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A while back I wrote about using Black Powder Ultra as part of my energy swap, aside from the fact that it was powdered vs canned it had other benefits for me, the biggest of which was headaches stopped.

Honestly there's probably a lot of factors that contribute to having your head wanting to split after doubling down for the 3rd time in a day. As long as I maintain a decent diet though I have yet to actually hit anything with my Watermelon Ultra. I took it with me to SDCC this year and I carried it in my sling bag, instead of letting days on end of walking and waiting and a lack of sleep ruin panels. Probably one of the first years I wrapped up the convention and I was still on my toes waiting for something else to do. Just a sip here and there and I was holding in like it was only the start of the day.

It's weird honestly, used to always be a case of throw a monster in the freezer, grab it and run out the door and just hope it holds me through the event or night out and so on. I know companies like 5 hour energy tried to focus on portability long ago but my experience with it was pretty awful (stomach cramping like mad) so I've largely just avoided ever trying to go back. In past years I would stow 1-2 away in my bag and grit and bear drinking a warm one as the late afternoon kicked in but without tasting like syrup I was able to drink the Black Powder Ultra at any point.

I usually drink monster / red bull / rockstar / full throttle when I game as well, when its repetitive or a review it helps burn the hours or speed through. I've replaced those as well and I control my delivery to just a bit of a wakeup to "why am I constantly dying / crashing" and its the full punch. You get the focus, you get the energy and as long as you're not terrible at the game you're set to do better there as well. I don't use Black Powder Ultra just to wake up a little either which is what I would do with a regular drink, nursing it through a day until it was flat and I felt obligated to finish it off or waste the value on it.

Strange times but I'm glad things are changing and maybe we'll see more trying to reach that market. You have a ton of regular supplements like Gatorade, Propel and others going into powdered form for portability and casual drinks like Starbucks and Crystal Light repeating it. We should have that option on a larger scale for all things so I'm glad MRI and Black Powder Ultra are trying to set the bar for that market. Now I just need them to make it portable so I can avoid hassles trying to get it through the TSA.

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Sarah's MWO Jenner departs August 20th, have you gotten yours? - http://neo.ly/18dOpAl



We've lost a lot of good people to medical issues lately in this community, be it friends or family. Personally it's hit close to home with the recent cancer related death of Sarah Parries. She and many others have left too soon from the world and from our community. As someone who has faced cancer in the family and has a 5-year-old daughter, the story about Sarah hits to the core because really, it can happen to anyone at any time and it's the one thing we're still helpless against now.

Fortunately I wasn't the only one to feel that way, the MWO community was equally struck that a 5 year old MechWarrior that had just started into their world had passed from the world. The fans did what they do best, they petitioned, they reached out and they wanted to fight back however they could. The result is a customized Jenner Mech in tribute to Sarah that users could buy and all proceeds would go into Cancer research, not only did everyone get to contribute to a cause but they'll always have Sarah with them when they go into the battlefield or stand a chance to see her Mech running free through the world just as she would have.



Right now they're closing in on $100,000 in donations (now $97,280) and they're running toward the close of the event (August 20th). I think it's moving that a community can come together to raise money for things that touch each one of us these days. When people question if we've fallen into the depths, items like this show the community still has some fight and when the right cause comes they'll do what it takes.

At Neo we never had the largest MW community but it's interesting to see how sometimes even people who aren't the biggest fans can still feed off other groups and support them.

Sarah's Jenner Specs:

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Read the latest X (#4) for our review, so good, so violent. Might not sleep well after that

So in part 1 of this group I talked about getting back into shape and putting a train wreck of a schedule back on track. The other half of that was a failing attention span while attempting to do my own work and Neoseeker jobs as well. General tiredness from long hours and living off energy drinks was basically the main issue, also the fact that any of those drinks felt like they were eating through my stomach wasn’t helping things. What sucked even more was as a gamer I was losing time or just being generally awful at anything I played offline or online.

When I went looking for supplements on working out I also dug in for things to help build focus in development situations or in gaming so that I could sneak that extra hour in at 11pm for gaming and actually not fall asleep mid game. I came upon promotions for the new Black Powder Ultra, pitched for working out as well but also for them using a series of supplements focused around generating mental focus. At the time I was already getting the EO2 and aminos so I basically threw the Ultra in with the bunch.

While I didn’t initially focus on it because I was unsure of the reaction, I kicked myself after using it almost a week later as the awareness shot up and I was able to work without lingering headaches or the excessive crash afterward. I got many projects completed in the 11th hour range because of that stuff and it helped lead into the completion of the planning and executing for about 80% of our E3 needs this year. I wasn’t jacked up to the extreme but it was nice to have a mystical extra wind without the hand jitters or stomach churning aftermath from relying on those too much.



So in the midst of all this, I also tested the perks for gaming because hey, they said it’s for gamers to reach in for extra focus or go that extra mile. When you’re about 5 miles over that extra mile it’s really nice to be able to get into a shootout or a race and actually not be awful at it. I had just taken up ownership of a new Logitech G27 and was trying to get used to it with GRID 2 and my patience… it was just missing. After crashing, missed gears and general awful starts I summoned it up again and was basically riding Black Powder Ultra to get me to bond with the wheel at about midnight after spending hours measuring, printing, testing and photo shopping my brains out. As I mentioned above, at times the sensitivity to these things gets to be a bit high and instead of awareness I get jitters in my control instead. It was good though, I was getting kills, getting first and I wasn’t rage quitting anymore or passing out face first and getting admin kicked. A rarity that I enjoyed in the midst of piles of work.

Then E3 hit, it’s a drain fueled by anything you can get your hands on, in my case I made a bottle of it to wake me up, to bring me back to full awareness mid-day and to carry me into the night until it was time to settle in. During the show it was nice to be able to stand aware though while playing games instead of thinking of a nice pillow to plant my head on, although it didn’t stop me from being terrible at some games like The Crew, hit so many palm trees I swear I think I set a record. The bottle cycled over 3 days but I was able to actually enjoy what I was playing on the floor and even remember it later. On top of that I was again free from my body hating me completely and not on the verge of collapse.

Post E3 it’s been a unique ride, with a reduced schedule in general, more time to play during normal hours and not being tired or stressed I took myself back over to the Ultra instead of grabbing a Rockstar or Monster. Having it in mind that I was able to game without the shakes or jitters and actually enjoy it I said why not, I don’t usually need those for general gaming but it’s usually something I have on tap anyway for the moment. I jumped into GRID 2 and honestly, it was a bit better each step of the way, better shifts (faster with fewer misses) and I still had the same enjoyment. In shooters like BF3 it’s the same translation, less having to psych myself into the game and more just communicating with friends and laying it down on the other team.

I needed help getting ready for E3, I had exercise to do to be in better form for the group, I had a ton of development and design projects to clear up for my schedule as well. I went into supplements to get that extra hand and honestly… it wasn’t bad, I got to my goals ahead of schedule, I was able to improve my own health by not power chugging energy drinks and having my body out of whack and I honestly feel better after the show now than I have in any prior year. Also I don’t think I’m going back to Monster and others anytime soon, while the powder has the Taurine, L-Carnitine and Caffeine going for it along with other popular supplements, the way it digests or is used for me is a much more forgiving experience and for a lot of people that’s the big deciding factor, well along with it not tasting terrible and avoiding giving me the shakes.

After going through the prep to get fit for E3 and the overkill use of energy drinks to find those extra hours to get things done I wanted to write up my experience with it all and document a bit about what I did and how I got there. A lot of people just say “yeah bro, worked out, got jacked it was easy, just lift some weights and run” but I wanted something a little more about the why and how I got there. Also with Comic-Con coming up, I think it’s fair to document how I managed to not die at all and instead be active the whole time. Decent hour to cycling if not more, push for the inclines when you can get them and work out the areas you’re really going to use, high reps of a weight I could handle it with and honestly I think I’ll be really happy with myself through the convention walking and carrying phases. Nothing prepares anyone though for 8hours in a line though :P

Hopefully this was some help, I usually go with a lot of things until they break, in this case I couldn’t really stomach more shelf energy drinks especially stacked on each other and I found something that worked out really well and continues to do so. No shakes just focus, faster projects and a lot less dying in game lol. Also it's now the summer so bring it on Gaming.

energy drinks black powder ultra e3 design development musingsthoughts gaming related

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This year going into E3 I wanted to break away from the sore feet, tired shoulders and general physical dismay that follows the show. Aside from the fact that sleep and food are essentials (Scotch, Whiskey, Vodka and other spirits don’t count) there’s a reality that working out a bit more on specific areas and building up higher endurance for the miles I’ll walk each day can greatly help and make me less of a sweating mess at the next appointment. Also with a lot more in the planning for how our show was to go down I was burning that candle at both ends and regular energy and coffee were cutting it, into my stomach. :P

When I set out to start this goal, I was knee deep in appointments, design and developing projects and even a special site for our industry friends. Needless to say my diet consisted of Monster / Red Bull / Rockstar and basically anything I was able to cook between those periods. As anyone will note, after a while and especially as you age these are not great staples of living.

I started looking into a few things toward E3 to increase my endurance and start getting my diet back in check. I started working with free weights throughout the day, also taking about an hour to cycle as well. Putting in my miles and my reps I was able to start building toward that goal, unfortunately living in Southern California, sometimes a nice day turns to death valley because the Sun loves doing that and your endurance crashes with it. After some heavy defeats I decided to step it up a bit with my timetable to E3 closing in.



Even with downshifting and water there’s only so much I can do against stiff elevation changes, I started using EO2 Edge from MRI to help optimize how I was working out, following the general advice of pre-workout and how to sustain mid-workout I was able to actually start pushing toward doubling my ride range. I was able to increase leg strength and stamina as a whole, with my refined diet I pushed to help that accelerated exercise schedule with amino’s from them to focus on the muscle development, while they are basically massive pills they helped immensely with the recovery periods and got me where I needed to be.



As a result of that focused workout, at E3 I was incredibly snappy to move around, it’s a given you’ll get warm but I wasn’t dropping buckets going from end to end at the show and that was a relief because despite the AC it’s often not enough and you don’t want to be the odd guy carrying a towel to dry off before you meet up with people. I can say that pushing for that 40 days or so of straight up cardio was a massive factor in it and using the E02 Edge was monumental because the uphill areas around where I live can just flat out kill after a while. It’s a cocktail of vitamins and supplements that let me keep pushing to the next tier in a hurry and it probably kept me out of what seemed to be a post E3 bug for a lot of people online.

My feet weren’t sore at E3, my knees weren’t killing me, I wasn’t a soaked mess and I was able to reach my goal of 7-8 miles of riding to get it done. I might not be ready to run a marathon or cycle in a massive race but I can say that having some physical prep going on for even just shows in general helps a ton and if you really push it you’ll be thankful. For my time available I needed the boost and I'm glad for taking that plunge because I'm in better condition after doing it and the time to get there otherwise could have taken much longer with a harder toll on my health.



On the free weights, focused on shoulder exercises and some incline bench which helped immensely with heavy bags or equipment for the team. Stuck to using high reps of 15’s for the whole thing and it was clutch since I always feel like I’ve killed one side by the end of E3 with my laptop bag and backback.

The prep hasn’t stopped though, Comic-Con is coming up and I’m still going strong with a bottle of my endurance prep while I ride. I look forward to being able to power through the show this year with all the crazy events they’ll have going on across the Gas Lamp district and more.

Part 2 follows this, talks about passing out and moving from standard energy drinks to something more forgiving.

exercise e3 mri e02 edge training gaming related musingsthoughts

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E3 Coming, expect extremely reduced forum activity and slower response times

Gabriel Vega

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