As cannabis laws continue to relax across America and the rest of the world, we are seeing cannabis become incorporated into a range of new markets, and amongst the most surprising of the lot is the health and fitness industry. Yes – you heard us right!
It’s true that cannabis products have started to span the health and wellness sectors, with CBD-infused drinks and snacks, and even some that contain THC to promote certain health benefits for a well-balanced lifestyle.
Now professionals and exercise enthusiasts alike are turning to cannabis as a potential fitness aid and with marijuana now being the second most widely used drug among athletes after alcohol, we think it’s about time we addressed the matter.
Keep reading to find out three things everyone NEEDS to know about marijuana and exercise…
#1 Runners “High”
If you are a keen runner or an industry specialist, then you will likely be familiar with what is known as runner’s high. Runner’s high can occur during or after a run, and refers to the feeling of elation and euphoria as endorphins are released into the body.
Exercise enthusiasts will be familiar with the post-workout buzz we’re talking about. But what if we told you that you could increase your runner’s high with cannabis?
When it comes to marijuana, we have THC to thank for the feelings of happiness and euphoria during workouts such as running. Throughout our body there is the endocannabinoid system (ECS), which regulates a host of essential things from body temperature to the way we feel emotions and pain.
The ECS works by releasing endocannabinoids to bind to cannabinoid receptors throughout the body to regulate vital functions. In the case of exercise, it is the endocannabinoid known as anandamide, which is a neurotransmitter responsible for that feeling of post-workout “high.” When we consume cannabis, THC binds to the very same cannabinoid receptors as anandamide, thus providing the same high feeling.
As well as the feelings of a high, cannabis can also help keep you focused on your run (or during any other workout) as the cannabinoids work to control discomfort and pain and reduce inflammation, leaving you to zone in on the task at hand.
#2 Immersive Experience
Some people love nothing more than going for a long run, but for many of us working out of any kind is a necessity rather than something we like to do. With a lack of enthusiasm comes a lack of focus, and these are both crucial areas of fitness that cannabis can enhance.
Consuming the right amount of cannabis can work wonders for your focus as well as making exercise FUN! Whether it’s the gym or just a run around your local park, if you are not feeling your workout you will find yourself distracted by every little thing and very disengaged with what you are doing.
Cannabis has the ability to numb pain or discomfort, and can help you zone in on your workout, whether this means helping you block out the environmental noises on the run or helping you focus better on your form; you will find you are more in tune with your body than ever before.
What’s even more interesting here is that, during a recent study, researchers found that when we consume cannabis we can reap the benefits of THC for up to 28 days after consumption! It turns out that that THC is stored in our body fat, so when the body begins burning fat, small amounts of THC are released, allowing you relive that endorphin-filled high over and over (but in small doses, don’t worry you won’t be overcome with a potent high out of nowhere!)
#3 Say Hello to a New Age of Cannabis Consumption
We know what you’re thinking; surely smoking cannabis while exercising can’t be healthy? Well, you would be right – but with the consumption methods of marijuana being more versatile than ever before, smoking joints is a thing of the past!
Back in the day, you would find that smoking weed through a joint or a bong was the most popular and pretty much most common way to enjoy the flower. But as the cannabis industry has expanded and developed, we are glad to say that there are many other options now open to consumers.
From edibles, topicals, and vaporizers, there is a multitude of methods that work excellently with the health conscious amongst us. So, if you are hoping to reap the benefits of cannabis before your big run, don’t worry – vaping, or even edibles, offer all the benefits with none of the lung capacity related issues!
Many gym-goers opt for microdosing cannabis so that they can benefit from just the right amount of CBD and THC during their workout to reach their maximum potential.
If you have been ruling cannabis out for fear of smoking, think again – the choices are plentiful!
So, is Cannabis Your Favourite Workout Buddy?
If you haven’t used cannabis before, during, or after a workout but wanted to find out more, then we hope you have learned a thing or two today!
Although cannabis and exercise are a match made in heaven, we must state once again that it is never recommended to consume high levels of marijuana, especially before a new or dangerous workout.
Starting small and doing a familiar exercise is the best way to start, and you can then find out what works best for you.
Let us know in the comments your best tips for using marijuana while exercising!