: Relax, dear Elena!
Pay attention to a healthy, regular diet. Make sure you do get some rest in between: Your heart will be thankful! What sounds natural in this fast-paced time we live in, is actually quite stunning when you look at the visual heart variability results, nearing a picture of “licking flames” called Lebensfeuer. At the end of my measurement period, I am told by my “Lebensfeuer” professional Klaus Peter of Hotel Gemma that my heart has beaten almost 130.000 times in just a day! I should save some of those beats really. My pulse, too, is too high – I am just too excited. 😉 My biological age is something I’d rather not talk about. I really need to find more reasons to relax.
“Take care of you and your personal rhythm. Make sure you get those breaks, such as power-napping even! You have potential to rejuvenate and regenerate during your sleep: Use this! Take care while preparing healthy, balanced and warm food for yourself”, are the most important statements of my “Lebensfeuer” analysis. THANK YOU, dear Klaus for this detailed and in-depth analysis of my “Lebensfeuer”! I am very motivated to do something with the results, and come back in order to check it again after some time. Most certainly, I will let you know here!
Disclaimer: We have been invited by Kleinwalsertal Tourism Board and Hotel Gemma to travel to Kleinwalsertal mountain food district. All opinions are my own.