10 Reasons To Jump On The Hammock Bandwagon

10 Reasons To Jump On The Hammock Bandwagon

It's the best bandwagon around!
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I have a hammock. I adore my hammock. I got one to join the stereotypical freshman scene at my university, becoming one of the many hammocks spread across campus. It was the hipster, yet mainstream, thing to do. And I fell in love. I was in my hammock every minute I possibly could be. I did homework in my hammock, I read, I napped, I invited my friends into my hammock. I did anything and everything in this piece of fabric that I had become over attached to. And now you can too!

1. You can experience nature without touching nature.

Bugs rarely try hard enough to break such a fortress as a hammock. You’re off of the ground and dirt. You really only have to interact with nature when putting the hammock up -- once you’re in, you’re in. You get to smell the naturey smells, feel the sunshine (unless you’re in a heavily wooded or cloudy place), and breathe in the fresh air. Nature, without the dirt and bugs.

2. Cuddling.

I will put it simply, you cannot be in a hammock with another person and not be cuddling. I think I have said enough.

3. It’s kind of like a swing if you push enough.

If you sit perpendicular to the hammock you can dangle your legs out and if you’re close enough to the ground, you can push yourself like you’re a porch swing. Except it’s better than a porch swing, because you’re in nature.

4. You can put them up in the woods to achieve isolation.

If you need to focus to do homework or you just plain want alone time, you can put your hammock up in the woods. Obviously this is subject to situation and placement, but if you try hard enough I’m sure you can avoid seeing other human beings. It’s wonderful to sit in a hammock alone in nature, breathing in the air and thinking. Listen to the birds and animal sounds, experiencing nature in it’s solidarity and all that great stuff.

5. Sleeping in them is supposed to be super good for you!

I’ve taken several naps in my own hammock and I can say, they were some great naps. Once you get over the weirdness of basically napping out in the middle of nowhere, it’s quite relaxing. You could even rock yourself to sleep, using the method described in number three. It’s supposedly really good for your back, as it is fabric and is limited in how it restricts you. Also, you can be protected from the wind, while still feeling the sunshine through the fabric! What could be better?

6. You can post cool hammock pictures.

Look up Instagram accounts that are focused on hammock pictures, they rock. So hipster. Very nature. Such artsy.

7. It makes you feel more outdoors-y and cool.

It’s very hipster (slash mainstream) to hammock and hike and do nature things. Hammocks mean you’re cool, I promise.

8. Sometimes it forces you to be more adventurous.

If you have a hammock then you’re forced to be outside and go find cool places to hammock. Once I got my hammock I found myself searching for the perfect hammock spots, hiking further into the woods or even driving to parks and such. It’s so much fun to find a new spot and sit there for a few hours. The more wonderful spots the better. It’s even more fun to go find these hammock spots with other people who have hammocks! Haven’t you seen those pictures of people stacking hammocks? How cool is that?!

9. It’s a handy way to go camping, but more short term.

In the order of least portable to most portable: skyscraper, house, camper, tent, hammock, umbrella. I’m just saying.

10. They are like hugs of outdoors and fresh air.

Laying in a hammock is like being hugged by nature. That’s all I can say.


I have presented some of my best arguments. Please feel free to challenge them, but please consider them deeply first. Think about it. Hammocks improve your life enjoyment. Hammocks help you make friends. A hammock can be your best friend. That is all. I’ll see you at the nearest REI.

Cover Image Credit: Rebekah Lang

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An Honest Review Of ItWorks! From Someone Who Doesn't Sell The Products

No, I'm not looking for you to "join a team" or begin any challenges.
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I'm sure you've seen your friends on Facebook transition from friend to salesman. Whether it be for Scentsy, LipSense, or AdvoCare; multi-level marketing companies are on the rise thanks to social media. ItWorks! remains one of the most prominent.

ItWorks! is a health and wellness company using primarily plant-based ingredients without any artificial sweeteners or coloring. Their "number one seller" is the famous body wraps but the company is mostly weight loss supplements and vitamins. The company has a passion for the natural over the synthetic. Co-founder Mark Pentecost states on the site's Our History page that "you want to know that you're putting the very best things in your body."

Since most reviews of these products come from distributors, who are therefore biased, I have reviewed three of their greatest products and one I believe you should avoid.

1. Greens™ Blend Chocolate

As a vegan, I sometimes have to double check that I'm receiving the proper nutrients. ItWorks! Greens have been saving my life lately. It contains 52 herbs and nutrient-rich superfoods as well as 34 fruits and veggies. It is meant to alkalize, balance, and detoxify.

This is my favorite product! It gives me energy and even fills in for breakfast sometimes. It honestly makes me feel great. Then again... they always said eating all your fruits and veggies would!

ItWorks! gives you those healthy servings in a delicious chocolate flavor (which is bomb with almond milk). Make sure you use a blender bottle or blender. Like many powdered supplements, it can have that grainy aftertaste.

2. Advanced Formula Fat Fighter™

The idea behind this supplement is that it’s "okay to indulge if you have your Fat Fighters." Basically, if you just must have that sweet treat or piece of bread then you can take this pill within an hour to prevent your body from absorbing the carbs and a portion of the fats. If you're anything like me, you eat what you want when you want, so you'll end up taking these pills on the daily.

The main reason I like the Fat Fighters is that they reduce cravings and I normally have such a sweet tooth!

3. ThermoFIGHT™

This product is meant to increase calorie burning, boost the rate of your metabolism, and boost your energy. Like with Greens, I definitely feel energized when I take this supplement. Not in a jittery or wired way, either.

They say "abs start in the kitchen" but I'll try and cheat the system when I can!

4. Ultimate Body Applicator™ and Defining Gel™

This is the ItWorks! claim to fame... and that ASTOUNDS me.

I used to be so skeptical of this company because of the wraps. I tried them three different times and was not impressed each time. The ultimate body applicator and defining gel are meant to tighten and tone the skin to redefine the appearance of your body’s contour. Sure, you'll receive those results... just at an outrageous price. It's an expensive product that requires a lot of re-purchasing in order to receive any drastic results. Not to mention the most drastic results are just reduction of water weight.

They're really just an overpriced skin firming lotion. I suggest finding a nice cream from Target and sitting in the sauna instead.

If your facebook-friend-turned-salesman pushes for you to buy the wraps, just remember that I warned you.

I would like to give an honorary mention to KetoCoffee (probably their second most popular item). Because it is not vegan, I have not given it a try. I have heard amazing things from multiple women, though. Most keto coffee recipes give people the shakes and amp them up too hard. I've heard that ItWorks! has perfected the recipe.

I have used the first three products for a little over three months now. Sometimes I am inconsistent and miss servings. However, I match these products with a vegan diet (mostly whole foods based) and 3-4 days of exercise. I do not have drastic results but I have lost a little over ten pounds and feel great each day. I plan to remain a customer with this company (I have Greens on Autoship!).

I feel so blessed to be a Loyal Customer with ItWorks! because I receive up to 40% off and free shipping after three months. Without this discount, I probably never would have given this company a second thought. I highly recommend going that route because, well...

Cover Image Credit: Savanah Garcia | Instagram

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I'm Chronically Sick And It Made Me Appreciate The Little Moments In Life

My doctor's office became a second home to me, but never gave me the answers I needed.

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People get sick all the time, a cold here, the flu there. It doesn't seem like anything out of the ordinary to get sick a few times a year - I wish that was the case for me.

I have always been the kid in class who seemed to get a cold every couple weeks. It never caused an issue in school, I always pushed through.

As I got older I got sicker.

If I look back at the last year and compare the times I was sick to my friends, you would be amazed. One of my friends would get a cold and it would pass in a few days. I would catch the same cold, and it would stay with me for multiple weeks. This happened every time someone around me was sick, it didn't matter that I had had the same virus two weeks prior. My body couldn't shut out illness.

I remember the day I came into the editor's office at the magazine I was working for and everyone froze at the sight of me. I had mono, strep throat, and a sinus infection - all at the same time. I looked like a walking ghost. To make it worse, I had already had mono and strep throat previously that winter.

My doctor's office became a second home to me, but never gave me the answers I needed. Everything was just a little annoying until it got serious.

Halfway through fall semester at Washington State University, I faced the scariest medical moment of my life so far. I started getting stabbing pains in my left side. They escalated over the next couple weeks, but I didn't have the time to get it checked out. School, work, my friends, and my boyfriend at the time kept me busy.

It got to the point I couldn't stand it anymore.

When I finally went into the hospital the doctors were amazed I was still as active as I was. I had developed a massive infection in my left kidney. My doctor ordered a rush CT scan to ensure I didn't have to have surgery. In the meantime, I was on multiple painkillers and medications, bedridden for over a week. The results finally came back and I was in the clear. With that said, I now only have half of my left kidney function and it is unclear if I will gain it back.

I was lucky that I didn't lose my kidney from that infection. With that said, I lost my job, my depression levels rose and I barely passed my classes last semester due to the complications. My sickness had finally caught up with me, and that was the final straw.

Once I recovered from my infection I started seeing an immune specialist. We discovered that my sinuses had been stripped of all needed particles that filter out viruses and that my body was a boundaryless breeding ground for bacteria.

I'm defenseless against getting sick.

To this day we still do not know what is going on, but we are constantly doing testing to try to make my life as easy as it can be medical wise. I will always be sick, but the experiences I have had have only made me appreciate the little moments in life more. While I hate the fact I'm getting sicker, and it makes me struggle with self-love, it is something I'm constantly learning from.

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