Cannabis and exercise are not two things you would usually think go together.
But more and more people are advocating using marijuana when it comes to their workout regime.
Even more unusually, professional athletes believe CBD and THC can really help with their performance.
Senior author Angela Bryan, a professor in the Department of Psychology and Neuroscience at the Institute for Cognitive Science, said in a statement about the report:
“There is a stereotype that cannabis use leads people to be lazy and couch-locked and not physically active, but these data suggest that this is not the case.”
What People Think About Working Out High?
According to a report by Frontiers of Public Health, 8 out of 10 marijuana users in legal states take cannabis shortly before or after a workout.
That’s two-thirds (67%) who said they used it both pre and post workout.
About 600 cannabis users aged 21 and up living in California, Colorado, Nevada, Oregon, and Washington were questioned.
Those who used the drug an hour before working out and/or within four hours after breaking a sweat reported getting 43 more minutes of exercise each week than the cannabis users who didn’t.
52% of those who worked cannabis into their exercise regimens said they were inspired to go harder in their exercise regime.
Meanwhile, 70% said they enjoyed the workout more, while 78% believed it helped their recovery.
However, the report didn’t record how much cannabis these exercisers were taking, or what form they ingested it in (i.e., smoking it, vaping it or consuming edibles).
4 Benefits Of Cannabis And Exercise
So, how can marijuana assist with your workout?
Let’s take a look at the suggested benefits of cannabis and exercise.
1. CBD Helps in Pain Relief
CBD and CBD hemp oil products have remarkable abilities to reduce inflammation and heal pain.
Dr. June Chin, an integrated cannabis physician at MedLeaf RX, believes it enables you to focus or work harder by soothing any annoying pain you have.
Remember, different cannabis strains may produce different effects when it comes to working out.
This isn’t the first time cannabis has been linked to pain relief. A 2016 study using rats found that CBD could be used to help with arthritis pain and inflammation.
While that study was on rats, not people, a number of pro athletes stand by their CBD products and say they have enabled them to improve performance on the field and court.
2. THC Expands Your Lungs
THC, the primary chemical compound in cannabis that makes you feel high, might not provide the benefits you need for a weight-lifting session.
However, studies on THC have revealed that it produces bronchodilative effects. This means you get increased airflow as a result of consuming marijuana.
When you improve your lung capacity, you gain a potential athletic advantage and can potentially boost your performance while exercising.
3. Cannabis Acts As A Mind Stimulator
Researchers have discovered marijuana works on some brain receptors as the body’s natural endocannabinoids.
These are chemicals that act as mood-boosters.
They work the same way as the endorphins produced during a workout and can give athletes a head start on achieving their natural “runner’s high.”
4. Marijuana Helps in Weight Loss
There have been a number of studies which look at the connection between cannabinoids, metabolism, and body weight.
Another study found obesity is lower in cannabis users than in those who abstain.
However, marijuana strains which are incredibly low in THCV may not be effective as a weight-loss supplement.
Potential Risks of Using Marijuana for Athletes
There are lots of potential benefits to using marijuana to improve your workout.
However, you’ll also want to be aware of some of the risks.
1. Drug Testing In Sports
It is important to note that the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) has banned athletes from using cannabis.
Why? Because of its potential to help with improved performance.
Marijuana is a particular concern for competitive athletes, as many of the organizations that govern competitions and events require participants to submit to drug testing.
The World Doping Agency, for example, drug tests Olympic athletes, Ultimate Fighting Championship competitors, and participants in other major sporting events around the world.
CBD was removed from their list of prohibited substances in 2018. However, as of 2019, all other forms of cannabis are still banned.
2. Intoxication And Injury
If you don’t manage your high carefully, it could result in injury.
If you are taking any substance that has an altering effect on your body, you should be very careful about the dose.
Always consult a physician before taking cannabis or CBD as part of your workout.
Also, be mindful if you are handling heavy weights or pushing yourself physically, as you could be putting yourself at risk.
3. Cardiovascular Risks
Also remember cannabis and exercise can potentially increase your risk of heart attack in the hour after smoking it.
This is because it raises heart rate and causes blood vessels to dilate.
So, if you have heart disease, it could put you at risk if you smoke or ingest it before working out.
It may surprise you that cannabis and exercise can go hand and hand.
However, as long as you use caution, it can be a great tool for helping you boost your workout regimen.
Whether you’re new to marijuana or an experienced user, we at Green Kong want to help you find the right product for you.
We want to help you find a strain to get those gains!