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Unlock Your Fitness Potential: The Role of CBD in Muscle Recovery and Performance


The Role of CBD in Muscle Recovery and Performance

I remember years ago working with a trainer to get fit. He was very good, but I found myself so sore after his intense workouts that I began dreading seeing him. That is not ideal for reaching longer term fitness goals. Unfortunately, CBD wasn’t readily available at the time, so I just suffered (and walked funny for a few days).  If you are one of those people that struggles with getting fit because you suffer muscle soreness or joint stiffness after working out, you may find using CBD prior or just after exercise helpful. This can be in the form of an ingestible CBD for whole body relief or through the application of topicals to trouble spots. 


CBD is most widely known for use by those with chronic discomfort, trouble sleeping, and anxious feelings.  However, there are also many people that find it helpful with getting fit. This is because CBD has anti-inflammatory properties that may help minimize the soreness of both muscles and joints. 



No Pain, No Gain? Or No Gain Because Pain?


Woman lifting weights

If you are anything like me, after intense workouts you feel like a limp noodle, but then you wake up the next morning feeling like someone poured paste in your veins. Stiffness and soreness can make the next few days painful and unpleasant. There are a number of factors that contribute to stiff and sore muscles after working out. This is particularly true when you are increasing, adding repetitions, doing longer workouts, or working hard to build muscles. Working out actually inflicts microscopic damage to your muscles, which, oddly enough, is the goal. This is because your body’s repair process leaves the muscle stronger and larger than they were before. However, the damage leaves you sore and stiff in the meantime. The pain may make you hesitant to exercise again for several days. If you are anything like me after seeing my trainer – it makes me not want to move, much less exercise!


The technical term for the soreness is DOMS or “delayed-onset muscle soreness.” The good news is that it can be mitigated both before and after your workout. Some of the best preventions are a good warm-up routine and doing some low-intensity cardio. And any fitness trainer will tell you that stretching and preparing the muscles for your workout is always beneficial. Beyond the basics of good fitness practices, though - CBD may have a positive impact on the duration and intensity of muscle soreness. 


The International Journal of Physical Education, Sports and Health showed that trained athletes who used ingestible CBD after their workout recovered more quickly. They also felt far less muscle soreness 1, 2, and even 3 days after working out.


 The researchers’ conclusion was that “CBD appears to have a significant influence on muscle soreness associated with EIMD [exercise-induced muscle damage] DOMS when consumed immediately after strenuous exercise.”



CBD for Workout Recovery - Is CBD the Secret to Soreness-Free Fitness Training?


Post-workout recovery muscle massage

If you want to consider CBD for workout recovery, the next question is what to use and how much. 


One of the simplest ways to use CBD for recovery is to use a topical just after working out. This can be effective on specific problem spots. For example if you knees get stiff, or you are working particularly hard on a specific muscle group. There are lotions, which can be applied all over. However, most people find that slathering their entire body is not practical, so targeted application may be more helpful. 


Our most popular post-workout topicals:


This one has an intense deep freeze sensation because of the high menthol content. Some people love this on sore joints post workout.


  • Wildflower Relief Sticks – now rebranded as PlantsHealUs Relief Sticks



If you prefer no freezing sensation, the Blue Lotus Calm Salve is very popular for its excellent penetration, mild lavender and eucalyptus scent and the fact that it “stays in place” once applied.



Some athletes use CBD only when working out, while others take a consistent dose daily and an extra or double dose for workouts. 


For full body relief, try an ingestible method. Gummies, capsules, or oils can all be a good choice for recovery.


These are some of our most popular:


Enjoy Hemp CBD Relief Gummies provide not only CBD, but also turmeric and ginseng, which give it a little extra anti-inflammatory boost.  Gummies take 1-2 hours for onset, so consider taking them prior to working out.  



For those that prefer the more traditional CBD oil, Consider Blue Lotus Calm Oil – it is designed to calm anxious feelings, help with focus, and provide all the anti-inflammatory goodness of CBD and Spearmint oil. The organic spearmint helps offset the bitter taste of most CBD oil.  



Placed under the tongue 45-60 minutes before your workout. Allow the oil to sit as long as you can (about 30 seconds). This allows the mucous membranes in your mouth start the absorbing the oil. 



Don’t Forget about CBD for Sleep


CBD for sleep

CBD also has been shown to potentially improve sleep quality. This applies to everyone, whether you work out or not. There are many studies that show great sleep has a positive impact on muscle recovery. Likewise, too little sleep can have negative impact. See our article on CBD for sleep for full details. If you need help getting some good rest as a part of your workout recovery, consider one of these products:






Is CBD Safe for Athletes?


Woman running on a track

CBD has a very low side effect profile and is considered safe for almost everyone to use, but there can be mild effects. These can include short term tummy upset (this should be mild and resolve within a week of starting use. Some people find that CBD can make them drowsy, so start with a low dose if you are inexperienced with it and do incremental increases over time until you fund an effective dose without feeling sleepy. Dry mouth can occur for some, which is yet another reason to stay hydrated while working out. Some people experience increased appetite, though this is very mild compared to those who use THC. Most users find any side effects to be mild and short lived.


If drug testing is a concern, be aware that full-spectrum products DO contain a small amount of THC. Most research shows that very high doses have to be consumed on a regular basis (1000mg+ per day) in order to fail a drug test. However, regular use or high doses increase the odds.  If your job, scholarship, or sponsorship is in jeopardy if you fail a drug test, you should stick with THC free options or forgo using it.  If this is a concern for you, try these:


 

As always, feel free to reach out with any questions via chat on the website, call or text us at 407-235-0653 or email us at info@bluelotuswellnessandcbd.com

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