This One's For The Athletes
Now I know what I'll be reaching for next time I'm in recovery mode.
For almost two decades now, I’ve been consuming cannabis in flower form. I was lighting up in Missouri long before I moved to Colorado and starting shopping at dispensaries. I remember old school brick weed that had the stems and seeds still in it. Of course, this was before the rise of the gorgeous, professionally trimmed buds you see today. One luxury I enjoy about today’s legal cannabis market (besides not having to wait “just ten minutes” for an exchange in a parking lot) is the wide variety of choices behind the counter.
But because there are so many options to choose from, it can be hard to narrow down what to pick. I personally enjoy all forms of cannabis, unless it’s mixed with any kind of alcohol. I especially like edibles and topicals, and I’m a big fan of concentrates. Alas, my all-time favorite is still flower, plain and simple. There’s something about smoking flower that hits me in all the right spots. For me, it has the quickest onset of effects. I also feel there’s a stronger connection between you and the plant when you’re consuming the flower, especially if you’ve grown it yourself.
“Let me just start by saying it was awesome.”
Now, when it comes to strains, you can ask your budtender to help you narrow down which to choose, but chances are they might not be as knowledgeable as you’d think. Don’t get me wrong, there are some excellent budtenders out there, but not all are educated equally. Sometimes it’s not even their fault. Some dispensaries can run through a variety of strains in a single day, so there’s a good possibility they might not have had enough time to study the exact benefits of each strain on hand. This can be challenging for those seeking a consistent product, since a shop could run out of a strain they may never sell again, or when they do, it could be from a completely different grow-op.
This is where branded cannabis flower comes into play. Leafs by Snoop caries a variety of cannabis products, including a selection of top-notch cannabis flower. By purchasing a branded cannabis flower, you’re more likely to receive a better consistency in product when compared to no-label jar strains. I recently had the pleasure of testing out the Northern Lights from Leafs by Snoop and let me just start by saying it was awesome.
Northern Lights is an indica-dominant strain with an Afghani and Thai lineage. I personally prefer indica strains for their common uses in pain relief, relaxation, and sleep. Indica plants are also known for being more purple in color, with sweet berry-like aromas. This Northern Lights from Leafs by Snoop did not disappoint. However, the moment I took the lid off the jar of my eighth, my nose was not immediately greeted by any amazing scents. This could have been the packaging, but the scent was faint, plain, and a little earthy. Once I started to break the buds up with my fingers, though, the powerful sweet aroma of grapes and berries flooded my nostrils with an intense mouthwatering effect.
The bud itself was light and fluffy, with a hint of purple shade all throughout it. The nugs broke up very easily and made for a great pack in my bowl before sparking up. I always love the first hit off a freshly packed bowl, one that’s free of any burnt pieces or ash residue. The Northern Lights tasted like a familiar indica—sweet and fruity with an earthy undertone. The smoke was smooth during inhalation and even though I took a huge rip, I didn’t need to cough. The aftertaste left a hint of sweetness in my mouth, which I savored for a moment before smoking the rest of the bowl.
The onset of effects in the head and body were rapid, becoming noticeable almost immediately after the first hit and continuing to grow after finishing the bowl. I felt a soothing wave of comfort in my muscles and a nice buzz in my face and head. I’m a competitive trail runner, so soothing my almost always achy muscles is what I look for in a good strain. It also worked as an appetite stimulant, because for those three hours, all I wanted to do was eat. The effects of one bowl lasted for about three hours in total before subsiding. It was a perfect strain for me at the time because I had been training hard that week and the relaxation of my muscles was on point. The appetite boost was also ideal for consuming extra calories to help fuel my recovery. Athletes, this is the flower for you.
“Athletes, this is the flower for you.”
The particular batch of Northern Lights I received was tested for potency and came in at 17.8% THC and 1.2% CBG. Most of us are familiar with THC, the most common psychoactive cannabinoid found in the cannabis plant, but CBG has its own medicinal benefits. Cannabigerol, or CBG, is a non-psychoactive cannabinoid known for decreasing inflammation, protecting neurons, being antibacterial, and even inhibiting the growth of tumors and cancer. It’s also know for stimulating the appetite, which could explain why I was so hungry.
All in all, I give the Northern Lights from Leafs by Snoop a solid five stars. Its smell was inviting, its taste was mouthwatering, and the smoke was smooth with long-lasting, enjoyable effects. I would recommend this for help with sleep, any aches and pains, or even a nice binge of your favorite show on Netflix. I will definitely be picking up some more on my next trip to the dispensary, and I’ll plan to keep it on deck for recovery from training. As Snoop himself says, “Let's medicate, elevate, and put it in the air!”