Last week (and I think this week, if my morning foray to the grocery store was any indication), Kroger had a bunch of their energy drinks on sale half price. I’ve not ever been a huge fan of energy drinks, having tried a few when someone else was paying (gas station convenience store mystery shops). Diet Red Bull, some other Rockstar… I just thought they were awful. But they were on sale HALF PRICE!! So…

Sale bonanza! But was it a good buy?

I read all of the information on the cans carefully. For instance, did you know that you aren’t supposed to drink more than three energy drinks per day? I took it easy and only had one or two. There were a lot of supplements in the drinks, and I know that overdoing it on vitamins is just as bad as underdoing it on vitamins.

If you’re new, I’ll tell you this right now: I love me some food. So I don’t like wasting calories on beverages. All of these drinks have 10 or fewer calories per serving (most cans are two servings, except for the itty bitty baby Rockstars). And most of them have excess caffeine.

This is the first one that I tried.

After a Zumba class, the rehydrating promised from this Rockstar seemed appropriate.

In case you're wondering, milk thistle is supposed to help with liver toxins or something. Taurine does something with bones. Whatever. How does it taste?

It looks moderately like lemonade.

This wasn’t offensive-tasting. It didn’t taste like lemonade per se, but there was a lemony citrus element to the drink that successfully masked the supplement content. I was able to finish this beverage without much protest from my taste buds.

Monster Red Tea and junk

Have you ever had Lipton prepared tea? The kind you can buy in a 2-liter bottle at the grocery store? That’s kind of what this tastes like. It looks like this…

You got your cranberry juice in my tea!

Again, this wasn’t difficult to get down, and it tasted fine. Not wonderful. Fake tea isn’t my favorite. But I didn’t gag.

More like "Mountain Don't"!

I had high hopes for this one! I’d downed two energy drinks and had not had much trouble with that whole thing. And I LOVE Mountain Dew! But this drink… goodness help us, it is NASTY. It tasted not at all like Mountain Dew. It tasted like supplements and something strong that is supposed to mask that taste, but didn’t. Yuck. Gagged it down because I’m cheap, but it was disgusting.

At this point in the experiment, by the way, something interesting had started happening. I was crashing at the end of the day. I would fall asleep at 9:30 and stay down all night. I usually go to bed between 12:30 and 1. That happened for a couple of days, and then something REALLY weird happened…

I left the house one morning feeling like I could conquer the world! I was so giddy and hopeful and energized! By 4:00 PM, I was drowning in a sea of morose complacency. I was sitting at my desk on the verge of tears, thinking, “This life is soooo depressing. Nothing is ever going to change. Whyyyyy?” So I was emotionally crashing in addition to the physical. I don’t think it was the caffeine; I drink a ton of caffeine (in the past 24 hours, I’ve had more than 3 liters of Diet Coke). I guess it must have been some of the other stuff?

Of course, at the same time, we were having really weird weather and I was largely unable to breathe, so I was sucking on the Albuterol way more than the recommended dosage. So perhaps the lesson here is not to mix a stimulant inhaler and energy drinks?

One morning, I got to the office about the same time as my employer and, because his hands were full, I was trying to unlock the door for him. My hands were shaking so much that I couldn’t hit the key hole!

Lesson learned.

Oh, and speaking of lessons…

zomg, it's pink!

It's packing its own straw!

This here beverage was adorable. But do you remember the stuff with which you used to swish during your visits to the pediatric dentist’s office? Yup. That was how this tasted. It was even a little worse than the Amp, but only because instead of just being generically bad, it was specifically medically-tasting. And, yes, I polished it off.

This one wasn't memorable in any way. Meh.

So. Not really impressed with any of these. None was tasty, and they might have contributed to a near mental breakdown. You should really pity my closest friends; if you interviewed them, I’m sure they’d tell you that they highly recommend I no longer partake of the energy beverage genre. Plus, even half price, they’re still too expensive for me.