CBD for runners is an effective tool for improving recovery which means better training and bigger results.
A few years ago, I started hearing whispers of ultra marathon runners crushing their uber long trail workouts thanks to the now legal Colorado trade of marijuana. I was intrigued, but not really sure how getting baked at 5AM to run before a full day of work was supposed to go.
Plus let’s be honest, I’m the girl who won’t even take a pain pill after knee surgery because I didn’t like feeling out of control. Marijuana was just not going to be part of my sports nutrition plan.
Luckily CBD oil, CBD gummies, CBD creams and CBD protein powders have hit the market and they work.
As always I wasn’t willing to recommend without testing and research. Now it’s been part of my routine in various ways since 2017.
Today we’re going to clear up any confusion about is CBD a drug, how does CBD work, CBD for runners benefits and how to begin using it as part of your routine for maximum benefits.
Is CBD Good for Runners?
CBD, it won’t get you high, but gives you the benefits portion of marijuana.
One 2016 study in arthritic rats, found that it significantly reduced joint swelling and pain ratings, without the side effects of other drugs! Nice.
- It is not a performance enhancer like a steroid
- It can enhance performance by reducing nerves
Of course that’s just one study, but there are many more underway like using CBD to reduce anxiety without the high. Which is actually something that many consistent users often report.
Knowing that there’s more work being done, I’m listing here the reported benefits from both brands and those who’ve tried it.
Benefits of CBD for Runners
One of the absolute biggest benefits is improved sleep. For athletes sleep is the wonder drug. In study after study it has been shown to enhance performance from speed to endurance.
CBD can help allow you to both fall asleep more easily and sleep longer.
Part of this is due to the other ways that it works:
- natural pain relief
- reduction of muscle aches and soreness
- reduced anxiety
- potential to reduce inflammation of Type 1 diabetes
- acne reduction
- promotes heart health
- promotes bone growth (healing stress fractures!)
Why Did CBD for Athletes Become so Popular?
I thought this was a fantastic question because it certainly seems like you heard about it a little and now there are tons of companies popping up. I think there are a few things happening:
- Success always encourages others to jump in to a market and it’s currently projected to be over 1 billion by 2020.
- Changing regulations are making it easier to sell these products even though CBD isn’t a banned substances.
- There are more studies now around it’s usage.
- Those changing laws are also making people more comfortable with these products
- It’s a non-addictive pain relief option, without some of the issues we know exist with others if taken before workouts
✅ Resilience CBD is what I recommend if you don’t want to read more! And if you’re ready to test it out use code AMANDARUN20 to get a 20% discount on your first order.
What is CBD oil?
Cannabidiol oil is extracted from the hemp plant
In fact, our bodies produce certain cannabinoids already! It’s part of our endocannabinoid system. Your brain has cannabinoid receptors which are what the body uses when you ingest marijuana.
- CB1 receptors: deal with mood, hunger, and coordination
- CB2 receptors: deal with the immune system and pain
CBD appears not to attach to either, but instead to encourages your body to use more of it’s own cannabinoids.
Hemp Oil vs CBD Oil: They aren’t the same.
Ok this can get confusing, so let’s try to break it down:
- Both come from the hemp plant
- Hemp oil is used in shampoos, lotions, etc for its high vitamin content
- Hemp oil is extracted from large industrial plots cultivated to have low to no traces of CBD or THC
- Hemp seeds contain no THC
- Hemp oil is basically like coconut oil, you can cook with it or eat it
- CBD is extracted from hemp grown specifically to be high in CBD
- Cannabis is the same plant that creates hemp and marijuana, just different species
Will CBD make you high?
Nope, it’s nothing like that. You’re thinking of THC which is the active component of the leaf.
Now as you’ll see below some products do contain a very small trace amounts of THC (.3%) in the pain relief cream because there is some research that you need the full source for maximum benefits. Kind of like not taking vitamin C alone, but rather eating the whole orange.
That minuscule dose will not give you the effect often discussed with edibles or smoking, where you will often find up to 30% THC.Ever wondered about the athletic application of CBD? Answering all your questions in this guide to CBD Oil #runchat #recovery Click To Tweet
In FACT, the results of CBD work on the same system that produces your very natural runner’s high!
Is CBD Cream Good for Runners?
How to Use CBD for Athletic Performance?
Should you take CBD before a run? Lots of questions about when and how to take CBD, so let’s talk.
Honestly, once I decided to dive in I was a little confused by the CBD sublingual drops, the creams, the lotions and the salves. What did I need, how much and when!
Types of CBD for Runners
Let my confusion, which lead to research save you time!
- Sublingual drops (under the tongue) are great for helping to reduce total body inflammation, calming, mood, etc. When taking it sublingual, let it basically absorb in your mouth, don’t just swallow it.
- Creams and lotions are ideal for localized areas of pain.
- Bath bombs are an alternative to the sublingual drops as you can absorb the CBD through the skin.
- Protein powders are an option for easily including it in your post run recovery smoothie.
- Gummies have become my go to when traveling to reduce stress on the plane and help me sleep at night.
Tips On Using CBD for Runners
1. Take it Nightly
Most people will take the sublingual drops a night to help them wind down and have a good night of sleep. It builds up in your system, so remember to try making it part of a nightly routine.
We know that quality sleep is one of the key components to good health and workout recovery, so this can help with that while also working on inflammation.
2. Try it Pre-Workout
I started to wonder about pre-workout usage based on the original stories of ultra runners and their edibles. A little self testing and research lead me to find it can be a great option for prior to long runs as a way of getting in to a flow and preventing muscle cramps as well.
We know that getting focused an in to a flow state can allow you to run farther!
Now others might find it makes them too sleepy for a great workout and I wouldn’t use it before a speed session, but worth knowing so you can decide what’s best for you.
Does CBD Help For shin splints?
Yes, it’s going to help lessen the inflammation and allow your muscles to relax. But then you have to do the work to recover from shin splints!
Can CBD Help Plantar Fasciitis?
Yes, it can also help here with lowering inflammation. But again it’s not magic, you have to work on those foot muscles and do the plantar fasciitis exercises to fully resolve it.
Best CBD for Runners
First a few things you need to know if you’re going to ignore my recommendation!
A 2017 study showed over 70% of CBD products are over or more commonly underlabled, meaning they don’t contain what you’re paying for! Again that’s why I’m excited to share Resilience CBD with you because they do a lot of testing to ensure product quality.
Additionally, it’s really important to all my fellow Amazon lovers to know what you see on Amazon isn’t CBD. It’s not allowed to be sold there, which means you’re buying hemp oil.
Look for Studies
The brands I recommend below are very open about all the studies they’ve done and you want this in any brand you choose. Of course I’m trying to save you that hassle by just sharing a great option!
Now, having tested out three different varieties of drops, a few different creams, bath bombs and gummies over the last 5 years, my ultimate choice is Resilience CBD.
✅And if you’re ready to test it out use code AMANDARUN20 to get a 20% discount on your first order.
Let me tell you why it’s my personal choice.
Resilience CBD Oil Drops
For all over inflammation fighting, relaxation, taking sublingual drops is ideal. The way to get the most from them is to hold it in your mouth for 60 seconds where it essentially absorbs under your tongue.
In the previous brands I tried, I needed to put it in and take a flavored drink to get past the taste, gag.
Not so with Resilience!
Also compared to the others, I noticed an actual difference when taking it. So much so that during a few days of super high stress, I took an extra dose during the day, which I never even pondered with the others.
If you want to ensure you are getting 0 THC (for a work drug test or anything else), opt for the Resilience Isolate, instead of the full spectrum drops.
**Update: I’ve had a number of private messages asking about the 300mg vs the 600mg dosage. That’s just telling you the size of the bottle, it doesn’t change the potency. I’d say the 600mg lasts just over a month if you use 1 dropper full daily.
Resilience CBD Gummies
I often refer to these as my chill pills.
While they are gummies that you can chew, I will suck on one with the same idea as letting the oil sit under my tongue. Having one during a super stressful day (hello visiting in-laws) or when I need help sleeping while traveling is perfect.
They aren’t going to make you high or anything like that. It literally just helps you calm down.
But basically a must on my order list.
Two tips for ordering! One is to use my Resilience CBD Discount code AMANDARUN20 for 20% off and the second is if you’re unsure, pair up with a friend. Here’s what I mean!
Resilience Give and Rise Project is all about reminding us all to come together to push each other to our best. After you’ve used the product for 30 days, they’ll give you the opportunity to give a friend a FREE product! What?!
Yup so why not buddy up, one of you try it first then the other…I mean you’ll both be convinced you need it forever after 30 days, but this feels like an easy way to start!
#2 Extract Labs
If you want something that’s even stronger, then Extract Labs is my second recommendation.
One of the unique things about them is that some of their oils contain CBD, CBN and CBG. Basically they act on the brain in slightly different ways and for some that means more pain relief or relaxation.
I was pretty excited to try this local brand and it’s one that I do continue to use.
If you’ve found that some oils don’t work for you, this one being stronger might actually do the trick. Again, no hemp smell and no weird after taste.
This brand is local to me in Colorado and also created by a Veteran. I think it’s really interesting how many Vets have found this as a tool and really want to share the best possible quality with others.
They have a much larger product line:
- CBD Tinctures in a variety of levels
- Pet formulas
- Vapes – please don’t
My Experience with CBD Oil
All right, I’ve told you the basics of why I like these specific products, but I also want to talk about what I noticed from using them consistently.
The products arrived during a particularly stressful period for me and I found after using it for a few nights, I also opted to take a half dose of the drops early in the day and used the cream consistently on my knee.
- I had my longest run by 2 miles since my knee injury started in 2016 (I took .5 CBD before the run)
- I finished that 15 miles without knee pain
- I proceed the rest of that week to continue having not just good runs, but faster and better feeling
- We went through the time change and I found myself adjusting more easily
- I’d been having some knee pain post shorter runs and that is continuing to diminish again
- The skin issues that had suddenly started in my late 30’s are absolutely better
This is just what I found within the first month of using the product, so I’m quite excited to make Resilience CBD a standard part of my training leading up to my next race!!
My only complaint is that now I want travel sizes from them because I know these are must have’s around race day and when traveling! And auto-refill seems like a must!
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This post is sponsored by Resilience CBD, but all opinions and testing results are my own.