CBD and Working Out: Everything You Need to Know
Oct 22, 2020
CBD & Muscle Recovery: How CBD Can Complement Your Workout Routine
Anyone who has worked out has had days where they have worked out hard and spent the rest of the week barely able to move. Whether it’s a long-distance marathon, dance competition, or legs day, anecdotal evidence suggests that CBD and exercise could help you stay on track. Read on to discover the relationship between CBD and working out and why CBD could help speed muscle recovery after a heavy training session.
Why Does Exercise Make Us Sore?
Working out your muscles is the only way to make them stronger, but the strengthening process is by no means instant. Every time you work out your muscles, the millions of proteins that make up the cells actually become damaged at a microscopic level. The muscle then becomes inflamed as your body works to repair the damage, and this is what makes you feel stiff and sore.
As you keep working out in the same way and at the same level, your muscles strengthen and become more resistant to the movement. That’s why we experience less delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS) once we’ve gotten used to a particular routine. Could taking CBD and working out reduce DOMS? Let’s take a look at some common approaches.
Techniques and Strategies for a Faster Recovery
Typically, DOMS usually lasts for three to five days — this is far longer than you’d want to be out of action if you’ve got another game or event coming up. To recover more quickly, athletes use several measures in addition to taking CBD after working out, to speed up the process and get back into training:
1. Stretching, Massage, and Physiotherapy
CBD might help with muscle recovery, but it’s essential that you make sure that you’re actively preventing muscle stiffness by warming up and stretching out after you exercise. Stretching straight after a workout removes lactic acid from the area as well as increasing the blood flow that’s necessary for recuperation. Massage and other physical therapies can also work to increase blood flow by stimulating the area and draining any buildup of lactic acid.
In addition to combining CBD and working out, applying ice to the stiff or injured area can slow the rate of blood flow, and with it, the amount of inflammation. For best results, apply ice directly after your workout or injury, as ice won’t be as effective once the area is already inflamed.
Your muscles can’t repair while you’re causing more damage, so some amount of rest is essential. This will usually involve having a day or two of downtime, coupled with a healthy amount of sleep to maximize your body’s repair process.
4. Anti-inflammatories and Painkillers
As a last resort, professional athletes sometimes turn to non-steroidal anti-inflammatories (NSAIDs) to reduce the inflammation and discomfort following a workout. While NSAIDs like Ibuprofen and Aspirin are effective for relieving symptoms, they come with short-term side-effects and long-term risks that you might want to avoid if possible. This is one of the reasons why the CBD-and-exercise combination is becoming more and more popular among naturally-minded, high-end athletes.
How CBD Could Help with Muscle Recovery
We’ve covered some basics about muscle soreness and common strategies. Now, let’s talk about CBD and working out!
Specific studies examining the relationship between CBD and working out aren’t here quite yet, but we can apply the existing research to explore the potential for combining CBD and exercise.
We already know that CBD has anti-inflammatory properties and relatively low toxicity. While not tested extensively in the context of exercise, CBD has been seen to reduce joint swelling in arthritic rats, and we could expect that this same reduction in swelling could be helpful for injuries and post-workout muscle soreness.
Pain and inflammation often go together, and this is especially notable in the stiffness we experience following a workout. Fortunately, CBD appears to help regulate pain just as it can regulate inflammation. A study examining muscle pain in rats showed that stimulating CB1 and CB2 receptors reduced the pain-related behaviors — with local administration being more effective than systemic administration. What this means for CBD and working out is that applying a topical balm could provide fast and targeted relief when used in addition to your regular sublingual CBD oil.
Reducing Stress and Anxiety
Mental stress can put you at a greater risk of becoming injured while playing sports — increasing downtime while you recover. As a natural anxiolytic (anxiety-reducing substance), oral CBD could potentially help to prevent sport-related injuries by helping you to stay calm and focused.
As we explained earlier, the ultimate remedy for muscle soreness is rest. Much of the rest and repair that you need happens during the phases of sleep. Research suggests that ingested CBD could improve sleep quality by reducing REM sleep behavior disorder and excessive sleepiness during the day. Better sleep means more effective repair for your muscles — the icing on the cake in terms of the benefits of CBD and working out!
What is the Best Dosage for CBD and Exercise?
If you’d like to try taking CBD for muscle recovery, we usually recommend combining oral CBD drops with topical balms, salves, and cream. While oral CBD reduces workout-related systemic inflammation, topical CBD provides fast relief where you need it.
A typical dose of CBD drops will naturally vary from person to person, but you can generally start with one dropperful per day and increase by increments of a half dropper per day (to a maximum of four dropperfuls) until you reach the dosage that works for you. Topical CBD can be applied as often as you need it, as the active ingredients do not reach the bloodstream.
Enhance the Effects with Kanavia Organics CBD Oil
Now that you know why CBD and working out work so well together, the only thing left is to choose an oil. The CBD products that we sell at Kanavia contain broad-spectrum, phytocannabinoid-rich hemp oil combined with medium-chain triglycerides (MCT) oil for the best possible absorption and largest range of potential benefits. We offer neutral and flavored CBD tinctures as well as an all-natural muscle balm and delicious gummies. Try our products with free U.S. shipping, and please get in touch for advice from our medical professional staff.