Poetry On Odyssey: It's OK

Poetry On Odyssey: It's OK

Its ok to break down.
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Its ok to break down.

Its ok for it not to be ok.

Its ok for things to be bad or down or dark. Because that’s how the world is sometimes. And because we are in the world, we will experience these things.

But we can overcome it.

We CAN overcome it.

If we have our God within us and on our side, we can push through the black. Through the mush. Through the bad days. Through the dark skies and hate. Through the relentless black sticky matter that threatens to pull us down and not let go.

We can push through,

we can prevail.

We just have to keep the faith.

Faith in love,

in others,

in goodness,

in light,

in our God,

and in ourselves.

Remaining faithful in these things and people is sometimes the hardest thing to do, when the world around you and within you is crumbling.

But you can do it.

I can do it.

We can do it.

I believe in us.

Cover Image Credit: Photo by Todd Diemer on Unsplash

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Everything You Need To Know About BANG Energy Drinks

Say goodbye to your favorite pre-workout drink.
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BANG energy drinks from VPX Sports are the hottest new products for athletes everywhere. On every can, you'll find their catchphrase "Potent Brain & Body Fuel" and it gives you just that. Clean energy, laser-sharp focus, and no sugar induced crashes are just a few of the reasons these bad boys are flying off the shelves faster than retailers can keep them stocked. Haven't heard of them? Sound too good to be true? Let me answer your questions.

What is it? It's an energy drink that's kind of like your typical Red Bull or Monster. It's a perfect substitution for pre-workout supplements or coffee.

Who's it meant for? Anyone! A better question to ask is, "Who isn't this drink meant for?" On the can, you'll find a recommendation for no one under the age of 18 to consume the drink. You also may want to steer clear of it if you're sensitive to stimulants like caffeine.

What's in it? BANG energy drinks contain zero calories, zero carbohydrates, and zero sugar. But what you can find are BCAA's, CoQ10, creatine, and copious amounts of caffeine. These are things athletes often take as supplements.

What are BCAA's? BCAA's are Branched Chain Amino Acids. They are known to stimulate protein synthesis, increase muscle function, decrease your soreness after a workout, and even aid in repairing damaged muscles.

What's CoQ10? Coenzyme Q10 is found in the mitochondria of your cells and sparks energy production. It helps produce energy your body needs for cell growth and maintenance. People often take this as a dietary supplement when they feel tired or lethargic.

What's super creatine? Creatine does a great job in enhancing athletic performance by aiding growth of lean body mass (AKA muscle). When you take creatine orally, the amount in your muscles increase and helps regenerate ATP more efficiently. According to the nutrition label, this so-called "super" creatine is bonded to Leucine to make Creatyl-L-Leucine. On SupplementReviews.com, a VPX Sports representative allegedly said the following about the Super Creatine in the drink:

"The creatine in there is actually something very special...it is the world's only water stable creatine. It is Creatine-Leucine peptide. Think of this...if you mix creatine in water, it sinks and if you mix leucine in water, it floats....if you combine the two into a peptide, it creates a water soluble and water-stable form of creatine. It also has a fatty acid chain that makes it easier to cross the blood brain barrier. The focus of the super creatine is not for muscle function, but for cognition...by combining this form of creatine with caffeine, it works synergistically for mental focus."

How much caffeine is in one can? In one can of BANG, you'll be blessed with 300mg of caffeine. This is the equivalent to over three cups of coffee.

Is that even safe? Yeah, it is. In order for the caffeine in the energy drink to be lethal at any capacity, I would have to drink 30.7 cans.

So, what are the downsides? There are two things that come to mind. One is that consumers have no idea how much BCAA's, CoQ10, or creatine is actually in the drink. It could very likely be trace amounts too small to do anything beneficial. Two, BANG energy drinks do not go through the FDA approval process.

Is it really that good? Well, out of 113 reviews of the product on Bodybuilding.com, there's an average 9.6 overall rating. Most reviews comment on the quality of the energy, the cognitive focus, and the non-existent crash once the drink wears off.

What kind of flavors can I get? There are currently eight BANG energy drink flavors on the market: Black Cherry Vanilla, Cotton Candy, Sour Heads, Star Blast, Blue Razz, Champagne Cola, Power Punch, and Lemon Drop.

Where can I buy BANG energy drinks? You can find BANG energy drinks at Amazon, your local GNC or Vitamin Shoppe retailers, Bodybuilding.com, VPX Sports' website, some gas stations, and privately owned retailers.

How expensive are they? This depends on where you make your purchase. The cheapest place to purchase your BANG energy drinks is at Bodybuilding.com for about $2.00 per can. You can find similar prices on Amazon and at your local retailers. The energy drinks are most expensive through the VPX website where you'll pay about $2.75 per can.

How does BANG compare to other energy drinks? I'll give you some data on nutrition facts and you can make your decisions based on that:

16 oz. BANG: 300mg caffeine, 0g carbohydrates, 0g sugar.

16 oz. Monster Energy (regular): 160mg caffeine, 54g carbohydrates, 54g sugar

16 oz. Red Bull (regular): 160mg caffeine, 56g carbohydrates, 56g sugar

16 oz. Rockstar (regular): 144g caffeine, 54g carbohydrates, 54g sugar

Cover Image Credit: Youtube

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The Most Positive Place On The Internet

Can you guess what it is?

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With all of the negative things going on in this world it is easy to be consumed by it all. It is terrific to be informed about what is going on in our country and in others, but it can become extremely overwhelming and downright depressing when you consume too much bad news at once. When you are feeling engulfed by these bad stories, it is important to be reminded of the good things happening on our planet as well. Your one-stop shop for happiness on the internet lies in the deep depths of Instagram. You weren't expecting that, right? Well, your happiness isn't lying on just any account on Instagram. The one place that will always bring you happiness on the Internet is dog Instagram accounts.

I have been following dog Instagrams for years now, but I swear there has suddenly been an influx of them. There are Instagrams featuring every dog breed you can imagine. For me personally, I have an English Bulldog, so I follow many English and French Bulldog Instagram accounts. I also follow German Shepherd and Golden Retriever ones as well to spice up my feed.

The reason why these accounts bring me and other dog lovers so much joy is that of the positivity they radiate. As you scroll through the comments of dog Instagrams, you will rarely find a negative remark. Everyone comments about how cute the dog in the picture is or comments on their own personal dog experiences. How can it get any better than that?!

Another nice thing about dog Instagrams is that the captions are usually witty, so not only are the pictures adorable, but they are hysterically funny as well. Some of my favorite dog Instagram accounts at the moment are @3bulldogges, @keepingupwithkeene, and @mr.winstonthefrenchie, just to name a few. I really recommend following Instagrams like these. While being bombarded by photos of people doing amazing things and looking amazing on your feed, it can be extremely refreshing to scroll by a furry friend doing something endearing.

Cover Image Credit:

Isabella Nowak

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