Consumers are turning to CBD seeking relief from a variety of health conditions and symptoms, from chronic pain to insomnia, anxiety, nausea, and more. While more research is needed to fully explore CBD’s potential effects on specific health conditions and symptoms, many people have shared their experiences using CBD for myriad purposes, and consumers across all adult age demographics – including seniors – are increasingly giving CBD a try to explore its potential effects on their personal health and well-being.
One area in which consumers are increasingly exploring the potential benefits of CBD is in exercise and recovery. For example, some consumers use CBD as a pre- or post-workout supplement to reduce inflammation or alleviate muscle soreness or fatigue. To learn more about how CBD can play a role in exercise and recovery and its potential benefits in this area, we reached out to a panel of fitness professionals and CBD experts and asked them to answer this question:
“What should consumers know about CBD and exercise and recovery?”
Meet Our Panel of Fitness Professionals & CBD Experts:
● CJ Xia
Read on to learn what our experts had to say about the most important things consumers should know about the role CBD can play in exercise and recovery.
NOTE: The information and opinions expressed below represent the opinions of the individual contributors and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Incredible Edibles.
After years of life on the farm in Northern California, Bryanna Fissori received her bachelor’s degree in Agriculture Business and followed up with a Juris Doctorate. She now works as the Content and Compliance Manager for Receptra Naturals CBD in Colorado, where she is happy to work in all aspects of production, from planting and harvesting, to legal compliance and marketing. She is also a nationally ranked professional boxer.
“Antioxidants help to reduce inflammation from exercise or from injuries, which can reduce the amount of time it takes the body to recover properly…”
CBD has known antioxidant properties. The US Government patented CBD as an antioxidant and neuroprotectant over 20 years ago, although hemp and general cannabis use has existed for centuries. CBD works both internally and topically. The endocannabinoid receptors located directly underneath the skin are able to absorb and interact with CBD applied topically to achieve immediate relief for physical discomfort, bumps, and bruises.
CBD combined with other natural botanicals, such as arnica and camphor for topical application or turmeric for internal intake, can help the discomfort-reducing powers of CBD. The Receptra Serious Relief line is specifically designed to help with pain.
Rhiannon Moore is a marketing associate at Evopure, a farm-to-door organic CBD organization based in the UK and selling to the US and UK. Evopure sells CBD oil, balm, capsules, and hemp tea of different varieties including camomile, green sencha jasmine, and lemongrass rosehip.
“Sleep is essential for athletes, and a good night’s sleep before competing could mean the difference between winning and losing…”
A bad night’s sleep can also lead to injury. Regular, quality sleep is critical for training. The body’s most vital processes occur during sleep, including repairing damage and building tissue. This makes sleep vital for muscle growth, focus, and concentration. CBD aids sleep duration and quality and can make a huge difference to anyone who struggles maintaining a healthy circadian rhythm.
Ben Hofmeister founded Kokora CBD back in 2019 in Cardiff, UK. The mission is to develop a brand that can help support people striving towards a healthier and more authentic future both mentally and physically, through honesty and authenticity.
“CBD has muscled its way onto the health and well-being scene with more and more people are adding CBD to their daily health routine…”
CBD, or cannabidiol, is one of over 400 active compounds found in cannabis plants, and while CBD has been known to do wonders for a variety of issues such as seizures, anxiety, depression and other mental disorders, we are still discovering the mechanisms at play and its wide benefits both physically and mentally.
When CBD enters the body, it interacts with our endocannabinoid system. So far, research has shown that the endocannabinoid system is involved in regulating many different bodily processes, including:
Muscle Soreness & Inflammation
The endocannabinoid system plays a key role in regulating inflammation, and numerous studies have shown that CBD can help lower chronic inflammation caused by conditions like arthritis, IBD, and even multiple sclerosis.
Nate Diaz, for example, says CBD helps him relieve the pain and inflammation after a fight, as well as recover faster from injuries.
Thanks to its anti-inflammatory effect, it’s no surprise then that CBD has found its way into the exercise and fitness lifestyle. While working out is essential for keeping our minds and bodies in good functioning condition, we have all felt the tension, aches, and pains after a workout. These DOMS are due to microscopic damage to our muscle fibers, and it’s no surprise that muscles get inflamed as a result.
Excess inflammation can interfere with muscle recovery, which increases the risk of injuries in the future. Professional athletes or those taking part in intense training can find themselves subject to more illnesses due to a slower immune system during high inflammation periods.
With CBD’s natural anti-inflammatory properties, it is a perfect solution to help your muscles recover more efficiently. Studies have found that the antioxidant effects decrease inflammation and contribute to instant pain relief. According to a 2018 review of 132 original studies published in Frontiers in Neurology, CBD can reduce inflammation in the body and help improve pain and mobility in patients with multiple sclerosis.
There are many different factors that help improve recovery from a workout, but sleep is without a doubt one of the most important because when you sleep, your body is able to focus almost entirely on recovering.
This is another area in which CBD has great potential due to the endocannabinoid system’s direct involvement in moderating sleep. This is often an overlooked aspect of CBD use as a muscle recovery supplement. Sleep is the optimal time for muscle recovery as while you sleep, the body produces melatonin, which is a human growth hormone that helps facilitate muscle recovery. If you don’t get enough sleep because you can’t relax or due to post-workout pains, your muscles do not recover as fully.
A 2016 study from the US National Institutes of Health and Northeastern University examined the effects the system has on sleeping rats. It found that endocannabinoid signalling directly affected the rats’ sleep stability. Other studies suggest that CBD can not only increase sleep time but also improve sleep quality.
So, how should you take it?
Beyond CBD oils and tinctures (a few drops under the tongue), CBD is now infused in balms, lotions, creams, and capsules.
For muscle recovery, the perfect combination seems to be taking the tincture post workout and/or before bed to help enhance sleep recovery, alongside using a CBD muscle cream or gel post workout, applied directly to the relevant areas. Ideally, if you can, find a muscle cream with both CBD and CBG, as CBG in another up and coming cannabinoid that has been found to reduce inflammation.
Steven Brown is the CEO and Co-founder of Nothing But Hemp. As a Marine veteran, Steven wanted to create a business that focuses on the health and wellness of the customer. He built his business with a heavy focus on providing education and quality CBD products. Nothing But Hemp began in Minnesota and has grown to include locations in Wisconsin, Nevada, and Florida.
“CBD affects your body at a hormonal level without causing any distracting effects…”
It is a natural anti-inflammatory, and it helps the body get into a recovery mode much faster. Athletes typically use a topical CBD product. It allows them to concentrate on trouble areas like knees, shoulders, and other joints.
For people who choose to take CBD orally, be careful not to consume a large amount before a workout. It could make you feel too relaxed and defeat the purpose of your planned workout.
Sam Watson is the founder and Chairman of Breathe International Ltd, a biomedical wellness company that distributes cannabis products under the Dr Watson™️ brand.
“First, consumers need to know what CBD is going to do…”
Cannabidiol (CBD) triggers processes that stimulate our endocannabinoid system. Cannabinoids bind to receptors in our immune and regulatory systems and balance us. This is something we call homeostasis.
For athletes or casual exercisers, we know that working out, skiing, or even doing some yard work causes microscopic damage to our muscle fibers. Our muscles then inflame to essentially put them out of action and start the healing process.
CBD, whether it’s applied as an oil or ingested as a consumable or in a vape, can reduce recovery time, muscle tension, and pain. Studies have shown that CBD can even alleviate the symptoms of arthritis.
For athletes competing at a high level, what’s extra important is that it can also mitigate performance anxiety and combat sleeplessness. This is really important if you’re a competitor who has to travel to events or who gets nervous the night before. Plus, when we’re asleep is when our body does the most healing.
For any consumers and sportspeople new to CBD, either start slow (5-10 mg a day) or measure your intake by body weight. Remember to always check with your regulating body that CBD is allowed in your sport and that it doesn’t have THC (tetrahydrocannabinol – a psychoactive ingredient) added.
Edie Reads is a nutritionist, a proud mom to a lovely boy and a gorgeous girl, fitness expert, author, and editor-in-chief for CorrieCooks.com. Edie has a passion for foods and healthy living, which drove her to teach and help more than just her family lead a perfectly healthy life.
“Through research and in-house experimentation with our class of trainees, we believe that CBD is by far the most effective product in aiding muscle recovery after exercise…”
It helps eliminate the fatigue and soreness that comes with intense workouts. But there are two things you need to know about CBD oil:
- Only buy plant-based CBD oil: The number of synthetic CBD oil brands coming into the country has more than doubled. Therefore, you have to be careful with the brands you use and ensure that you only buy plant-based and lab-tested CBD oils from reputable companies.
- It is not a magical solution: The buzz around the healing effects of CBD oil is enormous. And in a bid to push sales, some CBD oil retailers may have misrepresented facts and referred to the oil as a magic wand – an instant pain reliever – which it is not. Though it is faster in relieving pain, its effects aren’t instantaneous.
Aaron Simmons is the founder of Test Prep Genie. He believes in studying smart rather than studying hard to be successful. On the blog, Aaron shares tips and tricks on how to develop smarter study habits.
“There are three important things consumers should know about CBD and exercise and recovery…”
CBD is making a buzz recently because of its healing factor that treats anxiety and eases chronic pain. CBD can help with pain-related conditions such as joint pain and arthritis. Here are three things you should know about CBD and exercise and recovery.
- CBD helps inflammation. CBD is much more of an anti-inflammatory agent or may have some pain relieving properties. This can help with joint issues like osteoarthritis or arthritis and can keep inflammation down during the exercise.
- CBD may need some time to kick in. Some users feel better after taking CBD, but it usually takes a week or so to fully kick in. If you do not see any improvement at first, that doesn’t mean there are issues with it. Continue to take it as long as you follow the recommended dose.
- Know the type of CBD you use. Choosing what kind of CBD to use is very important. There are many factors to consider, such as whether the product contains GMOs or if it’s organic. Make sure to use only CBD products that have been verified by an independent third party lab. This is to ensure that the CBD you are getting has no impurities or contaminants. I suggest that you check the item description and label before buying the product. See to it that it’s from a licensed dispensary and has been lab tested.
James Bullard is the founder of Sound Fro. He shares his love for music on his blog, covering a variety of topics that will strike a chord with music enthusiasts around the world. He offers information and advice, drawing from his own personal experience in learning to play different musical instruments successfully.
“Cannabis has been mostly used by athletes for medicinal purposes…”
Modern researchers are still discovering some of the useful health benefits CBD could bring. Below here are some of the health benefits one can experience.
- Reduce inflammation. CBD can help athletes prevent inflammation and reduce pain after their workout. CBD has this anti-inflammatory factor that can help ease the pain.
- Aiding muscle recovery. Rigorous workouts and competitions can trigger inflammation resulting from tears in muscle tissue. The anti-inflammatory effect of CBD is helpful to repair and heal muscle tissue.
- Better sleep. CBD directly affects sleep by interacting with the receptors in the brain. When I am struggling with going to sleep or having insomnia, CBD might help.
- Relieves stress. Another health benefit of CBD is that it helps in managing stress and anxiety. You may feel discomfort, anxiety, and nervousness during a workout, and CBD can help alleviate these feelings.
CBD is useful for athletes and for those who work out regularly. However the results you experience may be different compared to others. Before you try CBD, try seeking some professional help and be knowledgeable about what CBD is for.
Erin is the chief marketing officer of Key to Cannabis, a cannabis and CBD education site aimed at equipping everyone – athletes, scholars, and even your grandparents – with the knowledge and tools to achieve total-body, plant-powered wellness.
“Consumers should know that CBD is incredibly beneficial in exercise and recovery…”
CBD interacts with the endocannabinoid system – everyone has one – to bring the body back to homeostasis. When CBD is used for recovery, the body is able to treat muscle and joint soreness and swelling at an accelerated rate, compared to recovering without CBD. CBD also helps athletes find their flow state, in which they can work out harder and longer without feeling fatigued.
Anne Polland is the Social Media Manager for CBD American Shaman, a US Hemp Authorized company based in Kansas City, MO.
“Here’s what consumers should know about CBD and exercise and recovery…”
Energy, Stress, and the Motivation to Work Out
So, we all know that exercise is important. But, despite this, so many of us fail to commit to a consistent fitness routine. Why is that the case? Well, much of it can be blamed on modern life. The large majority of us have stressful jobs and are at the office for long hours at a time. When we come home, we have to feed ourselves, spend time with our family, and try to maintain a social life amidst all of this. Now, you can understand why so many people fail to see where exercise could possibly fit into the daily grind.
Three factors that can contribute to a failure to workout are low energy levels, high stress, and a lack of motivation. In fact, all three of these traits intensify each other, meaning that those who are already stressed out or overexerted will have low energy and motivation due to the functions of the cognitive system.
The Importance of Proper Recovery After a Workout Session
Another important factor when it comes to working out is recovery. Even if we do find the motivation and strength to commit to a daily fitness routine, many times, we have to take a step back due to fatigue and muscle strain caused by particularly grueling sessions. The more intense your workout routine, the more your body needs to rest afterward in order to heal itself. This is especially the case for weight-trainers, as this type of exercise tears the muscles so that they can rebuild into stronger, larger ones. Without the proper chance to recover, that next-day soreness can turn into a legitimate injury.
Boost Your Workout with CBD
Now, we can talk about the relationship between CBD and fitness. As you know, CBD is a plant compound, meaning that it’s completely natural in origin. And one thing that makes CBD unique compared to other natural products is that it works with the body’s endocannabinoid system because it is classified as a cannabinoid, which is a unique type of plant compound.
The endocannabinoid system seems to play a huge role in the maintenance of homeostasis. This means a state in which all of the body’s important systems and processes are functioning properly in perfect harmony. The endocannabinoid system utilizes a system of cannabinoid receptors that are located all throughout the body. Each cannabinoid receptor utilizes cannabinoids to regulate a particular bodily process, such as pain, mood, or energy.
Now that you know how the endocannabinoid system works, you can understand what all of this has to do with working out. It seems that the endocannabinoid system may have a lot to do with how motivated, energized, optimistic, and focused we feel.
Making CBD Part of Your Workout Routine
Now that you have a clearer idea of the relationship between CBD and working out, what’s next? Well, let’s talk about how you can incorporate this cannabinoid into your daily routine. The most important thing to do is make sure that you’re buying your CBD from a legitimate company that has their batches of hemp tested by a third party. Then, we suggest taking CBD on a daily basis, as this allows the cannabinoids to build up in the endocannabinoid system. You may wish to take a higher strength than average if your body weight is on the higher end of the spectrum.
Rob Boirun is the CEO of The CBD Directory.
“CBD is a great anti-inflammatory agent…”
And many athletes use it for recovering. The most common way to get CBD into the sore muscles is to use a cream or lotion which puts the medicine directly on the areas that need it. Many professional athletes are getting behind CBD brands where they are able to tell their stories about how CBD is helping them with recovery after athletic events.
April Hatch, RN, co-founder of Cannabis Care Team, is the ultimate healthcare guru to cannabis, and she’s providing her wisdom, consultation, and support to patients throughout the country. The use of medical marijuana is now legal in 33 states, with more on the way. However, there are very limited resources to navigate the world of medical marijuana, leaving patients feeling overwhelmed, influenced by stigmas, and deterred from truly benefitting from this natural healing plant.
“CBD is a great addition to your traditional supplements to promote overall wellness, not just for those who are sick or are suffering…”
However, if someone is trying to find relief for certain symptoms, they often have to take much more than others who take it as a supplement. It takes some experimentation for individuals to find the right dose. Consistency is key, and most won’t notice a difference overnight.
CBD is better absorbed through the skin than some other cannabinoids, so CBD salves may also work for those who need to reduce superficial inflammation in a particular area. However, to get the most medical benefit, it works best if it is ingested and is able to reach the bloodstream.
What should consumers know about exercise?
That the ‘runner’s high’ we experience after a good workout is not related to endorphins, but the endocannabinoid system. That feel-good rush is our body releasing its own cannabinoid, anandamide, also known as the ‘bliss molecule.’
Many athletes are using CBD to help them improve their game or to help them recover from an injury or following intense workouts (Rob Gronkowski, Nate Diaz, and Bubba Watson, to name a few).
CBD helps promote the health of our endocannabinoid system, our physiological system that promotes balance and homeostasis. The endocannabinoid system is responsible for telling all of our other systems when to react and when to calm down. Recovery is an important part of any exercise routine, and our endocannabinoid system helps our bodies get into that recovery state after a workout.
Many athletes and those who regularly exercise may also be more susceptible to joint pain, inflammation, or arthritis, and CBD is a great anti-inflammatory that can help their joints recover over time. CBG is the next big cannabinoid which has been shown to be an effective muscle relaxant, and we know muscle tightness can also be an issue related to exercise or overdoing it.
Laura Mogen is a CBD expert and editor at AllBestCBDOil.com, a CBD-related digital journal researching different CBD brands and products.
“CBD supplements are used by professional athletes to fasten the recovery process all the time…”
It can be used not only after but also between workouts. Since CBD is non-psychoactive, it won’t make you high. Here are the benefits that CBD brings:
- Reduce inflammation
- Relax muscle tissue
- Might relieve pain
- Reduce cortisol levels
- Improve the quality of sleep
CJ Xiais the VP of Marketing & Sales at Boster Biological Technology.
“CBD or cannabidiol oil is found in cannabis plants…”
It does not create any form of intoxication, which is always the immediate concern of anyone who reads about it the first time. The oil is known for providing a remedy for multiple pains and diseases, but it still faces criticism because of its association with marijuana. It yet hasn’t been approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for any medical uses, and it can have side effects. The possibility of depression, dizziness, hallucinations, low blood pressure, and withdrawal symptoms such as irritability and insomnia are known so far.
There are certain things you must know when using CBD for your pain relief. It improves pain by affecting your brain’s pain receptors, but its anti-inflammatory actions are known to be more effective. CBD can be a very good alternative for people who rely on medications for chronic pain.
According to researchers, CBD interacts with a core component of your cell signaling system called the ECS – endocannabinoid receptors in your brain and immune system. Receptors are tiny proteins attached to your cells. To help your cells respond, they receive signals, mostly chemical ones, from different stimuli. This response creates anti-inflammatory and pain-relieving effects that help with pain management.
Whether CBD can help with other pain conditions like arthritis, MS pain, spinal cord injuries, etc., is still being explored through research.
Robert Royceston is a certified family physician, IFMCP, and chief advisor at Herbies Head. He is currently based in Weston, FL. He specializes in investigating the underlying factors of chronic disease. In addition to Robert’s seven-year private practice in Weston, FL he is an AASECT certified sex therapist.
“There are a few things consumers should know about CBD and exercise and recovery…”
- CBD is a pre-workout booster. CBD is a great supplement for speed, strength, and speed-strength sports because it boosts muscle performance and concentration.
- CBD speeds up metabolism. CBD helps to boost your metabolism even more. It means that all the useful nutrients like amino-acids and vitamins will be absorbed faster. Faster recovery means faster muscle growth and performance growth.
- CBD has positive secondary effects for recovery. We all know that CBD is a very effective anti-inflammatory. But it improves the quality of our sleep (which is a vital condition for muscle recovery), as well.
Bert is a fitness and cannabis industry veteran. He is the founder of Cycle House (with locations in LA, New York, and DC), a favorite for celebrities and athletes to stay fit. In the last six years, he has built successful cannabis companies including Olio in Denver and F/eld Extracts in Los Angeles. His leadership and taste in brands have made him a standout in the cannabis industry. Today, he is one of three co-founders of OFFFIELD, a functional cannabis company created to make working out more enjoyable.
“While research is still ongoing, CBD provides a myriad of potential benefits for the everyday athlete, primarily anti-inflammation, anti-anxiety, and endurance…”
Another big discovery consumers should know is that ‘runner’s high’ isn’t just about endorphins; it’s also about anandamide, also known as the ‘bliss molecule’ for its ability to reduce pain and anxiety, and has been found to increase with exercise of moderate intensity. Anandamide is an endocannabinoid (a part of your body’s larger endocannabinoid system) and can be stimulated through the use of botanical cannabinoids (i.e., THC, CBD).
CBG inhibits FAAH (the enzyme responsible for breaking down anandamide in the body), which means increased anandamide levels in our bodies for longer amounts of time. OFFFIELD leverages this functionality of CBG and combines it with CBD (which performs a similar task), encouraging pre-workout use to ideally enable more pain-free, anxiety-free workouts and earlier arrival of that legendary runner’s high.
Dr. Nikola Djordjevic, MD is a Medical Advisor at LoudCloudHealth.com. He is a Doctor of Medicine who graduated from the University of Belgrade Faculty of Medicine in 2015 and obtained his medical license in the same year.
“As you may know, the reason CBD is becoming more popular for post-workout recovery by helping your muscles recover faster…”
The reason CBD is so effective for this purpose is that it works through a different pain pathway compared to traditional pain-management agents. Instead, CBD travels through the endocannabinoid system, making it an entirely new way to target inflammation, boosting post-workout muscle recovery significantly.
Topical CBD has been proven to be an effective way of treating muscle soreness and muscle recovery, as well. The way it works is by manipulating the endocannabinoid system to maintain homeostasis in your body, thus reducing pain and speeding up recovery. Furthermore, CBD contains natural anti-inflammatory properties that greatly enhance this effect.
The best ways to apply CBD is after exercising in topical forms such as ointments, salves, and bath bombs. The most convenient way is to apply it with CBD spray. It’s easier to absorb, and you can add it to your daily gym routine. It will help not only your muscles recover faster, but also any joint pain and inflammation resulting from workouts.
Alysia Allie Bear, a.k.a. The Canna Canuck, is a cannabis journalist, educator, patient, and activist who lives in the Niagara Region, Ontario, where she raises her five children. She is the assistant editor for High! Canada Magazine, a top-rated cannabis news and information publication, where she covers lead stories in her home province of Ontario and international news for High! Europe, Asia, and the Carribean. She has also founded The Broadleaf Cannabis Collective, a leading provider of cannabis education, networking events, and entertainment.
“With hemp-derived cannabidiol being removed from the anti-doping agency’s list of prohibited substances just a couple of short years ago…”
It’s no wonder we’re only beginning to uncover the numerous benefits of adding CBD to a workout routine now. And what fantastic research we are being provided, starting with the fact that the World Health Organization states that, “In humans, CBD exhibits no effects indicative of any abuse or dependence potential…. To date, there is no evidence of public health-related problems associated with the use of pure CBD.”
As a chronic pain patient, one who ended up losing 65 pounds utilizing CBD to combat the fatigue and pain from exercise, I can attest firsthand to the usefulness of this compound for both during a workout routine and afterwards while in recovery. I am a big proponent of utilizing both THC and CBD together, taking advantage of the synergistic relationship between the two. However, I encourage full-spectrum CBD use, regardless of how little THC happens to be included, for the many benefits it has afforded to me alone.
A study from the European Journal of Pain found that CBD applied on the skin could help lower pain and inflammation so, even if you’re worried about ingestion, there’s mounting evidence to show the benefits of cannabis as a topical and not just for internal uses. In an exercise routine, a good topical can help prep your muscles for the workout and dull your existing pain in order for you to push through your workout easier, faster, or fully. Many athletes describe the runner’s high, which used to be thought to come from using such a massive muscle group for long periods of time. But now researchers are actually suggesting it comes from your endocannabinoid system.
After working out, CBD can help with alleviating inflammation and shortening your recovery time in between sessions. There have been studies showing that CBD inhibits neuropathic pain, along with inflammatory issues, both of which are challenging when attempting to be physically active and fit.
Why are many of us hitting the gym or sweating it out anyway? Well, weight loss, of course! Did you know that several studies have shown that people who use cannabis regularly have a smaller waist circumference, a lower BMI, and are at less risk of being overweight? In a report published in the American Journal of Epidemiology in 2011, a survey was done including more than 50,000 participants that concluded cannabis users had about 1/3 lower obesity rates than their abstaining counterparts.
There’s also evidence to suggest that CBD itself lessens cortisol levels and, ladies, that’s probably where your little midsection fluff comes from! Cortisol is lowered by CBD use, meaning increased adrenal function and weight loss, leading to more energy, a better functioning immune system, and a bit of a reset for your metabolism. CBD is now being researched for its anti-obesity applications along with its many medical uses.
I advise everyone I talk to that they start using cannabis as part of their health and wellness routine promptly. I also always suggest they speak to their doctor or check out any medical contraindications before use. Just like with any other medical procedure or decision, research everything yourself, become fully informed, make the decision that’s best for your personal health, and spread the good word when you make the jump.
Sara Deskins Tucker is a Partner and leads the Cannabis Practice at Womble Bond Dickinson LLP. She practices product liability litigation as well as FDA regulatory law. Sara is based in Atlanta, Georgia and provides advice and counsel to cannabis, pharmaceutical, and medical device companies and related service providers.
“Here’s what consumers should know about CBD’s potential effects on exercise and recovery…”
Researchers out of Australia recently published in Sports Med Open (July 2020) a review article relating to CBD and sports performance. The researchers reviewed studies conducted as well as case reports. They found supportive evidence for anti-inflammatory, neuroprotective, pain relieving, and anti-anxiety actions of CBD. They also noted that it may protect against GI damage and promote the healing of traumatic skeletal injuries. However, the supportive evidence was mostly from animal studies in which high doses of CBD were administered, not from clinical studies performed on human subjects. The data is also not entirely consistent. The authors encouraged more studies on CBD and sports performance to be conducted so that better conclusions can be drawn.
From a legal perspective, the FDA has not reviewed or approved any CBD products to make specific health claims about exercise and recovery. While the preliminary science is interesting, consumers should be aware that taking CBD to promote exercise recovery is not approved by FDA at this point in time. The research is in the very early stages, and we do not know what the long-term data will show, so consumers should discuss it with their personal doctor, find out the laws in their state regarding CBD, and do their own due diligence on the manufacturer they purchase from. Assuming the CBD product chosen is legal in your state, there is no law preventing you from conducting a science experiment on yourself – but just be aware that is what you are doing, and there are health risks inherent in any experiment.
Shanon Henry is a Medical Marijuana Research Analyst working for a medical marijuana clinic that helps patients obtain medical marijuana recommendations. They can register with local medical marijuana programs and get a cannabis card to make it easier for them to get medical marijuana.
“First of all, we need to understand the importance of medical cannabis…”
Medical cannabis and its constituent cannabinoids, such as tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD), are used as medical therapy to treat disease or alleviate symptoms, most notably as an antiemetic, which is effective against vomiting and nausea. They also offer a variety of therapeutic applications which include:
- Relief of muscle spasms
- Relief of chronic pain
- Reduction in interlobular pressure inside the eye
- Suppression of nausea
- Weight loss – increase and restore metabolism
- Anxiety, depression, or OCD
- Multiple sclerosis
- And much more
CBD has a positive impact on your workout and recovery.
CBD can help in muscle recovery. Exercising actually causes damage to your muscles, causing inflammation. CBD’s anti-inflammatory properties could make the cannabinoid a useful addition to any post-workout regimen. In addition, CBD is often considered to have potential pain-killing abilities.
Hailing from Costa Mesa, California, Conor Denman graduated from FIDM with a degree in product development and merchandising. With a natural eye for product design and a love of business, Conor decided to invest his skills into his own start-up, SMPLSTC.
“Broadly speaking, CBD does decrease inflammation when it’s rubbed on muscles as an ointment or taken orally…”
So using CBD products before or after a workout could potentially help with recovery. My personal experience has been just that. CBD helps me recover fast and, in turn, allows me to get in more and better workouts due to a fast recovery rate.
Ashlee Van Buskirk is the owner and operator of her own fitness and nutrition coaching business called WHOLE INTENT.
“One thing that many consumers still get confused about with CBD these days is the difference between CBD and cannabis…”
It often helps to clear the air on the subject right from the get-go. While CBD is derived from cannabis, it does not contain the psychoactive substance of cannabis (called THC) that makes users feel high. CBD does not cause impairment, it will not get you high, and it is completely legal in the United States.
CBD is actually used widely for its pain relief applications, alongside its long list of benefits (e.g., better sleep, mental health, acne, etc.). And while research is still ongoing about the actual benefits of CBD, many fitness enthusiasts have adopted the cannabinoid oil to support their fitness routines. In fact, many fitness buffs will utilize CBD for pre-workout and post-workout benefits.
Current evidence has suggested that CBD can be used for fast-acting pain relief; most commonly, it is used as an anti-inflammatory before workouts. Others have used CBD as a pre-workout to help control their stress response, as research has shown it may help ease anxiety. This may help you focus on a tough workout and crush your performance throughout every minute of it.
Additional evidence has shown that CBD may help alleviate delayed onset muscle soreness following an intense workout. However, we should note that while many studies are promising, there still is not enough research to fully support this claim.
Maxime works with CBD Flower USA.
“CBD has become increasingly popular for a number of reasons…”
Cannabidiol (CBD) interacts with the body’s endocannabinoid system to help regulate homeostasis throughout the body, and this would include the muscles.
Once you have gone through a strenuous workout, the tiny microfilaments within the muscle fibers can become damaged. This will lead to pain, loss of strength, and inflammation within the muscles. Your body will need to repair itself for the next three to five days. During this time, it will repair the damage and strengthen the fibers. You may find that it is difficult to exercise a specific muscle while the body is repairing itself. This can ultimately slow down your progress in your training. However, injuries can keep you out of the gym for months.
CBD can offer a variety of unique benefits during the recovery period. These may include:
- Decrease inflammation to help prevent damage to the surrounding muscles.
- Improve the quality of sleep to support the regeneration process.
- Help the muscles relax, which will decrease spasms and tension.
- Block the transmission of pain.
These benefits help explain why athletes report improvements in their recovery times once they have used CBD. To get the most from your CBD products, you should combine it with other recovery measures, such as massage, drinking plenty of water, and getting lots of rest.
While CBD and muscle recovery are still being explored, there are lots of research studies on the horizon.
Estelle Russo is the Chief at Paleo Safe and a certified personal trainer who calls Texas home. She combines the latest personal training trends and advice with healthy eating with her clients and online.
“As a certified personal trainer during the COVID crisis…”
I have had countless clients ask about using CBD oil and gummies as a recovery aid. My clients – especially the weight lifters – have seen great results using CBD as part of their post workout recovery. The oils are especially effective on sore muscles during off days.
Hailey Groo is a life-long researcher and CBD expert. She specializes in CBD subjects involving health and wellness.
“CBD actually works by binding with the natural cannabinoid receptors in your body’s endocannabinoid system…”
Everyone is born with these receptors, and our bodies actually make cannabinoids on their own. CBD mimics these natural cannabinoids and fits perfectly into the receptors in the endocannabinoid system. Once bound, CBD causes the body to send hormonal signals that can have a variety of effects. Again, the benefits of CBD are yet to be conclusively proven, but scientific research and testimonials show that CBD can be:
- Anti-inflammatory – CBD helps in modulating the EIMD inflammatory process and produces anti-inflammatory cytokines. Anti-inflammatory effects are generally observed at higher CBD doses, although lower doses have indicated efficacy in some studies.
- Pain relieving – The analgesic effects of CBD on chronic neuropathic pain are found to be effective in attenuating its initial development.
- Bone health – CBD has empirical effects on bone structure and function. Bone resorption is suppressed by CBD. It also decreases the production of inflammatory agents at the site of injury.
- Agent of better sleep – CBD users are reported to have increased duration of sleep, which is necessary for optimal athletic performance. CBD is able to control the symptoms of REM behavior disorder.
It is easy to imagine the numerous benefits that those properties can offer athletes. When taken on a regular basis or as needed, CBD can help prevent serious injury, improve energy and endurance, and help athletes recover from activity.