What do Ryan VandenBussche, David Ahrens and Riley Cote all have in common? They’re all ex- NFL players who subscribe to CBD. So, why are so many athletes turning to CBD post workout or before they train?
We’re going to outline why a CBD workout is becoming popular and give some solid facts to backup the claims.
Spoiler alert: CBD for muscle recovery isn’t a myth.
Introducing CBD And Exercise, A “CBD Workout”
Many people (perhaps you included) have heard and even used the word CBD without knowing that it is the abridged form for cannabidiol.
CBD is one of over 100 chemical compounds, known as cannabinoids, which are found in cannabis plants. Apart from cannabinoids, the cannabis plant has other major compounds including terpenes, flavonoids and other nutrients.
The other prominent cannabinoid is tetrahydrocannabinol which is famously referred to as THC. The good news is that unlike THC which causes the “typical marijuana high”, CBD is non-psychoactive.
Essentially, you can enjoy your workout after taking CBD without the fear of getting high and “spacey”.
CBD, as well as other cannabinoids, interacts with an important system known as the endocannabinoid system (ECS).
The ECS, through receptors spread throughout the body, controls functions such as:
CBD exerts its effects on the body through its interaction with the ECS.
CBD Before Workout Will Get You Energized And Motivated
Embarking on your fitness regime each morning may not be the most exciting thing. To get your spirits high you can try CBD vapes, tinctures or CBD capsules.
A study published in Current Neuropharmacology in 2014 showed that CBD promotes wakefulness. This means that taking CBD before workouts can deliver an energy boost that allows you to exercise better and for longer.
Full-spectrum CBD that is infused with terpenes such as limonene can help to increase focus and motivation.
The benefits of pre-workout CBD don’t end there; CBD also inhibits the release of the hormone cortisol which can be released excessively during intensive workouts.
Cortisol reduces muscle tone and this will affect your stamina during exercise. Using CBD before a workout can help to retain muscle mass and improve your endurance.
When you take CBD you might not feel the effects immediately. For rapid effects, you should consider vaping (inhaling) CBD which ensures that the CBD hits your bloodstream soon.
Ingested CBD will have to go through the digestive process before it finally hits the bloodstream.
CBD During Your Workout Will Fight Muscle Spasms and Tightness
It’s common to experience muscle spasms during exercise. But you might be surprised to learn that CBD for muscle recovery is a good potential option to bounce back. In fact, CBD can be used to reduce muscle spasms, muscle tightness and even cramps.
Muscle spasms like those mentioned are normal – they’re nothing more than defense response initiated to prevent tissue damage following irritation or inflammation.
And taking CBD will increase blood supply to the injured area and actually initiates the healing process.
If your workout involves resistance training you’re likely to benefit from topical CBD. If you’ve not heard of it, topical CBD comes in the form of topical sprays, lotions, ointments, or balms.
Should you get muscle spasms during workout you can apply CBD directly to the affected area. Expect to start feeling better in about 15 minutes.
This is also another fast acting way of taking CBD. The skin is richly endowed with endocannabinoid receptors which take up the CBD immediately.
Using CBD For Post Workout Recovery
Getting to the end of your workout can be exhilarating, unless you are sore as a boil. The United Kingdom’s NHS explains why this might be the case;
“Working out causes microscopic damage to muscle fibers. Those muscles then become inflamed, which triggers the body to respond and repair, causing muscle soreness or stiffness”.
A 2018 review published in Frontiers in Neurology showed that CBD can be effective in relieving inflammation and muscle stiffness. And a previous 2009 study had also shown that CBD has anti-inflammatory effects.
Inflammation is a natural response to injury that is linked to the immune system. When your body detects damage to tissues it initiates repair which unfortunately causes swelling and pain in the area (inflammation).
CBD post workout is good for combating pain and inflammation and it also speeds up the recovery process. Full-spectrum CBD containing linalool promotes relaxation post-workout.
Final Thoughts: CBD Has A Good Safety Margin
A report published by the World Health Organization in 2018 showed that CBD is safe for human consumption and has a good safety profile.
High doses of up to 1500 mg per day can be safely tolerated by adults. Putting this into perspective, CBD capsules will normally come in doses of 10mg, 20mg, or 50mg. 1,500 mg can be in excess of 100 CBD capsules.
The recommended starting dose for CBD is 1-6 milligrams per 10 pounds of body weight based on pain levels. However, you should consult with your doctor before starting CBD treatment.
The WHO report indicated that CBD has minimal side effects, but when severe side effects occur they are more likely the result of interaction with drugs. Your doctor should advise you of any possible interactions with other drugs that you may be using.
CBD before and after workouts can be used to amp up motivation, relieve muscle aches and soreness, and help with post-workout recovery. CBD activates the ECS through the CB2 receptors and is able to promote healing.
It is useful for those constantly engaging in strenuous physical activity and long exercise sessions.
So, are you going to give it a try? Your muscles might thank you after a heavy lifting session! Good luck and always consult your doctor beforehand.